2.16.06 Assignment 1

2.16.06 Assignment 1 - Polsci 117 Assignment 1 2/16/06 The...

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Polsci 117 Assignment 1 2/16/06 The Influence of Domestic Politics on the Current Iranian Nuclear Stand-Off Introduction Perhaps if there was a stronger representation of the modern right in the central leadership of Iran, the events leading up to the current nuclear stand-off would have played out differently. The pragmatic decision making typical of the modern right may have allowed for a positive response to the restraints that have been placed on Iran by the U.S. Rather than Iran’s current response of hardening an already solid anti-American stance, Iran could have recognized and then taken advantage of the opportunity to cooperate with the U.S. It is possible that the two countries could have negotiated a compromise that in turn could have helped Iran economically by lifting or softening U.S. imposed sanctions and embargoes that are presently in place. Body I will begin discussing counterarguments by stating the most obvious rebuttal; Iran is not currently compelled legally to cease the development of a civilian nuclear energy program. As a member of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), Iran has the right to enrich uranium for its stated peaceful purposes (Heard 2006). Iran will not concede this right under the unfounded pressure of some members of the international community, especially such as the U.S. or Israel that are themselves not only in possession of civilian nuclear facilities but also nuclear weapons. Iran has complied with the International Atomic Energy Association (IAEA) regulations and inspections while it has also consistently reported that its enrichment of uranium is for the purpose of operating a civilian nuclear reactor at its Bushehr facility (Potter 2006). The political ideology of the central leadership in Iran has little to do with its continued enrichment of uranium; nuclear energy is efficient and the Iranian government has already invested $800 million into this project, it is in the best interest of Iran to see it through to the end in pursuit of a fully operational nuclear facility at Bushehr. Another possible counterargument stems from Iran’s wishes to become a more powerful state in its region and in the global community; obtaining a nuclear weapons program shifts the balance of power when sitting at the table with the major global players including Russia, China, and the U.S. The insistence of the U.S. and Israel that
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2.16.06 Assignment 1 - Polsci 117 Assignment 1 2/16/06 The...

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