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Making the Right Call: How the World Can Limit Iran’s Nuclear Program

Authors: Charles D. Ferguson, Adjunct Senior Fellow for Science and Technology, and Ray Takeyh, Hasib J. Sabbagh Senior Fellow for Middle East Studies
March 2006
Arms Control Today


“After the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on Feb. 4 voted to report Iran to the UN Security Council because of concerns over its nuclear program, the rituals of diplomacy persist. The international community sees the Security Council move as ratcheting up pressure in order to deter Iran from moving closer to potential weapons capability. Yet, the Islamic Republic of Iran is seemingly determined to acquire a sophisticated nuclear infrastructure that will avail it a weapons option at some point in the near future. Whether Iran will actually cross the threshold and assemble nuclear bombs remains debatable, but the notion that Tehran will be deterred from its contemplated course through invocations of threats and perfunctory sanctions seems far-fetched, and military action would likely only prove counterproductive.”

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