Six world powers in Vienna - HATICE KARAHAN

Six world powers in Vienna

While the world focuses on the Greece debt problem, another substantial global issue is taking place: the nuclear negotiations with Iran. The meetings held between the P5 + 1, consisting of the U.S., England, China, Russia, France and Germany, with Iran are taking place in Vienna.

The parties which convened with the aim to finalize the accord -which they had agreed back in April- failed to reach a resolution on June 30, which was set as the deadline date. It was first postponed to July 7, then July 10, but was still not finalized. Let's put it this way; a nuclear exhaustion persists in Vienna.

They had convened for the happy ending which would be the next step after the point they reached in April, and there were only final details left for the job. However, as luck would have it, the process was filled with complications again and the demands requested from Iran brought delays along.

In this respect, as an agreement was almost reached, the question "what are the six world powers trying to do?" rakes one's mind. Is nuclear peace the goal or tool of this story?

Mixed signals

The basic framework of the current state of affairs contains various conditions which limit Iran's nuclear activities in the next 10-15 years and blocks it from producing nuclear weapons. One of the harshest conditions stipulates that Iran keeps its military facilities open for UN inspection. On the other hand, Iran's request is that the sanctions be lifted swiftly and completely…

As it is known, the UN and Western sanctions against Iran which started in 2006 and worsened since then had been causing difficult periods –in terms of commercial and financial aspects-. Iran seems to have accepted many conditions and said “yes” in order to pick up its painful economy, which was seriously affected in line with the developments in oil prices.

However, this acceptance especially did not convince the U.S. This is one of the reasons for the eschewal of Western sides -and the current blockage- for “lifting the weapons sanctions by UN” in Iran's “all sanctions” request. As a matter of fact, the U.S has sent mixed signals until today by sending the message that they could “leave the table.” Without a doubt, the goal here was to bring Iran to its heels with the least amount of prizes as possible.

The actual goal is to restrain

The six powers – especially the U.S. - are concerned about Iran reaching a high level of uranium enrichment which would pave the way for nuclear weapons in a short period of time. Wasn't this the cause which triggered the negotiations in 2013? At this point, the question “For whom is Iran really a nuclear threat” comes to mind. Considering the U.S.'s insistence, it is evident that the first response would be Israel…

However, if nuclear threat is this serious then why is Israel adopting an anti-agreement stance? The answer is Israel's perspective: an Iran which is freed from its chains, would gain economic and geopolitical power and would start its nuclear works after 15 years, much more effectively from where it left off at. For this reason, Israel is dominated by the fear that an agreement would strengthen Iran in the region.

Alright, but why does the U.S. delay it despite its desire to confiscate Iran's nuclear work, by including the other five powers? It seems like Iran freeing itself from sanctions and becoming richer to increase its influence throughout the region does not suit anyone's book. This lays at the foundation of disagreement over weapons sanctions.

Especially, if Iran does not accept UN inspectors being authorized to enter military fields, the value of the agreement will fall even further. Therefore, the nuclear security issue appears as a strong tool rather than a goal in this adventure. The actual goal is presented before us as “restraining” Iran in a comprehensive manner.

To bomb Iran?

Alright, but what will happen if there is no agreement? How will goals which were not reached through nuclear negotiations be saved? Through a military attack? Until today, the U.S. has adopted diplomatic relations and added the rest of the five world powers in the equation, as the previous option was costly. However, this diplomatic stance came under question last week when Eliot Engel, a democrat U.S. Representative for New York's 16th congressional district, voiced “the potential of Iran's nuclear facilities being bombed.”

On the other hand, the elite circles, which include mainly Republicans and Democrats, also play a role in the procrastination of the U.S. We should add that these groups have close relations with oil companies and Israeli lobbies.

This comes to mind in this regard: Even if the agreement is accepted in the doors of Vienna, will it pass through the U.S. Congress? In the case that the signs are put, the eyes will be turned towards Washington in the 60-day long process. And to the Iranian parliament…

As you know, there is a sentence that everyone including Obama, Netanyahu, Kerry and Hamaney keep saying: “Not reaching an agreement is better than reaching a poor agreement.”

Of course, the six world powers and Iran will have the final say on this. While I write this piece in the afternoon, heated meetings continue to take place behind the doors; because July 13 was the 4th deadline.

We need to carefully watch what will happen. As a matter of fact, the resolution that will be taken will affect Turkey in a multi-dimensional and multi-directional framework –regarding regional policies- including exports, oil, investments.


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