March 30, 2006

Mohamed's Radio-active

With apologies to the shade of Warren Zevon for that title, Mohamed ElBaradei says:

"My message to Iran: the international community is getting impatient and you need to respond by arming me with information," he said.

Does anybody else think this is a remarkably poor choice of verbs for a diplomat trying to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons? Then again, perhaps Mohamed believes his job is to do battle on behalf of Iran? Further on, Mohamed ElBaradei says:

"There is no military solution to this situation. It's inconceivable."

He keeps using that word. But I do not think it means what he thinks it means. Meanwhile, on planet Earth:

In Berlin, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said the international community still aimed to find a diplomatic solution to the stand-off.

Think about it, diplomacy is essentially only useful in negotiating terms of surrender at some level. Since Iran won't back down to this petty tomfoolery, I suppose the usual suspects are going to volunteer to maintain the illusion of process and progress in negotiations. Put yourself in Iran's shoes, what's the downside to prevaricating, obfuscating and carrying on with uranium enrichment at a double quick time pace?

Russia and China firmly oppose any sanctions, let alone force, and insisted on removing language in the U.N. statement that they feared could lead down that path.

Got that? No sanctions. Period. And for heavens sake, no force. The only tool left in the arsenal of, ahem, democracy, is the sternly worded warning.

Cardinal Biggles, fetch the comfy chair!

DOWNDATE: A deadline, er, I mean, a line in the ever shifting diplomatic sands has been drawn, however lightly, letting Iran know that the UN means, uh, business:

The U.N. Security Council gave Iran 30 days to clear up suspicions that it is seeking nuclear weapons, and key members turned their focus on what to do if Iran refuses to suspend uranium enrichment and allow more intrusive inspections.

As noted earlier, there's plenty of room on the table. It's certainly uncontaminated by what's been left on it.

Posted by Charles Austin at March 30, 2006 03:22 PM