Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said today that his country will have nuclear power by February. In a related story, the IAEA has found traces of plutonium and uranium in a nuclear waste plant in Iran. Ahmandinejad is naturally a thorn in the side of the Bush Administration - which tries to enforce its worldview through intimidation. Intimidation has worked well so far - North Korea, Iran, and Al Qaeda have become so scared as to nullify their operations, right?
Ahmandinejad defiantly says that Iran is a sovereign nation and that they have a right to develop nuclear energy. He claims that they are only pursuing the peaceful use of nuclear energy, not weapons - but this claim is questionable. If they are currently pursuing only nuclear energy - the leap from nuclear energy to nuclear weapons is a short one. Even if Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons - is that not their right as a sovereign nation?
If we want to reduce the spread and/or the number of nuclear weapons in the world, we need a sound, responsible, world-wide nuclear policy which is free of double standards. The double standard where the “good guys” get nuclear weapons and the “bad guys” don’t has failed miserably - and is untenable.
We need to step down from our shrinking pedestal and treat other nations as peers. We need an internationally enforced nuclear policy such as the one I’ve advocated here. Any policy where the USA treats other nations as less sovereign is doomed to failure, tragedy, or both.