Iranian Missile Dispute Has Israel Concerned

It’s “he said, she said” with nuclear implications. The US is arguing that Iran agreed to discuss their missile program as part of the nuclear talks, but Iran doesn’t see it that way. Considering the fact that Iran has worked on a space program that could lead to missiles able to reach all of Europe and the US, resolving this dispute is critical to global security.

Despite the matter’s importance, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is concerned the West could give in. He said the permanent nuke agreement with Iran “must dismantle the Iranian ability to either produce or launch nuclear weapons, and this has yet to be achieved, and without the insistence of the major powers it will not be achieved.”

In comments released by his office, Netanyahu highlighted the preliminary nuclear deal with Iran, in which Iran remains able to enrich nuclear fuel and hasn’t negotiated any capabilities of their missile program. “I view with concern that fact that Iran believes that it will realize its plan to be a nuclear threshold state, with an enrichment capacity that it thinks cannot be touched, with the ability to develop both nuclear weapons and inter-continental missiles, which it is continuing to work on unhindered,” he said.

“This combination of enrichment, weapons and launch capabilities says that Iran is, in effect, receiving everything and giving almost nothing [in the nuclear deal]. This is the current situation. The permanent agreement cannot render this situation permanent.”

But while the Americans claimed the Iranian nuclear deal included Iran’s missile program, since the missiles are part of the United Nations resolutions mentioned in the deal, Iran feels differently.

The Fars News Agency reported that senior Iranian legislator Alaeddin Boroujerdi said of the nuclear negotiations between the world powers and Iran, “No permission has ever been issued concerning talks over missiles, and the talks are merely limited to nuclear subjects.”

That’s why Netanyahu is concerned. If Iran retains the ability to develop their global missile program, they would need even less time to break their agreements with the world powers and threaten the US with a nuclear warhead. Forget North Korea – a nuclear-armed Iran with intercontinental missiles could be a repeat of the Cuban Missile Crisis.

So it seems the West needs to settle who said what – and what was agreed upon for these nuclear talks – as soon as possible.

(By Joshua Spurlock,, February 24, 2014)

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