Thursday, June 27, 2019

FM Reiterates: Iran Will Never Seek a Nuclear Weapon

Iran has been disavowing nuclear arms since 2003

There appears to be substantial misunderstanding around the world about the specifics of the P5+1 nuclear deal with Iran. The deal is not in any real way about nuclear weapons, and when the deal was reached Iran had no nuclear weapons program, and had for over a decade disavowed the very idea of ever acquiring them.

Talk of Iran acquiring such a weapon has entirely been talk out of Western hawks, and no matter how many times Iran reiterates that nuclear weapons are in violation of religious law, the allegations continue. Iranian FM Javad Zarif reiterated that matter again today, saying Iran “will never pursue a nuclear weapon.”

By contrast, Zarif pointed out that the US has nuclear weapons and has actually used them in the past. He expressed surprise that President Trump was worried about killing 150 people in an attack on Iran, asking “how many people have you killed with a nuclear weapon?”

The P5+1 deal was always meant to govern Iran’s civilian nuclear program, the only one they have, and which has no military dimension. At present, Iran is enriching uranium to 3.6%, which is the level used in an electricity-generating plant at Bushehr. This is the sum total of Iran’s program.

While Iran has suggested specific commitments within the P5+1 deal may change, since the US after all dishonored that treaty, this too would be totally unrelated to militarization. Iran’s enrichment program is only producing at very low civilian levels, and weapons-grade uranium is in excess of 90%, far beyond Iran having shown the ability to even approach, let alone produce.

And once again, Iran’s capacity to enrich uranium is neither here nor there, since they have repeatedly disavowed ever having nuclear weapons as a formal religious tenet, since 2003. President Trump promised to be Iran’s “best friend” if they’d only disavow such weapons. Iran did so before Trump’s comments, and they’ve done so after. The result from Trump was a solid day of threatening total obliteration.

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