Nuclear Knockout Not Nearly Nailed…writes David Singer

April 8, 2015 by David Singer
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President Obama seems to have been unduly optimistic in triumphantly proclaiming the success of the P5+1 talks with Iran in Lausanne.

Speaking from the White House President Obama announced:

“Today, the United States — together with our allies and partners — has reached a historic understanding with Iran, which, if fully implemented, will prevent it from obtaining a nuclear weapon. 

There was only “an understanding” – not even a piece of paper initialed by representatives of all the parties to the long and complex negotiations – that President Obama could wave to the waiting media setting out what that “understanding” was.

It did not take long to discover the reason explaining the absence of such an initialed document.

It turns out there are in fact two pieces of paper – one prepared by each side – but neither signed or agreed to by the other:

  1. Parameters for a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action Regarding the Islamic Republic of Iran’s Nuclear Program
  2. Iranian Fact Sheet on the Nuclear Negotiations which was only published in Farsi – but has been subsequently translated into English – for which there does not appear to be an official Iranian Government translation.

The first and simplest question one needs to ask is – in what language will the final authorised version of the agreement be actually framed?

Will it be English or Farsi or both?

Can the nuances of language be properly translated from one language into another language so that the meaning of the words is absolutely identical in both versions?

Was this very basic issue even addressed at the Lausanne negotiations? No mention of it appears in either of the above documents.

Who is going to draft the agreement – supposed to be ready for signing on 30 June – the P5+1 or Iran?

The appearance of these above two documents supposedly recording their “understanding” have already revealed wide gaps in each party’s understanding of their understanding.

It can be reasonably concluded that the parties were indeed miles apart and that there is a lot more negotiating to do before a draft agreement can even be produced for discussion purposes – let alone signed in final form.

The differences between the two documents are stark on issues of major importance – as the Wall Street Journal points out:

  1. On sanctions:

“The U.S. says sanctions relief will be phased, suspended, and tied to Iran’s compliance with the terms of the deal. Iran says the sanctions, once the final agreement is sealed, will end more quickly.” 

  1. On stockpiles:

“Iran says it will limit enrichment and its stockpile for 10 years, the U.S. says 15.”

  1. On inspections:

“U.S.:  The IAEA will have regular access to Iran’s nuclear facilities as well as the supply chain that supports Iran’s nuclear program.

Iran: The fact sheet doesn’t specifically mention access to facilities or inspections, but does say Iran would, on a voluntary and temporary basis, implement an “additional protocol” on access to nuclear facilities, “for the sake of transparency and confidence building.”

US Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif reportedly held marathon negotiations through the night that ended after 6 a.m. on the morning of April 2, as they tried to overcome final gaps for a political accord on an Iran nuclear deal.

The result – two very different documents presenting two very different perspectives of what each side has taken away from the negotiations.

President Obama expressed his thanks:

“to our tireless — and I mean tireless — Secretary of State John Kerry and our entire negotiating team.  They have worked so hard to make this progress.”


The President must be joking.

David Singer is a Sydney Lawyer and Foundation Member of the International Analysts Network


4 Responses to “Nuclear Knockout Not Nearly Nailed…writes David Singer”
  1. Efrem Manassey says:

    The Iran deal? The Obama deal? Only one sentence comes to mind:

    I believe it is peace for our time.

  2. Leon Poddebsky says:

    North Korea got the bomb despite being subjected to excruciating sanctions.
    The Iranian regime is determined to get the bomb regardless of sanctions.
    What evidence is there to suggest that Iran will be unable to emulate North Korea?
    “The international community” is eager to rake in the dollars from trade with an Iran that will be freed from the current sanctions barrier (which was riddled with holes anyway.)

  3. Geoff Seidner says:

    I have understood for many years that the left are tending towards being only inveterate liars and professional spin – merchants, but they are plainly incapable winning a fair debate.ON ANY MAJOR ISSUE.

    If anyone fails to appreciate the generalized truth in this, [contradictory it seems] then merely contemplate Obama and compare Chamberlain’s pathetic delusions when he waved that decrepit document signed by”HER HITLER”!
    Peace in our time indeed!!!

    The words – have – real meanings of Alice / through the looking glass fame – has manifestly almost always been an issue for them.

    Why is the socialist way of disawawing reality so classically, pathetically – unique to them?

    Plainly the temptation distort is a human frailty conservatives have an affinity too.

    This is the chronic failure unique to these troglodytes – this is the way they are!

    Run it through the compass of 12 years negotiations and the constant shifting of purpose.
    Of terms of reference.
    The lies must follow – with classical fraud deliberate.

    Eventually it has come to pass that they do not understand the basic elements of style….

    Neville Chamberlain
    “Peace for Our Time,” September 30, 1938

    The following statement was made by British Prime Minister, Neville Chamberlain, in front of #10 Downing Street, London, after his arrival home from the notorious Munich Conference of 1938

    We, the German Fuhrer and Chancellor, and the British Prime Minister, have had a further meeting today and are agreed in recognizing that the question of Anglo-German relations is of the first importance for our two countries and for Europe.

    We regard the agreement signed last night and the Anglo-German Naval Agreement as symbolic of the desire of our two peoples never to go to war with one another again.

    We are resolved that the method of consultation shall be the method adopted to deal with any other questions that may concern our two countries, and we are determined to continue our efforts to remove possible sources of difference, and thus to contribute to assure the peace of Europe.

    My good friends, for the second time in our history, a British Prime Minister has returned from Germany bringing peace with honor. I believe it is “peace for our time.” Go home and get a nice quiet sleep

    • Leon Poddebsky says:

      Geoff, we live in a world where Iran publicly, constantly proclaims its determination to commit genocide, the same world where any one who warns against a nuclearised Iran is labelled a warmonger.
      Hitler, too, proclaimed that the Jewish People would be responsible for a world war if it were to erupt.
      At Sydney University and elsewhere in Australia, people who are paid by taxpayers to teach young minds act on behalf of explicitly genocidal Hamas, and accuse Hamas’ target of being genocidal.
      Some of those people are self-loving antisemites “of Jewish background,” heirs to the evil legacy of people like Pablo Cristiani, Karl Marx, Bruno Kreisky.

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