The historic Iran nuclear deal, which aims to prevent Tehran from producing enough material to build an atomic weapon, will not actually ensure an end to hostility. In fact, the opposite is true. There are many enemies of this agreement. Firstly, the American naysayers who aim to sabotage any success for President Obama, and then there’s Israel and the Arab Gulf monarchies. The threat for Israel is not so much nuclear-related, but its refusal – used as a strong point by Netanyahu during his last electoral campaign - to accept Iran as a legitimate player in the new Middle East. In addition to Israel, there is Saudi Arabia, another regional power worried about the extent to which it has supported and financed a series of extremist Sunni movements over the years, polarizing religious sectarianism in an attempt to weaken the Shiites.
Even in Iran itself there are some strong concerns. Some economic circles have accumulated immense fortunes from the segregation of the country and its forced autocracy, especially in the field of technology. The reopening of a dialogue with the United States has roused concerns and discontent in a system that has built its own political and institutional structure based on opposition to the West.
Looking at the contents of the agreement, it will guarantee the lifting of sanctions for Tehran in exchange for significant reductions in the scope of its nuclear program. Iran will continue its enrichment, just as it will continue with research and development on the main centrifuges.
Looking back in time, the proliferation of atomic material actually started in Europe; in France and Germany to be precise, the main European producers of nuclear energy. The two countries in question provided the first centrifuges which enabled the Islamic country to produce material for bombs. These centrifuges were actually supplied to Pakistan, which distributed them throughout the Middle East. Centrifuges are very complex and difficult to assemble as they are the key element in the process. In the early 1970s, the centrifuges supplied to Pakistan were made out of steel; these had a low efficiency and at least 50,000 were required to produce one gigawatt of explosive material. Some 3,000 were needed, working nonstop for a whole year, to produce 100 kilograms of U-235. However, technology has developed, and over time, the centrifuges used by Iran have been replaced with carbon fiber centrifuges, a more efficient, more resistant and safer material. Again from Europe. Many years ago, to thwart the nuclear threat of Iran, it would have been enough to simply block the export of carbon fiber for the production of centrifuges!
Coming back to the agreement, the Tehran program will be subject to inspections in order to check its compliance with its commitments. In the event Tehran violates the deal reached in Vienna, sanctions will be reintroduced within 65 days. The deal also includes a compromise between Washington and Tehran which allows U.N. inspectors to request a visit to Iranian military sites. In this raging climate of high tensions, the West is getting closer to Iran, and who knows if this will be of benefit to the West in its fight against jihadi terrorism. As we know, nuclear weapons are a weapon in war, but first and foremost, a political weapon.