These are the top five other than the fact that it’s not a deal; it’s a surrender. The West has agreed to lift the sanctions on Iran. Iran has not agreed to give up anything she needs to acquire a bomb, or cease any of her aggressive behavior (e.g., arming and training Hezbollah and Hamas, fighting wars in Syria, Iraq, and Yemen). Not one of these things – not one – is a measure of performance Iran will actually have to demonstrate to get the sanctions lifted.
1. The agreement paves Iran’s path to the bomb. The only question about Iran and the bomb now is when Iran will get it. If Iran adheres to the terms of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) agreement (link to full text here), she will retain the means, and improve the expertise, to build nuclear weapons throughout the next 10 years. She would wait for that 10 years to pass, however, before enriching enough uranium to test a warhead and stockpile weapons.Continue reading “Complete unraveling: Top 5 reasons why the non-deal agreement with Iran is bad”
If it wasn’t clear before that Russia intends to be prepared to “fight the Arctic,” it should be now. A report from last week indicates that the Russians plan to put “Bastion” anti-ship missile systems at their Arctic bases in 2015, to go along with airfield improvements, aircraft deployments, and installation of mobile anti-air missile systems and early warning radars for a network of bases that extends from one end of Russia’s Arctic coast to the other, and well into the Arctic Ocean.
There is certainly a question as to what “threat” Russia imagines herself to be countering with the deployment of the cruise missile systems.
But that’s really asking the wrong question. Given the dearth of non-Russian surface ship traffic through the area in question (maps 1 and 2), and the certainty that other nations with Arctic claims have no motive to put ships in that area against Russia’s will, a more accurate interpretation of this move is that Russia seeks to hold a geomilitary veto over the sea-lanes, in a manner similar to the veto sought by China over the South China Sea.Continue reading “Russia defines Arctic intentions with supersonic anti-ship cruise missiles”
Shell actually gave up on its hopes of drilling in the Arctic a little over a year ago after a setback in federal court, and at the time, environmental groups and the media were satisfied that the situation made sense, given the administration’s well-known posture on environmental issues and energy.