Skip to comments.Bush Blocks Euro Plan To Woo Iran Over Nuclear Freeze
Posted on 01/17/2005 8:40:29 PM PST by blam
Bush blocks Euro plan to woo Iran over nuclear freeze
By Anton La Guardia, Diplomatic Editor
America has hobbled an effort by Britain and other European countries to persuade Iran to freeze its nuclear programme.
Senior officials said privately that the US would not offer economic or political concessions to woo Teheran.
President George W Bush is trying to improve relations with Europe and will visit London and Brussels next month.
But in private, American officials are furious at the European Union's "engagement" with Teheran. They say they will not co-operate with what they see as the dangerous policy of giving the regime "rewards for bad behaviour".
The New Yorker magazine reported yesterday that teams of US special forces had infiltrated Iran to scout suspected weapons sites that would be targeted in future air strikes.
Seymour Hersh, the magazine's award-winning journalist, quoted a US official as saying that after Afghanistan and Iraq "we're going to have the Iranian campaign".
However, a senior US administration source said Mr Bush was unlikely to take any decisions on dealing with Iran for the next six months, while the issue was "blocked" by the European diplomatic initiative.
Another well-placed US source said "military action is only the last resort after other options have been exhausted".
He said Washington wanted first to exert pressure on Iran to halt its nuclear programme through an escalating series of diplomatic and economic sanctions at the United Nations Security Council.
Iran is widely believed to be pursuing a secret programme to build a nuclear bomb. The nation says it only seeks to develop nuclear power to save its oil reserves.
Under an agreement in November between Iran and Britain, France and Germany, Teheran was spared a referral to the security council after it agreed to suspend "voluntarily" the most sensitive parts of its nuclear programme: the enrichment of uranium and the reprocessing of plutonium. In return, the Europeans made a commitment to improve relations.
Working groups met in Geneva yesterday to discuss three issues: Iran's nuclear programme; improved technological and economic co-operation; and "firm commitments on security issues".
The EU has agreed to move ahead with co-operation even before an overall agreement is reached and has resumed talks on a trade pact with Iran.
But many of the benefits that Teheran seeks - advanced technology, investment in its oil industry and greater international acceptance - can be provided only with US agreement.
The Europeans hoped to entice the new Bush administration into the diplomatic process.
American officials dismiss the idea out of hand. One said the European effort was "comical". Another said the Iranians would break out of whatever constraints the Europeans imposed.
Washington believes that any concessions made by Teheran are temporary, and often imposed by their own technical problems. British officials admit their initiative is running into the sand.
Without US support, the Europeans believe their initiative is doomed and it will be only a matter of time before the Iranians resume their nuclear activities.
The US will not publicly denounce the initiative but appears content to watch it collapse.
It then hopes to bring the issue to the security council. Britain says such a move would be pointless because any sanctions would be blocked by Russia and China.
US blocks Euro Plan To Woo Iran Over Nuclear Freeze
It's Bush's fault.
Britain will be pulling out Iraq first chance they get. Bet on it.
"...giving the regime "rewards for bad behaviour"."
Have these leftist euro-morons ever heard of North Korea?
appeasement never works!!! Don't give them anything, not even humanitarian aid, when their situation degrades enough, the people will rise up against the Ayatollah. And absolutely positively no Oil for Food if we do get harsh sanctions in place.
Tehran is going to build a bomb. No doubt about it. They will have to test it somewhere to be credible.
What makes them think Iran ever stopped pursuing nuclear capability? Oh, right. Their persuasive diplomacy singlehandedly convinced the Iranians to lay these plans aside in good Faith while they willingly fall victim to blackmail.
They aren't dumb. To be credible, you not only have to demonstrate that it goes boom on your own soil... but you have to show you can deliver it to somewhere where it counts.
We know that they are working mightily on their long range missile with the help of North K. and Pakistan - and when they test they will tell us that they have 4 or 5 or 16 ready to go. The minimum range of the bird thaty have been testing can reach most of Europe.
Net net....neither us (US) or Israel can wait too much longer. Short strokes comming soon.....
Let's hope so.
I read somewhere that there's 35 or so hardened sites in Iran, each with parts of their nuclear program, all hard to destroy. It would take some doing to get them all.
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