Saturday, March 11, 2006

Once upon a time in Iran

International communty has in recent months become quite suspicious and weary of Iranian plan to develop a civilian nuclear programme to produce energy. It has accused Iran of seeking to build a nuclear bomb, whereas Iran says it is only seeking to produce electricity. It also developed the machinery to separate uranium from its core itself because no foreign country was willing to supply it. The question remains how tackles Western fears that Iran is building atomic bomb?

One can certainly not find a solution to this issue in Security Council imposing any kind of sanctions on Iran, less start talking about the possible armed attack on Iran. One of the oldest civilization on Earth will not be changed in one day as Rome was not build in one day. Options for influncing that ancient country with self-content regime are very limited. West cannot make Iran peaceful and democratic, it can only help to create the conditions in which Irani people decide themselves to make it so.

Millions of Iranians are fiercely critical of their theocratic regime and of its crazily outsopken president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. But many of them also believe that Iran is entitled to use nuclear power to produce energy. The Iranian Society faces eternal question how to weed out the corruption and practices of clientism and nepotism and steer itself to better standards of living and welll being together. Will eforts keep moving forward or stall? As said the solution is not in imposition of sanctions on nuclear issue and/or on human rights issue. The efforts and the subsequent results have to come from the Iranian society itself. Otherwise there will an anti-western revolt among majority of population. It is not wise argument to suggest that West or Europe should trigger Iraq-like madness since it may only benefit the affluent religious circles in Iran.

Nevertheless, it is a historical fact who used the atomic bomb for the first and last time. It was decribed then as an excessive use of force, which went against principles of international humanitarian law. This time around much better decision-making is needed.


At 8:20 PM, Blogger Miha Movrin said...

It's true Iran has a strong opposition to it's theocratic regime. Some 10 years ago there was even possibility of real political change. Existence of real opposition is what differentiates Iran from some of the neighborhood states (like Syria or Iraq before the war). However, Ahmadinejad won the election, and ever since Iran’s communication with the rest of the world had significantly deteriorated. Bearing that in mind there is no realistic possibility for the following scenario Jernej suggests: ”One can certainly not find a solution to this issue in Security Council imposing any kind of sanctions on Iran. […] The efforts and the subsequent results have to come from the Iranian society itself.”

In my opinion the international community simply cannot allow the regime like Iran’s to acquire nuclear technology. What is at stake here is Middle Eastern stability, since Iran’s position regarding Israel is well known. Furthermore, the combination of Iran having nuclear technology and Hamas in power in Ramallah is positively deadly. Note that Hamas still hasn’t renounced its die-hard position on destruction of Israel.

When Jernej observes that “West cannot make Iran peaceful and democratic, it can only help to create the conditions in which Irani people decide themselves to make it so,“ I heartily agree. We learned that lesson in Iraq. But when we are confronted with imminent threat of a rogue state producing nuclear weapons in Middle East, there is simply no time for something like that.

Security council has to intervene.

At 5:51 PM, Blogger Jernej Letnar said...

Miha writes that "What is at stake is Middle Eastern stability". I hereby submit that the West and Israel feed themselves on the instability of Middle East and especially countries in the Persian gulf. One character in recent Syriana movie aptly say that "their (US) oil corporation will continue to make high provifts provided that there is instability in the Middle East"

Miha, what is the difference between Iran and India? Last week Bush administration signed an agreement with in India on supply of India with nuclear technology in return for opening most Indian reactors to international inspection. Difference is only in inequal application of criteria to the same problem. Why should west trust India and why not Iran provided that international inspection continue?

One cannot rely on Rumsfeld-like understanding of nuclear threat. Remember what he said just before the US attack on Iraq when he faced with the faced that UN inspectors did not find any wheapons of mass destruction-"Absence of evidence in not a evidence of absence (of nuclear wheapons)". This logic may now feed US oil corporation in Middle East in the light of saggaring price ofl, but it cannot be valid argument to begin another crusade for private gains.

UN Security Council should not intervene in Iran.

At 9:14 AM, Blogger Miha Movrin said...

Jernej, I cannot accept your position, namely that stability in Middle East plays no role in this dispute with Iran and that the West and Israel actually “feed themselves on the instability of Middle East”. Correct me if I’m wrong, but following this logic the whole Middle East conflict is a charade, prolonged merely for profits of oil companies and of Israel. I’m a big fan of Syriana too but its script simply isn’t much of an argument here. Peace is.

I certainly agree with you, on the point that US have had a long history of double standards when it comes to international politics. However, this is a case where US position seems very much justified. One of things that differentiate India from Iran is that India has been pretty much at peace with Pakistan for quite some time now. Iran's establishment on the contrary renewed and strengthened its anti-Israel rhetoric, both on domestic and on international stage. Having that in mind, regime like Iran's simply shouldn't have technology to make nuclear weapons. With regard to its geo-strategic position even less so.

Casualties both on Palestinian and Israeli side of this conflict, which lasts more than half of century, is for me good enough a justification to put pressure on Iran.


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