Surprise: Iran still actively seeking nuclear contraband, says U.S. official

posted at 6:01 pm on March 17, 2014 by Erika Johnsen

Like anybody is really surprised, via Reuters:

Iran has pursued a longstanding effort to buy banned components for its nuclear and missile programs in recent months, a U.S. official said on Sunday, a period when it struck an interim deal with major powers to limit its disputed atomic activity.

Vann Van Diepen, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Security and Non-Proliferation, said Iran was still “very actively” creating front companies and engaging in other activity to conceal procurements. …

Asked if he had seen a change in Iranian procurement behavior in the past six to 12 months, a period that has seen a cautious thaw in U.S.-Iranian relations after decades of hostility, Van Diepen replied: “The short answer is no.

“They still continue very actively trying to procure items for their nuclear program and missile program and other programs,” he told Reuters in an interview.

“We continue to see them very actively setting up and operating through front companies, falsifying documentation, engaging in multiple levels of trans-shipment … to put more apparent distance between where the item originally came from and where it is ultimately going.”

The reported supplies don’t break any rules laid out in the interim nuclear-program-curbing-in-exchange-for-sanctions-relief agreement late last year, but that’s only because they break rules already specified in a 2006 U.N. embargo banning the provision by any nation to Iran of materials related to its nuclear and missile development work. Iran has been doing this kind of thing for ages, and the interim agreement certainly hasn’t done anything to deter them.

And speaking of that interim agreement, another round of diplomatic talks between Iran and the world’s six major power players is getting started on Tuesday to hammer out a more final deal on Iran’s nuke program (which I’m sure they’ll take really super seriously). Although the Senate has momentarily abandoned their push to try and convince the Obama administration to hang the threat of further sanctions over Iran to get them to faithfully cooperate, a group of more than eighty cosigning senators just sent the Obama administration a reminder of some explicit provisions they’d like to see in any sort of forthcoming deal — the first time they’ve committed the prerequisites to writing:

If at least these conditions aren’t met, the senators warn, they’ll demand a resumption of the sanctions that President Obama has eased off — and since Iran is highly unlikely to abide by just about anything spelled out in this list, I doubt the administration is at all pleased with the missive.


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J.J. Carafano
It’s time to realize that Vladimir Putin cannot be trusted

Iran still actively seeking nuclear contraband, says U.S. official

Two headlines today that are so obvious it’s painful to read…

right2bright on March 17, 2014 at 6:06 PM

the obama foreign policy wrapped in one word…failure.

dmacleo on March 17, 2014 at 6:07 PM

shocka…

jimver on March 17, 2014 at 6:09 PM

Sounds like a good time to drawn a line somewhere.
That’ll show’em…..

dentarthurdent on March 17, 2014 at 6:10 PM

John Kerry has this handled. He’s a statesman and a canny negotiator. You can tell that by his face.

butch on March 17, 2014 at 6:12 PM

I didn’t graduate from the JFK School of Government or do an internship on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, which is to say that it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that nuclear armageddon is in the near future for either Israel or Iran… Or both.

That is what Iran aspires to and given the reaction of the world community that’s what’ll happen.

turfmann on March 17, 2014 at 6:13 PM

Ya gotta wonder why the powers that be are all in favor of the coup in Ukraine (to put it mildly), but when we had a chance to support the overthrow of the mullahocracy in Iran we forgot to support it.

Akzed on March 17, 2014 at 6:16 PM

You are woefully backwards in the act of war. you fight erratically and clumsily. Your weapons are shockingly crude. And worst of all, in your hearts you long for peace. A small talent for war. Too small. Too small to be of any use to us.

dentarthurdent on March 17, 2014 at 6:19 PM

But I thank you for a most amusing day. You people have a delightful sense of the absurd. You might take some comfort in that. After all, as one of your fine Earth actors, Edmund Wynn, once said, “Dying is easy, comedy is hard.”

dentarthurdent on March 17, 2014 at 6:20 PM

Like anybody is really surprised,

Well Erika – King Putt won’t read it until he gets the paper tomorrow – THEN he’ll be surprised.

dentarthurdent on March 17, 2014 at 6:23 PM

Akzed on March 17, 2014 at 6:16 PM

Well, Obama was in favor of overthrowing Mubarak, but, not in favor of overthrowing Morsi. Were you looking for consistency?

butch on March 17, 2014 at 6:23 PM

You are woefully backwards in the act of war. you fight erratically and clumsily. Your weapons are shockingly crude. And worst of all, in your hearts you long for peace. A small talent for war. Too small. Too small to be of any use to us.

dentarthurdent on March 17, 2014 at 6:19 PM

Twilight zone indeed…

jimver on March 17, 2014 at 6:24 PM

John Kerry has this handled. He’s a statesman and a canny negotiator. You can tell that by his face.

butch on March 17, 2014 at 6:12 PM

This is hard, because I have trouble figuring out which end of Kerry contains a “face”…

landlines on March 17, 2014 at 6:25 PM

Asked if he had seen a change in Iranian procurement behavior in the past six to 12 months, a period that has seen a cautious thaw in U.S.-Iranian relations after decades of hostility, Van Diepen replied: “The short answer is no.

You might as well expect a scorpion to change its spots.

rbj on March 17, 2014 at 6:27 PM

This regime has made Jimmah Carter AND Neville Chamberlain look downright competent in foreign affairs.

dentarthurdent on March 17, 2014 at 6:29 PM

Obama is the crazed lunatic piloting the nation’s 777.

viking01 on March 17, 2014 at 6:30 PM

Obama is the crazed lunatic piloting the nation’s 777.

viking01 on March 17, 2014 at 6:30 PM

I hope some of us are able to survive the wreck.

dentarthurdent on March 17, 2014 at 6:32 PM

Well, we’ll just have to ratchet up the pressure on Tehran.

Let’s see, we just need Putin to help us out. Like he did in Syria….

Er…never mind.

How in the hell did we get into the situation where Putin has more sticks to use against us than we do with him?

SteveMG on March 17, 2014 at 6:32 PM

…and again!….Smart Power!

KOOLAID2 on March 17, 2014 at 6:45 PM

Like anybody is really surprised, via Reuters…

I know one fool in DC who will be surprised.

slickwillie2001 on March 17, 2014 at 6:47 PM

MeanWhile,sumpin doesn’t square:

Iran President Gives Reporter History Lesson He’ll Never Forget (English Translation)
*********************
.

Like his predecessor Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iran’s new president Hassan Rouhani made a number of prolific performances whereby he was catalyzed into an underdog position. Monitor Mideast translated one of such interviews exclusively into English. Rouhani is seen questioning the IRIB reporter on basis of long-held myths regarding Hassan Rouhani’s track record as a nuclear negotiator.
===================

Added: 2 days ago Occurred On: Sep-16-2013

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=d49_1379350808&comments=1

canopfor on September 18, 2013 at 10:09 PM

canopfor on March 17, 2014 at 6:47 PM

They’d better be careful. President Comprehensive will start drawing some comprehensive red lines and giving comprehensive speeches, followed by comprehensive sanctions.

reaganaut on March 17, 2014 at 6:48 PM

Ukraine

corona79 on March 17, 2014 at 6:48 PM

******* Persia’s ManHatten Project Marches On **************************!!

canopfor on March 17, 2014 at 6:50 PM

Democrats GROSSLY overestimate our enemies’ desire for an honest and mutually beneficial relationship.

They start with the assumption that every problem we may with any nation is the fault of the USA.

mankai on March 17, 2014 at 6:52 PM

This is hard, because I have trouble figuring out which end of Kerry contains a “face”…

landlines on March 17, 2014 at 6:25 PM

Lurch’s end making the most noise is the top end.

A blessing for Tah-ray-za, perhaps, but less so for civilization.

viking01 on March 17, 2014 at 6:53 PM

In the words of that great, sage, Iago…

ladyingray on March 17, 2014 at 6:56 PM

Why in the heck did HA just make me sign in to post when I was already signed in?!?!?!

I really wish they’d fix this site…

ladyingray on March 17, 2014 at 6:57 PM

All Hail the Messiah!

dmann on March 17, 2014 at 7:04 PM

Can’t be…their religion forbids it.

trs on March 17, 2014 at 7:11 PM

Can’t be…their religion forbids it.

trs on March 17, 2014 at 7:11 PM

Religion of Peace.

… and they’ll saw your head off if you disagree.

viking01 on March 17, 2014 at 7:23 PM

I’m really glad they released this ‘pertinent’ information. I would hate to be “in the dark” about it, if this is what Iran is doing.
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ANY OTHER (expletive) LATE BREAKING “DUHHH” NEWS WE SHOULD KNOW ABOUT, YOU BUNCH OF ( . . . . . . . . . . . Redacted . . . . . . . . . . . ) ? ! ! ! ! ! !

listens2glenn on March 17, 2014 at 7:30 PM

Reuters Top News ‏@Reuters 6m

Iran, six powers seek nuclear progress in shadow of Ukraine crisis http://reut.rs/1edMhh5
=========================

Iran, six powers seek nuclear progress in shadow of Ukraine crisis

By Fredrik Dahl and Parisa Hafezi

VIENNA Mon Mar 17, 2014 7:09pm EDT
**********************************

TALKS WILL GET “TOUGHER” NOW, IRAN SAYS

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/03/17/us-iran-nuclear-idUSBREA2G1RX20140317?feedType=RSS&feedName=topNews&utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter&dlvrit=992637

canopfor on March 17, 2014 at 7:30 PM

No worries! King Barack will read about it in the newspaper!

GarandFan on March 17, 2014 at 10:07 PM