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Friday, October 29, 2010

Understanding the souk

Just about every major city in the Arab and Muslim-populated parts of the world has a souk. A souk is an open-air marketplace filled with stalls, where the merchants sit outside and hawk their wares. The attraction of the souk is the bargaining. No one takes the first price they're offered.

But the buyer cannot get up and walk away and then offer the seller even less than he was offering before. Oh, he can. But the seller will be insulted and laugh at him. If the bargaining is to end in a deal being made, both sides must move toward the middle. That's why it's unrealistic to think that there's going to be peace in our region anytime soon (our best offer was put on the table and the 'Palestinians' said no). And that's why it's unrealistic to believe that the Obama administration is going to cut a deal with the Iranians to make them stop trying to enrich uranium.
The new offer would require Iran to send more than 4,400 pounds of low-enriched uranium out of the country, an increase of more than two-thirds from the amount required under a tentative deal struck in Vienna a year ago. The increase reflects the fact that Iran has steadily produced more uranium over the past year, and the American goal is to make sure that Iran has less than one bomb’s worth of uranium on hand.

Iran would also have to halt all production of nuclear fuel that it is currently enriching to 20 percent — an important step on the way to bomb-grade levels. It would also have to make good on its agreement to negotiate on the future of its nuclear program.

The failed 2009 accord was scuttled by hard-liners in Tehran. A later analysis by intelligence analysts concluded that Ayatollah Khamenei personally rejected the deal, reversing the judgment of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

For that reason, many officials suspect that this latest initiative is likely to fail. But they say that it fulfills President Obama’s promise to keep negotiating even while the pressure of sanctions increases.
But while they keep bargaining, Iran keeps enriching. A year from now, they will have to try to get Iran to put away even more uranium. And we're assuming that we actually know about all the uranium that Iran has produced. Do we really know?

What could go wrong?


At 8:05 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

We don't really know.

And Westerners and Jews alike go for the first price that's on offer and lose out out in the end.

They don't really understand the Iranian/Arab mind.

What could go wrong indeed

At 12:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

'Iran would also have to halt all production of nuclear fuel that it is currently enriching to 20 percent"--ha ha.

Consciously or not, this is not aimed at Iran but Western public opinion, an excuse to dither, to prevent Israel from acting on its [bluff?] military option, and not to face up to de facto acceptance of Iranian nukes down the road. The engagement continues even as the Iranian centrifuges spin on.

In America--time to vote no to this nonsense.


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