Thumbs Up! Unnamed US Official Spins Iran’s Non-Compliance as Satisfactory

A new story from the Associated Press cites a confidential report from the United Nations which found that Iran is meeting its nuclear commitments.

“Iran has met a key commitment under a preliminary nuclear deal setting up the current talks on a final agreement, leaving it with several tons less of the material it could use to make weapons, according to a U.N. report issued Wednesday.

Obtained by The Associated Press, the confidential International Atomic Energy Agency report said, “more than four tons of the enriched uranium had been fed into a pipeline that ends with conversion of it into oxide, which is much less likely to be used to make nuclear arms.”

Citing an unnamed U.S. official, the story goes on to explain how Iran isn’t producing uranium which could be used for the purpose of weapons.

“The report indicated that only several hundred pounds of the oxide that is the end product had been made. But a U.S. official told the AP the rest of the enriched uranium in the pipeline has been transformed into another form of the oxide that would be even more difficult to reconvert into enriched uranium, which can be turned into the fissile core of nuclear arms.

The official said that technical problems by Iran had slowed the process but the United States was satisfied that Iran had met its commitments to reduce the amount of enriched uranium it has stored.”

The AP claims the unnamed official “demanded anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the confidential review process.”

The Associated press did not mix words when it came to the obvious political implications of the report and the Obama administration’s interest in moving forward noting that violations would “complicate the Obama administration’s argument that U.S. negotiators are holding the line on demands for a verifiable deal” and repeating Obama’s claim that he would “walk away from negotiations if, in fact, it’s a bad deal.”

According to the Israel Project’s Omri Ceren, this report and the accompanied spin are flawed for several reasons. Ceren notes that the Obama administration is “letting the Iranians pick and choose which parts of the agreement they want to comply with. Then they’re working to justify it.”

He points out the administration’s efforts to politicize the issue in order to justify the massive spin on Iran’s violations saying “The oxidation condition was always a too-cute-by-half mechanism to let the Iranians keep enriching (their red line) while ostensibly keeping their program frozen (the administration talking point).”

Finally, Ceren noted the apparent deception being played out on Capitol Hill, saying, “the administration keeps telling lawmakers that the Iranians can be trusted to meet their final deal obligations, because they met their interim deal obligations. No they didn’t.”