Working for International Dialogue and Peace

U.S. casts doubt on secret Iran nuke facility

by Oren Dorell (source: USA Today) February 27, 2015

GMP safe product photoGMP safe product photoAn uncropped version of that photo was posted Feb. 12 to the website of GMP Safes, an Iranian vault-door manufacturer, which shows the door sitting in a large room above ground, with sunlight streaming in from windows.

David Albright, a nuclear expert who is president of the Institute for Science and International Security, said the cropped photo adds to legitimate questions about NCRI's allegations.

"The basic story raises questions about its authenticity. They may have answers but the questions raise further doubts," Albright said. "The claims are so controversial that any manipulated evidence casts doubt on the whole story." ››read more

MEK Hoax Exposed: "Lavizan-3" Revelations Found Fake

(source: CASMII) February 25, 2015

GMP product photoGMP product photo
The latest NCRI revelations of a new "Lavizan 3" facility has been sent to the right wing media and has been playing in the US non-stop. It is a total fabrication.

The photo that NCRI claims to have smuggled out of an underground nuclear facility has been exposed as a product advertisement photo from an Iranian safe manufacturer called GMP. ››read more

Leaked cables show Netanyahu’s Iran bomb claim contradicted by Mossad

by Seumas Milne, Ewen MacAskill and Clayton Swisher (source: Guardian ) February 23, 2015

Binyamin Netanyahu’s dramatic declaration to world leaders in 2012 that Iran was about a year away from making a nuclear bomb was contradicted by his own secret service, according to a top-secret Mossad document.

It is part of a cache of hundreds of dossiers, files and cables from the world’s major intelligence services – one of the biggest spy leaks in recent times. ››read more

Reading the Runes in the Latest Report on Iran’s Nuclear Program

by Peter Jenkins (source: Lobelog) February 23, 2015

In effect Iran is being asked to prove its innocence. But when it tries to do so, the evidence it submits is rejected out of hand because it calls into question the evidence that is being used to justify the suspicion of guilt. Is that consistent with due process? ››read more

        Editor's note: Peter Jenkins was a British career diplomat for 33 years. His last assignment (2001-06) was that of UK Ambassador to the IAEA and UN (Vienna).

CIA’s Nuclear-Bomb Sting Said to Spur Review in Iran Arms Case

by Jonathan Tirone (source: Bloomberg) February 23, 2015

Details of a 15-year-old Central Intelligence Agency sting emerging from a court case in the U.S. may prompt United Nations monitors to reassess some evidence related to Iran’s alleged nuclear weapons work, two western diplomats said. ››read more

The Real Problem of ‘Getting to Yes’ With Iran

by Gareth Porter (source: February 14, 2015

Talking to reporters Monday, President Obama asked rhetorically, “[D]oes Iran have the political will and desire to get a deal done?” Iran “should be able to get to yes,” Obama said. “But we don’t know if that is going to happen. They have their hard-liners, they have their politics….”

The idea that Iranian agreement to US negotiating demands is being held back by “politics” is a familiar theme in US public pronouncements on these negotiations. The only reason Iran has not accepted the deal offered by the United States, according to the standard official view, is that Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei is a hardliner who is constraining the more reasonable Iranian negotiating team from making the necessary compromises. ››read more

Clarifying the Nuclear Timeline: Debunking the Myth of a March Deadline

by Kaveh L. Afrasiabi (source: Iranian Diplomacy) February 13, 2015

There is a systematic effort in the United States today to convey the wrong impression that the deadline for the nuclear talks is only a month away in March, thus trying to put additional pressure on Iran. ››read more

NSA Claims Iran Learned from Western Cyberattacks

by Glenn Greenwald (source: The Intercept) February 11, 2015

The U.S. Government often warns of increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks from adversaries, but it may have actually contributed to those capabilities in the case of Iran.

A top secret National Security Agency document from April 2013 reveals that the U.S. intelligence community is worried that the West’s campaign of aggressive and sophisticated cyberattacks enabled Iran to improve its own capabilities by studying and then replicating those tactics. ››read more

Iranian Parliament Vows Retaliation if US Imposes New Sanctions

by Jason Ditz (source: January 26, 2015

Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani has warned that there are “retaliatory plans” in place in the event that the US Congress follows through on efforts to impose new sanctions against them. ››read more

We can't afford not to hold Saudi Arabia's royals to account

by Joan Smith (source: The Independent) January 25, 2015

What do you call the unelected leader of a state that beheads people in public, permits only one faith and exports an extreme form of Islam to other countries? If he happens to be Abu Bakr al Baghdadi, self-appointed caliph of Islamic State (Isis), the answer is one of the world’s most wanted terrorists. If he is King Salman bin Abdulaziz al-Saud, the proper form of address is “Your Majesty”. ››read more

Iran and the 2015 NPT Review Conference

by Kaveh L. Afrasiabi (source: Iran Review) January 20, 2015

2015 marks the 70th anniversary of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, a sharp reminder of the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons and the imminent danger to humanity posed by some 17300 bombs in the world today, irrespective of the legally binding obligation of the five (officially-recognized) nuclear weapons states (U.S., Russia, China, France, and England) to take practical steps toward a total elimination of nuclear weapons, i.e., disarmament. ››read more

GOP Mega-Donor Sheldon Adelson Funds Mysterious Anti-Iran Pressure Group

(source: The Nation) January 16, 2015

Nearly one-third of anti-Iran pressure group United Against Nuclear Iran’s 2013 budget came from the country’s foremost Republican megadonor, a man who invested a reported $98 million to defeat Barack Obama in the 2012 election, casino magnate Sheldon Adelson. Adelson routed his $500,000 donation to UANI through his family foundation, according to tax documents. ››read more

Paris is a warning: there is no insulation from our wars

by Seumas Milne (source: The Guardian) January 16, 2015

The former French prime minister Dominique de Villepin, who led opposition to the Iraq war, this week described Isis as the “deformed child” of western policy. The west’s wars in the Muslim world “always nourish new wars” and “terrorism among us”, he wrote, while “we simplify” these conflicts “by seeing only the Islamist symptom”. ››read more

Edward Snowden: U.S. used Stuxnet against Iran

by Nicole Arce (source: TechTimes) January 9, 2015

Edward Snowden has blasted the United States policy of launching cyberattacks first before defending the security of its own network and Internet infrastructure. ››read more

West must seek peace with Syria

by Patrick Cockburn (source: The Independent) January 9, 2015

Cockburn's bookCockburn's bookCatching and punishing those responsible for the Charlie Hebdo massacre is not going to deter people who have martyrdom as a central feature of their faith. But bringing to an end, or even just de-escalating the war in Syria, would begin to drain the waters in which violent jihadism flourishes.

Such a de-escalation means the US, Britain, France and their allies accepting that they are not going to overthrow Bashar al-Assad and Assad accepting that he is not going to win back all of Syria.

There should be ceasefires between government and non-jihadi rebels. Power would be divided within Syria and, for the first time, governments in Damascus, Baghdad and Paris could unite against violent Sunni jihadism. ››read more

Why Obama Won’t Reach a Deal With Iran

by GARETH PORTER (source: Middle East Eye) January 9, 2015

It is very difficult to imagine the administration rethinking its hard line unless and until Iran walks away from the negotiations at the end of the current extension and threatens to resume the development of its enrichment capabilities that it chose to freeze as a confidence-building measure. ››read more

Cuba, A Barometer on Iran

by Kaveh Afrasiabi (source: Iran Review) January 9, 2015

The prospects for a diplomatic rapprochement between U.S. and Cuba serve as a timely barometer on U.S.-Iran relations, in light of the strong parallels between the two cases. In fact, one may even go further and assert that the White House's ability to normalize relations with Cuba and end the half-century embargo on the island-nation in its vicinity serves as a litmus test of Obama's foreign policy including its Iran policy. ››read more

Ex-IAEA Chief Warns on Using Unverified Intel to Pressure Iran

by Gareth Porter (source: Lobelog) December 21, 2014

In a critique of the handling of the Iran file by the International Atomic Energy Agency, former IAEA Director General Han Blix has called for greater skepticism about the intelligence documents and reports alleging Iranian nuclear weapons work and warned that they may be used to put diplomatic pressure on Tehran. ››read more

        Editor's note: Gareth Porter, an investigative journalist and historian specializing in U.S. "national security" policy and was the recipient of the Gellhorn Prize for journalism in 2012. His new book, Manufactured Crisis: The Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare, was published by Just World Books in early 2014.

The IAEA Faces a Major Credibility Test

by Robert Kelley (source: LobeLog) December 15, 2014

On December 11, the spokesman for the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) confirmed that his agency was, as Gareth Porter asserted on this website earlier this month, not interested in accepting a recent invitation by Iran to visit Marivan, at least at this time.

The spokesman, Serge Gas, reportedly told Reuters in an email that the agency had “explained clearly to Iran—on more than one occasion—that an offer of a visit of Marivan does not help address specific concerns related to the issue of large-scale high explosive experiments.” No further elaboration was made in the email, according to Reuters.

As someone who has worked at a senior level for the IAEA and who has respect for its mission and its dedicated personnel, I found this statement—and the decision not to accept Iran’s invitation—disappointing and worrisome. ››read more

        Editor's note: Robert Kelly had been in the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna as a Director for challenging nuclear inspections in Iraq and many other countries.

Ashton Carter, Iran, Neo-Realism And ‘Incident At Sea’

by Kaveh L. Afrasiabi (source: Iran Review) December 12, 2014

US President Barack Obama’s pick of hawkish Ashton Carter as the next secretary of defense in place of the relatively dovish Chuck Hagel has been widely interpreted as the administration’s intention to increase its reliance on America’s ‘hard-power’ in light of the growing global instabilities and the dawn of a ‘new cold war’ between US and Russia. ››read more