US nuclear deal with India angers Iran

As negotiations continue over Iran’s nuclear programme with threats and pleas being swapped in a global relay race, President George W. Bush travelled to India with a completely different geopolitical message. Prima facie it might seem to the casual observer that the world suddenly leapt another mile down the path of inconsistency. At the centre of the argument lies the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty of 1970.

Most countries of the world are party to the treaty (187 out of 192) and the most notable absentees are Israel, Pakistan and India, of which the latter two are confirmed nuclear powers and the first is widely believed to be. Non-proliferation and disarmament are two of the pillars of the NPT; the third is the safeguarded use of nuclear technology for peaceful energy means. The wording of this third pillar in two articles gives rise to varying interpretations. It guarantees the “inalienable right” of states to use and develop nuclear technology for peaceful energy means, as long as it doesn’t involve the manufacture of nuclear weapons. It also requires non-nuclear weapon states to accept safeguards under the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) “with a view to preventing diversion of nuclear energy from peaceful uses to nuclear weapons.” These safeguards usually take the form of regular inspections of nuclear-related sites.

This is the heart of the issue between Iran and the IAEA, with Iran claiming it has the right to develop a nuclear programme as long as it is peaceful. The IAEA has never declared Iran to be in violation of the NPT, but matters were complicated in 2002 with the discovery of several clandestine nuclear facilities. This is what gives rise to suspicions that Iran is intending to develop nuclear weapons. However, countries like Israel have committed themselves to take unilateral action to prevent any form of potential for nuclear weapons arising. This in turn gives a rationale for keeping nuclear programmes secret, as Iran realises countries like the USA or Israel are disposed to suspect it.

The issues surrounding Iran’s nuclear ambitions are not confined to worries concerning the NPT. This is illustrated by the deal reached in early March 2006 between India and the USA regarding nuclear cooperation. It entails India splitting its nuclear programme into a civilian and a military component and allowing the IAEA to inspect its civilian facilities. In return, the USA will provide civilian technology to India, in effect signalling a definitive end to its isolation in the nuclear scene. However, it is feared that this means a tacit acknowledgement of India as the world’s sixth nuclear power, something that could plausibly strengthen the Indian bid for a permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council, and that this deal will hollow out the NPT.

The world thus risks a further erosion of international relations. Labelled a ‘crisis’ in Iran and a ‘landmark achievement’ in India, how the situation develops will depend largely on the actions of China. Traditionally, China has been opposed to Security Council action against Iran, and the energy hungry nation buys a lot of gas and oil from Iran. This opposition may fuel the efforts of diplomatic solutions, but it may also provoke military actions from a frustrated Israel fearing its very existence. China also insists that any Indian nuclear activities be brought within the auspices of the NPT, which would of course mean total unilateral disarmament for India. If Beijing decides to interpret India as an emerging rival this might lead to geopolitical alliances destabilising the already fragile region marred by tensions in Kashmir and civil war in Nepal.

What is clear is that whatever solutions are reached, these will largely be geopolitically determined, with trade and energy policies being key determinants unfortunately, as these are unlikely to be conducive to strengthening the authority of the NPT and this treaty is still the best protection against global nuclear armament.

2 comments

  1. NEED FOR NUCLEAR POWER
    If a third world war occurs it will not be fought for land,money,supremacy..etc . it will be fought for energy and water.As we all know ,we are now passing through the most rapid phase of industrialization,so our need for energy will never end.Many developing countries like India,Brazil,South africa,China(sorry,i still don’t consider china as a developed country). are at top gear on their path to push themself on to the front row of the world.For the last two decades the energy need is almost doubled.

    So can we say everything is going smoothly?….No we can’t, the problem that arises is how the energy requirements of these gaints and growing gaints can be fulfilled?.There is one and only one answer for that is “NUCLEAR POWER”.We can’t rely on the petroleum power anymore because it will extinct within next 100 years if our fuel requirements are going on this rate.So nuclear power is the one and only final answer to us.

    NUCLEAR POWER UTILIZATION:
    We can compare the nuclear power to a coin, then construction and destruction are it’s two sides .That is we can utilize nuclear power for constructive and destructive purposes
    a) Destructive application:As the term “destructive means” it can cause the total destruction of earth.Now a day nuclear weapon technology is highly developed it’s effects will thousands of times more than the bomb’s that hit’s Hiroshima and Nagasaki, that means complete destruction.Today there are 7 countries who posses nuclear power and many countries possessing nuclear technology.If these technology goes into hands of anti-social elements it will the end of everything.
    b) Costructive application:We can say that nuclear power is our future fuel since we don’t have anyother options.So to satisfy the energy requirements of these billions of people in the world, the reasearch and development in the nuclear field is a must.The main advantage of nuclear power is that we can deliver the energy at low cost compared to the other perishable sources of power.

    MANAGEMENT OF NUCLEAR POWER:
    We have right to live,right to breath,right to freedom , so as the time demands every countries must have right to posses nuclear power.The nuclear right must be possessed only in such a way that it should be only utilized for developmental activities.How can we achieve a balance in distribution of these division of nuclear power.

    CURRENTS TREATIES:
    The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) is a treaty which is signed for restricting the possession of nuclear weapons.This treaty was first proposed by irland.This treaty is effective in controlling the nuclear race .Then what is the problem?.why can’t we say that this thistreaty is not a full succsess?.Five states are permitted by the NPT to own nuclear weapons they are United States,China,Russia,England and France.They are playing a two sided game by developing and making weapons themself and not allowing others to make it.
    If these so-called gaints are really aiming for the security of the world they must first stop themselves from making these weapons.So i think this NPT treaty will only help to create sense superiority or inferiority complex between these countries.So new treaty is needed where all countries are treated as equals.India had tested nuclear weapon can we consider as culprit?.No we can’t ,because the situation demands them to make nuclear weapon since their neighbors china posses the nuclear weapons.So if we need a nuclear weapon free world we need a “NEW TREATY” in which every countries are treated equally.

    SOLUTION:We can build large nuclear power plants under the fully control of United Nations and andcan suppley the energy to different countries.This will helps to make the nuclear treaty more worthfull.So that no country have carry out nuclear development for power requirements.This also allow us to figure the countries who carrying out nuclear test for destructive purpose

    CONCLUSION(MY VIEWS): Why this developed countries who already posses nuclear power trying stop other developing countires from developing nuclear technology?.Is it only because of their fear of nuclear weapons?.I think these developed countries don’t like other developing countries attaining self dependency in power requirements.They always want to remain as the rulers of the world.So the big question arise is that “DEVELOPED COUNTRIES FEAR WEAPONS OR OTHER COUNTRIES ATTAINING SELF DEPENDENCY IN NUCLEAR ENERGY MOST?……..who knows????

    (I am Dhanoop jose from India doing final engineering in computer science.Please give feed about my view.my mail id is dhanoopjose@yahoo.com)

    Reply Report

  2. As India and the US have now reached agreement on the historic nuclear deal, there has been a huge public debate on it. At the moment, Indian opponents are reacting very strongly. They think the agreement will constrain India’s future nuclear development and national freedom & dignity have been sold out.

    But personally I welcome this Indo-US nuclear deal. Because this deal will help India to reap a lot of economic benefits. Through the deal, the US, strategically, accepts India’s nuclear prowess, thus strengthening India’s geopolitical position. Not only this, the deal is also bound to boost India’s chances to make it to the United Nations Security Council.

    India is the largest democracy in the world that requires capital to build its infrastructure and manufacturing base and also nuclear energy for its development. With assistance of US and Europe, India can attain 8 per cent economic growth over the next decade.

    According to the Planning Commission, India needs to increase its power supply five to seven times to sustain a steady growth of eight per cent per annum till 2031. It is reasonably unlikely that the options available will see India through. The nuclear deal that will help India import Uranium ore and civilian nuclear technology from the developed countries, including the US, can just solve the puzzle of “How to meet India’s growing power needs?”

    So, I think India will get triangular benefits by this deal i.e. Economical, Political, Military

    I would like to suggest a nuclear deal related article here >> http://www.merinews.com/catFull.jsp?articleID=123348&catID=2&category=Nation&rtFlg=rtFlg

    Reply Report

Leave a comment



Please note our disclaimer relating to comments submitted. Please do not post pretending to be another person. Nouse is not responsible for user-submitted content.