Iran Regime's Nuclear Deception
By Amir Taghati
Last year, it became known that the Iranian regime was not truthful when the nuclear deal negotiations were going on. Foreign intelligence discovered – through the seizure of tens of thousands of documents, images and files – that Iran’s nuclear planning was more advanced than the regime claimed. The evidence was able to show that in the first few years of the century, Iran was planning to manufacture and develop a missile that would be capable of delivering nuclear weapons. The plan was named the “Amad Plan”.
Iran claimed that the plan wound down towards the end of 2003, but what it actually did was conceal the planning under a different guise.
Researchers at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Institute for Science and International Security have also confirmed that after analysing the nuclear archive, Iran had hidden the extent of its nuclear development program from the West. They have also come to the conclusion that Iran is breaching its nuclear non-proliferation activities.
It is very clear that Iran needs to be monitored much more closely, especially given its past deception. The Iran nuclear threat must not be underestimated and it is important for governments to thoroughly assess the threat. Governments also must hold the Iranian regime accountable for its activities.
The researchers recommended that the many shortcomings and loopholes in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) are remedied – in particular with regards to the sunset clauses, inspections and its ballistic missile program. They also recommend that a more comprehensive nuclear deal is drawn up; one that will cover all of the peripheral issues that contribute to Iran’s path to nuclear weapons.
The IAEA - the International Atomic Energy Agency – the nuclear watchdog that oversees the implementation of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal is unable to confirm whether Iran is still carrying out activities related to its nuclear weapons program.
The nuclear archive suggests that even the IAEA has been deceived by the Iranian regime and that IAEA inspectors have been blatantly lied to during inspections. For example, the archive contains details about a number of nuclear facilities that the IAEA and foreign intelligence agencies did not even know existed.
All of this makes us wonder if Iran is in full compliance with the JCPoA. Indeed, all indications suggest that it is not compliant. Certainly, the spirit of the deal is being completely disregarded by Iran.
Moving forward, the IAEA ought to take the information from the nuclear archive and verify every single detail regarding the facilities, sites and locations mentioned in it. Iran should also be obliged to fully cooperate with these efforts. Personnel should be questioned and no query should be left unanswered. And of course, Iran should be held accountable for its actions.
The United States has already pulled out of the nuclear deal, with President Trump explaining that a belligerent regime should not be allowed to reap the benefits of it. The other signatories of the deal have a responsibility to ensure that the deal meets its goals.