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The truth about the Accord

editorial

Since signing the accord in early morning of Sunday, local time in Geneva, there has been much discussions about this agreement. President Obama and Secretary Kerry described it as a major achievement in the course of preventing the clerical regime from obtaining nuclear bomb, while others strongly criticized the Administration for leaving the regime's nuclear apparatus intact and making unnecessary concessions to the regime. Simultaneously, the Iranian regime claims that the world powers have recognized the right to enrich uranium for the clerical regime, while some within the system have gradually begun to call it a retreat from its previously held position.

 

One question is if this regime can be trusted. Past experience says no. Today Reuters reported that “Iran will pursue construction at the Arak heavy-water reactor, Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif was quoted as saying on Wednesday, despite a deal with world powers to shelve a project they fear could yield plutonium for atomic bombs.” France has already expressed concern about Zarif’s remarks.

This is what also Rouhani said “I want to assure our people that the principles set by people, the rights which belong to the people, the framework which the Supreme Leader has set, these will be applied until the end of the negotiations. Meaning that in the country, our nuclear right will be operational with more strength and clarity. Even the right of enrichment which is a part of our nuclear rights will continue. It [enrichment] is being continued today, it will continue tomorrow, and our enrichment will never stop. This is our red line."

Head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization further said “'Work at the Arak reactor will continue… Research and development will continue. All our exploration and extraction activities will continue. There are no activities that won’t continue."

These remarks need no explanation.

However, what is missing in all claims and counter claims or even the independent analysis is a thorough assessment of the state of the Iranian regime and the reasons which led to this agreement. There are correctly references made to the impact of the international sanction but not a comprehensive assessment. Without such assessment, it would be hard to come to a comprehensive conclusion.

The accord on the one hand reflects the desperate situation of the clerical regime to reach an agreement with the hope to overcome its domestic crisis while being extremely concerned that this first step in retreating from its previous position would lead to serious consequences, threatening the survival of the mullahs in power. On the other hand it reflects the failure of the Obama Administration to benefit from mullahs' weakness and need for an agreement to put an end to their nuclear ambition.

Thus, allowing regime the opportunity for further deception and efforts to maintain its nuclear weapons program. So, in this respect no excuse or spinning could change the reality.  No doubt the regime has retreated from its previous position, but that is simply due to its own vulnerability and no more. The US Administration cannot claim any credit for that as the outcome falls far short of what it should have been achieved. 

The regime, domestically, is under enormous pressure from the Iranian people to end this destructive program, which has cost the Iranian people dearly, demonstrating that, contrary to propaganda by the regime and its lobbies outside Iran, the Iranian people strongly reject mullahs' nuclear program and want an end to it.

Mismanagement of the economy had also brought the country to the verge of economic collapse, exerting more pressure on the regime.  Finally, international sanctions forced the regime to the corner and denied it the opportunity to benefit from the oil revenue and its relations with the rest of the world to put a lead on domestic crisis. The US Government and others failed to understand this simple fact, which is the basis for the regime entering the negotiation.  Thus, there is no change of heart or change of mind, but the hardheaded realities that forced the regime to engage in a "charm offensive". What needs to be understood for the next round is that mullahs' regime is very vulnerable and very desperate to end international sanctions. Therefore, full implementation of Security Council resolutions, ending all enrichment activities, destruction of the regimes nuclear weapons program capabilities and snap inspection of every sites, declared or undeclared, are the least that must be implemented.

For quite some times, the prime fear of the regime's establishment has been the eruption of a major uprising, which would be much more difficult, if not impossible, for the regime to contain, no matter what suppressive measures it may deploy. It was this fear that led Khamenei to agree with change from Ahmadinejad’s style to that of Rouhani, hoping to take advantage of Western naivety and illusion about Rouhani to buy time for its faltering regime and gain concessions from Western countries.

In a nutshell, US Government, as the main party in these negotiations, must be held accountable for violating six UN Security Council resolutions for being fixed with this misguided notion that concession would work with terrorist regimes.  The UN resolution explicitly demanded a complete end to enrichment.  In this respect, the US must be held accountable for failing to end mullahs' nuclear weapons program at the time they are on their knees. Mullahs are instead offered further opportunity to hold international community hostage to their nuclear weapons program while continuing ruthless suppression of the Iranian people.

Whether the relief was 4 billion or close to 7 billion dollar is a secondary issue. So long as the regime is violating UN Security Council resolutions not a cent should have been released.    There can be no excuse for making financial concessions to the central banker of international terrorism. The US Government and 5+1 must also be held accountable for ignoring the ongoing human rights violations in Iran and daily executions of opponents. They must be held accountable for attempting to give credit to a regime that deserves nothing but rejection by the international community for its crimes against Iranian people.

Finally, looking to the future, with a right approach, it should not take another six months before a final arrangement to scrap mullahs' nuclear program is achieved. This can be done in few weeks. Make it clear to the mullahs that they have to abandon all enrichment activities and nuclear weapons program. The mullahs are known to be good in bargaining and being the master of deception, but they are also known to fully understand the language of firmness. Be firm with them, they will retreat further, make concession they will be more emboldened. It is now time for President Obama to be firm.

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