While many, many newspapers, from both the left and the right, are publishing strong reservations about the Iranian nuclear deal, the New York Times is firmly in line with the Obama administration – and even more in line against Binyamin Netanyahu.
Which causes some interesting logical inconsistencies:
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel has gone into overdrive against a nuclear agreement with Iran. On Monday, his government made new demands that it claimed would ensure a better deal than the preliminary one that Iran, President Obama and other leaders of major powers announced last week. The new demands are unrealisticand, if pursued, would not mean a better deal but no deal at all.
…As outlined on Monday by Yuval Steinitz, Israel’s minister of intelligence and strategic affairs, the Israelis are now insisting that Iran end all research and development on advanced centrifuges, which are used to enrich uranium; reduce the number of operating centrifuges at its Natanz plant beyond what was agreed to in the framework; and close its underground enrichment facility at Fordo. Also, Israel has demanded that Iran allow inspections “anywhere, anytime” by international monitors, ship its stockpile of enriched uranium out of the country and disclose past nuclear-related activities that might involve military uses.
In any negotiation, there could never be a deal without compromise. It would be preferable if every vestige of Iran’s nuclear program were eradicated. But that was never going to happen, not least because Iran’s know-how could never be erased.
Iran’s leaders would not accept a deal in which they did not maintain some elements of a nuclear program tailored for energy and medical purposes – not weapons. Ultimately, Mr. Obama had to make many judgment calls in getting a deal that would prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon.
Now, where exactly does Israel’s demands listed in this very editorial contradict Iran maintaining “elements of a nuclear program tailored for energy and medical purposes?”
Not one of the conditions proposed of stopping R&D on advanced centrifuges, reducing the number of centrifuges at Natanz, closing Fordo, insisting on truly comprehensive inspections, reducing its stockpiles of enriched uranium, and disclosing military dimensions of its nuclear program is inconsistent with a peaceful nuclear program.
Instead of insisting that the US make the best possible deal while allowing Iran to have a peaceful nuclear program, the NYT wants that Iran have more freedom to build nuclear weapons.
And one of the reasons they give? Because the specter of Iranian unemployment from closing Fordo is just too horrible to contemplate.
The alternative is no deal, and Iran simply moves forward on its nuclear program without any limits. Shuttering Fordo was an early goal, but, in the end, the agreement would allow Iran to keep a small number of centrifuges spinning and to produce medical isotopes at the plant. For the Iranians, it was a matter of political symbolism and jobs to keep the plant open; Mr. Obama apparently felt there were enough protections that he could agree.
No, the alternative is to enforce sanctions until Iran agrees to a program that can only be used, verifiably, for peaceful purposes.
Iranian jobs and pride are not and must not be a factor.
Ideally, more of the 10,000 centrifuges operating at the Natanz enrichment plant would be stopped, as Israel has demanded, but the agreement would halt 5,000 – a significant reduction.
The NYT editors are, frankly, idiots.
5000 first generation centrifuges are the exact amount Iran needs to build nuclear bombs. They are way too few for a nuclear power program and way too many for peaceful medical research.
If Iran wants to assure the world of its peaceful intentions, it should not insist on thousands of centrifuges.
This is pretty clear logic, but apparently too difficult for New York Times editors, who cannot grasp that “fewer” and “more than enough” are not mutually exclusive concepts.
While the deal does not grant international monitors the right to go anywhere, anytime, it does impose a tough inspection regime and establishes a commission to resolve disputes if Iran blocks access to a suspected site.
The editors are again too blinded by Obama’s brilliance not to understand that there is a major contradiction between “tough inspection regime” and “a commission to resolve disputes if Iran blocks access to a suspected site.” If Iran can block access then it is not a tough inspection regime.
Iran’s hostility and threats toward Israel and its involvement in terrorist activities are heinous and unacceptable. But those issues should be dealt with separately; resolving them should not be made conditions of the nuclear agreement.
I missed the NYT editorial that said those words when Obama himself linked Iran’s aggression with its nuclear program in his 2008 AIPAC speech.
In short, this editorial proves that the editors of the New York Times are unable to do the slightest amount of critical thinking when its mind is made up beforehand.
The problem is that so many people think that the New York Times editorials represent the epitome of intellect and correct thinking.