Fox News Channel
November 25, 2004
A Look at Developments in Iranís Nuclear Program
apparently trying to get out of part of a nuclear agreement that Iran
itself recently signed. So is Iran
now able to make nuclear material that could be used in an atomic bomb? Well
joining us from Washington Fox News foreign affairs analyst Alireza Jafarzedeh.
Welcome, itís great to see you this thanksgiving, thanks for coming in.
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Thank you very much, Page. Happy
Thank you. Alireza, I want to ask you about this agreement that Iran
made with European officials to stop Tehranís
uranium enrichment program, at least temporarily. Doesnít this leave Iran
still free to make plutonium?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: It certainly does. First of all,
in terms of the uranium enrichment, itís not very clear exactly what is included.
actually trying to push the envelope. They now say they want twenty some
machines exempted so they can do research and development. After all they can
announce that this was not a complete freeze of their program. But also it
makes no mention of plutonium which is a parallel way of getting fissile
material for a nuclear weapon and they have a huge facility in Arak;
they have a heavy water facility. They are building a heavy water reactor
there. So the gates are still very open.
And also, when we hear about this
agreement, why should we believe Iran
when they have been back stepping out of these agreements every inch of the
way. They agree then they back paddle. Why even go through the motions?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Well, thatís a good question
Page. I think last year, in October, Iran
shouldíve been referred to the UN Security Council. They made promises and they
have violated their promises and they are making similar promises this time
except that they have bought a year of time. They have made tremendous advances
in this one year. They now have a uranium conversion facility in Isfahan;
theyíve made parts; they have made a lot of advancement in Natanz. This is
Are those one of the facilities that according to the National Council of
is running? Sort of a secret nuclear site, that has
not been disclosed? Is that what you are talking about?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Well, this is actually new
information that came last week. The image you see is the site in Natanz, but
the NCRI revealed a new site in Lavizan which they say has not been declared.
This is run by the military. This is what you are looking at right now. Iran
is now doing laser enrichment in this site. There is another site in Parchin
which the opposition, the NCRI says that they are doing laser enrichment and
Iím surprised that the International Atomic Energy Agency has not inspected
these sites in light of the upcoming session of the IAEA.
What do you think it is going to take? Do you think it is going to take more
inspectors on the ground inside Iran
or more boots on the ground?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Well, I think itís a combination
of the two. I think the US
should pursue a two-pronged strategy. On the one side, as far as the IAEA is
concerned, they should insist on referring Iranís
file to the UN Security Council. But on the political side, you need to tighten
political screws on Iran.
Iran will not
take you seriously, will not abide by these
regulations unless they are threatened. Their very existence is threatened. And
the way to do it is not necessarily by sending troops or making military
strikes, but rather reaching out to the Iranian opposition. Just last week
there was a huge rally here on Capitol Hill. Thousands of Iranians who called
for regime change in Iran.
They said this is the sure way of ending Iranís
nuclear threat, but also a sure way of ending the threat of the Iranian regime
against its own population. They said the US
should support Iranian opposition groups. This is something the US
has not been doing. This is one thing we definitely need to focus on.
Well, it sure feels like Iran
is the next frontier in the war on terror. Alireza Jafarzadeh, thank you so
much for coming in and joining us today.
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Thank you very much Page. Happy
Happy Thanksgiving to you.
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