Sunday, November 24, 2013

Interim Nuclear Accord Reached With Iran

A major breakthrough was reached in Geneva today on halting Iran's momentum toward nuclear weapons capability.  The foreign ministers of the major powers -- the U.S., UK, France, Russia, China, and Germany -- along with the European Union's representative, worked late into the night to achieve a six-month interim agreement that would halt uranium enrichment activities and allow international inspections to verify Iranian actions.  In return, over $4 billion in Iranian oil revenues would be unfrozen in Western banks, plus lifting of limited economic sanctions and an agreement not to impose new sanctions.

Israel's Likudnik Prime Minister Bibi "Bomb Bomb" Netanyahu expressed great disappointment in the interim agreement, calling it an "historic mistake", and will no doubt work through his neocon allies in the U.S. to undermine the agreement.  Hardliners in Iran will likely side with Bomb Bomb, since they see any agreement with the major powers as an infringement on their right to pursue enrichment and, by implication, nuclear weapons.

This is a first step, and it's hoped that Iran's new leadership was serious when they stated that they wanted a fundamental change in their relationship with the rest of the world.  Time -- in this case six months -- will tell.

BONUSHere's the clincher:
The concessions not only halt Iran’s nuclear advances but also make it virtually impossible for Tehran to build a nuclear weapon without being detected, the officials said. In return, Iran will receive modest relief of trade sanctions and access to some of its frozen currency accounts overseas, concessions said to be valued at less than $7 billion over the six-month term of the deal. The sanctions would be reinstated if Iran violates the agreement’s terms. (our emphasis)
Looks like a deal anyone but the most hard-core Likudnik could live with.

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