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03 April 2015


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FB Ali

Thank you, Adam, for this link to a clear statement of what has been agreed so far.

The MSM (and others) are doing a lot of pointless "we won...they won" stuff. It all depends on whether Iran was actually trying to achieve the capacity to build a bomb. If they weren't (as I believe, certainly currently), then they've given up quite little to have the sanctions lifted. This is the key to the whole deal: if the West doesn't agree to sanctions being lifted promptly after verification, there will be no final deal.

As the piece says, once they are lifted it will be very difficult to reimpose them. The Iranians must also know this full well.


My initial impression is that this is a pretty good deal for us, depending on how the final details are resolved.



You are correct FB. It's the lens.

All Iran really needed was their ability to run a civilian and research nuclear program. And have the nuclear related sanctions removed particularly by the Europeans. The US will for the forseeable future have some sanctions to placate the Ziocons.

All Bibi and his fellow groupies real care about is for the US to bomb Iran. They will never stop trying to corner our feckless politicians to achieve that end.


dear sir,
I always thought that Iranian Nuclear weapons were of low possibility because biggest supporters of Iran (Russia and China) do not want a nuclear armed iran.


That Vox report is a complete mess by someone who obviously does not have the tiniest bit of knowledge about the issue. Consider just this:

Term: Iran will be required to rebuild its plutonium plant at Arak such that it will only make energy-grade plutonium, and will ship out its spent plutonium. It is barred from heavy-water reactor use.

Plain English: Iran had built a facility at Arak for making and storing potentially weapons-grade plutonium. Now, it will repurpose the facility to only make nuclear fuel.

1. There is no "plutonium plant" in Arak. There is a heavy water reactor.
2. There is no "energy grade plutonium"
3. There is no "spent plutonium"
4. Iran would not be barred from "heavy-water reactor" use
5. There is no facility in Arak to make and store potentially weapons grade plutonium.
6. The reactor in Arak will not be repurposed "to only make nuclear fuel"


A heavy water reactor uses natural uranium as fuel. Once burned up the spent fuel will contain some share of Plutonium. One needs a very specialized separation plant to extract Plutonium from such spent fuel. Iran has no such separation plant nor has it plans to build one nor could it build one for several years.

Arak is designed as a heavy water reactor because the radiation of those can be used for scientific and special production purposes (medical uses, conservation of food, material science etc.) It can be reconfigured in a way that would leave its spend fuel with a lower share of Plutonium. This will require to replace the central reactor vessel. That would be regarded as safer in a proliferation sense but the reactor will likely be less valuable/useable as a radiation source. This then may require to keep the Tehran Research Reactor running instead of shutting it down. That, in total, would not be "win" for either side.

That Vox piece was written by someone who missed even basic physics in highschool. One should not further the proliferation of such "nuclear" nonsense.


Steve wrote, "........depending on how the final details are resolved." Indeed, and other than that. Mrs Lincoln how did you like Play? This is less, much less, about what technical details will, or will not, be "resolved", than it is how this will spun, in both Capitals.


we are always grateful that you didn't miss basic physics in high school. At least I am: In my time Atomic Physics wasn't a topic in the final years in physics, although no doubt we were taught basics of atomic theory in chemistry, or quantum chemistry.

Thus the vast majority of us struggles with propaganda in the field.
If Iran does not have what they outline, all the better for them. No? They do not need to ship surplus or destroy matters. In that case. Strictly I wondered about that too.


Another issue: Were I Iranian I quite possibly would demand that my country has the ultimate threateningly defensive tools to prevent regime change too. Just as equal rights to study matters. But as the following that is a different matter.

The fact that there should be transparency concerning Israel's possession--I am aware you didn't allude to it.

That makes me feel slightly uncomfortable too. But then, I do not know how realistic the Samson Option is, or for that matter no matter what 'neoconnish'* or Israeli hawkish voices occasionally demand, how likely is it really they would really use it beyond larger "Iran Wall matters".

* turn Arab cities into dust force them into surrender, after all "little boy" ended the war in the Pacific:

"YB: How did we end World War II, by dropping atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. We did not create more enemies, we actually created friends and we created ultimately a free Japan. We brought the Japanese people to their knees and that is the only way you can establish a democracy in a culture which is so opposed to freedom, is bring their culture to its knees. As long as we continue to appease them we are not going to be successful. We cannot win a war by trying to buy their love. They do not love us, they hate us. What we want to achieve is—"

William R. Cumming


William R. Cumming


Adam L Silverman


Calm down. Below you'll find the fact sheet on the P5+1 Agreement posted on the White House website:
In the fifth section entitled "Reactors and Reprocessing" the first two bullet points state:
"-Iran has agreed to redesign and rebuild a heavy water research reactor in Arak, based on a design that is agreed to by the P5+1, which will not produce weapons grade plutonium, and which will support peaceful nuclear research and radioisotope production.
-The original core of the reactor, which would have enabled the production of significant quantities of weapons-grade plutonium, will be destroyed or removed from the country."
The exact same language appears on the "Parameters for a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action Regarding the Islamic Republic of Iran's Nuclear Program" at the Department of State's website: http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2015/04/240170.htm

The Federation of American Scientists, who WERE definitely NOT asleep during high school physics, have this to say about heavy water production:
"Heavy water is the key to one type of reactor in which plutonium can be bred from natural uranium. As such, the production of heavy water has always been monitored, and the material is export controlled. In addition, a source of deuterium is essential for the production of tritium and 6LiD, two ingredients of thermonuclear weapons. A nation seeking large quantities of heavy water probably wishes to use the material to moderate a reactor, and may be planning to produce plutonium. However, CANDU (CANadian Deuterium Uranium) reactors designed and built in Canada are used for commercial electric power production."

I'm of the persuasion that recalls that a heavy water accident created the original Flash - Jay Garrick!


Two things:
People who "win" a negotiation usually celebrate.
Note the celebrations in Iran.
Nations don't build deep earth nuclear bomb proof bunkers for fun.



You are quoting Yaron Brook. You are being disingenuous by not pointing that out. He is wrong about how the allied powers defeated the Empire of Japan.

Larry M.

Larry M. said to Adam L. Silverman,

what I wonder about is how much of a civilian nuclear programme will the Iranians be able to have if they fulfil the terms of the understanding. They have always said that the purpose of their nuclear activities is to be able to build enough nuclear power plants to cover their future electricity needs without having to burn oil, their main currency earner. Can anyone give any indications on this matter?

Swami Bhut Jolokia

The actual details of the agreement are immaterial, as no minds are going to be changed no matter how much information is revealed. For the people opposed to any deal (manifested in their demands for total Iranian capitulation), this is a matter of faith and no amount of reason or logic can overcome faith-based argument.

Those favorably predisposed towards an agreement will assume the P5+1 negotiated the best agreement there was to be had. If the details can be hammered out in the next 3 months (and the odds are good that they will be) the deal will be put in place through the UN, and the US Congress will be marginalized. All the talk by Republican candidates to overturn any deal if elected is just pre-election bluster. Which is not to say there won't be a lot of wailing and gnashing of teeth. But after June you can stick a fork in it.


So in June, the UN will assume the role of the US Congress - at least for national security.


Fred, I have such a huge distaste for the guy that I prefer not to make any advertisement for him. Disingenuous?

I studied a lot of his lectures, and I can assure you, it left me with more than a visceral nausea. So you have to forgive me.

But, since he pretends he is not a neocon at all, I nevertheless give him at benefit of doubt with "neoconish".

It's a pity the video has been taken of the web.

But see it works without once mentioning his name. ;)

Swami Bhut Jolokia

tv, as I said, no minds are going to be changed.

You ask if the UN will assume the role of the US Congress for national security. That's a question based on some biased and uninformed opinions. The President of the US will direct the US Ambassador to the UN to vote to approve this deal in the UN Security Council. The terms of the deal will be binding on the US, to the extent they are in the scope of the UN Charter. The decision on national security in entirely within the purview of the President. Current sanctions regimes enacted in US law will be honored.

Now, are you similarly concerned about the Prime Minister of Israel directing the US Congress on what our national security interest should be? Is it in our national security interest to have one nation in the Middle East hold a large arsenal of nuclear weapons? Are you in support of entering negotiations with Israel to eliminate their nuclear capability? Reasonable people may conclude that a nuclear-armed Israel is also a threat to US national security.


Here's another one:

CNN: "Parameters of the tentative Iran nuclear deal"


Nothing in what you quote contradicts what I said above. It confirms it. But it does contradict, obviously, the nonsense Max Fisher at Vox wrote.

Why should I calm down when that nonsense, wrong in about any detail, is pointed to as "breaking the details down for the lay person"? That is just propagandizing propaganda. We have enough of that already.


Adam L Silverman said in reply to b...

"-The original core of the reactor, which would have enabled the production of significant quantities of weapons-grade plutonium, will be destroyed or removed from the country."

Just to add a different perspective, do you think that could have been a good bargaining chip? Of course, those who have been influenced by the izie propaganda of the bomb bomb scare sold themselves the goodies! [with friends like that.....].

Note, Iranians have been trading thru greater Asia for the millennia and managed an empire or two. More so by (lets call it) by 'influence' than by waring.



Yes, your anti-American bigotry works consistently by posting garbage like this while implying that this individual is responsible in some fashion for actual American foreign policy. Congratulations on your achievement.



You, like a lot of Arabs, do not believe in the possibility of win-win outcomes? pl


Fred, if I had something special on my mind concerning you, I could no doubt concentrate on what feels like evidence in what you write. Lately i have been trying to understand Babak's position. I wouldn't say I completely understand.

To quote, maybe not quite literally, one of my favorite quotes by Henry Miller:

"In every statement there is a little error and the error gets bigger and bigger until the snake is scotched."

Thus I basically give everybody the benefit of doubt. In other words, a person (lived life, shaping experiences) beyond my categorizing instincts. But no doubt, I am human with all the fault that brings along.

This would make any collective approach difficult. Would Anti-Americanism include all the Americans i met or respect? ...

Back to Yaron Brook, I object to his hawkishness, and I do not think he is the best average representation of the typical American, not least since his experience in Israeli military intelligence may have profoundly shaped his outlook. It actually formed the basis why he was advertised as ME expert at the time, when I stumbled across him.

On the other hand, before I became aware of Yaron Brook, I was only in a very limited way aware of Ayn Rand and her 'philosophy'. It may well have shaped some Americans minds. But are they representative?

Whatever I added below the asteriks, was a hesitant attempt to give a feedback to "b"--from German to German, so to speak--what I indirectly read into his response, with whatever surfaced on my mind associatively. I shouldn't have added that.

In a nutshell: I am a nitwit, while obviously "b" considers himself as expert, but what matters for me: as long as Iranians--their leadership and the majority of Iranians--can live with this deal, I am pleased, I prefer it a lot to a military confrontation which would not solve anything, it feels, looking into developments during the last decade.


Concerning your second paragraph, under ideal conditions, or not quite the ones we saw under Bush43, intelligence wouldn't be politicized. Thus the fact that the US has the vastly bigger intelligence budget, should guarantee limits to Israel influencing the whole process.

Whatever precise methods the members of these talks adopted, it no doubt happened based on feedback from their own intelligence communities.

Is it at least theoretically possible that Netanyahu screamed at the top of his head, since he wasn't able to influence matters as much as he would have liked to?


b: "4. Iran would not be barred from 'heavy-water reactor' use"

Well, if you feel that Adam agrees with you, you should explain to us why you, at least to this nitwit, why your 'analysis' above seems to contradict the summery in Adam's link on the topic:

"Plutonium plant at Arak

Term: Iran will be required to rebuild its plutonium plant at Arak such that it will only make energy-grade plutonium, and will ship out its spent plutonium. It is barred from heavy-water reactor use.

Plain English: Iran had built a facility at Arak for making and storing potentially weapons-grade plutonium. Now, it will repurpose the facility to only make nuclear fuel.

Why it matters: You can make a nuclear bomb with one of two fuels: uranium or plutonium. The other parts of the deal limit and restrict what Iran can do with uranium. This part of the deal removes weapons-grade plutonium from the equation and only allows fuel-grade plutonium for powering a power plant."

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