Iran rejects West’s proposal on nuclear curbs
Ali Akbar Dareini and Lara Jakes, AP – May 24, 2012
Iranian negotiators on Thursday rejected proposals by six world powers to curb Tehran’s nuclear program, and demanded answers to their own counteroffer meant to alleviate concerns about the Islamic Republic’s ability to build atomic weapons. The stance underscored the difficulties facing the nuclear talks as both sides stake out their terms and agendas for a second day in the Iraqi capital. Still, the negotiations did not appear in danger of collapse.
U.S., allies may drop demand that Iran completely halt uranium enrichment
Sahar Issa, McClatchy – May 23, 2012
The United States and five other major powers exchanged extensive proposals with Iran on Wednesday over that country’s nuclear program amid signs that the U.S. and its negotiating partners were dropping demands that Iran completely halt the enrichment of uranium.
Op-Ed: Undercutting Negotiations Hurts the U.S.
Lawrence Wilkerson, McClatchy – May 23, 2012
With a second round of talks with Iran taking place in Baghdad, we should take a lesson from recent history. In February 2003 the Army Chief of Staff, Gen. Eric Shinseki, testified before the U.S. Senate about challenges the military would face in invading Iraq. Unfortunately, high-ranking members of the Bush administration had already made up their minds.
China, North Korea ties hit rough weather
Alexa Olesen, AP – May 24, 2012
China’s leadership is hitting a rough patch with ally North Korea under its new leader Kim Jong Un, as Beijing finds itself wrong-footed in episodes including Pyongyang’s rocket launch and the murky detention of Chinese fishing boats.”The context of what is happening now between China and North Korea is this: Since Kim Jong Il died, the Kim Jong Un regime has been unfriendly to China,” said Shi Yinhong, an international relations expert at Renmin University in Beijing.
North Korea to boost nuclear deterrent after U.S. pressure
North Korea intensified its war of words against the United States on Tuesday, vowing to strengthen its nuclear deterrent after Washington warned Pyongyang of further sanctions if it did not abandon its atomic program.
India to go for new age Agni-VI
Hemant Kumar Rout, New Indian Express – May 23, 2012
Sources said the drawing and designing of a more advanced missile had been started. “It will be a three-stage missile and taller than the Agni-V. The design is just taking shape and other sub-systems are under development. If everything goes as per the programme, the missile will be ready by mid-2014,” said the source.
Military Will Remain Strong With Cuts, Obama Tells Cadets
Peter Baker, New York Times – May 23, 2012
President Obama vowed on Wednesday to keep the military strong even as he winds down the wars of the last decade and takes the budget knife to Pentagon spending in an age of increasing government austerity.
Nuclear weapons just don’t make sense
Walter Pincus, Washington Post – May 23, 2012
Nuclear weapons are terror weapons, and basically unusable. That’s one reason why no rational strategy, other than deterrence, has ever been developed to justify them. Events in the past 10 days make my case.