(Reuters) - Iran and six world powers reached a breakthrough agreement early on Sunday to curb Tehran's nuclear program in exchange for limited sanctions relief, in a first step towards resolving a dangerous decade-old standoff.
The deal between the Islamic state and the United States, France, Germany, Britain, China and Russia was nailed down after more than four days of negotiations.
"We have reached an agreement," Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif announced on his Twitter feed. French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius also confirmed the deal.
Iran will get access to $4.2 billion in foreign exchange as part of the accord*, a Western diplomat said. No other details of the agreement were immediately available.
All I can say is that it looks good for Iran, but I wonder if it's good for the world.
One of the phrases in the Reuters article, on which most news sites are basing their reports, that makes me nervous is this which I've put in bold and italics:
The talks were aimed at finding a package of confidence-building steps* to ease decades of tensions and banish the specter of a Middle East war over Tehran's nuclear aspirations.The idea of sanctions should be to do the opposite, put an aggressive country in its place, not reward it and certainly not build up its already over-inflated confidence.
This is the twenty-first century version of "The Mouse That Roared." In this modern version, it isn't a poor backward country that inexplicably and unintentionally defeats the world power in search of a "Marshall Plan" of foreign aid, a wealthy aggressive country just threatens the world with its nuclear weapons development and gets lots of financial gifts from world powers. We're all supposed to trust a country that has never been honest.
The party-like atmosphere, diplomats willing and wanting to make a deal no matter the cost and quality, remind me of those who rush to get married, because they want to have a wedding, which is a sure-fire recipe for divorce.
Israel says the deal being offered would give Iran more time to master nuclear technology and amass potential bomb fuel. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told local media in Moscow that Iran was essentially given an "unbelievable Christmas present - the capacity to maintain this (nuclear) breakout capability for practically no concessions at all".It's obvious that Israeli warnings have been ignored, and Israel will be threatened by the countries that negotiated the "deal" against doing anything to endanger it.
A lesson Israel should learn from all this is that being nice, reasonable and willing to compromise will get you nothing from the world, just scorn. We'd be treated much, much better if we would just stop being Mr. Nice Guy and just do what's best for us, our security and our future!