Reasons to Be Skeptical About the New Iran Deal

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To the surprise of no one, Iran has struck a deal with Brazil and Turkey to remove 1200 kg of low enriched uranium to Turkey, as a means of avoiding sanctions. Very few people believe, however, that the deal means anything more than sanctions-avoidance. Laura Rozen describes some of the technical shortcomings of the deal here; David Albright, the former weapons inspector, writes that the widespread skepticism that has greeted the Brazilian-brokered deal is justified:

The news this morning that Iran had agreed in principle (the text of the agreement published by the Guardian notes that Iran will inform the IAEA of its official agreement to the deal within seven days) to send 1200 kg of its low enriched uranium (LEU) to Turkey has been greeted skeptically by the European Union, the United States, and others concerned that this declaration is merely an attempt to delay the imposition of U.N. Security Council sanctions.  The Security Council is debating these sanctions as a result of Iran's continuing defiance of calls to halt its enrichment of uranium and accept adequate IAEA inspections.  Thus, while clarifications should be sought, this declaration provides no reason to stop negotiating in the Security Council the imposition of sanctions on Iran.

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Jeffrey Goldberg is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and a recipient of the National Magazine Award for Reporting. He is the author of Prisoners: A Story of Friendship and Terror. More

Before joining The Atlantic in 2007, Goldberg was a Middle East correspondent, and the Washington correspondent, for The New Yorker. He was previouslly a correspondent for The New York Times Magazine and New York magazine. He has also written for the Jewish Daily Forward and was a columnist for The Jerusalem Post.

Goldberg's book Prisoners was hailed as one of the best books of 2006 by the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, The Progressive, Washingtonian magazine, and Playboy. He received the 2003 National Magazine Award for Reporting for his coverage of Islamic terrorism and the 2005 Anti-Defamation League Daniel Pearl Prize. He is also the winner of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists prize for best international investigative journalist; the Overseas Press Club award for best human-rights reporting; and the Abraham Cahan Prize in Journalism.

In 2001, Goldberg was appointed the Syrkin Fellow in Letters of the Jerusalem Foundation, and in 2002 he became a public-policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

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