One of the
first things Condi Rice didn’t do as secretary of state was
to address the 2005 Review
Conference of the Treaty on Nonproliferation of Nuclear Weapons.
She also didn’t allow the conclusions and commitments made at the
RevCon to even be discussed, much less reaffirmed.
sent Stephen Rademaker to inform the 2005 NPT conferees thusly:
France and Germany, with our support, are seeking to reach a diplomatic
solution to the Iranian nuclear problem, a solution that given
the history of clandestine nuclear weapons work in that country,
must include permanent cessation of Iran’s enrichment and reprocessing
efforts, as well as dismantlement of equipment and facilities
related to such activity.
ElBaradei, director-general of the International Atomic Energy Agency
and responsible for verifying to NPT signatories that no source
or special nuclear materials are used in furtherance of a military
purpose, had just reported, after more than two years of unprecedented
highly intrusive inspections, "I have seen no nuclear weapons
program in Iran."
was essentially charging that the IAEA is incompetent to accomplish
its NPT mission.
had given up on the NPT and was supporting efforts outside
the NPT to reach a "diplomatic" solution to the "Iranian
Well, on Nov.
15, 2004, Brit, French and German ambassadors (with the support
of Javier Solana, high representative of the European Union) signed
an agreement with the Iranian ambassador, now known as the Paris
The Paris Accord
negotiations – nominally – were to a) provide "objective
guarantees" to the Brits-French-Germans that Iran’s nuclear
program is "exclusively for peaceful purposes" and b)
provide equally "firm guarantees" to the Iranians of EU
technological and economic cooperation as well as "firm commitments"
on "security issues."
involved only the Brits-French-Germans and Iranians.
offered to voluntarily suspend for the duration of the negotiations
"all enrichment related and reprocessing activities."
Since those activities were already subject to an IAEA full-scope
Safeguards Agreement, the IAEA was invited to "verify"
did not otherwise involve the IAEA Board or concern them.
primary mission of the IAEA is to facilitate the widest possible
transfer and subsequent peaceful use of nuclear technology.
the Brits-French-Germans were – with U.S. support – seeking
"permanent cessation of Iran’s enrichment and reprocessing
efforts, as well as dismantlement of equipment and facilities related
to such activity," they were not negotiating in "good
faith" under the terms of the Paris Accord or the NPT or the
We now know
– Rademaker knew at the time – that as a result of Condi’s
arm-twisting, the Brits-French-Germans weren’t negotiating
in good faith.
On March 23,
2005, Iran had offered a "confidential" package of "objective
guarantees" that included a voluntary "confinement"
of Iran’s nuclear programs, to include:
the reprocessing of spent reactor fuel;
the production of plutonium;
only the low-enriched uranium required for Iran’s power reactors;
- the immediate
conversion of all enriched uranium to fuel rods.
By any measure,
the Iranian "confinement" offer was substantial. Nevertheless,
Condi did not allow the Brits-French-Germans to even acknowledge
the Iranian offer, much less accept it.
Hence, in August
the Iranians notified the IAEA they had broken off the Paris Accord
negotiations and intended to resume some of the Safeguarded enrichment
activities they had voluntarily suspended.
strong-armed the Brits-French-Germans into improperly involving
the IAEA Board in the mess they made. The IAEA Board then improperly
and illegally "required" Iran to resume negotiations with
strong-armed the IAEA Board into improperly and illegally seeking
to involve the U.N. Security Council in the Iran-Board confrontation.
Contrary to what you have been told, the Security Council essentially
"remanded" the "Iranian dossier" to the IAEA
That is, the
Security Council refused to accept jurisdiction (which is what the
IAEA Board should have done).
has strong-armed the Russians, Chinese and the Brits-French-Germans
into sending EU High Representative Solana to make a "confidential"
offer to Iran to return to the negotiating table.
As the Brits-French-Germans-Russians-Chinese
and Iranians must know, Condi has no intention of allowing good-faith
negotiations this time, either. If she had, the "confidential"
offer to negotiate would essentially restate the terms of the Paris
And the starting
point for the negotiations would be careful consideration by Condi
and the Brits-French-Germans-Russians-Chinese of the March 23, 2005,
offer by the Iranians.
James Gordon Prather [send
him mail] has served as a policy-implementing official for national
security-related technical matters in the Federal Energy Agency,
the Energy Research and Development Administration, the Department
of Energy, the Office of the Secretary of Defense and the Department
of the Army. Dr. Prather also served as legislative assistant for
national security affairs to U.S. Sen. Henry Bellmon, R-Okla. –
ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee and member of the
Senate Energy Committee and Appropriations Committee. Dr. Prather
had earlier worked as a nuclear weapons physicist at Lawrence Livermore
National Laboratory in California and Sandia National Laboratory
in New Mexico.