U.N. Nuclear Monitor Says Deal With Iran Is Near
Alan Cowell, Thomas Erdbrink and Jodi Rudoren, New York Times – May 22, 2012
In an apparent breakthrough that could play into the broader confrontation over Iran’s disputed nuclear ambitions, the leader of the United Nations nuclear monitoring arm said on Tuesday that, despite unspecified differences, he expected to sign a deal with Tehran “quite soon” on arrangements for an investigation into potential military applications of the program.
US Senate approves tougher Iran sanctions
Roberta Rampton and Susan Cornwell, Reuters – May 22, 2012
The U.S. Senate unanimously approved on Monday a package of new economic sanctions on Iran’s oil sector just days ahead of a meeting in Baghdad between major world powers and Tehran. The new package would extend sanctions to cover dealings with the National Iranian Oil Co and National Iranian Tanker Co, if they are deemed to be an agent or affiliate of the Revolutionary Guards. It aims to close a potential loophole that could have allowed Tehran to continue selling some of its oil using its own fleet.
Iran’s Economic Minister Says Sanctions are a Two-Edged Sword
Alexandra Jaffe, National Journal – May 20, 2012
On CNN’s Fareed Zakaria GPS on Sunday, Iran’s economic minister said that despite increasing sanctions, Iran will not give up its “unalienable right” to a nuclear program and warned that the upcoming EU embargo on Iranian oil will have an adverse effect globally. He said oil could reach $160 a barrel this summer.
North Korea at Work on Nuke Test Site
Foster Klug, AP – May 21, 2012
North Korea has ramped up activity at its nuclear test site, according to an analysis of recent satellite images released Tuesday, a day after the top U.S. envoy for North Korea warned Pyongyang that an atomic test would unify the world in seeking swift, tough punishment. Glyn Davies’ comments after meetings Monday in Seoul with his South Korean and Japanese counterparts reflect widespread worry that North Korea may follow a failed April 13 long-range rocket test with its third nuclear test.
Retired Gen. James Cartwright offers a fresh view on defense
Walter Pincus, Washington Post – May 21, 2012
Retired Marine Corps Gen. James Cartwright aired some fresh ideas about U.S. defense policies last week. About the same time, the House was preparing to pass next year’s Pentagon authorization bill and, in the process, illustrating Cartwright’s point that the nation isn’t downsizing correctly.