By Claude Garrod, July 11, 2010
In the New York Times of June 25, Yossi Beilen, the former Israeli minister of justice, had an op-ed titled "Let Jordan Enrich Its Own Uranium." The minister of justice of Israel is roughly comparable to the attorney general of the United States, and therefore is someone quite familiar with international law.
The following is an exact quotation from that article: "Jordan is a signatory to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, which explicitly allows participants to enrich uranium for peaceful power production."
But Iran is also a signatory to the treaty and thus has every legal right to enrich uranium under the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency. However, it is exactly because Iran refuses to stop this completely legal activity that the U.S. and Israel are threatening to destroy the country.
What is almost never mentioned in U.S. news media is that Iran has fulfilled all of its obligations under the treaty and that the United Nations charter gives no authority to the Security Council to demand that Iran cease a completely legal activity.
Would the U.S. feel obligated to do so if the Security Council demanded that we stop refining oil? The whole business of Iranian uranium enrichment is just another version of Saddam Hussein's “weapons of mass destruction” — in other words, something to get everybody on board for a full U.S.-Iranian war.