Remember Argentina's President Christine Fernandez de Kirchner's speech last year at the United Nations' General Assembly? Well, if not, let me refresh your memory. Granted, the UN is a largely useless organization (in this author's opinion), but it does serve as an interesting stage for world leaders to make speeches and drop the occasional bombshell into them. Recall only President Kennedy's address at the General Assembly, which set the tone for a milder approach to the Soviet Union during the height of the Cold War. Ms. Kirchner had her own day, last year, when her financially troubled government was trying to re-negotiate terms of loans to privately run US investment concerns, and clearly pointed the finger at the rapacity of those concerns. If you don't recall that speech, and its clear fingerpointing at US "dollar diplomacy", here it is once again:
This year, with all the verbal fencing between Mr. Obama and Mr. Putin at the General Assembly, Ms. Kirchner's speech became lost in the shuffle. But she again dropped some bombshells, according to this article shared by Ms. B.H., a regular reader and contributor of articles:
Ignoring the hyseria about whether Mr. Obama committed treason by attempting to broker this deal, the disturbing questions nonetheless remain, as President Fernandez de Kirchner pointed out:
Kirchner revealed that Gary Samore, a former White House Coordinator for Arms Control and Weapons of Mass Destruction, visited Argentina and tried to persuade the nation to provide Iran with nuclear fuel back in 2010.
"In 2010 we were visited in Argentina by Gary Samore, at that time the White House’s top advisor in nuclear issues. He came to see us in Argentina with a mission, with an objective: under the control of IAEA, the international organization in the field of weapons control and nuclear regulation, Argentina had supplied in the year 1987, during the first democratic government, the nuclear fuel for the reactor known as “Teheran”. Gary Samore had explained to our Minister of Foreign Affairs, Héctor Timerman, that negotiations were underway for the Islamic Republic of Iran to cease with its uranium enrichment activities or to do it to a lesser extent but Iran claimed that it needed to enrich this Teheran nuclear reactor and this was hindering negotiations. They came to ask us, Argentines, to provide the Islamic Republic of Iran with nuclear fuel. Rohani was not in office yet. It was Ahmadinejad’s administration and negotiations had already started."
And, as the article also notes, Mr. Samore has apparently confirmed the attempted deal:
Following the publication of the story, Samore provided a statement to TheBlaze outlining a past proposed nuclear deal that involved nations manufacturing “fresh fuel for the Tehran Research Reactor in exchange for Iran shipping most of its stockpile of low enriched uranium to Russia.” Read his statement in full below:
“Story is true that I went to Buenos Aires in August 2009 to ask Foreign Minister Timmerman if Argentina would be willing to manufacture fresh fuel for the Tehran Research Reactor in exchange for Iran shipping most of its stockpile of low enriched uranium to Russia.
As I recall, Minister Timmerman told me that Argentina could not participate in the project because of Iran’s refusal to cooperate in the AMIA investigation. I said that I understood the political sensitivities and accepted that Argentina could not be part of the project.
We subsequently approached France, which agreed to manufacture the fuel for the Tehran Research Reactor.
In October 2009, Iran agreed to the deal: Iran would ship 1,200 kilograms of low enriched uranium hexafluoride (less than 5%) to Russia; Russia would further enrich the uranium to 19.5% and ship it to France for fabrication into research reactor fuel, which would then be shipped to Iran.
From Washington’s standpoint, the objective of the agreement was to remove most of Iran’s low enriched uranium stockpile at that time and therefore make it more difficult for Iran to produce weapons grade enriched uranium.
In the end, Supreme Leader Khameini rejected the Tehran Research Reactor agreement and the deal fell through. Iran’s rejection of the deal lead directly to President Obama deciding to increase economic and political pressure on Tehran, which produced UNSC Resolution 1929 in June 2010.”
The real question is why the President of Argentina would choose this moment to talk about this attempted deal before the whole world, in her speech to the UN General Assembly. And it requires little high octane speculation to understand why: Argentina might be signalling yet another major policy disagreement with the USA, and specifically, with Mr. Obama's nuclear deal with Tehran. The deal was sold as "better than war'(which it is), but also as an attempt to open the door with the Tehran regime, which is, let us make no mistake, brutal. That diplomatic logic now seems to have been forgotten in the wake of Mr. Putin's intervention in Syria, with Iran lending its own unique brand of assistance. By signaling the fact that the "deal" was in the works in some form of fashion long before its announcement, the Argentine President seems to be expressing yet another nation that is looking askance at Washington's increasing bumbling on the world stage. After all, if Argentina was unhappy about Iranian non-compliance with the AMIA investigation then, it can hardly be happy about the outcome now. Indeed, the implied logic of Argentina's position is evident: if a nation can ignore its commitments to the non-proliferation treaty, deny that it is seeking a nuclear weapon, and obtain a deal in the face of non-cooperation, where does that leave nuclear countries like Argentina, and what is the value of international monitoring organizations like the AMIA? Ms. Kirchner's logic here is clear: if Iran can obtain such a deal, where does that leave Argentina, which was asking for far less last year?