AFP PODCAST & ARTICLE: War With Iran Imminent?

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The former Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security and Special Assistant to the President on the National Security Council, both under President George W. Bush, believes the current framework of the interim agreement on diplomatic discussions between Iran and the United States over the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program will fail and a military strike on its nuclear facilities will happen. All that remains is the date of the strike.

Ambassador Robert G. Joseph, who is now a Senior Scholar at the National Institute for Public Policy, and was the lead negotiator when Libya’s Muammar Qadaffi decided to surrender his weapons of mass destruction, was one of four speakers for a Capitol Hill Senate briefing on January 29 entitled “Can Iran Deal In Good Faith?”

Dave Gahary spoke with Ambassador Joseph about the hearing in an exclusive interview (15:12).

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Dave Gahary, a former submariner in the U.S. Navy, is the host of AFP’s ‘Underground Interview’ series.

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Iran Strike Imminent?

By Dave Gahary

The former Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security and Special Assistant to the President on the National Security Council, both under President George W. Bush, believes the current framework of the interim agreement on diplomatic discussions between Iran and the United States over the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program will fail and a military strike on its nuclear facilities will happen. All that remains is the date of the strike.

Ambassador Robert G. Joseph, who is now a Senior Scholar at the National Institute for Public Policy, and was the lead negotiator when Libya’s Muammar Qadaffi decided to surrender his weapons of mass destruction, was one of four speakers for a Capitol Hill Senate briefing on January 29 entitled “Can Iran Deal In Good Faith?”

On January 30, AMERICAN FREE PRESS spoke with Ambassador Joseph about the hearing in an exclusive interview.

“My focus was on the interim accord that was signed in November and that recently went into effect governing the nuclear program in Iran,” Joseph began.

Ambassador Joseph expressed concern that “the interim accord that has just gone into effect last week, leaves open the pathways, both pathways, for a nuclear weapon, both enriched uranium and plutonium.”

AFP asked why he thought the accord was so structured.

“I just think the Iranians got the better of the deal,” he said.

Joseph pointed out that the time for sanctions may have passed and that Iran’s global image is on the upswing.

“I think the momentum on sanctions has been shifted,” he said. “If you look at the reception that [Iranian] President Rouhani received in Davos, Switzerland last week, it’s very clear that many countries are eager to reestablish their commercial relationships with Iran and to continue to import more and more Iranian oil,” he said.

Joseph feels that “without sanctions, I don’t think there’s really any prospect that the final comprehensive agreement, if we ever get there, will be favorable to us.”

AFP asked if he would be supportive of an Israeli strike on Iran.

“We might have to use force,” he said, adding that “the Israelis may have to use force to stop Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon, and if that’s what is required I certainly would support it.”

If the agreement fails, he said “then the use of force is, I think, much better than the alternative of allowing Iran to have a nuclear weapon. If we get to the point where Iran is on the threshold of acquiring a nuclear weapon, force is entirely justified.”

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