An impossible partner

Take a look at Iran’s track record with nukes.

Samantha Bass

As students on a large college campus in the United States, it is easy for us to dismiss world news as irrelevant to our lives. Yet, even as I write this article, there is a country that is moving closer and closer to destroying the modern world as we know it. I am surprised by how little is being said on this campus about IranâÄôs nuclear program. Iran is a threat not only to the future of the Middle East but to our entire global community. We should be paying a little more attention. Iran has been increasing its uranium enrichment facilities for the past few years. Its leaders claim that the treated uranium will be used to create nuclear energy sources for IranâÄôs people. The amount of uranium enriched, however, and the dimensions of the plants indicate a far more sinister use as weapons. In the past, Iran has refused to speak about its nuclear program or allow international inspectors to search the plants in question. At the Geneva Conference on Oct. 1, the United States gave Iran two weeks to allow international inspectors into a site near Qom, a recently revealed uranium enrichment plant. Iran has also agreed to send away most of its enriched uranium for processing in Russia and elsewhere. Sounds like a good plan, right? Wrong. Iran has a long history of lying to the world about its nuclear program. Furthermore, these negotiations have not worked in the past. Iran typically makes a few minor concessions in an attempt to take the attention away from its refusal to stop enriching uranium. So what exactly is the danger of Iran? It is not only Israel or the United States who will be affected by a nuclear Iran. For the past several years, Iran has served as a sponsor of terror throughout the region. It has been estimated that Iran contributes over $100 million annually to terrorist organizations such as Hezbollah in Syria, Lebanon and elsewhere, and Islamic Jihad in Gaza. Even other Arab countries such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia are afraid of a nuclear-armed Iran. Should Iran achieve nuclear weapons, it will be able to control the entire Middle East by threatening the annihilation of any state that fails to adhere to its fanatic Shiite beliefs. This in turn will forever change warfare and international policy between the Middle East and the rest of the world. IranâÄôs President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has called for IsraelâÄôs destruction âÄî a task that would be only too easy with nuclear missiles. Such an attack from Iran would result not only in the destruction of the only Jewish state but also in the deaths of millions of Jews, Christians and Muslims. Before glossing over his words as an empty threat, remember AhmadinejadâÄôs treatment of his own people or his denial of the Holocaust. This is not a just man but a fundamentalist who funds terrorism across the globe in an effort to obtain more power. Given such a formidable threat, one cannot blame the United States and Israel for wanting to take action. Diplomacy is always the ideal alternative to war, but it cannot be forced upon deaf ears. To quote President Barack Obama, âÄúWeâÄôre not interested in talking for the sake of talking. If Iran does not take steps in the near future to live up to its obligations, then the United States will not continue to negotiate indefinitely.âÄù In the coming days, we will see whether Iran follows through with the demands set forward by world leaders in Geneva. We cannot afford to appease Ahmadinejad and Iran like the Allies did with Hitler prior to World War II. Silence for the sake of peace will not bring long-term peace. If Iran acts as it has in the past, then perhaps it is time for the United States and other powers to take action. Samantha Bass Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America University undergraduate student Please send comments to [email protected]