The Meaning of Verification, by Ted Snider

The International Atomic Energy Agency has certified 11 times that Iran is in compliance with the Nuclear Agreement. Now that the US has pulled out of the agreement, Iran can kick out the inspectors and we won’t have that source of information on what Iran is doing. From Ted Snider at antiwar.org:

As North Korea begins to open up to the world, what must they be hearing?

Two of the loudest stories concern Donald Trump’s reactions to countries accused of having active weapons of mass destruction programs. Trump bombed Syria for using chemical weapons, and he has now officially pulled out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear agreement with Iran.

But the first thing that needs to be said in any discussion of Syria’s chemical weapons or Iran’s nuclear weapons is the one thing that is seldom said: Syria has no chemical weapons and Iran has no nuclear ones. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) verified Syria to be chemical free, and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has verified Iran’s consistent and continued compliance with the JCPOA. To the best of anyone’s knowledge, Syria has no chemicals and Iran has no nukes: that’s what verification means.

Syria

On September 14, 2013 the United States and Russia finalized a Russian brokered agreement on the removal and destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons. On January 4, 2016, the OPCW declared the completion of the destruction of all chemical weapons in Syria.

Nonetheless, on April 14, Trump ordered the bombing of Syria because of a claimed chemical attack in Douma, near Damascus. Only days before the missile strikes, Defense Secretary James Mattis said that the U.S lacked the intelligence that Assad was responsible for the alleged chemical weapons attack. Mattis admitted that the US was “still assessing the intelligence… We’re still working on it.”

Days after, however, the US bombed three particular buildings that they claimed housed specific chemicals and chemical production equipment. That’s very precise, specific intelligence. Armed with that proof, why would the US rush to bomb Syria? Why not take that intelligence to U.N. inspectors? Why not hand it over to the OPCW? Why not reveal the illegal Syrian clandestine chemical weapons program to the world?

Russian chemical weapons specialists who were on site found no trace of chemical weapon use. Neither did Red Crescent doctors who treated people. The OPCW inspectors might quickly have answered the question, but their access to the site was blocked by the United Nations department of Safety and Security.

To continue reading: The Meaning of Verification

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One response to “The Meaning of Verification, by Ted Snider

  1. And now on offer are choice beachfront properties in Utah…….

    Like

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