Big news yesterday, as Pradva on the Hudson revealed that “American intelligence agencies” have come to the conclusion that “Iran halted its nuclear weapons program in 2003 and that the program remains frozen”. The $64,000 question is how much this actually matters: will it halt or slowdown Bush’s war preparations against Iran (that is, if war with Iran is actually on the cards and is not just used as a convenient threat). Lenny is guardedly optimistic on this, but I’m not so sure. The Bush administration has never let itself be embarassed by inconvenient facts before, so why should this time be different?
In general the report does not say anything new about the whole Iran “crisis”. We already knew that the accusations of nuclear chicanery were bogus. The only new thing is that a segment of the American government has finally managed to acknowledge reality, which is a step forwards, I guess. However since the report does say that Iran had been working on a nuclear bomb back in 2003, in a roundabout way it strengthens the Bushite narrative as Iran as an unreliable, aggressive power.
Now as far as I know, only American or American backed sources have ever said that Iran was working on nuclear weapons, there has never been any independent confirmation of this, so the fact that the US government and the media finally have to acknowledge Iran isn’t working on them
now is decidedly a “glass half empty” situation. Especially since it allows the Bushites to argue that their strongarm tactics have worked, as they’re already doing.