Why Iran Cannot Have The Bomb

    As the Iranian nuclear nightmare diplomacy continues to spin out of control and the Neo-Con attack dogs persists in fanning the flames of war, it is painfully obvious that Iran cannot have a nuclear weapon. The reason Iran cannot have a nuclear weapon has nothing to do with the Bush WMD argument or the Israeli Armageddon scenario. While the wing-nuts would have us to believe that Iran's behavior precludes them from possessing nuclear technology. They parade out charts and graphs displaying Iran's support for terrorists, its unstable leader, and its theocratic government as reasons to launch a pre-emptive strike. Remember, we don't want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud.

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Diplomacy Works?

North Korea has endorsed an agreement to dismantle all of its nuclear facilities by the end of the year, according to a joint six-nation statement released by China in Beijing today, the state-run Xinhua News Agency reported. NY Times

    In what will surely be hailed as a coup by all wing-nuts and their pundits, the North Koreans have agreed to dismantle their nuclear facilities in exchange for aid and a non-aggression pact with the US. While only the dismantling of the nuclear facilities is being touted, make no mistake there will be more concessions forthcoming as this deal goes forward.

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Why Iran is no North Korea

With Iraq - as usual - casting a damp over this historic breakthrough, the Bush administration just scored their greatest diplomatic victory to date: North Korea pledged to close down its nuclear reactor at Yongbyon and to make its entire nuclear program public by December 31. One is tempted to detect an almost poetic justice in this war-president being denied to properly celebrate and mendaciously claim the first giant step toward a pacification of the Korean peninsula for himself by his cronies - also as usual - having turned carpetbaggers in Iraq. Yet it wouldn't be George Bush, if he were not to misuse this triumph of cautious diplomacy over dull saber rattling for beating the war drum on Iran.

On paper the North Korean deal may perfectly serve as a model of how to break the nuclear stalemate with Iran. On second thought, though, all deliberations in this direction quickly turn out to be nothing but pipe dreams. Iran is no North Korea. It may sound cliché, but the prime reason why Chris Hill doubtlessly would fail to pull off a similar stunt with Tehran as he did with Pyonyang is: oil - also as usual.

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Presidential Candidates Respond to Key Nuclear Weapons and Nonproliferation Questions

The Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferations's sister organization, Council for a Livable World, today released responses to seven critical questions on national security issues that were posed to all declared presidential candidates from both parties.

Joseph Biden, Hillary Clinton, Christopher Dodd, John Edwards, Barack Obama, and Bill Richardson responded to the Council's questionnaire. Their responses exhibited noteworthy unity while differing on some important details.

Six of the seven questions were on nuclear weapons or nonproliferation issues. A summary and analysis for those questions is provided below and is available here.

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Talking to Bad Guys Can, in fact, Produce Desirable Outcomes

Without much fanfare, there has been a recent flury of progress toward actual, verifiable North Korean nuclear disarmament. In the latest development, the International Atomic Energy Agency announced this morning that a team should be on the ground by Saturday, July 14 to oversee the shutdown of the plutonium producing Yongbyon facility. So what does this mean for the wider non-proliferation debate? It would seem that Security Council sanctions, backed by regional diplomacy and direct bi-lateral engagement with the United States can coax a country away from its nuclear ambitions.

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