tv Cross Talk RT August 9, 2013 3:29am-4:01am EDT
everyone respects a promise written in stone that promises written on the internet well they're a bit more flexible and a lot easier to erase obama made a lot of promises as a candidate on his site change dot gov including some about protecting whistleblowers and obama said that we need to empower federal employees as watchdogs and that he would strengthen whistleblower laws to protect federal workers who expose waste fraud and abuse of authority and government but strangely and possibly coincidentally two days after the first revelation of government spying by stoughton these promises of the change dot gov site were taken down if this is not just some odd coincidence and they consciously chose to hide obama's campaign promises that this is political cowardice at its worst and what is even worse is that they didn't think that this would get exposed almost immediately if
hello and welcome to crossfire all things are considered. the nonproliferation treaty stands as one of the most important international agreements ever signed the un says the treaty is under threat from such countries as around a member of the n.p.t. is the treaty fairly applied to some countries get a free pass well others are punished even though they are in complete compliance. to cross out the nonproliferation treaty i'm joined by my guess what i meant marandi interim he is a professor at the university of toronto in washington we have charles blair he is the senior fellow on state and non-state threats at the federation of american scientists and also in washington we cross to thomas moore he's a senior fellow and deputy director at the center for strategic and international studies right gentlemen cross-talk rosenberg that means you can jump in anytime you want to run for us that we heard this week a man thomas countryman assistant secretary for international security and
nonproliferation says iran's nuclear program possesses the greatest threat to the credibility of the treaty n.p.t. how would you reply to that. i think it would be best to say that the behavior of the united states and the allies is the greatest threat to the treaty because the united states and western powers have been treating iran only not only unfairly but also. in a very disturbing manner the sanctions that have been imposed upon ordinary iranians and their attempts to make ordinary iranians suffer in order for iran to put aside its nuclear program are really pathological if you look at it objectively the iranian nuclear program from the very beginning was supported by western powers billions of dollars were invested after the revolution the iranians felt that they cannot throw that investment out the window and to this state there's been no
evidence whatsoever that iran's nuclear program has been anything but peaceful so iran is working within the framework of international law the n.p.t. and the united states and its allies are violating fundamental human rights of the iranian people by trying to wreck the iranian economy and by trying to make ordinary iranians suffer ok tom would you like to reply to that in washington. sure thank you peter i think mohamed i disagree with a number of the things you said first of all it's quite clear from the director general amano and the rest of the international atomic energy agency board of governors reports that iran remains in noncompliance with the binding mandates that it imposed on it through the u.n. security council resolutions you can call those western conspiracies but i think that in the main we see lots of military dimensions to iran's nominally supposedly
peaceful civilian nuclear program so i think the west is given several options here one is dialogue and one is sanctions and of course there are other options that can be entertaining it was certainly not good news this week that iran had decided to install is revealed by the i.a.e.a. more advanced centrifuges that could be used of course to make more highly enriched uranium upwards above twenty percent more like ninety percent if they decided to so i think iran needs to take a pause we need to take a look at the dialogue that came out of the and figure out whether there's not a way to calibrate back from the brink and i don't think by the way that the sanctions that have been imposed have been unduly harsh i think they are an appropriate remedy for where we are right now tim how would you like to reply to that lot said. the sanctions have led to the deaths of people and let me jump in just so you know that i'm so i'm sure it's going to we're just going to go against you on mohamed ok go ahead first. no i repeat i actually i'm sort of
the middle road apart from mohamed hyperbole in terms of calling the united states and western powers pathological i think we need to focus on what your question really was and that was is iran in alleged nuclear ambitions a threat to the n.p.t. so we can debate whether or not the iranians have actually decided to weaponize their potential capability but the real point is that iran is is not a threat even if they were to develop nuclear weapons it would be bad news for the n.p.t. but it certainly wouldn't signal a tipping point where suddenly we would have dozens of nuclear armed states so i think in the middle ground. i don't think the iranians have decided yet whether or not they're going to actually proceed with a nuclear weapon they certainly can the point that thomas made about them going from twenty to ninety percent enrichment it's the it's the same process you're just enriching it more there's and there's nothing new about that at all any country
that has enrichment capability whether it's civilian or not can enrich a certain isotope to a level whatever it wants to so i think that the point is that iran really has not behaved well it has violated the spirit if not the letter of the n.p.t. but even if it were to weaponize its nuclear possibilities i don't think it would form a threat and i think that's really the message you need to get out it's not the end of the world i agree with what. i agree with atrocious said in the sense that i think that i don't believe all one hundred ninety countries who are states part of the n.p.t. would withdraw tomorrow if iran weaponized but i do have a strong concern about the impact that iran's weaponization will have on its region certainly if you take a look around iran there are already countries with nuclear weapons i don't think we would want more countries in addition to iran to have nuclear weapons so i certainly agree with charles on that point ok muhammadiyah i hope you were taking notes go ahead a lot said. well i i think it's obvious that there. any behavior that
leads to human suffering in the way in which western countries pursue it is pathological just like drones killing innocent people without notice at the moment the united states for example is carrying out cyber attacks on sensitive installations terrorist attacks carried out in iran where scientists are murdered and of course the sanctions are in tended to destroy the iranian economy. so and that is that means the intention is to make seventy five to eighty million people suffer but in any case a point that's very important here is that you run has never been in breach of the n.p.t. or the i.a.e.a. if iran has not obeyed u.n. security council resolutions is because it is because those resolutions are in fact illegal iran writes as an independent country cannot be trampled upon by the u.n. security council even the u.n.
security council itself although it is not a democratic body by any means it has permanent seats people countries with permanent seats and rights of vetoes where you run doesn't even have a presence in the council but beyond that it doesn't have a mandate to go beyond international law at no point has there been any evidence even when iran halted nuclear enrichment for three over two years and implemented the additional protocol which goes far beyond what most countries in the world do no evidence had ever been found that iran's nuclear program as i said they don't in any way let it wait a minute and as we know it on the weekend we can make the argument i think he is very he from the very start he was very much in the american camp ok tom go ahead jump in what mohamed let's let's just i want to make one slight correction to what . and that is that iran is quote implementing its additional protocol. in fact it
never brought it into force and it's not acting under it it was provisionally applied for sometime very early on and stands us in two thousand and four it's been a consistent theme that the board of governors of the i.a.e.a. and the un security council of called on iran to bring in the forces additional protocol and act according to its terms mohamed do you disagree there that's not true iran employment is the national party at all during a period in which it halted the like you're getting these are. all right charles jump in go ahead i think that there is a lot more agreement here than i think we probably have noted so far but what is hindering the argument or the discussion right now is your insistence on having a very black and white view of what is taking place the u.s. is pathological the u.s. is destroying the n.p.t. and so forth and on the other hand you're also arguing that iran has never been in any sort of acting only above ground all of its actions have been completely legal
when we know that's not the case they've been acting in subterfuge we could take this debate to a higher level and ask ourselves why would iran contemplate having a nuclear deterrent and there are very good arguments for that ok but how do you know that's what it's going to have it is the question of the united states. well i would stress that in fact it is pretty much black and white in the sense that the united it's clear as day the united states and western countries were the countries that actually benefited from the iranian nuclear program before the revolution billions of dollars were paid by the iranians the infrastructure was there many thousands of iranians were trained to be a part of their nuclear program and the suddenly the united states and western powers insist that the iranians from these experts and scientists much must drive taxis are something the iranians insist on having nuclear energy just like iran insists on having all sorts of high tech technology iran debate is developing wind
farms it's about being solar energy and it has the right to develop nuclear technology iran has from the very start even what now that it is producing enrich uranium at twenty percent for the test run. reactor in order to produce medical isotopes it didn't want to produce nuclear energy or enrich uranium at twenty percent but western countries prevented iran from obtaining the fuel despite the fact that one almost one million cancer patients a year are need of this medicine they took western countries took innocent iran all right gentlemen i have to jump in here we're going to a short break and after that short break we'll continue our discussion on the nonproliferation treaty state.
was terrible. the city was on fire nobody knew what was happening. five days without a break we were terrified of. there was no communication only tanks all around us we came out to find georgian democracy in our streets. that any one of us could have left straight away but we knew that our first duty was to defend our homeland now that we've had peace since two thousand and one of the places reviving and coming back to normal suffered since april twentieth twelve i've been the president of the republic of south ossetia i'm very pleased to see that all people are so positive about building and strengthening our country statehood. we live in s.a.t.'s and we love it putting everyone loves his homeland right and you know we didn't expect to live through five years of such peace and quiet is good there is
no war. welcome to cross talk where all things are considered i'm peter lavelle to remind you we're discussing the nonproliferation treaty. ok tom i'd like to go back to you in washington the united states says it wants a nuclear free middle east but not israel isn't that. well i think that the desire for a nuclear weapons free zone in the middle east is an old item it's been on the calendar certainly of many. general assemblies or general conferences for many years but he said. he is. i think it's i think it's i think it's
probably a manifestly aspirational goal to have a nuclear weapons free zone in the middle east until conditions are set that allow people who have them to make a decision that they don't need them anymore and clearly we aren't confronted with those kinds of conditions only one country has nuclear weapons in the middle east well i think that israel's nuclear weapons are in the point i think the point is that we need to be careful about how we talk about the situation with respect to israel's nuclear weapons or anyone else's as i said earlier my concern with the iranian program is not so much necessarily that once they develop a weapon they might use one but that it might encourage other people in the region in addition to israel to adopt their own independent nuclear deterrents and i think that that's not a good thing i think that's something that we need to be more worried about than whether or not we can create a nuclear weapons free zone in the region mohammad which i can reply. well i
find it i find it a bit strange because the argument is quite flawed first of all the run is not producing a nuclear weapon but let's say that the argument is that if you run produces a nuclear weapon that would encourage other countries to produce them as well well if israel has nuclear weapons that encourages other countries to produce them so the israeli regime has to put aside nuclear weapons and then no one has an excuse to produce one anyhow and in fact it's their israeli regime that has actually helped with proliferation like in south africa during apartheid ok charles go ahead jump in. charles currently want to talk about my main concern. yeah i'm generally in agreement with what thomas pointed out i think that the notion that you can blame let's just have a notional nuclear program that produces a nuclear weapon in iran that somehow you can blame that on the israelis and their
arsenal is farcical i think that iran the little there are many other reasons why iran would want to have a nuclear deterrence and it's not simply the existence of the israeli arsenal their power in the area and they're also as a shia country they have real serious security concerns and if you look at a map of the united states they're pretty much surrounded so there are other reasons why they might want to do it but the idea that it's going to somehow spawn other political what thomas brought up is a very good point and i think we should discuss that saudi arabia is obviously the first country that people look at but other than that i don't think that the risk of a rapid amount of political taking place in the area is likely it just doesn't seem to be in the cards right now in terms of how that's going. to double syria and us thinks it's a jumble standard moment right. yes i mean even the talk that iran is produced attempting to produce nuclear weapons is completely baseless
and the fact that the iranian nuclear program has always been peaceful seems doesn't seem to be enough for some people in the west because they went in when it comes to western countries you're innocent until proven guilty when it comes to countries like iran you're guilty unless proven innocent and being proven innocent is literally impossible the iranians see the nuclear program as an issue of sovereignty it is both economically important because huge investments were made before the revolution and the iranians need to need to make money out of those investments and since the united states and western countries have been trying to force iran to stop its nuclear program the iranians have been adamant that they will continue because it's an as i said it's an issue of sovereignty when saddam hussein invaded iran and western countries again sorry but pathologically producer provided saddam hussein with chemical weapons to gas iranians killing many
thousands even people are dying as we speak i'm a victim of chemical weapons the iranians defended their country and prevented saddam hussein from taking any part of the country because it was an issue of sovereignty western countries have to come to some sort of agreement with iran and in fact in the talks that just took place recently the iranians were willing to make significant strides forward to reach some sort of agreement either a step by step agreement or otherwise and western countries the five plus one people who were there simply did not have the authority and they said we have to go back and speak to our governments so and iran has been waiting for weeks right now so when the iranians go to the negotiating table they go there with authority and western countries their representatives don't have that authority. to reply to that go ahead. well i have no idea whether or not but negotiators claimed they did or
didn't have authority i think right now the question is can we verify certain aspects of iran's nuclear program by having an on the ground presence that the i.a.e.a. consistently guarantee to the world the nonproliferation benefits that should arise out of iran's compliance with its obligations as a non-nuclear weapon state party to the n.p.t. i think that the question of enrichment is a very difficult one but there needs to be more thought and emphasis placed on how you would have verified enrichment in iran and mohammad's and correct i think we haven't denied it the russians were perfectly willing to provide fuel for bushehr on a take back basis and the iranians as far as i know were never very respected receptive to that proposal so at this stage we're confronted with a very clear choice on it's are there we're going to pursue really strong inspections on the ground in iran or are we going to continue down the path that we're on now and the burden really does rest on iran if you take a look at the director general's most recent report to the board of governors there are lots of military dimensions to this program that remain unresolved there are
questions involving reprocessing there that questions involving what happened to parchin there are questions involving what happened at fordo so i think we need to focus on how we can verifiably demonstrate to the world everything muhammad has said and i think the burden or the ball is in iran's court in this regard because there's been every intention and effort for more than a decade now to try and bring them to some term of agreement respond mohamed jump in. well all of iran's nuclear and so they are monitored twenty four hours a day seven days a week by the i.a.e.a. every single one of them including fordo and the only reason why fordo was built under a mountain was because the united states and the israeli regime were constantly threatening iran with a military attack which is itself against international law the irony is that it is iran that is constantly being attacked it is iran against whom weapons of mass
destruction have been used with the help of western countries chemical weapons and iran has never produced them during the war iran never produced or used chemical weapons the iranians have throughout this whole episode they have had this support of the nonaligned movement which consists of the majority of the countries of the world iran has always been in compliance and that is what the nonaligned movement has said as i said and also russia and china are not in they do not have the same views as the united states does now the russians have said repeatedly that the so have the chinese that the iranians the iranian nuclear program is peaceful and in fact you ronny and when the russians put forward a step by step proposal the iranians were receptive to it the united states rejected it charles i want to jump in there. peter i would just yeah go ahead i would point out just a couple points first of all. the notion that somehow the iranian program
is a return on investment made prior to the revolution is farcical they could easily choose other methods and do other things it's not cost effective there was recently a study done by a. and it pointed out the great amount of cost it is incurred upon the iranians to pursue the program whether or not it's civilian or military so the idea that that's the motivation behind it really doesn't stand the test it's pretty clear that iran could do certain actions and reduce tensions and that's really the question right here to try to talk about the israeli arsenal my question the point is. right. mohamed go ahead just say it i'm sorry it's going to go back to a moment yes i was going to say that i think it's obvious if anyone even googles they would know that the iranian nuclear program began well before the revolution and billions of dollars were invested in iran also invested in companies that
enrich uranium in a company that enriches uranium in france and it right now has shares in that company. the nuclear plant in teheran was built in the one nine hundred sixty s. the nuclear plant that is now producing electricity. share was half built when the revolution took place so you know a huge amount is a huge investment but i don't mean is that yes tom jump in or. ask you a question go ahead. if you had a meeting with i mean the mohamed i'm wondering what your advice to him would be in order to how to convince the west that iran's program was peaceful and if he asked you should iran develop nuclear weapons what would you say go ahead moment well i think you raise a very good point why in the world should iran convince the west is the west the international community this is a very eurocentric point perspective and point of view in other words western
countries are judge jury and prosecutor the iranians have a right within the framework of international law and they will not rule relinquish that right it's for the west to even contemplate it is nonsense that that era is gone so your advice the iranians will cancel your advice if i mean go ahead john so many would be to continue with the nuclear program and to just not worry about all of the concern that exists outside of iran with respect to it and then on the second there are obviously the iranians have to not develop nuclear weapons i'm i'm not an expert on nuclear issues or on negotiating. but the point is that the iranians have to do their best to deal with both propaganda coming from the west both pressure coming from the west and misinformation that comes from the west the iranians have to continue i see i mean you see the rest of the us what is coming excuse me if i could just if i could just finish it to convince the west of the
rest of the world that western countries are spreading misinformation but of course western countries by blocking all of iranian television channels english arabic persian and spanish from satellites throughout the world they are doing a good job in preventing iran's voice from getting outside of its borders. going to start if you like it whatever you want to thank you twenty twenty seconds charles going into your twenty seconds i would say that there are so many other arguments you you could make to say that the iranians you would any military official in iran that has not at least considered a nuclear option is not doing their job and so simply say the rounds program is all right gentlemen fascinating discussion but we have run out of time many thanks to my guests today and to around and in washington and thanks to our viewers for watching us here are to see you next time and remember the rules.
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