From The Washington Post , 14 2013:
- freeze its higher-level enrichment of uranium and
- accept more inspections
But the Obama administration should not necessarily be prepared to accept an Iranian “yes” for an answer, even if it is unqualified. That is because Iran’s continued development of its nuclear infrastructure during the course of this year has torn some big holes in what was intended to be a temporary safety net.
Meanwhile, a new reactor based on heavy-water technology, in Arak, is due for completion next year and would allow Iran to produce plutonium that could be used in bombs.
Any accord with Iran, even an interim arrangement, must take these new facts into account. No sanctions relief should be granted unless Iran takes steps that decisively push back its potential time frame for producing the core of a nuclear warhead. That means that the advanced centrifuges and the Arak reactor must now be part of any deal.
Even such a broadened interim arrangement would draw strong objections from Israel, which says that no sanctions should be eased unless Iran gives up all uranium enrichment. Israeli officials argue that even a slight easing of sanctions would cause the system to quickly crumble, as Russia, China, Turkey, India and other nations that have only reluctantly honored the sanctions rush to resume normal trade. Iran might then win sufficient relief to succor its economy while retaining a robust nuclear capacity.
All the difficulties with a preliminary accord might be addressed if it were folded into a larger framework that spells out how much of its nuclear program Iran is prepared to give up in exchange for full sanctions relief. That, in turn, invites the ultimate test of the new government: Is it willing to definitely abandon its drive for a nuclear weapon or only temporize?