AUTHORBarzegar, Kayhan
TITLEThe Paradox of Iran's Nuclear Consensus
PERIODICAL TITLEWorld Policy Journal
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This 2009 article by an Iranian professor of international relations presents an Iranian perspective on Iran’s desire for an independent nuclear fuel cycle. The author cites national pride, regional influence, and national security as the reasons for the nation’s nuclear aspirations. He suggests that delays in negotiations between Iran and the international community, led by the U.S., moved Iran in the direction of obtaining nuclear weapons. He indicates that President Ahmadinejad’s position with respect to an independent fuel cycle has the support of most political factions in Iran. The article then goes on to enumerate several reasons why, from the perspective of Iranian leadership, obtaining nuclear weapons is untenable, unnecessary, and unwise. Concluding ideas bring up the paradox that the nuclear issue may provide the road to possible reconciliation between the U.S. and Iran. As the author puts it, from Iran's perspective, such a reconciliation would require that the U.S. "acknowledge the legitimacy of the current leadership," recognize Iran's right to an independent nuclear fuel cycle, and "respect the nation's long-held history as a regional power" (p. 30).

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