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Old 01-22-2012   #41
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All this and without deep reading on such matters puzzles me. Iran develops and reveals an underground factory, which is inspected by the IAEA and under safeguards - which IIRC includes time lapse CCTV and more. Why would the Iranians allow such external oversight?
In short, they are required to. Safeguards is a requirement of the non-proliferation treaty. Iran has, in force, a safeguards agreement (really a treaty with the IAEA) on such safeguards.

A secret, operational enrichment facility (ie. currently enriching uranium) would be another violation of Iran's safeguard agreement and would be perceived as clear evidence that Iran's nuclear efforts are not peaceful. I think it would almost certainly result in an attack on Iran.

It's important to note, however, that Iran is using a bit of "lawfare" to its advantage. Iran is supposed to notify the IAEA whenever it decides to construct a nuclear facility, but it unilaterally abrogated this requirement and reverted to the old standard whereby they only had to inform the IAEA of a facility's existence 180 days before nuclear material is introduced. In essence under this old standard Iran can (or rather claims it can) construct nuclear facilities in secret as long as nuclear material is not introduced to the facility. Details here.
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Old 01-22-2012   #42
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Originally Posted by Ken White View Post
It was three hundred and sixty (360) to the dollar. I wonder what could've gone wrong...

ADDED: That was the real rate -- the official rate was 75 : 1.00. Nobody used that except the Banks...
An aggression by a powerful neighbour and eight years of war may have had a role in it.
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Old 01-22-2012   #43
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An aggression by a powerful neighbour and eight years of war may have had a role in it.
Tch, tch -- and you an Economist...

Yes, a role or a factor, sure -- but the root cause is various actions of the Government of Iran.

Note Iran at this LINK. The war to which you refer ended in 1988, while its effects contributed, the first real elevation occurred in 1993 but the major upswing occurred in the last seven or eight years as a result of blunders by the Ayatollahs not a war more than ten years past...
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Old 01-22-2012   #44
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Default But the Ayatollahs are nothing if not true believers.

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the root cause is various actions of the Government of Iran.
You have to be a true believer in the free market to crank up a privatization program in the context of sanctions preventing international investments in your country.
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Old 01-24-2012   #45
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Default The deal the West could strike with Iran

A rare insight into the diplomacy with Iran, by a retired British diplomat, including the offers made - which the author contends should have been accepted:http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worl...with-Iran.html

I cite the last two paragraphs:
Quote:
At the moment, however, we are locked into a process of imposing ever tighter sanctions on Iran. This economic warfare has many drawbacks. It requires an exaggeration of the Iranian “threat” that fuels the scare-mongering of those who want this pressure to be a mere step on the way to war. It risks provoking retaliation, while hurting ordinary Iranians. And it risks higher oil prices that the West can ill afford. Moreover, even if Iran were unexpectedly to give way, coercion rarely delivers durable solutions. Its effect on motives is unpredictable. It can breed resentment, while restrictions can be circumvented in time.

It may be asking a lot of our leaders that they swallow their words, lower their sights and focus on a realistic target. They could do it, though, and the talks due to take place shortly in Turkey could be the setting for a change of course. What is much more likely, unhappily, is that we will continue to see a variant on the devil having the best tunes. Far too many American politicians see advantage in whipping up fear of Iran. I can almost hear them sneering that the NPT is for wimps. The odds must be that they will continue to propel the West toward yet another Gulf war. Still, nothing is inevitable.
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Old 01-24-2012   #46
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Tch, tch -- and you an Economist...

Yes, a role or a factor, sure -- but the root cause is various actions of the Government of Iran.

Note Iran at this LINK. The war to which you refer ended in 1988, while its effects contributed, the first real elevation occurred in 1993 but the major upswing occurred in the last seven or eight years as a result of blunders by the Ayatollahs not a war more than ten years past...
Event and its causes do not need to have the same date.
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Old 01-24-2012   #47
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Default True -- and with respect to monetary and fiscal movement, rarely do.

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Event and its causes do not need to have the same date.
However, Government tinkering is most often the root cause. In the US , the result then gets the sitting President applause or disapproval when he likely had little to do with it. Same deal with wars and such...

In the case of Iran, folks within get the word out that a combination of official corruption and poor policies jointly lead to poor results, exacerbated by the sanctions and resultant smuggling (both a result of government policy).
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Old 01-27-2012   #48
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Default Will Israel Attack Iran?

Will Israel Attack Iran?

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--------
Read the full post and make any comments at the SWJ Blog.
This forum is a feed only and is closed to user comments.
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Old 01-29-2012   #49
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Default National Interests

Why is a nuclear-armed Iran incompatible with our vital national interest? In lay terms - why cant we live with a nuclear-armed Iran?
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Old 01-29-2012   #50
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Default Living with a nuclear-armed Iran?

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Why is a nuclear-armed Iran incompatible with our vital national interest? In lay terms - why cant we live with a nuclear-armed Iran?
A good question and one that could be asked about other nations that have gained a nuclear weapons capability: Israel, India, Pakistan, North Korea, South Africa (renounced), Libya (renounced) and Ukraine (renounced).

So in lay terms I'd say:

1) Geography - being in a rather volatile region
2) History of relations, or lack of them between Iran and the USA since 1979
3) The Israel-US relationship, notably within American politics
4) A Western policy of avoiding more nuclear capable states, NPT etc
5) Fear that Iran is a crazy, irrational state - in American and a few other's eyes
6) The fear that other nuclear capable nations will decide to go for weapons

If for example Brazil decided to for weapons, how would the West react? Could the USA live with that decision? Many nations are known to have considered going for nuclear weapons since 1945, without being under duress.

I'd recommend checking this website:http://www.thebulletin.org/

Where I've taken this quote from an article on Iran:
Quote:
Crying wolf. As strategic analysts Anthony Cordesman and Khalil al-Rodhan remind us, in the 1990s, high-level American and Israeli policymakers repeatedly warned of an Iranian bomb by the year 2000. When that did not come to pass, policymakers warned of an Iranian bomb by the year 2005. Then they said it would happen by 2010. Now the talk puts Iran's nuclear debut in the 2013-2015 time frame, if not sooner.
Link:http://www.thebulletin.org/web-editi...n-nuclear-bomb
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Old 01-29-2012   #51
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Default Iran

Thanks for your response...yes, all the standard replies likely to be recited. I remain unconvinced.

How about this for thinking out of the box:
- If the assumption that a nuclear-armed Iran will CAUSE Saudi Arabia to buy the capability from the Pakistanis, then wouldnt the ultimate deterrent environment be created, with the dominate Sunni, Jewish, and Shia states as co-belligerent nuclear-armed states balancing each other?
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Old 01-29-2012   #52
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Thanks for your response...yes, all the standard replies likely to be recited. I remain unconvinced.

How about this for thinking out of the box:
- If the assumption that a nuclear-armed Iran will CAUSE Saudi Arabia to buy the capability from the Pakistanis, then wouldnt the ultimate deterrent environment be created, with the dominate Sunni, Jewish, and Shia states as co-belligerent nuclear-armed states balancing each other?
Only if one believes that nuclear deterrence will inevitably work. It would be very dangerous to assume that nuclear co-belligerents would actually produce a stable and long-lasting peaceful balance. By that logic we can eliminate war by giving everyone nuclear weapons.
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Old 01-29-2012   #53
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Default We could and likely will. No big thing.

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Why is a nuclear-armed Iran incompatible with our vital national interest? In lay terms - why cant we live with a nuclear-armed Iran?
Anything in the US that has to do with Iran is much more dependent on US domestic politics than anything else...

Reality is not an issue.
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Old 01-29-2012   #54
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Default Iran

The factors I find most interesting regarding the Iran debate are the 1979 Hostage Crisis, threat to Israel, proliferation, and terrorism. The world has changed a lot since 1979 (and in many ways is very much the same). While most Americans remember the hostage crisis, few remember that the Pakistanis sacked our embassy in 1979 as well - we seem not to hold it or their current inaction against them. If we can put the Vietnam experience behind us and embrace the Vietnamese as both economic and security partners, I dont understand why the same outcome is not possible with the Iranians. Regarding the threat to Israel, most Americans are unaware of the fact that the Israelis did not perceive the Ayatollahs as a problem originally, and in fact, secretly tried to give them weapons after Iraq attacked them. When discussing proliferation, the French and Israelis tend to be amongst the worst offenders. Terrorism is an interesting topic these days. Israel is concerned about Iranian sponsored terrorism, yet someone (Israel?) is attempting to terrorize Iranian scientists, and most Americans seem supportive. Most Americans fail to appreciate that the second most spectacular terrorist attack of the last 50 years was the MEK attack against the Iranian government in 1981, thus our two nations share the status of being victimized by terrorists.
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Old 01-30-2012   #55
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The factors I find most interesting regarding the Iran debate are the 1979 Hostage Crisis, threat to Israel, proliferation, and terrorism. The world has changed a lot since 1979 (and in many ways is very much the same)...I don't understand why the same outcome is not possible with the Iranians.
Many reasons IMO, foremost among them is that the Iraniha embarrassed us and while many American correctly sense that should not have happened for a variety of reasons, it did and to some, that's unforgivable. Of course, one must also consider that Iran also serves as a neat target to justify a lot of DoD. DoS and others fiscal legerdemain ably abetted by a Congress that needs villains to rail against...
Quote:
Most Americans fail to appreciate that the second most spectacular terrorist attack of the last 50 years was the MEK attack against the Iranian government in 1981, thus our two nations share the status of being victimized by terrorists.
Heh. True. However, our protection of MEK in recent years hasn't helped...

Common sense is a not US foreign policy establishment trait...
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Old 02-04-2012   #56
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Is Iran trying to develop a missile that could reach the "Great Satan"?The missile under construction at an Iranian research-and-development facility, which was damaged by a mysterious explosion in November, was a long-range missile prototype with a range of 6,000 miles – enough to hit the United States, a senior Israeli official said Thursday in a speech to a defense and security forum.

At the time of the Nov. 12 explosion at a facility some 30 miles outside Tehran, Iranian officials insisted that the suspicious blast was an accident. It occurred, they said, during experimentation on a medium-range missile – one capable of reaching Israel.
http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Foreign...-reach-America
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Old 02-04-2012   #57
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More on the Youtube

Israelisches Werbevideo emprt Iran, Von Dominik Peters, 04.02.2012, Der Spiegel

Quote:
Mossad-Agenten, verkleidet als Frauen, und ein explodierender Atomreaktor in Iran: Aus diesen Zutaten hat eine israelische Kabelfernseh-Firma einen makaberen Werbespot gemixt. Der Videoclip verbreitet sich im Netz rasant - und erzrnt die Gemter in der Islamischen Republik.
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Old 02-04-2012   #58
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Default cough--bulls@#t--cough

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Is Iran trying to develop a missile that could reach the "Great Satan"?The missile under construction at an Iranian research-and-development facility, which was damaged by a mysterious explosion in November, was a long-range missile prototype with a range of 6,000 miles – enough to hit the United States, a senior Israeli official said Thursday in a speech to a defense and security forum.

U.S. Plays Down Warning by Israeli Over Iran’s Missiles, by Ethan Bronner. The New York Times, February 2, 2012.
Quote:
Speaking on the condition of anonymity because assessments of Iran’s missiles are largely classified, the officials said that Iran might harbor the ambition of having missiles that could reach the United States, but that it was not close to achieving that goal. They declined to say what kind of work was being done at the base where the blast took place.

Today, the maximum range of Iran’s known ballistic missiles is roughly 1,200 miles, rocket experts say.
That means they could reach targets in the Middle East, including Israel, as well as Turkey and parts of Eastern Europe.

Iran is known to be working on missiles with a range of 2,000 miles, which are considered medium range. The United States defines long-range or intercontinental ballistic missiles as having ranges greater than 3,400 miles.
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Old 02-05-2012   #59
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cough--bulls@#t--cough.
Well yeah, they replaced the Red Oxide fuel with BS. That's how they got the extra range...

Quote:
(Reuters) - Iran will target any country used as a launchpad for attacks against its soil, the deputy Revolutionary Guards commander said, expanding Tehran's range of threats in an increasingly volatile stand-off with world powers over its nuclear ambitions.
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...81409R20120205

If you don't have weapons with enough range, guess you have to move the weapons you do have closer to the target.
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Old 02-07-2012   #60
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Hill Poll: Voters willing to see US attack Iran over nuclear weapons

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Nearly half of likely voters think the United States should be willing to use military force to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon, according to this week’s The Hill Poll.

Forty-nine percent said military force should be used, while 31 percent said it should not and 20 percent were not sure.

Sixty-two percent of likely voters said they were somewhat or very concerned about Iran making a terrorist strike on the United States, while 37 percent said they were not very concerned or not at all concerned about it.

Nearly half — 49 percent — of likely voters also said they opposed cutting military spending to balance the federal budget, while 40 percent said it should be reduced.
With hindsight, the Vietnam syndrome of fearing overseas wars was a really, really good thing.

Last edited by Fuchs; 02-07-2012 at 01:56 PM.
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