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Welcome to my blog! True to my name, Shiva the Spy, I will be your eyes and ears in Iran, bringing you detailed accounts of everyday life from my perspective. You'll have a window into the social, cultural, political, and historical aspects of the country. I will bring you the stuff that American media can't...or won't. So, check back regularly for stories, photos, commentary, and anything else your curiosity calls for.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Russia's Role

Well, Iran’s in the clear with the nuclear issue, for now. After Thursday’s board of governors meeting, the IAEA has decided to refrain from sending Iran’s case to the UN Security Council, much to the chagrin of the U.S. and Britain. Apparently, Russia has been thrust in the middle of the situation, as a possible mediator (ahem—supervisor) to Iran’s pursuance of peaceful nuclear energy.

If all goes according to the IAEA’s plan, Moscow will submit a proposal to Tehran that requests all uranium enrichment activity to be carried out in Russia, rather than in Iran. This is to ensure that no technology essential to the development of WMD gets into the hands of the theocratic state.

While many Iranians—sports/athletic community; Zoroastrian, Christian and Jewish religious leaders; 9 million Basijis (voluntary reserves); and more—have publicly protested the discriminatory tactics of the EU trio and the U.S., former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani has been quoted in multiple reports as calling the decision of the IAEA board of directors “wise” and "visionary".

At Friday Prayers, during the funeral procession for the 110 newly unearthed soldiers, he is quoted in Iran Daily (Nov. 26) as saying, “Iran is prepared to collaborate with the IAEA to help remove existing ambiguities (about its nuclear program),” adding, “We need to interact rationally and seriously with the world. Islam and the Islamic Revolution subscribe to regional interaction and are not after waging wars with the world.”

It’s interesting that Russia, which has had its own conflicts with the U.S. pertaining to the proper dismantling of nuclear weapons left over from the Soviet era, is suddenly given a tremendous amount of weight in deciding Iran’s future.

Of course, Russia is a strong diplomatic partner of Iran, especially in the area of nuclear technology exchange, but the IAEA’s move seems a bit excessive. After all, Iran has been more transparent and welcoming to the agency’s innumerous inspection requirements/demands than any other country, and has operated within its legal rights, as dictated by the terms of the NPT. Plus, in spite of the highly suspicious attitude of the IAEA towards Iran, inspectors have turned up nothing suggestive of unfriendly nuclear development.

On a side note, Iran News (Nov. 26) reports Russia’s ambitions to get in on the $7-billion-dollar gas pipeline project involving Iran, Pakistan and India. Iran boasts the world’s second largest natural gas reserves (after Russia), making it a significant source of gas for its Asian neighbors.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I’m wandering if Iran would accept the offer from Russia. Well, if they are truthful to what they say about having a peaceful nuclear energy program, I don’t see a reason why they shouldn’t…
Unfortunately, the latest comment by Ahmadinejad in regard to Israel doesn’t make things easy for Iran and its nuclear energy program.
The rest of it is all politics…
Nice post!

10:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks, Farzad. I agree, if there's nothing to hide, then why not? Although, if I were a country, I'd probably worry about my sovereignty. Actually, I'd worry about that as a human, too. Well, I guess we'll just have to wait and see what Russia comes up with. Iran and Russia are strong diplomatic partners, so the deal would likely be in both countries' best interests.

10:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually, Iran puts the training wheels on itself. The regime has crushed the spirit of the people so the talented scientists and engineers do not stay in Iran. And there are no great foreign scientists who would even dream of coming to Iran to teach or work.

Therefore, Iran's nuclear program is completely hostage to whatever foreign power provides the technology. If the regime were serious about strengthening Iran, they would work to raise educational opportunities and keep the talented Iranians who flock to the best universities abroad.

Please don't mistake me for someone who is sympathetic to the US and EU. They are at their old game of trying to keep Iran weak. But they will succeed quite well given the bad decisions of the regime.

You must remember that the foreign invaders of Iran always relied on unwise Iranian rulers and internal conflict to defeat Iran.

7:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


"if I were a country"--what the heck does that mean?! contries are not persons, and vice versa. iran, russia, etc. are just names for a complex representation of various internal special and mixed interests. ahmadinejad and his cabinet, the negotiating team, etc. are just representing some internal interests. they are not the country of iran, nor the country of ira is them. they do not even represent an aggregate interst of the society of iran as a whole, given that the elections are ont free and fair in iran.

3:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello, Anonymous,

"If I were a country" refers to a nation's government, and its role in making decisions that serve the nation's interests. In international relations theory, states are considered actors, much like people. But aside from IR, I do think countries are people, and vice versa, but I won't get into the philosophy here.

Furthermore, Ahmadinejad was voted into power by a majority. Many people here support him, and they are not all poor. I've talked to affluent young people, especially college-aged kids, who have admitted that they voted for Ahmadinejad. As far as the elections not being free and fair in Iran, I haven't read any evidence that would support this claim. If you know where I can find proof that Iran's elections were somehow rigged, I would appreciate it if you could post the link. Thanks.

4:58 PM  

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