Opinion—For Fanatics, You Should Test, Don’t Trust

Really moderate, or just for show? Iranian President Rouhani. Illustrative. FEMA/Marty Bahamonde.

Really moderate, or just for show? Iranian President Rouhani. Illustrative. FEMA/Marty Bahamonde.

Lots of smiles. Special phone calls. Even handshakes could be on the horizon. But for all the happy, peaceful facades of Iran, one shouldn’t forget why we’re dealing with them in the first place. Because they’re a bloody, terrorist-sponsoring dictatorship with an interest in weapons of mass destruction.

You want safety from terrorists? You want low, stable oil prices? Then don’t trust Iran. Here’s why.

Want to know the big reason why the world is suddenly more open to compromising with Iran and reducing the sanctions on them over their nuclear program? Because the Iranians have done an exceptional job of convincing the world they are finally willing to negotiate in good faith.

At last, Iran is willing to back down from their interest in nukes. At last, a peaceful solution is just around the corner. At last, Iran has a reasonable, moderate president.

Yeah, right.

Israel is right to point out that the person who really calls the shots in Iran is Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei. The same guy who’s been in charge throughout their current nuclear pursuit. And therefore, the same goals and mindsets are still in charge in Iran.

We’ve seen this movie before. Iran had a moderate president in the early 2000s. Mohammad Khatami was a leader not unlike new president Hassan Rouhani. Open to talking and all that.

And during his leadership, Iran actually worked on nuclear weapons, even though there seems to have been a halt to “official” work on the project once they were exposed in 2002. In fact, for most of Khatami’s presidency, Iran did real nuke work.

The International Atomic Energy Agency noted in a 2011 report that work on designing a nuclear weapon, including testing, actually took place as part of a “structured program” prior to 2003, and “there are also indications that some activities relevant to the development of a nuclear explosive device continued after 2003.”  The so-called moderate Khatami was president from 1997 until 2005. So much for moderate.

In fact, the latest version of moderate—Rohani—was part of the nuclear negotiating team at the time. And he later bragged about tricking the West during the talks—all while Iran was still working on their nuclear program. In 2006, The Daily Telegraph released comments of Rohani originally published by an Iranian journal.

“When we were negotiating with the Europeans in Teheran we were still installing some of the equipment at the Isfahan site,” he said at the time. “There was plenty of work to be done to complete the site and finish the work there. In reality, by creating a tame situation, we could finish Isfahan.”

This came after Iran’s secret nuclear program had been exposed.

In other words, this is how Iran’s approach has been: Make major progress on the nuclear program in secret; after exposure of covert activity, use negotiations as cover to make more progress; make some concessions to buy time; repeat as necessary.

So with the world meeting with Iran this week, the world powers need to remember the past. Don’t make compromises just because Iran makes compliments. Don’t relax sanctions just because Iran relaxes its posture. Only make real gestures when Iran makes real moves toward compliance—halting uranium enrichment, removing their stock of research-level nuclear fuel, closing their underground nuclear facility and allowing full access to all their suspected nuclear military sites.

It’s time to stop trusting Iran; it’s time to start testing them. Lest while we trust them, they end up testing a nuclear bomb.

(By Joshua Spurlock, www.themideastupdate.com, October 14, 2013)

What do you think?