Analysis || In this UN act, Iran is the star and Israel is the grump observing from the sidelines
……………….. “We are the kid who shouts that the emperor has no clothes,” Strategic and Intelligence Affairs Minister Yuval Steinitz, Netanyahu’s close ally, said this week. But the shouting is being ignored.
The star of the General Assembly session will be Iran’s newly elected president, Hassan Rohani. He has conducted a well-planned campaign in the past few weeks, aimed at presenting the new, moderate face of the regime in Tehran. The main reason Rohani won an absolute majority in the first round in the national election in June is that the Iranian people expect him to achieve one main goal: to bring about a significant relaxation of international sanctions, whose effect on the country’s economy was even more serious than originally anticipated last year. The ayatollahs, who did not intervene this time to falsify the election’s results, have been compelled to go with the flow.
The gist of the deal that Rohani is offering the West is: more limited nuclear ambitions in return for reduced sanctions. The regime wants to retain its ability to enrich uranium, but is signaling a readiness to compromise on the question of demonstrating greater transparency at its nuclear sites and allowing closer international supervision.
Iran has not yet crossed the threshold that Netanyahu delineated in his General Assembly speech last year: what was explained later as the accumulation of 250 kilograms of 20 percent-enriched uranium (almost enough to manufacture one nuclear bomb, after enrichment to a “military” level of 90 percent). To date, the Iranians have accumulated about 190 kilograms. But the latest reports by the International Atomic Energy Agency indicate that Tehran has found a way to leapfrog over the red line: The installation of faster centrifuges for enriching uranium has shortened the distance to the manufacture of a bomb. The concern among intelligence organizations in Israel and in the West is that an Iranian decision to complete the process could lead to rapid progress within months, with the intelligence community spotting the development only when it is already too late.