The 15 Costliest Nuclear Disasters Before The Big One

The names Chernobyl and Fukushima connote nuclear disaster. But do you remember Three Mile Island? Have you ever heard of Beloyarsk, Jaslovske, or Pickering? These names appear among the 15 most expensive nuclear disasters.
Chernobyl, Ukraine (1986): $259 billion
Fukushima, Japan (2011): $166 billion
Tsuruga, Japan (1995): $15.5 billion
Three Mile Island, Pennsylvania, USA (1979): $11 billion
Beloyarsk, USSR (1977): $3.5 billion
Sellafield, UK (1969): $2.5 billion
Athens, Alabama, USA (1985): $2.1 billion
Jaslovske Bohunice, Czechoslovakia (1977): $2 billion
Sellafield, UK (1968): $1.9 billion
Sellafield, UK (1971): $1.3 billion
Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA (1986): $1.2 billion
Chapelcross, UK (1967): $1.1 billion
Chernobyl, Ukraine (1982): $1.1 billion
Pickering, Canada (1983): $1 billion
Sellafield, UK (1973): $1 billion
A new study of 216 nuclear energy accidents and incidents crunches twice as much data as the previously best review, predicting that
The study points to two significant issues in the current assessment of nuclear safety. First, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) serves the dual masters of overseeing the industry and promoting nuclear energy. Second, the primary tool used to assess the risk of nuclear incidents suffers from blind spots.
The conflict of interest in the first issue is clear. The second issue may not be transparent to the layperson until they understand more fully how industry conducts the probabilistic safety assessments (PSAs) which are the source of the standard predictions of the risk of nuclear accidents. A PSA involves identifying every single possible thing that could go wrong, and assigning a probability that reflects the risk it will go wrong. Nuclear plants are then built with layers of interlocking safety mechanisms, that should reduce the probability to near zero that all of the failures necessary to result in a significant event could ever happen all at the same time.
It is a comprehensive and thorough method to help safety engineers reduce risks to levels that are acceptable relative to the benefits of the technology. It has certainly helped safety engineering make great strides in the effort towards ‘zero accident’ goals. However, the scientifically calculated risk probabilities from a PSA are only as good as the engineers’ abilities to identify every single thing that could go wrong.
Every time some new thing goes wrong that wasn’t thought of before, it is quickly integrated into the PSA and the assessment re-calculated and safety measures reinforced to again return the risks to the ‘safe’ levels. And industry keeps close track of everything that goes wrong, even when no accident occurs due to the layers of safety engineered in, which helps to fine-tune PSAs without the need for actual disasters. But every so often, a Chernobyl or Fukushima proves that our limitations outrun our technology for controlling the risks.
The new study, by researchers at the University of Sussex (England) and ETH Zurich (Switzerland), takes a different approach by submitting the data on events that have disrupted the nuclear industry to a statistical analysis. The report tracks the evolution of nuclear safety engineering that with the benefit of 20:20 hindsight in the wake of each nuclear disaster. It finds that nuclear accidents have substantially decreased in frequency, especially due to success of safety engineering in suppressing the “moderate-to-large” incidents.
But even with these optimistic trends, the report predicts that it is more likely than not that disasters at the extreme end of the IAEA scale will occur once or twice per century. Accidents on the scale of Three Mile Island have over a 50% probability of occurring every 10-20 years.
This may not spell the end of the nuclear industry though. One co-author of the study, Professor Didier Sornette, emphasizes that: “While our studies seem damning of the nuclear industry, other considerations and potential for improvement may actually make nuclear energy attractive in the future.”

Preparing For Fukushima At The Sixth Seal


Got KI in your kit? Pills recommended around Indian Point

A Journal News editorial
May 7, 2014

A New York-based health foundation is once again advocating that people who live or work within a 50-mile radius of Indian Point nuclear power plant keep potassium iodide (KI) on hand. It’s a smart safety tip, although not everyone agrees with the need to push the pills so far.

On Tuesday, the PATH foundation brought out big-name support — former Govs. David Paterson and George Pataki, a Democrat and Republican, respectively — for a press conference announcing a new report on the issue. “We cannot minimize the gravity of concern we would have if there was some kind of disaster,” said Paterson during the press conference.

Last month, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission rejected a petition to extend Indian Point’s primary evacuation zone from the current 10-mile circle to a 25-mile radius; the NRC also declined to establish a 50-mile secondary zone, which would stretch as far north as Kingston and as far south as New York Harbor.

Rockland Emergency Services Program Coordinator Nick Longo Jr. said he didn’t find a 50-mile KI distribution zone necessary, but “everyone is entitled to their opinion. … I have it in my house.” Standard distribution is one pill per person in a household in the evacuation zone, but Longo told the Editorial Board that county officials don’t ask people for their address and “we don’t confirm how many people are in your family for that matter.” Some towns and villages in Rockland also have supplies.

Westchester and Putnam emergency services offer distribution to residents in the 10-mile Emergency Planning Zone around the Buchanan plant; Putnam officials have, upon request, given the pills to people who live outside the 10-mile zone.

Pro-safety pitch

Speakers at Tuesday’s press conference pitched the concept as pro-public safety and disaster preparedness, rather than anti-nuclear power. Capital New York quoted Pataki, former mayor of Peekskill, cautioning that, “This is not, in my view, about frightening people. … But we do have to be prepared.” In case of a radiation incident, KI would also be distributed during an evacuation or if health officials determine it is needed, officials say.

The PATH foundation report, “Managing Terrorism or Accidental Nuclear Errors Preparing for Iodide-131 Emergencies: A Comprehensive Review,” recommends that KI be “pre-distributed within 50 miles of a (nuclear power plant), and used only under regulatory guidance.”

Although KI is available without a prescription, it needs to be used with caution. Potassium iodide can cause adverse reactions in people with thyroid problems; infants who receive more than one dose should be closely monitored. Thyroid cancer from radiation exposure is a bigger risk for people under age 40, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People should take KI only on the advice of public health or emergency management officials, according to the CDC, because it poses its own risks.

According to the CDC, KI does not stop radioactive iodine from entering the body, but blocks the absorption of radioactive iodine in the thyroid. KI doesn’t protect other parts of the body. Thyroid cancer is a major risk from radiation exposure.

The pills have a five-year shelf life. So if you can’t remember when you last stocked up, it may be time for replacements.

It’s smart to plan for emergencies that will likely never happen. Most residents take such measures by placing smoke alarms in every room and having extra flashlight batteries on hand. For residents who live within 10 miles of Indian Point, or more, it’s worth considering if KI belongs in your emergency preparedness kit.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers advice on the use of potassium iodide to inhibit thyroid cancer as a result of nuclear exposure; find information at http://www.bt.cdc.gov/radiation/ki.asp.

Prepare For The Inevitable Nuclear War (Revelation 15)

Stanford experts warn of probable nuclear catastrophe

The Doomsday Clock was created in 1947 by the Bulletin of The of Atomic Scientists to measure the risk of a global disaster. The clock reached its earliest point in 1991, 17 minutes before midnight, following the end of the Cold War. However, it has since ticked progressively closer to “doomsday.”
William J. Perry, former Secretary of Defense and FSI Senior Fellow, pointed to recent efforts by the U.S and Russia to modernize their nuclear weapons and stated that he feared that the risk of a nuclear disaster today was even greater than during the Cold War and that government policy did not yet reflect this threat. Perry exhorted President Obama to remain committed to nuclear disarmament as he enters his last year in office. George P. Schultz, former Secretary of State and Hoover Institute Senior Fellow, also stressed the need for American leadership and engagement on the international stage.
While the Doomsday Clock initially focused on the risk of a nuclear catastrophe, in recent years it has also reflected the threat of anthropogenic climate change. Governor Brown said that the two issues are innately tied and was discouraged by the lack of government action.

LA left vulnerable to a nuclear attack (Rev 15:2)

  

Dangerous Decisio Could Leave Californians Vulnerable After Nuclear Disaster
By Joel Grover and Matthew Glasser

Housed in a nondescript office park in Las Vegas, the United States Environmental Protection Agency has an elite team of radiation experts trained to respond to a nuclear disaster. One of their most important tools is a Mobile Environmental Radiation Lab known as the MERL.”

A set of three large vehicles, the MERL can be in Southern California in a matter of hours after a terrorist attack or nuclear accident. And it allows the radiation response team to quickly identify and track dangerous radiation spreading across the region.

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“The laboratory would be used to make emergency response decisions as to where people are okay to go, and where they can’t go,” explains Richard Flotard, a retired EPA radiation chemist

But the NBC4 I-Team has obtained an EPA internal memo explaining that the agency is moving the mobile lab from Las Vegas to Alabama, leaving the state far removed from what California’s Office of Emergency Services calls a “first response” tool in the case of nuclear attack or accident.

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Homeland Security officials have long worried that the port of LA, or downtown LA, could be a prime target for terrorists to detonate a nuclear device.

The EPA says it plans to move the lab to Montgomery, Alabama, home of another EPA radiation facility, this summer because of “tight resources.” That means the lab would have to drive across 7 states, taking 4-6 days for it to get to California in case of a nuclear event

“Leaving the western U.S. without this critical resource will increase response time to our state, jeopardizing our combined ability to adequately protect the public” during a nuclear disaster, said Jennifer Chappelle of the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services in a letter to the EPA.
Dr. Vern Hodge, a radiation scientist at the University of Nevada Las Vegas who has been studying radiation for decades, told NBC4 that “it’s a criminal act if you remove this rapid response unit from the west coast.”

The EPA’s official in charge of the mobile radiation lab, Mike Flynn, defended his decision to save money and move the lab to Alabama to be housed at another EPA office.

“Our view is that it (the lab) is not part of a first response. That it comes in later, and that there are other assets, particularly with the Department of Energy that are brought in, in the first days of a response,” Flynn told NBC4.

California’s Office of Emergency Services disagrees. “State and local governments consider these lab systems as first response assets,” says Chappelle in her letter. And she writes that California “strongly objects” to the decision to move the lab.

But the EPA’s Flynn told NBC4 he’s moving ahead with his decision to move the lab to Alabama, where there’s already a second mobile radiation lab. He plans to take that lab out of service, leaving the entire U.S. with only one mobile radiation lab in case of nuclear disasters.

“If you move this asset, they are on purpose jeopardizing the lives of people,” UNLV’s radiation scientist Dr. Hodge told NBC4.

Babylon the Great: Our Fukushima Is Coming (Rev 15)

  • We estimate the contamination risks from the atmospheric dispersion of radionuclides released by severe nuclear power plant accidents… We present an overview of global risks… [These] risks exhibit seasonal variability, with the highest surface level concentrations of gaseous radionuclides in the Northern Hemisphere during winter [Fukushima crisis began with 10 days left in winter].
  • The model setup was evaluated… using emission estimates from… Fukushima
  • The risk posed from nuclear power plant accidents is not limited to the national or even regional level, but can assume global dimensions. Many nations may be subjected to great exposure after severe accidents.
  • Our model shows increased surface-level concentrations throughout the Northern Hemisphere during the boreal winter months compared to the summer… Not only the expected risk magnitude is higher, but the geographical extent of the high concentrations of transported radionuclides is more pronounced towards the northHorizontal advection [i.e. transfer] is more efficient in winter due to relatively stronger winds, and the concentrations are highest near the surface [and] surface level concentrations in the summer tend to be more localized in the emission region.
  • Our results illustrate that accidents… could have significant trans-boundary consequences. The risk estimate [shows] increased surface level concentrations of gaseous radionuclides in the Northern Hemisphere during winter and a larger geographical extent towards the north and the east… This is related to the relatively shallow boundary layer in winter that confines the emitted radioactivity to the lowest part of the atmosphere close to the surface…It is the view of the authors that it is imperative to assess the risks from the atmospheric dispersion of radioactivity from potential NPP accidents [for] emergency response planning on national and international levels.

JAMSTEC, Univ. of Tokyo, etc.: We show a numerical simulation for the long-range transport from the [Fukushima] plant to the US… Large-scale updraft [over] Japan from March 14 to 15 was found effective in lifting the particles [to the] jet stream that could carry the particles across the Pacific within 3 to 4 days [See study: On Mar. 15, Fukushima reactors emitted 100 quadrillion Bq of cesium into air — This one day was equal to total lifetime release from Chernobyl]… Some of the particles [had a] long-range atmospheric transport over — 10,000 km within 3 to 4 days… [R]adioactive materials were detected in that period over the east and west coasts of the U.S… In order for the particles to be transported with the jet stream, they must be lifted up from the surface boundary layer to the mid- or upper troposphere. Large-scale updraft was indeed observedon March 14 through 15[T]he westerlies in mid-March were thus particularly effective in the trans-Pacific transport of the radioactive materials…

Ms. Rajavi Is Correct: “There Is A Nuclear Bomb At The End” (Revelation 15)

Maryam_Rajavi
Maryam Rajavi: West must show resolve if it is to stop Iranian regime from obtaining nuclear bomb

Cooperation with Iranian regime under pretense of fighting ISIS is not a solution but a recipe for disaster

Maryam Rajavi, Iranian Resistance President-elect Maryam Rajavi told a conference at the European Parliament on Wednesday, December 10: “The West needs to show resolve to stop Iran from obtaining the nuclear bomb.”

She stressed: “This nuclear program enjoys no legitimacy in the eyes of the Iranian people. According to government figures, 12 million Iranian people are suffering from hunger. They do not want this program to continue.”

Rajavi pointed to the increase in atrocities by the fundamentalists in Syria and Iraq, and asked: “Why are Western governments not standing up to a regime that is the ‘Godfather of ISIS’ with a record a hundred times worse than ISIS. How can European governments justify their silence vis-à-vis the regime’s suppression?  More regrettable is the fact that the regime’s lobby has been encouraged to promote collaboration with the Iranian regime as the solution to defeating ISIS. This is not a solution, but a recipe for disaster.”

In the conference held on the internationally recognised Human Rights Day,  Mrs Rajavi referred to the bloody record of the velayat-e faqih regime and the gloomy record of its so-called moderate President Mullah Rouhani with atrocities such as the splashing of acid on defenseless women or the stabbing of female students and said: “The regime of velayat-e faqih lacks any capacity to reform. Since Rouhani became President, at least 1,200 have been executed. In the past 25 years, we have not seen as many executions as in the first year of Rouhani’s presidency. Nor have we seen so many opposition members being massacred or taken hostage. Nor have we seen Iranian women being the target of criminal campaigns to this extent.

Mrs Rajavi condemned the conduct of some Western governments that sacrifice human rights in Iran for their relations with the religious dictatorship and said: “Look at the bitter outcomes of European delegations’ visits to Tehran in the past year. The mullahs used each and every one of them to increase executions.”

This conference was held with the participation of senior representatives of the European Parliament from various political groups. In another part of her speech Mrs Rajavi said  “Now is the time to intensify the pressure on the regime. The mullahs agreed to negotiate due to mounting pressure.  They stalled on signing the agreement due to West’s concessions. The only way forward is more pressure and more sanctions.

“There is no light at the end of tunnel of marathon talks. THERE IS A NUCLEAR BOMB AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL.

Mrs Rajavi said in another part of her speech: “The regime is entangled in a destructive power struggle at the top, while Iranian society is deeply discontent and on the verge of another uprising.”
Mrs Rajavi expressed her abhorrence for the continuation of the six-year siege against Iranian dissidents in Iraq (Camp Liberty) and urged the EU to ‘change its policy and show resolve in face of the brutal theocracy ruling Iran’.

She said that in this new policy:

  • Any ties with the Iranian regime should be linked to the improvement of the situation of human rights; the leaders of this regime should face justice; the regime should be forced to fully implement UN Security Council resolutions, halt the uranium enrichment, and accept international inspection of all suspect sites and centers.
  • And the siege on Camp Liberty, especially the medical blockade, should be completely lifted and the Camp Liberty file should be handed over to institutions with no ties to this regime instead of the Iranian regime’s agents.

This conference that was presided over by MEP Gerard Deprez, Belgian State Minister and EP representative, a number of political figures also spoke at this conference including Howard Dean, former U.S. Presidential candidate and former Chairman of the Democratic Party; Alejo Vidal-Quadras, Vice-President of European Parliament (1999-2014) and President of International Committee In Search of Justice (ISJ) ; Struan Stevenson, President of European Iraqi Freedom Association (EIFA); and a number of European Parliament legislators, including Mairead McGuinness, Vice-President of European Parliament; Patrizia Toia, Eduard Kukan, José Bové, Anna Záborská, Julie Ward, Tunne Kelam, José Manuel Fernandes as well as former MEP, Stephen  Hughes  and Paulo Casaca, former members of the European Parliament.

Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
December 10, 2014

Middle East Nuclear War Averted In Egypt in 1973

The Last Nuclear Moment

Nuclear Jericho Missiles Were Ready to Be Launched in the Yom Kippur War of 1973

Nuclear Jericho Missiles Were Ready to Be Launched in the Yom Kippur War of 1973
 
By Avner Cohen
 
Published: October 6, 2003

Since the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945, the world has come to the nuclear brink only twice. The first, and better known, was the Cuban missile crisis of 1962. The second, and much less discussed, occurred in the early days of the Yom Kippur war, which began 30 years ago today.

The shock Israelis felt at the Egyptian-Syrian surprise attack on Oct. 6, 1973, can best be compared to that felt by Americans after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Israel was caught totally unprepared: the government had assumed that its intelligence services would be able to alert it at least 48 hours before any invasion.

Yet, while Israeli intelligence had detailed knowledge of Egyptian and Syrian war plans, and Prime Minister Golda Meir had even been secretly warned of an imminent war by King Hussein of Jordan on Sept. 25, the information was not translated into military preparedness. This colossal failure — due to a combination of arrogance, self-deception and misperception — is part of Golda Meir’s legacy.

Only in the early morning of Oct. 6 did the Israeli leadership finally understand that it was facing a full-scale attack by Egypt and Syria that very evening. (And even then they had the estimated time of the attack wrong; the war actually started at 2 p.m.) By the next morning, the Egyptian Army had crossed the Suez Canal and columns of Syrian tanks had penetrated deep into the Golan Heights. Hundreds of Israeli soldiers had died in a heroic but hopeless effort to save small, isolated strongholds along Israel’s borders.

The hope was that with the arrival of Israel’s reserve troops, the military situation would turn around. While this happened to some extent on the Syrian front, things were still a disaster at the Suez. Israel’s first attempted counterattack on Oct. 8 was a miserable failure. At the end of that day, Defense Minister Moshe Dayan was heard murmuring about ”the end of the Third Kingdom.” The commander of the air force, Gen. Benny Peled, warned that with the rate of losses his forces were enduring, within a week Israel might no longer have any effective air power. It was arguably the darkest day in the history of the Israeli Army.

It was in the early hours of Oct. 9 that senior Israeli military leaders brought up the idea of using Israel’s doomsday weapons. By that time Israel had lost some 50 combat planes and more than 500 tanks — 400 on the Egyptian battlefield alone. According to a new book by the Israeli journalist Ronen Bergman, when the prime minister’s top military aide heard those ideas, he begged the army’s deputy chief of staff, tears in his eyes, ”You must save the people of Israel from these madmen.”

Later that morning, at the end of a somber briefing before the war cabinet, Mr. Dayan raised the nuclear option with the prime minister. No detailed record has surfaced as to what exactly Mr. Dayan proposed, but we know he gave an overall assessment that Israel was fast approaching the point of ”last resort.” And certainly Mr. Dayan wanted the United States to take notice that things had reached such a point. That he meant using nuclear weapons (albeit in coded language, as at the time nobody dared call them by name) was confirmed in an interview last week by Naftali Lavie, who was Mr. Dayan’s spokesman during the war.

This set the stage for a moment that defined Golda Meir’s other legacy, her nuclear legacy. Supported by other members of her war cabinet — notably the ministers Israel Galili and Yigal Allon — she refused to concede to Mr. Dayan’s gloom and doom rhetoric. Her idea, instead, was to fly secretly to Washington and, as Henry Kissinger later wrote, ”for an hour plead with President Nixon.”

Mr. Kissinger flatly rejected that idea, explaining such a rushed visit ”could reflect only either hysteria or blackmail.” By that time, American intelligence had signs that Israel had put its Jericho missiles, which could be fitted with nuclear warheads, on high alert (the Israelis had done so in an easily detectible way, probably to sway the Americans into preventive action).

Mr. Kissinger instead started to arrange air supply to Israel, and within three days a tremendous United States airlift to Israel was in action. The tide was turned. By Oct. 21 the Israelis were within 20 miles of Damascus and had crossed the Suez Canal, encircling the Egyptian Third Army. A permanent cease-fire was established within a few days.

Like John F. Kennedy a decade earlier, Golda Meir had stared into the nuclear abyss and found a path back to sanity. Mrs. Meir’s decision not to accept Mr. Dayan’s pessimism not only avoided a nuclear catastrophe, it demonstrated to the world that Israel was a responsible and trusted nuclear custodian.

Ultimately, Mrs. Meir’s nuclear legacy goes far beyond those days in October 1973. Her prudence contributed significantly to the creation of the nuclear taboo — the recognition that nuclear weapons are not like any other weapons humanity has ever invented; that under virtually any circumstances they must never be used.

In this sense, her legacy is as relevant today as it was 30 years ago.

America’s Missiles A Recipe For Disaster 

 

Investigative Journalist Finds America’s Nuclear Missiles In Need Of TLC

 

Nuclear Cheating Scandal

Nuclear Cheating Scandal

By John Ostapkovich

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The US military still acknowledges having about 4,800 nuclear weapons, but a journalist finds need for improvement in the people, systems and equipment that maintain them.
The book Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety, is the distillation of six years work by Eric Schlosser and focuses a lot on the way good intentions aren’t enough.

“In the last few years, there have been some remarkable scandals in the Air Force with launch officers being caught using illegal drugs, cheating on exams.”60 Minutes” did a very powerful segment on the aging equipment in our Minuteman silos, computers using 9-inch floppy discs, doors that won’t close, and this is a recipe for disaster.”

The Damascus, Arkansas Accident started with a dropped tool that begin a leak in a silo and eventually an explosion that destroyed the missile and killed an airman, but did not trigger the warhead. Good thing, too, because it contained three times the explosive force of all the bombs used by all the armies in World War II.

“There was an accident at Minuteman silo where the burglar alarm went off, someone used a screwdriver instead of a fuse puller on the fuse box and created a short circuit and blew the warhead off the missile.”

Although Schlosser would like to see the end of nuclear weapons, he says better training and upgraded equipment are imperative to keep a terrible accident from happening.

Iran Talk Failures Would Spell Disaster

Nuclear talks failure would be a disaster: Iran

Munich, 1 days ago

Image
Iran’s foreign minister held rare private talks with his US counterpart on Sunday and said it would be a “disaster” if Tehran did not turn a provisional agreement to defuse a decade-old dispute over its nuclear programme into a permanent deal.
In a sign of the thawing climate between the Islamic Republic and the West, Iran’s Mohammad Javad Zarif said he had held bilateral talks with US Secretary of State John Kerry, as well as with other ministers from the six powers negotiating with Tehran, during a three-day security conference in Munich.
His talks looked forward to negotiations starting in Vienna on February 18 when Iran and the six powers will attempt over a period of six months to build on an interim agreement on Tehran’s nuclear activities to reach a definitive deal.
“What I can promise is that we will go to those negotiations with the political will and good faith to reach an agreement because it would be foolish for us to only bargain for six months,” Zarif told the conference after his meeting with Kerry.
“That would be a disaster for everybody – to start a process and then to abruptly end it within six months,” he said.
Zarif said Iran and the West had an historic opportunity to improve relations. “I think we need to seize it,” he said.
Iran insists its nuclear programme is entirely peaceful but Western countries have long suspected Tehran of seeking the ability to develop a nuclear weapon.
Under a landmark preliminary deal with the United States, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany sealed last November, Iran agreed to halt its most sensitive nuclear operations in return for winning some relief from sanctions.
The deal has lessened the risk of Israel or the United States launching a military strike against Iranian nuclear facilities to prevent Tehran acquiring a nuclear bomb.
SANCTIONS
Kerry stressed to Zarif the importance of both sides negotiating in good faith and of Iran abiding by its commitments under the November deal, a US State Department official said.
The US and the European Union have suspended some sanctions on Iran under the interim deal, but Kerry told Zarif the US would continue to enforce other sanctions.
Kerry and Zarif have met several times since the election of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, a relative moderate, last June paved the way for the thaw in ties with the West after years of confrontation and hostile rhetoric.
Zarif said Iran was prepared to address important outstanding questions in the nuclear negotiations but said there was still a lack of trust on both sides, including mistrust among Iranians about the West’s intentions.
Zarif told Reuters in an interview on Saturday however that Iran was not prepared to give up research on centrifuges used to purify uranium as part of a final nuclear deal.
Zarif held out an olive branch to Saudi Arabia, Tehran’s regional rival, saying he was ready to start talks at any time with Riyadh on improving relations.
“I believe Iran and Saudi Arabia share a common interest in a secure environment,” he said. “Neither one of us will benefit from sectarian divisions, neither one of us will benefit from extremism in this region … We can work together in order to have a safer neighbourhood. There is no need for rivalry.”
The head of the United Nations’ nuclear watchdog, Yukiya Amano, said possible military dimensions of Iran’s nuclear programme needed to be clarified and he said his agency also wanted to clarify the issue of small amounts of polonium-210 that had been produced by the Tehran research reactor.
“Polonium can be used for civil purposes like nuclear batteries but can also be used for a neutron source for nuclear weapons. We would like to clarify this issue too,” Amano told the Munich Security Conference. – Reuters

Middle East Disaster Looms

Dangerous Times: A Looming Strategic Disaster in the Middle East.

If you think ObamaCare is bad, just wait till you hear the new “peace” agreement that is due to be imposed on the Middle East over the coming weeks. Even if it works, a giant if, it will make the world much more dangerous:

1. Iran will have nuclear weapons, or it will be balanced right on the edge — within one month or less to make nukes.
2. Saudi Arabia and Egypt will go nuclear, to balance Iran.
3. America’s role as a guarantor of peace will be blown, crushed by Obama’s betrayal of Israel and the Arabs. America’s nuclear umbrella, which has kept world from major war since 1949, was always based on trust. Once you blow that trust, the umbrella disappears.
4. The coming victory of Bashar Assad in Syria, supported by Hizb’allah and Iran, will forge the much-feared Shii’ite Crescent that surrounds Israel and directly threatens Arab nations like Egypt, Iraq and the Arabian Peninsula (Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states).
5. Russia will replace America as a more trustworthy major power in the region, including the Eastern Mediterranean.

This is not a framework for peace. It is an unstable Rube Goldberg contraption that could lead to total war in a matter of weeks. It will never have the long-term stability of the Egypt-Israel peace treaty of the last forty years. On top of all those balancing acts, Israel will be driven back to borders that are much more vulnerable to Muslim terrorism. World conquest is a basic premise of Islam, and it includes Europe, Russia, and America.
The emerging agreement, which will be greeted by the Euro-American socialist media as peace on earth, will be much more like Munich, 1938 — a temporary truce on the way to much more dangerous times.
Here is a reasonable guess about the Obama-Putin proposal that is now being circulated around the major participants:

1. The U.S. and Russia will agree to cut back drastically on nuclear weapons. That has been the major aim of the Russians, because they can defend against a small nuclear attack, but more attacking nukes and missiles will overwhelm any existing defense. This has its own pros and cons, depending on Russian intentions. It is a major draw for Putin, because it reinstates Russia as a superpower on an equal basis with the United States.
2. American power will be deliberately set back around the world, which is Obama’s announced policy. The U.S. will no longer be the guarantor of peace, because (a) Obama has decided to cut down our armed forces to divert money to the new massive welfare state, and (b) nobody trusts us to provide a nuclear umbrella any more.

Within that U.S.-Russian umbrella agreement, the Obama fantasy will be that:

1. The Iranian nuclear danger will be reduced by a treaty, to be monitored by a great power inspection regime, aided by the UN. Because Russia will be one of the guarantor powers, and because Russia fears and hates the prospect of a radical Muslim nuclear power near its borders, it will want to restrain Iranian weapons development. However, Iran will be able to get real nukes in a month. Other WMD programs (like dirty bombs) are not controlled, especially from rogue forces like the 60,000 Al Qaida gangsters in Syria.
Obama and the Europeans will celebrate this as a great victory. But it will be a huge gamble with the security of the world. In the foreseeable future Iran will have ICBM’s that can reach our shores.
Hamas and Hizb’allah terrorism will be increased rather than stopped, because that is the routine of every Muslim power in history. For example, Pakistan and India are nominally not at war, but Pakistan has never stopped terrorist attacks on India. That is the standard strategy for Muslim powers, and having nuclear weapons will make terrorism even more attractive.
2. The Europeans will lose the American nuclear umbrella, and will appeal to Russia for nuclear protection. They must also modernize the nuclear capacity of France and Britain, because this will not be a one- or two-superpower world, but an ongoing arms race between multiple powers, all possessing weapons of mass destruction. The UN will pretend to conduct inspections, just as it did in Iraq and Iran, a laughable failure.

In other words, this will be a fantasy peace, just as ObamaCare is a fantasy healthcare program. Obama craves the appearance of success, but in truth he never bothers to find out if his fantasies actually work. He is hooked on personal celebrity.
Obama is likely to run for UN SecGen after 2016, a major reason for this dreadfully unstable, phony solution to nuclear and missile proliferation. Obama’s personal ambition is a big ingredient in anything he does. The Russians have figured that out, and saw it as an opportunity to reverse their decline as a superpower. Domestically we no longer have a functioning opposition, so that there is no critical thinking about absurd policies any more. That is why ObamaCare is likely to fail over and over again. A number of O’Care “architects” have come forward in the last week to confess that yes, of course they were lying to Americans about their future healthcare. But they were lying for a good cause, naturally. In fact, they were making wild guesses and now have Americans in a trap. They won’t allow us to escape their fantasy trap no matter how bad it gets.
The same mad illogic governs this Middle East “peace” process. It’s just as phony and destructive as Obama’s medical takeover. The top goal is more power for the socialists. Healthcare and peace are strictly secondary.