Iran and its nuclear weapons have been a matter of concern to the world for years now, and the ambition to talk Iran into an agreement opened again this week with the European Union foreign policy head meeting Iran over their nuclear program status. “I have been engaged in discussions with Iran for nearly four years on these issues, and I think this interim agreement is really, really important, but not as important as the comprehensive agreement we are currently engaged in,” said Catherine Ashton. The only time Iran ever signed a deal on nuclear weapons is in May 2010, known as the Tehran Declaration.
The Tehran Declaration is a joint declaration by Iran, Turkey and Brazil in which the primary agreements were: they would reaffirm their commitment to the treaty of Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, their cooperation in the areas of nuclear reactors and energy resources that included handing over 1,200 kilograms of LEU to Turkey for safekeeping. The international community, including the then newly elected President Obama, was glad that this process of dialogue has started with Iran.
President Obama is a man of extreme optimism and hope. His election as the first ever black president of America proves it, but anything in the extreme has an odd glitch and one among those moments for the US president was his “Hope for a nuclear free world” remark. What he meant was a nuclear free Axis of Evil world, which includes the states of North Korea, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq until its liberation and Syria that are in this league of dubious honor. Iran’s Tehran Declaration was greeted in the west as a move in the right direction. But Iran has been back and forth ever since that signing and their mullahs have been the biggest holdout.
Velayat-e faqih is an Iranian mullah’s bread and butter, and this theocratic governance gives them the right to bully the citizenry and in the process destroy an ancient civilization. One important fact that ought to be underlined is this is not a difference in emphasis between Iran and the democratic states of the world like many global analysts suggest; it is a clash of ideologies and civilizations. If Iran desires to return to the League of Nations, it will have to answer many important questions.
Those begin with Iran’s thermonuclear program and the thousands of lies they told about it before being caught by the inspectors. They should explain how, when they bred despotic groups like Hezbollah and Hamas, would they expect the international community to embrace them. What about their eyebrow raising friendships with North Korea, Russia and China as well as their constant meddling in the Israel-Palestine issue? Human rights in general, and woman rights in particular, have been abysmal in Iran and the modern, freedom loving people of Persia with half of the population under 25 years of age are demanding these answers too.
In the end, for the safety of the world at large, it is the responsibility of the United States and other democratic countries to keep Iran and its axis of evil allies completely devoid of nuclear weapons.
Opinion By Vikas Vemuri