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It’s only a matter of time before the Germans and French accuse the Americans of being at fault for the Iranian’s refusal to yield. They’ll say, "You ruined the pretty little treaty we almost had completely negotiated."

First of all, Britain is in on these negotiations, too.

Secondly, without Russsian help Iran wouldn't be able to get nukes in the first place:

MOSCOW (Reuters) - President Vladimir Putin said on Friday he was convinced Iran was not trying to build a nuclear weapon and that Russia would press ahead with nuclear cooperation with the Islamic Republic.

Putin's defense of Iran, where Russia is building a nuclear power plant, comes in the face of U.S. concerns that Tehran could be using Russian know-how to covertly build a nuclear weapon.

"The latest steps by Iran convince Russia that Iran indeed does not intend to produce nuclear weapons and we will continue to develop relations in all sectors, including peaceful atomic energy," Putin told Iran's top nuclear negotiator, Hassan Rohani.

"We hope Iran will strictly stick to all agreements with Russia or the international community," Putin said at the start of talks with Rohani at the Kremlin.

The United States has criticized Moscow for pressing ahead with construction of a 1,000-megawatt reactor at Bushehr in southern Iran.

Russia's top nuclear officials are due to travel to Iran next week to finalize the final technicalities of its start-up later this year.

The question of Russia's nuclear ties with Iran is certain to figure in a summit between Putin and President Bush in the Slovak capital Bratislava on Feb. 24.

I think putting pressure on Russia would be more productive than the negotiations with Iran.

--It’s only a matter of time before the Germans and French accuse the Americans of being at fault for the Iranian’s refusal to yield. They’ll say, "You ruined the pretty little treaty we almost had completely negotiated."

Q: Sounds familiar... --

Honesty, who would have thought?

Whatever France and Germany do, history will prove them wrong, because their history will be rewritten by Muslims in a few decades. Sic transit gloria mundi.

Blunt talk indeed - perhaps once again the uncouth Americans will fail to win over the diplomats of Europe with such honesty

Maybe if we signed up for the Kyoto treaty - and then ignored implimenting it like everyone else - we would get a smily face on our paper

Re. Putin, I think a very public and simple question should be put to the Russians. If they are so convinced about Iran's peaceful intentions regarding nuclear power, then how about a guarantee from that if it is used otherwise, or nuclear material finds its way into a 3rd country, or terrorist hands, that they take responsibility financially - and set a price. If Russia is unwilling to do so, then ask why we should risk citizens lives allowing such an endeavor to continue.

Actually, I think that are good news. Europe is showing, that it is able
to follow it's own humanitarian aund diplomatic way. Certain american circles fear, that
they are left alone and Europe will obtain the peace divident again.

God bless the German people.

It’s only a matter of time before the Germans and French accuse the Americans of being at fault for the Iranian’s refusal to yield. They’ll say, "You ruined the pretty little treaty we almost had completely negotiated."

First of all, Britain is in on these negotiations, too.

Secondly, without Russsian help Iran wouldn't be able to get nukes in the first place:

MOSCOW (Reuters) - President Vladimir Putin said on Friday he was convinced Iran was not trying to build a nuclear weapon and that Russia would press ahead with nuclear cooperation with the Islamic Republic.

Putin's defense of Iran, where Russia is building a nuclear power plant, comes in the face of U.S. concerns that Tehran could be using Russian know-how to covertly build a nuclear weapon.

"The latest steps by Iran convince Russia that Iran indeed does not intend to produce nuclear weapons and we will continue to develop relations in all sectors, including peaceful atomic energy," Putin told Iran's top nuclear negotiator, Hassan Rohani.

"We hope Iran will strictly stick to all agreements with Russia or the international community," Putin said at the start of talks with Rohani at the Kremlin.

The United States has criticized Moscow for pressing ahead with construction of a 1,000-megawatt reactor at Bushehr in southern Iran.

Russia's top nuclear officials are due to travel to Iran next week to finalize the final technicalities of its start-up later this year.

The question of Russia's nuclear ties with Iran is certain to figure in a summit between Putin and President Bush in the Slovak capital Bratislava on Feb. 24.

I think putting pressure on Russia would be more productive than the negotiations with Iran.

M,

I'm with you.

Of course, am not sure how you get a dividend when you have made no investment. Must be something unigue to social welfare states.

I think this is great.

Paul, "Re. Putin, I think a very public and simple question should be put to the Russians. If they are so convinced about Iran's peaceful intentions regarding nuclear power"

Personally, I'd like to hear Putin's answer to the question, "What on earth does a nation sitting on an ocean of oil need nuclear power for?"

Compliance to Kyoto? Please.......

mamapajamas and Paul

That is an excellent idea.

" If they are so convinced about Iran's peaceful intentions regarding nuclear power."

What if Israel puts that same question to the eu3 with their treaty?

But instead of say some euro amount, they just say we will take down berlin, paris and london.

Are you prepared to agree to that? Do you think the eu3 are prepared to agree to that?

It would follow the logic you put forth.

If the appeasers of Europe manage to enable the mullahs of Iran to go nuclear - and this results in a nuclear attack on Israel ( an Iranian gov't official was quoted in the past saying Iran could absorb a counterstrike if it got rid of Israel - sort of the ultimate suicide bombing ) - then I would not be surprised to find some anger from Israel directed at Europe.

No one in America seriously expects much help in the War on Terror from France or the current German administration. But Russia -- for its own selfish reasons -- really ought to get on board. They virtually border on Iran, and certainly have not been immune to the sort of terrorism Iran has been supporting and exporting for a quarter of a century now.

For France, substitute Japan. For Germany, substitute India. For Russia, substitute China. For the 20th century, substitute the 21st century.

Joe, POgue,

w3hy blame the EU 3 when Russia is giving Iran whole reactors?


I think he makes a mistake telling "Die Welt" that the elections would have legitimized the war.
Thats really nonsense.
It would have been more correct to state that the war in the end brought a respectable result concerning the democratic movement in iraq.

It's only a part of the interview here. The complete version in English:

http://www.signonsandiego.com/uniontrib/20050220/news_lz1e20perle.html

I couldn't agree more with the "prince of darkness."

Ralf,

The eu3 have chosen to use only "soft power" to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons. berlin has already ruled out any use of hard power. So for Iran this is pretty much risk free from their perspective.

Besides as the eu3 have said over and over this is the new way to deal with these kinds of threats. It is much better than a war.

So with this level of faith in what they are doing, it would only seem logical they would be prepared to give Israel some form of assurances too.

Russia being close allies of france and germany, I would think they would have greater influnce. Remember it is your dear chancellor who feels Putin is a real democrat and is getting a raw deal in Washington. It is he who continues to make Russia a key german trading partner who is providing over 40% of your engery requirements.

But if you think germany should get a pass on responsibility, so be it. Who am I to disagree with the foreign policy goals of germany.

@ Ralf

I think the disappointment doesnt affect Russia because you can only be disappointed in those who you expected to act differently. i.e. France and Germany. Britain doesnt really count as Blair is facing an election in a few months and can be expected to be seen to be pushing for negotiations. As I always say: Look at the map and you will see that soft powers only hope of working is that Iran is surrounded now by two new democracies and a lot of coalition troops, not forgetting the IAF easily within striking range. I doubt British troops will be planned in to any strike on Iran, if these plans even exist, but being in Iraq they have provided an important part of the pro democracy moves and will be there for backup in terms of logistics.

My cynical attitude to Russia makes me generally believe that whatever the USA is in favour of then Russia will be against it in theory. Putin I am sure will be very happy once agreeing to build the reactors to take compensation from the USA for not building them after talks with Bush. This and some help with anti-terror in Russia and a few fewer criticisms of Russias "democracy" is probably what Russia is after. Disappointment it is not, merely what is expected.

Germany and France however have the possibilty of helping to rebuild Iraq and perhaps even sending troops to train Iraqi soldiers. They also have the possibility of being slightly tougher than they are, as in any ammount of tough. That Atomic question cannot rest on the presumption of innocent until proven guilty. It is up to Iran to PROVE its innocence. Israel cannot take this gamble, there is too much at stake here. The ultimate aim is to push for democracy in Iran thus making a difference between military and civilian use of nuclear power, a difference which currently does not exist. The reaction of Germany and France is therfore disappointing.

Here a nice article on Iran in German

Iran´s use of Russia is interesting though. Does that mean that Pakistan is not willing to help? Are they hoping to get Russia to vote in the UNSC against any action against them? Is this just a public snub?

With yet another earthquake in Iran today, you gotta wonder whether nuclear reactors are good for Iran?

--Personally, I'd like to hear Putin's answer to the question, "What on earth does a nation sitting on an ocean of oil need nuclear power for?"--
already saw a 10ish minute segment on Die Welt on this.

Germany is helping China develop those pebble bed reactors.

Off them to Iran since they want it for peaceful means. They can wait a couple of years, they're not running out of oil soon.


So Bush will be here soon.... Welcome Bush..

At this point, just for debate, I want to ask people whether they think now that things would be different if the USA had voted Kerry? I have my view but i was just interested what others thought...

If you spent any time perusing Iranian blogs before the clampdown, as I did, you would have found that even liberal Iranians want the bomb. Even though the Iraq they fought so painfully no longer exists, I think they were so traumatized by that event that they crave total security, which they believe nuclear weapons will give them.

They are also very proud people, who will not hesitate to lecture you on their magnificent, millennia old civilization, even if it has essentially been an Arab satrapy for the past 1300 years. They feel that they have as much right to nukes as anyone.

The point is, it's not just the Mullahs. The quest for nuclear weapons is popular in Iran. That is why there is zero chance that it can be negotiated away. Absent military intervention, Iran will soon become a nuclear power. Anyone who imagines otherwise is fooling themselves.

@ niko, *courriel*? Maybe calling it *L'e-mail* would be to obvious. Wonder what the French call snail-mail? The Quebecois have gone so far as to francomize baseball jargon. Is nothing sacred to thoughs cretins?

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