Monday, April 17, 2006

The Wrong Direction

Mehrdad Sheibani, Rooz Online:
The new Iranian year (March 20, 2006) which began with the news of Iran’s acceptance of talking to the US, soon turned into a fury regarding Iran’s announcement of a nuclear breakthrough in its enrichment activities.

Ahmadinejad’s government began its term by attacking the nuclear and reform policies of the former administration led by Mohammad Khatami. Soon after that, he re-started the country’s “nuclear research” activities, which culminated in last week’s announcement that Iran’s scientists has successfully enriched small amounts of uranium, an event which seemed more to have propaganda value than usage in a nuclear weapon.

During the same period, US hardliners succeeded in pushing Iran’s nuclear issue to the UN Security Council, i.e. a forum that is under their control and management. The Council then gave Iran a month to suspend its uranium enrichment and other related activities. The countdown is now 14 days away.

In a wide propaganda campaign which conspicuously did not include Ali Larijani the highest official responsible for the nuclear issue, the government announced its success in enriching uranium to levels useful for nuclear power generation. Then the orchestrated rallies and celebrations took over the nation which “rejoiced” over the “defeat” of the West. Fars news agency even included former president Mohammad Khatami in the national celebrations, which is subsequently rescinded and refuted. READ MORE

But perhaps the most important point about the “good news– which is what the government labeled the enrichment success - was announced by the two presidential contenders, i.e. Ahmadinejad and Rafsanjani. They both said that with this accomplishment, Iran would participate at the UN Security Council with an “upper” hand. At the Council, the US will move to facilitate the elimination of the Islamic Republic and thus pave the way for its new international order in the Middle East, while the latter will strive to deflect the dangers and threats facing the Islamic regime.

On the eve of the Security Council meeting and with a “nuclear” Iran, two scenarios are presented for Iran’s next step. Iran may voluntarily suspend its enrichment activities, as the BBC predicts, and thus neutralize the Security Council stick. Or, Iran would continue its propaganda and claims about its accomplishment, while its international situation turns even more dire, especially since all the major powers including Russia, Iran’s nuclear partner, have said that the development was in the wrong direction. They all called on Iran to heed to the UN Security Council statement which demands that Iran suspend all its nuclear enrichment and related activities immediately.

True to form, Israel interpreted and announced that Iran’s successful enrichment of uranium a serious danger which should be concerning to the whole world.

Fourteen days from today, the events of the Security Council shall clarify whether Mr. Ahmadinejad’s theatrics about the nuclear issue were helpful in the survival of the Islamic regime, or pave the way for the “Iraqization” of Iran’s nuclear issue.