You read that headline correctly.
Barack Obama has now authorized the United States government to pay the government of Iran, a state sponsor of terrorism, to produce nuclear material. Via the Wall Street Journal (behind a paywall, those bastards):
The Obama administration is buying 32 tons of heavy water, a key component in atomic-weapons development, from Iran in an effort to safeguard its landmark nuclear agreement with the country, according to senior American officials.
The Department of Energy’s impending purchase was driven by U.S. concerns that Iran doesn’t have the capacity yet to quickly reduce its stockpile of the material as required under the July nuclear deal, according to these officials.
Under the accord, Iran must keep its load of heavy water to below 130 tons during the initial years of the deal, and under 90 tons later. But U.S. officials said Iran has been struggling to find buyers for the material on the international market and that its stockpile is at risk of rising above that level.
The U.S. hopes its initial purchase will give other countries the confidence to purchase Iran’s heavy water in the coming years.
The deal, estimated at $8.6 million, is expected to be formally signed by U.S. and Iranian officials Friday morning in Vienna.
“The idea is: Okay, we tested it, it’s perfectly good heavy water. It meets spec. We’ll buy a little of this,” U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. “That will be a statement to the world: ‘You want to buy heavy water from Iran, you can buy heavy water from Iran. It’s been done. Even the United States did it.’”
Note that we aren’t paying Iran for its existing stock of heavy water. We aren’t paying them to shutdown production facilities. We are paying them to keep their production facility open and profitable. We are marketing their heavy water for them which will encourage the Iranians to increase rather than reduce production. The obvious solution to the problem is that Iran needs to a) stop producing heavy water or b) dump the excess and let it evaporate.
This whole scheme to give Iran nuclear weapons in exchange for not much of anything differs from anything Edward Snowden did only in that the US government is doing this deliberately and it is much more injurious to US interests because is create as permanent rogue, nuclear armed power in the Middle East/Soutwest Asia.
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