[ RadSafe ] For Critics of the Iran Nuclear Deal

Dan McCarn hotgreenchile at gmail.com
Thu Aug 6 01:35:51 CDT 2015

Dear Group:

Though this opinion does not directly relate to nuclear safety, It is
topically related to an important nuclear issue that, I believe, we are all
concerned about. This is my opinion. I'd like to hear your opinions.

*For Critics of the Iran Nuclear Deal  *

For critics of the Iranian nuclear deal: I worked for years (1980-1988) at
the IAEA in Vienna and a total of 15+ years overseas in, guess what?
Uranium resources, exploration, development & mining as well as other focus
areas in the Nuclear Fuel Cycle including nuclear waste management and
decommissioning. To place this in context, it has been 35 years since I
first sat down at a table with an Iranian counterpart. I cannot dismiss the
Safeguards challenges, but I believe that they are manageable.

I'm quite familiar with the nuclear capabilities of most countries in that
area including Iran. Every president except Obama since the Iranian hostage
crisis in 1979 has been a badly misguided because you do not cut off
communications with an enemy or potential enemy because it drives them
deeper into a certain desperation that results in the worst outcome. Are
you not familiar with the street riots against the mullahs in Teheran
during the last election? The Iranians are ready to negotiate; their people
want to reintegrate into the world society. So why tell 'em "Stuff it!"?
Had we done that with the Former Soviet Union, I think most of the world
would be a cinder by now...

Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT)

Read the NPT. First, Iran has the right under the NPT to develop
capabilities in the nuclear fuel cycle including mining, UF6 conversion,
enrichment, fuel fabrication, operating a reactor, spent-fuel storage, and
disposal. All of these activities are required to be under IAEA Safeguards.
Also note that power reactor fuel, despite some other comments to the
contrary, cannot be processed to make a plutonium weapon because of the
isotopic "lack of purity" of discharged reactor fuel. It takes a very
special type of reactor to produce weapons-grade plutonium. All enrichment
activities must remain "Low-Enriched Uranium" or LEU. Current stockpiles
can be easily down blended to produce power reactor fuel or shipped
overseas. In this case, the agreement reached is pretty invasive for

Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action - The Agreement

If at any point in time we see that the Iranians are not acting true to
their agreement, we have a full range of responses that we can take
including direct military action.

But more than that, the reason that we know so much about the attempted
weapons program is that Iranians have leaked massive amounts of information
to the west. For that, I'm thankful and proud that those courageous
individuals are ready to give their lives to prevent a nuclear and national
disaster. Who do you think deployed the computer viruses that delayed the
weapons program? It was Iranians.

The time of the revolution is over and the mullahs will soon go the way of
the McCarthy-types of the Red Scare in the '50s. The moderates are winning
back the country. I just hope that the USA and the other western powers
have the courage to assist that change to a more secular Iran. But, If
Netanyahu and the Republicans in Congress have their way we are going to be
at war with yet another country, with which we share a great deal in common
- fighting an even worse group in ISIS. I've already had family displaced
due to ISIS in Iraq, and they've lost everything, again.

One more thing: Some compare North Korea with Iran. In the 35 years since I
began work at the IAEA, I've met scores of Iranian nuclear scientists, most
quite willing to discuss their programs. How many North Koreans have I met?
Zero, zip, nada, none. Comparing Iran to North Korea is comparing apples to

We have an opportunity here.

This agreement can be enforced by the IAEA. I have the advantage since I
read the language of the NPT and Safeguards fluently. But since you will
hopefully read the NPT and then the Agreement, the more the USA and the
West can become involved in the Iranian nuclear program (consulting,
hardware, software, safety, safeguards, personnel, etc.) the more
verifiable the agreement becomes.

Dan W McCarn
Los Alamos, New Mexico
Dan ii

Dan W McCarn, Geologist
108 Sherwood Blvd
Los Alamos, NM 87544-3425
+1-505-672-2014 (Home – New Mexico)
+1-505-670-8123 (Mobile - New Mexico)
HotGreenChile at gmail.com (Private email) HotGreenChile at gmail dot com

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