Skip to comments.IAEA chief says attack on Iran would be catastrophe
Posted on 01/25/2007 5:20:32 PM PST by NormsRevenge
DAVOS, Switzerland (Reuters) - An attack on Iran would be catastrophic and encourage it to develop a nuclear bomb, Mohamed ElBaradei, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, said on Thursday.
"It would be absolutely counterproductive, and it would be catastrophic," ElBaradei said at a discussion on nuclear proliferation at the World Economic Forum.
The Bush administration in recent weeks has toughened its stance against Iran, which the West has accused of seeking to secretly build an atomic bomb, raising fears among political and business leaders that the U.S. plans an attack.
President George W. Bush has moved an additional aircraft carrier into the Gulf and told Iran that he would not allow it to provide weapons and support to insurgents in Iraq.
Israel has refused to rule out pre-emptive military action against Iran on the lines of its 1981 air strike against an atomic reactor in Iraq, although many analysts believe Iran's nuclear facilities are too much for Israel to destroy alone.
The United Nations imposed sanctions in December to prevent Iran using its nuclear energy program for military weapons, and Iran this week banned 38 IAEA nuclear inspectors.
ElBaradei, head of the U.N.'s nuclear watchdog, has been engaged in meetings here at the gathering of world political and business leaders. He said diplomacy is the only way forward, and talk of military action can only backfire.
"This strengthens the hands of those in Iran who say 'let's develop a bomb to protect ourselves," he said.
The Bush administration has said it wants a diplomatic solution and that it is not preparing to attack either Iran or Syria.
Pakistan's Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz also warned against an attack, while Iran's former president Mohammad Khatami urged calm to reduce tensions over Iran's nuclear program.
"If there is military action, it will have catastrophic results, not only in the region, but the whole world," Aziz said.
"I hope they would be good enough in managing the situation. We deeply need patience and understanding and not to get too emotional," Khatami said.
ElBaradei said force should not be ruled out, but past experience has shown that it should not be used with haste, citing Iraq where no evidence of nuclear weapons was found after the U.S.-led invasion.
"I am convinced that the only way forward in Iran is engagement," ElBaradei said. "We have to invest in peace," he said, adding that if the international community failed to do that "the consequence will be 10 times worse."
"I hope we will stop speaking about a military option and focus on finding a solution," ElBaradei said.
Iran says it needs nuclear power to generate electricity but the West fears it is secretly seeking an atom bomb. In December, the United Nations imposed sanctions on Iran's trade in sensitive nuclear materials and technology to try and stop enrichment work that could produce bomb material.
Who decided to put a muzzie in charge of the IAEA anyway?
Why blow up the reactor? Just destroy Irans abililty to produce oil. Doesn't impact us except for a buck or two more at the pump.
However, China would be in economic ruins as would the EU.
We are going about this all wrong.
Same old song from the Islamic-nuclear-weapons promoting ElBadari. He and Blix have overseen the most danerous of proliferation of weapons into the hands of nutjobs the worlkd has seen for some time.
So clearly the U.N. will give them, some more awards.
ElBaradei has had his chance. What exactly is his track record of success?
Former Iranian President Mohammed Khatami is seen on a large video screen at the World Economic Forum in Davos, January 25, 2007. (Sebastian Derungs/Reuters)
Iran's Khatami calls for calm heads in nuclear row
DAVOS, Switzerland (Reuters) - Former Iranian President Mohammad Khatami on Thursday called for calm heads to reduce building tensions between the United States and his country over its nuclear program.
"I hope that they would be good enough in managing the situation. We deeply need patience and understanding and not to get too emotional," Khatami said at the World Economic Forum meeting in Davos.
Tehran and Washington have collided head-on over Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's decision last February to resume the country's uranium enrichment program, reversing a more than two-year pause under Khatami's government.
Iran says it needs nuclear power to generate electricity but the West is concerned it is secretly seeking an atom bomb.
In December, the United Nations voted to impose sanctions on Iran's trade in sensitive nuclear materials and technology to try and stop enrichment work that could produce bomb material.
This week, Iran banned 38 International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors from working in the country. On Tuesday it said it was still cooperating with the U.N. watchdog, which has a pool of about 200 inspectors qualified to check Iranian sites.
Khatami declined to comment on the decision to ban the group of IAEA inspectors, whom diplomats said were all Westerners.
The United States has urged Iran to sit down for talks on its nuclear program or face tougher sanctions if IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei tells the Security Council in a report due on February 21 that Tehran is not complying with U.N. demands.
Ahmadinejad has called the U.N. resolution a "piece of torn paper" and vowed to press ahead with the nuclear program.
Khatami also threw his support behind the U.S. Iraq Study Group proposal for the Bush administration to involve Iran in regional talks about the future of Iraq.
"Rather than confrontation, it would be better to cooperate and have dialogue with Iran and Syria," Khatami told reporters after attending a panel discussion on the outlook for Iraq.
Well, that's likely to make us solidify friendships! Why don't we bomb London with B-52's just to go whole hog.
These are countries that support terrorism. If I remember correctly you are either with us or against us. Seems that both China and the EU are against us.
Talking and making nice hasn't really worked. Isn't that what the Democrats want to do?
ElBaradei seems to be an expert concerning a catastrophe WRT Iran, but probably has no problem with an Iranian nuke hitting Israel or Iraq (w/ US forces there). That would not be a catastrophe.
Properly done, and attack would not leave enough resources to manufacture a stick match!
I thought he was Egyptian.
It would be a catastrophe, but if its done right, it will be a catastrophe for them.
My first question and I quit reading right there.
The actual quote was "You are either with us or you are with the terrorists." It's obvious from the many times that it is misquoted that Republicans are not good at repeating powerful expressions enough so that everyone learns them. Of course we don't have the DBM repeating things helpful to our country every half hour on the radio for three straight days as in the reign of ex42.
Many would like to be against us. Few want to be with the terrorists.
Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Vienna, Mohamed ElBaradei gestures while speaking during a session 'Stopping the Spread of Nuclear Weapons' at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Thursday Jan. 25, 2007. The tumult in the Middle East and the ongoing crisis between Israel and the Palestinians will take center stage Thursday at the World Economic Forum's annual meeting. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)
So maybe taking out Iran from the air is the key to winning the war on terrorism.
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