If Israel is lying about Iran, Tehran must offer real proof

If Israel is lying about Iran, Tehran must offer real proof

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has released vital information that fueled the conflict with Iran at an international level. He has also ruined things for EU leaders, who have been trying to convince the US government to postpone scrapping the nuclear deal and instead offer compromises.
Netanyahu has provided serious information that he says proves Tehran is not only abusing the 2015 deal, which prevents Iran from developing a nuclear arsenal, but in fact is violating it entirely.
If even some of his claims about Tehran not ceasing its nuclear activities are true, this would invalidate the international agreement, which was described as a historic one and considered very valuable for the signatories.

The Iranian regime is secretive and practices the most extreme forms of sneakiness — thus we will not know the truth until it is maybe too late.

Abdulrahman Al-Rashed

We cannot judge information provided by Israel because it is a direct party to the conflict, so we await the opinion of other interested parties, including EU leaders who said they were surprised by the information provided by Israeli intelligence agencies and are studying it.
Even though we do not know whether Iran was committed to the deal or not, we do know that the Iranian regime’s approach is based on deception, and that if not for the economic sanctions it would not have signed the nuclear deal with the West in the first place.
The question here is: Did the Iranian regime respect the nuclear agreement? Its behavior shows that it will not cease to improve its military prowess and offensive capacities, which the regime claims are necessary for its survival. It would not be surprising at all if it turns out that the Iranian regime continued to secretly develop its nuclear facilities, and it is likely that the countries of the West will not hesitate to investigate the matter — one of the basic rights of the agreement’s signatories.
The EU will most likely find the Iranian regime guilty of failing to cease working on its nuclear capabilities, but it will also claim there is not enough evidence to convict the Iranian regime because it did not exceed the rate of prohibited uranium enrichment.
Before signing the deal, the Iranian regime hinted that it would not stop developing its facilities because it considers this a right. It wants to be ready and have the nuclear capabilities that allow it to develop a nuclear arsenal quickly, as soon as the 10-year duration of the deal is over — maybe even before.
The idea of basing an agreement on trust in light of the Iranian regime’s respect for its commitments is wrong and stupid. Dozens of cameras installed by international observers, and the undertaking of surprise inspections, will not stop the Iranian regime from cheating.
Tehran might have adhered to the US sanctions and agreed to the conditions because of the blockade, but it was not convinced by it and, most likely, never intended to end its nuclear project. Therefore, if Iran shut down laboratories, stopped using some equipment and opened up its nuclear facilities for inspection, then it must have opened others and continued its activity in a secret parallel project.
The Iranian regime is secretive and practices the most extreme forms of sneakiness — thus we will not know the truth until it is maybe too late.
During the period following the signing of the nuclear deal, the security services in Iran, instead of becoming more lenient and transparent, became stricter and arrested dozens of Iranian citizens, visitors of Iranian origin, and others under different pretexts.
The security services also prohibited the gathering of information on Iranian territory, which suggests the regime is afraid of the truth being discovered.
Iran, which denies the claims by Netanyahu, must open its doors to international scrutiny to expose the Israeli lies — if they are lies — or else this deal is not worth the money spent on the papers that were signed.

  • Abdulrahman Al-Rashed is a veteran columnist. He is the former general manager of Al Arabiya news channel, and former editor-in-chief of Asharq Al-Awsat.
    Twitter: @aalrashed
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