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April 02, 2015

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Per other reports, it merely permits Iran to enrich enough fissile material to make 32 bombs a year. On the bright side, the Saudis are apparently so impressed with the agreement that they've arranged an air corridor for Israel to use when they attack Iran.

Bringing Israel and Saudi Arabia closer? That IS impressive diplomacy!

They even wheeled out John Bolton, aka The Nuclear Option, to hit out at the talks. That's how desperate the neo-cons have become.

Per other reports, it merely permits Iran to enrich enough fissile material to make 32 bombs a year.

Except for the little detail that it is only allowed to be enriched to something like 3.67%. Which is a long ways from pure enough to make a working bomb. But, details....

Except for the little detail of that not really being enforceable short of on the ground detailed inspections.

Yes, why did Iran not agree to dig up all Uranium (also lead and cadmium*)in the country and to deliver it to Riyadh and Jerusalem for safe-keeping, so there was no chance to cheat? Also why is not each and every Iranian forced to have a dosimeter implanted that can be checked remotely so any exposition of any person beyond 20 mSv/year could be treated as a breach of agreement and justification for war?

*with the added advantage of prohibiting battery abuse

Except for the little detail of that not really being enforceable short of on the ground detailed inspections.

Which are also provided for. (And, FYI, are explicitly a prerequisite for any sanctions relief.)

Except for the little detail that it is only allowed to be enriched to something like 3.67%. Which is a long ways from pure enough to make a working bomb. But, details....

You have overlooked the possibility of nuclear hand grenades. Grenades are bombs, are they not?

We gave the bomb to the British. We did everything we could to keep the bomb from the Soviets, the Chinese, and the North Koreans. We just threw our hands in the air when Pakistan and India joined the club. We wink at Israel's nuclear arsenal.

We are miserable failures at this.

Per other reports, it merely permits Iran to enrich enough fissile material to make 32 bombs a year.

The only "other reports" I could find that says anything like that is nextbigfuture.com, which is nearly as reliable a news and technical source of information as, say, addictinginfo.com.

Incidentally, that same article says this:

In order to enable atomic bombs, the 0.7 percent U235 fraction of natural uranium needs to be enriched to 10 percent or more.

If by "10 percent or more" they mean 90 percent or more, I have no quarrel. But that's not what they're saying.

You have overlooked the possibility of nuclear hand grenades.

I assume you are kidding with this.

Of course he is. Iran is an Islamic republic, and therefore can only produce holy bombs. As holy hand grenades are an explicitly Christian technology, we can safely rule out their manufacture.

I can't tell if I'm missing something...but the inspection regime seems like an exceptionally good deal for the US. Better than I was expecting.

That was my take, too. It certainly looks like we got everything we were asking for.

Which is pretty impressive, if that is what happened. And would seem to suggest that sanctions (instead of the war John Bolton is determined to have) actually did the job they were designed to do.

I see it this way:

Door number one - Iran builds a bomb, we have another nuclear state

Door number two - go to war, delay that by some single digit number of years

Door number three - make a deal, maybe it works out and Iran never builds a bomb and there isn'the a war

Show me the downside for door number three

The downside? For some people (John Bolton leaps to mind for some reason), that would be maybe not getting to have a war.

I think according to the John Bolton mindset, door number 3 is imaginary, so thinking you are going to be able to go through it is going to leave you totally unprepared for door number 1.

You forget door #2a, only visible to neocons: go to war and install a puppet regime in Tehran. Should that fail there is still room for a nuclear first strike (aka the #1 glass parking lot in the world).
Since - in their opinion - Iraq failed due to not taking out Iran next (and Dems stabbing everyone in the back of course), this should pose no problems since Iran is not backed by someone else like the Iraqi rebels. Neither Pakistan nor Saudi Arabia are going to funnel money into Shia insurrections. And Iran should be ISIS-proof too.
---
"They ruined my war by giving in to all of my demands" - a certain head of state after a deal this one will be compared constantly to (actually already was even before the negotiations really got started).

install a puppet regime in Tehran

Isn't that what helped cause today's problems in the first place ?
(Thanks, Kermit Roosevelt.)

In any event the complaints of the right (and indeed Netenyahu) about a sellout to Iran might make the deal a slightly easier sell to Iran's own hardliners.

Again, from the neocon POV the puppets were just not hard and pure enough and did not get sufficient support. Or they suddenly got the impression that they could act on their own and were not properly chastised for it which encouraged the rabble to rebel.

Here's my (Falsifiable, and I hope it is!) prediction: The inspection regime agreed to will fall far, far short of the 24/7/365, numerous boots on the ground with freedom to go anywhere at any time, regime which would actually be needed to keep Iran in the enrichment business, but stop them from building nuclear weapons. It will ne more on the order of occasional noots on the ground, sensors, and trust.

It will fall short because Obama was just too obviously desperate for an agreement, ANY agreement, and dismissive of any other approach.

Oh and Israel and the Saudis will will get more friendly, as Iran gets closer to having the bomb.

Brett: Obama was just too obviously desperate for an agreement, ANY agreement, and dismissive of any other approach.

What "other approach", Brett? Spell it out. Use small words and short sentences for the benefit of us simpletons.

--TP

Noots?

Is that some sort of nuclear boot?

Good God, not that!

Operation Noots On The Ground, led by General Seuss.

Presumably once Israel and Saudi Arabia become good chums, Israel will tip us, their sugar daddy, off regarding Saudi (aren't we their sugar daddy, too) aid and support to ISIL and to various Sunni efforts to destabilize Syria even further.

Probably not.

Obama also agreed to allow two Iranians and a Kenyan Sergeant-at-Arms from the United Nations to monitor Brett's movements from an unmarked car on American soil.

I, for one, will testify that Brett is with us at all times and we've got it covered.

obviously what mr. bellmore is concerned about are the dozens of secret, underground, hardened nuclear processing facilities which will go uninspected. clearly obama knows about the hidden nuclear research network (indeed, he's probably using discretionary funds to help iran keep it going) and was okay with them keeping it as long as they didn't embarrass him by accidentally revealing its existence. it's good that we have people like mr. bellmore around keeping it real.

Little virtual keyboard and blunt fingers, Count. I'm in the waiting room at the cancer center right now, while sis gets her last radiation treatment before chemo starts next week. She's improved a lot over the last week, as the brain swelling has gone down, and pain meds got adjusted.

And better nutrition, she's regained a little weight while I was here. (My niece, who she's staying with, can't cook worth a darn.) Too bad I have to head home tomorrow. But the house is better equipped for an invalid now, and our brother shows up in a week.

Yes, Obama was desperate for an agreement. Too desperate to care if it was a good one.

Here's my (Falsifiable, and I hope it is!) prediction

Brett, are you concerned about the proposed inspection regime (because it seems pretty thorough) in the agreement, think it will be removed before being finalized, or just think that the international community, having that agreement, will just kind of shrug and say 'nah, we trust you' to Iran.

Best of luck to your family.

The latter, although for 'international community' read 'Obama administration". All HE needs is for them to take two years before announcing they have a bomb, and he can count on you lot pretending it was all the Walker administration's fault they developed that in a couple months after he left office.

My bet is that the GOP controlled Congress will try to use the power of the purse to sabotage the inspection regime by not providing any money (and putting a clause in the defense budget explicitly forbidding to spend any money from other sources). Then they will hope that the other participants in the agreement will be either unwilling or unable to shoulder the burden alone (and of course disregard any findings that Iran is in compliance as invalid since one cannot trust dem gullible Chamberlains of Europe).
It will not matter what Iran does or does not do in the least, the ceterum censeo will stand.

Iran is always just about to produce a bomb. always has been. always will be. and it's always 1938, or 9/10, or Dec 6th, in Scareytown, Wingnuttia 91101

Remember that Brett, the racist, considers the Iranians "murderous savages" - I have no idea why anybody would engage with him on ME matters.

Is it just boredom?

I think it is reasonable to have doubts that it will work out well given the multiple parties that for one reason or other do not want it to and the general untrustworthiness of nearly everyone involved but there is a difference between dismissing it out of hand and demanding that verify should rank higher than trust here.

he can count on you lot

Yes, my unmitigated support for all things Obama is well known.

But regarding the international communities failure to follow up on the inspections regime...why? What's your basis for that? Why wouldn't they use their inspections authority.

Why does Obama need two years of sham treaty/executive agreement? It's not as if he's up for re-election.

he can count on you lot pretending it was all the Walker administration's fault they developed that in a couple months

That will give new meaning to the phrase "cheese-eating surrender monkeys".

Since - in their opinion - Iraq failed due to not taking out Iran next (and Dems stabbing everyone in the back of course)

What I particularly love is the viewpoint that Obama secretly wants Iran to get the bomb. (Brett does not go that far, of course.) What they never seem to address is why, if that is the case, Obama ordered the use of the Stuxnet virus. Great aid to Iran's efforts, that.

I'm sure Obama desperately wants the agreement which works. Simply because he doesn't want us involved in another war in the Middle East. But whether he wants one no matter what it says? If so, why didn't he give in to Iran's postions long since? It's not like there haven't been multiple opportunities thus far. If he is so desperate for any agreement, he could have already had one.

If so, why didn't he give in to Iran's postions long since?

well, ya know, he's so evil that he wants to pretend he got a good deal while knowing in his little blackened heart that he got a terrible deal so that Iran can get the bomb and then nuke Israel or give it to some terrorist group - because it makes all kinds of sense to spend billions of dollars and many hundreds of millions of man-years of suffering on something and then just give it away. we give bombs away all the time! right?

Tell me again who is desperate?

http://www.msn.com/en-us/money/markets/billions-up-for-grabs-if-nuclear-deal-opens-irans-economy/ar-AAaoDi9

Hartmut,

other participants in the agreement will be either unwilling or unable to shoulder the burden alone

I don't know. I'm not especially knowledgeable on these matters, but it strikes me that Russia, at least, is not in this for show. (I don't actually think anyone else is, either.) Whatever one thinks of Putin, I doubt he likes having a nuclear-armed theocracy on his border.

Brett, best of luck to your sister in her treatments.

byomtov, you overlook that the part quoted by you is part of the clause dependent of 'they hope'. If the agreement was just bilaterally US-Iran then the opponents (on both sides) could be almost sure (certain?) that it could be sabotaged. The way it is now it also requires that the other parties (not interested in war) will not play their part if necessary without the US. The (Western) Europeans could be expected to fail trying to do it alone but the Russians have no interest in an nuclear Iran, no interest in a war at their own doorstep and still possess the means to act either alone or together with the other Europeans, so even a desire to return to the Cold War is unlikely to persuade Putin to join the neocon wrecking crew.

I'm pretty sure it's the IAEA that will be handling the inspections: they have the expertise and the credibility.

The job of the P5+1? is to support them, and I'd bet that most of the IAEA's financial support comes from *other* countries, that are better at paying their bills on time.

We gave the bomb to the British...

You what? The British perspective is that we gave everything we had to the US, and the US subsequently reneged on the agreement (most explicit in the Hyde Park Memorandum*) by passing the McMahon Act.

*"Full collaboration between the United States and the British Government in developing tube alloys for military and commercial purposes should continue after the defeat of Japan unless and until terminated by joint agreement"

hartmut,

Do I take it that you agree with me that the hope is unreasonable and unlikely to be realized, especially given the Russian involvement?

That is, I think, what I was trying to say, albeit ineptly.

Let us suppose that an agreement is not reached/ratified. There are two possibilities:
1) Iran is seen by everybody else as being unreasonable. In which case, the sanctions get continued, and quite possible tightened.
2) the US is seen by everybody else as being unreasonable. In which case, the sanctions (except as they apply to US firms) get weakened or eliminated.

Iran is highly motivated not to let #1 come to pass. Which is why, dispite the serious opposition of their hard-liners, the talks are going forward and Iran seems to be giving in on most of what the US wants.

The US is motivated not to let #2 happen. (Except for those whose preference is for a military attack/war.) Which is why the rantings of our hard-liners are, so far, not carrying the day.

The difference is that, in Iran, the hard-liners can be told to stuff it, and Khamenei can make it stick. In the US, the hard-liners may well manage to pass stuff thru Congress which will lead to #2 happening.

Unfortunately, there are other ways of sabotage like e.g. restarting the murder of Iranian scientists. The way it looks now the chances that the agreemment will hold until Obama leaves office are not bad because others can and are likely to shoulder some of the burden. With the next president (Hillary or a GOPster) the odds look pretty unfavourable to me. But if we can keep it alive that long, that would be an improvement over the status quo. The survival will depend on whether the US will at least stay neutral (a Washington gridlock would still count). If the hawks get back into the saddle, Russia won't save us (and to have to rely on Putin is not nice, especially with him probably as the most rational and least insane option as Russian ruler for the time being).
---
Just to repeat it, all of this is under the assumption that Iran keeps its side of the deal. I do not consider their rulers suicidal but fully capable of 'we will take you with us, if you leave us no choice of survival'

You what?

A day when you learn something new is a day well spent. Thank you, PaulB.

For those of you curious as to how it ended, GB had to restart their nuclear program and conducted their first bomb test in 1952.

In the US, the hard-liners may well manage to pass stuff thru Congress which will lead to #2 happening.

That's unlikely. Most of what congress could do with serious damage would need to override a veto.

If I understand this stuff correctly, the current set of sanctions against Iran were put in place by law - i.e., by Congress - rather than as executive actions.

Is that correct?

If so, then IMO the biggest threat Congress can pose to the deal is to simply refuse to remove the sanctions when the time comes to do so.

Iran has some homework to do before the sanctions are due to be removed (also if I understand the deal correctly), so it's not something that will happen right away.

Most likely, Obama will be out of office or almost so when the time comes, so even if we don't have a President Walker, he can always blame Congress.

Such a crafty man!!

Some of the sanctions against Iran were put in place by law (i.e. by Congress). But some of them were put in place by executive action (i.e. by the President).

It's part of what will make implementation of any agreement tricky for the US. The President can simply terminate those sanctions that were put in place by executive action. But all he can do with those which were written into the law is "suspend" them. Nominally temporarily.

and some of the sanctions are UN sanctions.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sanctions_against_Iran

Thanks PaulB for getting there ahead of me.
For those who hasn't read it, Richard Rhodes' The Making of the Atomic Bomb is still a great read, nearly thirty years after it was written.

As far as the Iran deal is concerned, I agree with pretty well everything in this Beinart article:
http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2015/04/the-real-achievement-of-the-iran-nuclear-deal/389628/

If I understand this stuff correctly, the current set of sanctions against Iran were put in place by law - i.e., by Congress - rather than as executive actions.

It's more than that. Many of the congressionally passed sanctions include executive power to waive them:

Right now, the president is able to waive most of those sanctions because they were written to give him the authority to do that.

http://www.npr.org/2015/04/03/397213123/congressional-lawmakers-insist-iran-nuclear-deal-be-put-to-a-vote

Brett, as it is said among my people, I am holding your sister in the Light.

I will also hold the State Department's statement in the light so you can see it better.

Reactions right as predicted from the Right:

"Neville Chamberlain got a better deal from Adolf Hitler," Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) said in a statement.

On the other hand, maybe people who have studied the challenges of curbing nuclear proliferation know what they are talking about:

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/political-animal-a/2015_04/astonishingly_good_iran_deal054933.php

One point critics of the deal have not addressed is the utter failure of US policy, prior to the current negotiations, to contain Iranian nuclear development:
http://nationalinterest.org/feature/confirmed-the-hawks-were-wrong-iran-12538

You can't say that before we haven't at least tried open war. Diplomacy is the ultima ratio when that has failed. [/sarcasm]

Hartmut, you make an excellent point.

After all, we knew Saddam had nuclear weapons (or at least was close to making them). And after our invasion? No nukes in sight any more!

How much more successful can an approach be?
/more sarcasm

We ?

The broad coalition supporting sanctions will swiftly disappear if the U.S. manages to sabotage the deal its administration has negotiated...
and I can't see them forming a 'coalition of the willing' to prosecute military action.

Allies are clearly overrated in wars of aggression, so that it may be seen as a bonus not to take anyone's sensibilities into account. And one could count of Saudi support in this case (as long as there are no US boots on Saudi ground at least not with GIs in them).

Nigel, the difficulty is that those looking to sabotage the deal (any deal) simply cannot wrap their minds around the concept that the US is not able to single-handedly do anything and everything it wants. And at no noticable cost to their constituents either. (Belief in magic is not dead!)

Please add 'have to' before 'to take' and replace 'of' with 'on' before 'Saudi'.

Allies may be overrated - but if you're going to maintain US hegemony, they are not entirely disposable.

U.S. failure to prevent its allies joining the Chinese development bank is a sizeable straw in the wind.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/economics/11509242/Israel-applies-to-become-founding-member-of-China-development-bank.html

Well, if the US would stop spending Chinese money on expensive war toys and cheap Chinese consumer products, that would be a catastrophe for the Chinese banks and industry, so why should China cure the US from their* grand illusions of independence and hegemony.

*I refuse to use US as a singular form. They are plural like the Netherlands, at least as far as grammar is concerned.
Better grammar than grandpa nazi.

An argument for even the irredeemably bellicose to favour the deal:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/monkey-cage/wp/2015/04/03/if-you-really-want-to-bomb-iran-take-the-deal/

Nigel, Mr Long makes a solid case. But it is built on a flawed assumption.

There may be some "Iran hawks" who are concerned only with crushing Iran (and/or building up those, whether Israeli or Saudi, who oppose Iran). But for by far the most numerous, war with Iran is a means, not an end.

What is far more important to them is preventing anything that could be seen as a "win" for Obama. Nothing, nothing, in more important to them than that. And to have the agreement go forward would be such a win. Not to mention that, to have the agreement give a military option a greater chance of success would be a greater win. So that makes it doubly unacceptable.

Then they are very, very silly people.

And with the moral sensibility of maladjusted pre-adolescents:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/germanwings-plane-crash/11515956/Michele-Bachmann-compares-Barack-Obama-with-Germanwings-co-pilot-Andreas-Lubitz.html

I feel some strong cognitive dissonance. The rabid ones know that Obama is Hitler (actually Hitler 2.0, the even worse edition) but they also know that they have to compare the Iran deal to Munich 1938 (unfavorably) where Obama is Chamberlain (2.0 see above). So Obama was negotiating with himself or what? Real struggle there to not mix up the talking points. The only safe thing is that the Yahoo from Netanya is Churchill reborn (not sure who the Saudis are supposed to be).

Well, clearly the Iraqis are the Vichy French....

Maybe the Saudis are the Russians? (Although I have trouble seeing Salman as Stalin -- for all the similarity in the names.) Sort-of allies for the moment, but not really our friends.

Why not the Saudis as the Americans (rich, deeply religious, socially conservative, funding bad guys all over the world...) ;-)

I see the parallel. But the Americans pushing to attack Iran would never consider it. ;-)

What is far more important to them is preventing anything that could be seen as a "win" for Obama. Nothing, nothing, in more important to them than that.

Between 2009 and 2012, and to a lesser extent between 2012 and 2014, one could see the political calculation in that, however destructive.

But in 2015? With Obama beyond electoral payback? If you're right wj, and I'm not saying you're not, that GOP strategy just shrieks "racist douchbaggery".

Why not the Saudis as the Americans

Because they only want regional hegemony ?

Why then are they financing both terrorists and ultra-conservative missionaries world-wide?

Snarki, How much racism there is in the GOP's unwillingness to work with Obama is a matter of some dispute. But considering that it extends to cases where he is doing things which are (or were) explicit parts of their platform, I'm having difficulty buying their explanation that it is just philosophical differences at work.

"What is far more important to them is preventing anything that could be seen as a "win" for Obama. Nothing, nothing, in more important to them than that."

I'd call this a case of perverse projection: Democrats must regard everything Obama does as a success, because the alternative is admitting their enemies might be right about something.

Back home again, after an interesting drive. Not as much over the food poisoning as I thought, we made a LOT of stops on that 12 hour drive. Sis is getting her hair cut short today in preparation for it falling out. I don't get it, why does she have to shorten it in stages like this? When I started looking like the mange, I just shaved it straight away.

There certainly are some Democrats who think that way.

But some of us who decry the Republicans who can't stand the thought of Obama doing anything right are, ourselves, Republicans. And think Obama has gotten a number of things wrong, some of them seriously wrong. We're just capable of seeing that it's not nearly everything.

Democrats must regard everything Obama does as a success

haven't spoken to many Democrats, have ya?

I think this really sums up the issue here:

The odd reality of Iran's centrifuges: Enough for a bomb, not power

Why allow Iran centrifuges at all, if they're not going to have a nuclear power program? It seems to me that the only practical purpose of Iran having a nuclear program, at all, if they're not going ahead with nuclear power, is to serve as cover for their nuclear weapons program. It really advances no other purpose.

It really is a pity Thorium reactor technology wasn't pursued, ironically because Thorium wouldn't aid in making nuclear bombs. Iran could have Thorium reactors up the wazoo, and be no closer to the atomic bomb, if the technology hadn't been abandoned all those years ago.

Everything?

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/political-animal-a/2015_04/rough_trade054938.php

One half of your Presidential ticket likes the UN and the World Bank infringing on American sovereignty:

http://thediplomat.com/2014/10/rand-paul-to-obama-finish-tpp-trade-deal/

The other half, Scott Walker, is plotting to say he is for it before he is against it, I can just bet.

I hope the two of them coordinate their waffling on the subject, so you don't suffer from whiplash on top of the food poisoning, which I wish would go away.

I think you're surrounded by my enemies, with Barack Obama providing air cover for them.

Which way to the front?

Brett, the reason Thorium was abandoned is that it is really, really hard to make it work.

Easiest way to see that is to just compare the neutron capture cross-sections of the intermediate nuclei between 238U and 239Pu (Plutoniun breeding reaction), and the equivalent between 232Th and 233U.

The intermediates get burned up too quickly to use Thorium breeding, unless you pursue some really crazy difficult technology.

And it takes a MUCH larger centrifuge cascade to get U enrichment up to weapons-grade than it does to get reactor grade.

Iran has had at least one bomb's worth of HEU in a research reactor (provided by the U.S.A) in Tehran; that IAEA has keep an eye on for decades now, with no cheating. If they really wanted a quick breakout, that's how it could happen. But it hasn't.


I'd call this a case of perverse projection: Democrats must regard everything Obama does as a success, because the alternative is admitting their enemies might be right about something.

I wouldn't. I mean, McConnell said as much pretty explicitly. Further, let's be blunt. The hatred - the personal hatred - of Obama on the right is palpable. Not everyone shares it, but enough do to make it significant. You read lots of comment threads on lots of blogs. if you don't see it it's because you don't want to.

Democrats actually do have lots of criticisms of Obama. Many of these are from his left, so they don't involve agreeing with Republicans. But that doesn't mean they are not criticisms.

"And it takes a MUCH larger centrifuge cascade to get U enrichment up to weapons-grade than it does to get reactor grade."

No, it doesn't. It takes more passes, yes, but the total thruput is based on the number of centrifuges/passes, and bombs take pounds of U235, where reactors take tons. So, even though you need to put the material through the cascade a second time, you don't need nearly so many in parallel to get usable quantities.

No, Brett, you DO need many more centrifuges in the cascade, because each centrifuge only separates the UF6 stream into *slightly* more enriched (and *slightly* depleted). Both of those resulting streams have to be processed further, with the outputs combined so that you're never mixing streams with different enrichment (just because it wastes effort).
It takes many passes to get to reactor grade, many more to get to HEU grade, many more to get to bomb grade. And those "waste" streams have to be used, otherwise you're losing a factor of 2 at each step.

Sure, you could get a bombsworth of 235U with a handful of centrifuges, if you have a few centuries to spare, and lots and lots of storage for the intermediate product. Damn, those Iranians'll have the bomb any day now!

There is also the detail that, in addition to reacting violently with waterm uranium hexafloride is corrosive of most metals. Only mildly with aluminium, so it can be stored (while you pile up enough to run the next batch). But there are lots of lovely places for things to go wrong, if you are doing anything but run cascades without letting it cool (and solidify) and be stored.

Of course it's not *easy*. But the fact remains, this glorious agreement does permit them enough centrifuges for bomb making purposes, (Thousands, not a "handful".) but far short of enough for civilian purposes.

Which is kind of ironic for an agreement that supposedly stops them from getting the bomb.

Brett, nothing is guaranteed to stop them making a bomb, if they are really determined to do so. The most that can be done is to make it sufficiently difficult that it isn't worth the effort.

I'd call this a case of perverse projection: Democrats must regard everything Obama does as a success, because the alternative is admitting their enemies might be right about something.

It would be much more enjoyable discussing things with you if you didn't insist on trying to read people's minds.

You're not even good at it. Give it a freaking rest.

Plus they are left with their oldest and least efficient centrifuges, so the numbers of centrifuges alone is misleading.

Why not ban them from owning mass spectrometers? Those sort by isotopes too, don't they? With enough of those 'dual use' machines they could have enough by the time the sun turns red giant (not considering losses due to half-life of isotopes).
And their good buddies in Iraq could collect all the 'depleted' uranium the US left there and do a poor man's extraction on the side out of sight.[/sarcasm]

At this point the personal hatred of Obama us palpable and completely justified. He us the most obnoxious politician, particularly President, I've ever heard speak I watched just enough of his announcement to get to the part where he said if Congress disagreed with him then they would cause Iran to get the bomb and the whole world should blame them, shook my head and turned him off again. He sucks. I hope they impeach him for crimes against the country. Treason would be good. Inappropriate use of his office would be fine. I don't care, I just don't want to ever hear him talk again. I would rather listen to Hilary lie

He sucks.

You should hear what he says about you.

In it wasn't clear, that last was just me yanking your chain.

No worries, everybody needs to vent now and then.

At this point the personal hatred of Obama us palpable and completely justified.

i love the smell of epistemic closure in the morning.

Personal hatred based on dislike of his speaking style? Is that what sets you off?

Because most of us know lots of really terrible public speakers. (I, for example, know me.) But we don't hate them.

Or maybe you just feel that public speaking is the only characteristic which matters in a President. Granted, it is a huge plus for someone running for President. And almost as big for someone holding office and trying to sell a policy. But public speaking is hardly the most important part of the job.

NP russell, I am sure I would not be popular with him these days. And I laughed when I read your comment.

Marty, just because Obama states a truth that you don't want to hear doesn't make your hatred justified.

If Congress kills this deal, what do you think happens next? To me it is obvious that the other P5+1 countries will rightfully conclude that the US is negotiating in bad faith and the existing sanctions collapse. That isn't hard: China deciding to strike a "we'll buy lots of oil as long as you don't point nukes at us" deal might be enough by itself.

And then what? Iran will have far more money and even more motivation to get their bomb as quickly as possible. Yes, the US could bomb them, but tactical bombings will only strengthen and deepen Iranian resolve (not to mention the associated oil price spikes probably making Iran more money). And as for wholesale bombings... maybe you're enough of a monster to go there. I'm not.

"I personally hate him and we are now at a point where I see I was justified" reminds one of those reasoning fallacies that have a fancy Latin name.

Ravi, there is the fact also that Obama has negotiated and approved a stupid deal. So is it their fault for not agreeing to a stupid deal or his for trying to pad his resume? In either case, standing in front of the world press and bad mouthing them was pompous and stupid. And typical.

OK, if you think it is a stupid deal, fine. What do you think he should have done? Do you think the Iranians would have given more, with a different negotiator? Or do you think that a military "solution" (and what specific kind of military actions are you thinking of?) would be preferable?

Or is there some other, non-deal, non-military, approach that the rest of the world just has not had the wit to see?

But if you dislike the deal, you have to say what else you think should happen.

No, wj, I don't. I am pretty sure that setting deadlines and getting a "framework" in place is mostly irrelevant. Announcing it like he did was stupid, pompous and unconstructive. I don't have to know the ultimate answer to know what he did is bad.

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