Iran’s Guardian Council approved a bill passed by Parliament that would deny UN inspectors access to Iranian nuclear sites and ramp up enrichment of uranium to near-bomb-grade levels if the U.S. and Europe don’t lift sanctions by February.
Any hope by liberals in the United States to restart the Iran nuclear deal has been scuttled. In fact, this act by Iran’s Parliament is close to a declaration of war.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed his opposition to the bill before the Guardian Council vote. Rouhani is hoping for a new U.S. administration to be eager to restart negotiations. Now, Biden would be seen as kowtowing to Iran if he made any move of friendship toward the Islamic Republic.
The bill, passed by the Iran Parliament on Tuesday, orders Iran’s atomic energy agency to return uranium enrichment to levels not seen in the country since the United States and Iran entered the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action in 2015, commonly referred to as the Iran nuclear deal, if the incoming Biden administration and European powers fail to lift sanctions by early February, according to the New York Times.
The time it would take Iran to turn their enriched uranium into bomb-grade fuel has been reduced from a matter of months to a matter of weeks. Previously, Iran was enriching uranium by about 20 percent, a process that took about two months. But with their new, more powerful centrifuge machines, they could achieve enrichment levels of 90 percent in just a few weeks. And with no inspectors, it would be foolish not to assume they are building a bomb.
All the dithering by American presidents from both parties — from Clinton to Trump — is going to come back to haunt us. Joe Biden is not going to go to war in the Middle East to stop Iran from building nuclear weapons. The cost in lives would be enormous and there would be no way to keep the war from spreading. Eventually, Turkey would be drawn in and Russia will not sit idly by while Iran is destroyed.
Two or three decades ago, it would have been possible to knock out the entire Iranian nuclear program in one night of bombing. Now, their sites are hardened, their program is spread out all over the country, and their air defenses have become far more sophisticated. It’s just not worth the risk.
Biden won’t negotiate under the gun given the kind of threats being thrown around by the Iranian government. The implicit threat of enriching uranium to bomb-grade levels, and not allowing inspectors to see what’s happening at their nuclear facilities, will prevent the new president from any rapprochement with the Iranian regime.
Iran has gradually relaxed its compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal after President Trump pulled out and imposed a “maximum pressure” campaign of crippling economic sanctions. Biden has said that he would work to reenter the deal and ease sanctions if Iran went back to “strict compliance with the nuclear deal.”
This latest move is largely seen as a retaliation for the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh. Regarded as the Robert Oppenheimer of Iran, Fakhrizadeh was integral to building Iran’s nuclear program. The assassination has been blamed on Israel, a country that has refused to comment on the incident.
If this is “retaliation” for the Fakhrizadeh assassination, please send more. Iran is digging its own grave and unless it stops, Israel will end up being the undertaker.