Iran’s Nuclear Ambition and the Rocky West
By ANANT MISHRA [Former Youth Representative to United Nations]
Iran’s hunger for Nuclear power has always been a hot topic for discussion and an itch on the Western World. The Middle East – Western relations are more than 50 years, so are the Iran’s ambitions.
The new Republic – Rise of nuclear demand
The demand for nuclear program began during the 1950s under the rule of Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlavi in support of United States at the back. However with the beginning of Iranian revolutions the days of Shah’s came to an end. After Shah being ousted from power, the relations between Iran and the Western world deterioted.
With the new Supreme Leader in power, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, conservative policies were implemented and the western nations were considered as traitors of Islam. Although the demand for nuclear program was never discussed in the first few years but this was added in the agenda right after the outbreak of Iran-Iraq war in the eighties. Saddam Husain was preparing his nation with nuclear ballistic weapons; Iran was too desperate to get its hands on.
In the nineties a new leader came into power, Ayatollah Ali Khomeini. He understood the desperateness and setup a program to develop Nuclear weapons with the help of Russian Federation, marking the nation’s first nuclear pact. However this big dream of his came to a halt after the US invasion of Iraq as it would clearly implicate Iran in the presence of WMD’s in Iraq. Nonetheless the Uranium Enrichment facilities remained operational.
Ahmadinejad: Iran in the nuclear race
The need for Nuclear weapons increased more after President Ahmadinejad came into power. He however did not openly encourage his thirst for nuclear power as but openly violated United Nations Security Council resolutions. On many occasions he threatened Israel to be “wiped off the map”. He began expanding nuclear research by opening facilities in Arak, and resumed production in Natanz.
This eagerness of Ahmadinejad for Nuclear power was criticised by world nations and soon this criticism took an action form. Many nations such as the US and the UK imposed strict sanctions upon the nation. Currently the United Nations Security Council sanctions include embargo for arms and nuclear materials, and financial prohibition to Iranian Institutes. While the sanctions imposed by United States comprise mainly on the Iranian oil industry, banning all sorts of trade with Iran and warning all American companies for investing in any form in Iran. Looking over the European Union sanctions, it mainly prevents all the banks in the global market to trade which at the end cuts off almost all the international trading fecilities.
Rouhani: Beginning of a new Era
With the new elections in Iran, situations tend to improve. On August 28th 2013, The IAEA submitted a report to the United Nations indicating decrease in Uranium production.
In an attempt to negotiate with the west, and remove all the sanctions on Iran, Rouhani approached the P5+1 nation (China, France, Russia, United Kingdom, United States and Germany) to talk and discuss about the ongoing nuclear program. Initial terms were finalized on 24th November 2013. While the agreement was supposed to stand for 6 months from the date of signing of agreement, enough time for the P5+1 nation to draft a resolution of usage, preventing the nuclear program from destructive means.
Both the parties saw this as an historical event, which could rewrite a new history between Iran-US relations. However not every nation was happy. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressing to the public said “What was concluded in Geneva last night is not a historic agreement, it's a historic mistake”, and criticised heavily on the lifting of sanctions from Iran, as it could escalate Iranian hidden plans on destruction. Although no direct threats were made but experts speculated that Israel might seek this as an opportunity to launch an attack on its nuclear fecilities. Saudi Arabia too has shown reluctance regarding Iran’s resurfacing in the world.
It is a long way, powered with head to head and undoubtedly some heated discussions. In the end, the fate of Iran’s nuclear right will be decided on a table.
Undoubtedly every third nation wants Iran’s nuclear program stopped. Hence the entire P5+1 nation negotiations with Iran will be worth looking. Looking at the Israel’s stand on its neighbour, it is highly likely that an unprovoked attack might change the tides.
The United States has always been in a favour to shut down Iran’s nuclear facilities. In a recent popular TV show too showed the desperateness of the US in eliminating key personnel in Iran. Looking at the previous administrators, there has been a number of failed diplomatic talks. It is not less than a great achievement for United States to finally sit down with the Iranian diplomats, a new agenda which might give Obama administration a back in the game after loss in Senate. Meanwhile United States has to watch closely the “actions of its one of the strongest allies”, Israel. If it came to a war between the two neighbouring nations, it wouldn’t be wrong to say “all hell breaks loose” for United States.
However it is highly unlikely that either the Russians Federation or People’s Republic of China will support military actions of Iran, but at the end they have to decide which side will follow international law.
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