Leaving Islam



Iran’s chutzpah: Mullahs may defy IAEA’s call for uranium enrichment program


Dr. A.H. Jaffor Ullah


Iran is again in the news, lately.  This time the controversy that surrounds this oil-rich nation is her much dreaded uranium enrichment program, a technology without which no nation on earth could make nuclear bomb.  At the heart of nuclear bomb making lies the availability of enriched uranium that serves as the nuclear fuel.  Therefore, it is inconceivable an idea how could one make a nuclear bomb without enriched uranium.


Earlier, buckled under pressure from International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Iran had agreed to put moratorium on her uranium enrichment program.  The country at present is not making any enriched nuclear fuel but just recently, its leaders are saber rattling telling the IAEA that the nation may resume her uranium enrichment program.  And that is causing concern amongst civilized nations. 


A plethora of news reports on Iran’s threats to resume her nuclear program has graced the pages of leading newspapers.  The two nations that aspire to join the coveted nuclear club are Iran and North Korea.  While North Korea is using her nuclear program as a bargaining chip to receive concession and financial aid from the West, Iran has not trodden that path.  To Mullah dominated Shiite nation, having nukes has become rather a prestige issue.  I have no idea with whom Iran will pick a fight.  Saddam Hussein, Iran’s archenemy, is no longer in the catbird seat in Baghdad and her neighbor to the east, Afghanistan is no more a formidable force, nor is Turkmenistan, which seats to the north.  Unlike India and Pakistan, which had detonated their nukes in May 1998, Iran is not financially strapped; therefore, making nukes won’t break Iran’s back.  Overall, Iran wants to join the prestigious nuclear club.  The ruling-Mullahs have cherished all along to have “crescent nukes” in their possession and one-day they might have it.  The technology to make nuke is not a well-kept secret any more.  It is even available in the Internet.  Iran has trained nuclear chemists and physicists; therefore, with appropriate budget and mindset the country may possess nuclear bombs.  However, IAEA is applying pressure on Iran and so far, the Mullahs running the nation in a quasi-democratic way had listened to the recommendations of the international body.  In recent days, the Mullahs are becoming restless for whatever reason.  Therefore, their subtle threat to resume the mothballed nuclear enrichment program is catching the eyes of the West. 


Iran rejected today (September 19, 2004) a U.N. resolution calling on it to freeze uranium enrichment activities and threatened to “stop snap checks of its atomic facilities if its case were sent to the U.N. Security Council.”  The Iranian spokesperson even said that if the Security Council went as far as punishing Tehran with sanctions, the Mullah-dominated nation might follow North Korea and pull out of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty altogether.  It seems as if Iran is now following North Korea to become another infant terrible. 


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