Crossfire War – German FM Fears Collapse of Group 5 Plus 1 Negotiations – Iran

Crossfire War – TEHRAN WATCH – Eurasia Theatre: Tehran – Beijing/Paris – London – Washington – Moscow – Berlin; German FM Fears Collapse of Group 5 Plus 1 Negotiations with Tehran – Confrontation in Berlin Next Thursday

Night Watch: BERLIN – “Steinmeier fears that the refusal by Moscow and Beijing to support immediate sanctions against Iran could lead to a breakdown of the Group 5 Plus 1. We are trying to take out the pressure.” That was a quote of a confidante of German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier speaking through the website of Der Spiegel magazine. He was referring to the pressure being applied by the United States on trying to force the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council: France-U.S.-UK-China-Russia, plus Germany, on finally taking serious economic measures against Iran in order to force them to end their nuclear weapons program. But as established foreign affairs analysts have been admitting all along, Moscow and Beijing would never support those measures since they have such substantial economic contacts with Tehran. And in the case of Beijing, they want Tehran and its foreign policy to have a lot of military successes to weaken three of China’s rivals, the West – Russia – India. [IRNA]

Subverting Steinmeier’s efforts are also worried concerns among Germany’s business community. The German DIHK Chamber of Industry and Commerce stated that if sanctions were imposed Germany would lose 10,000 jobs. In addition to that 50 German firms have branch offices in Iran which would have to close and 12,000 German firms have trade representatives in Iran that would have to leave. They acknowledge that Iran could easily replace the buiness they lose with the West-Russia by increasing their contacts with East Asia. A spokesman said they want a “political” solution rather than “economic”. That is completely unrealistic. Iran is not about to come to a polictical agreement that will end its nuclear weapons program. That would undermine completely their leadership of the Islamic world. Recently reported Tehran’s own economic study which proved that the Security Council nations, plus Germany, could not afford economic sanctions. This is why Tehran knows that they are negotiating from a position of strength and that they are a government that has always thrived on crises. [IRNA]

These disturbing issues will come to a head next Thursday as the Group of 5 Plus 1 meet in Berlin. With their conflicting, divisive positions they have no chance of applying serious measures against Iran. Steinmeier may already realize that with no genuine cooperation Tehran’s foreign policy and military timetable will proceed uninterrupted. He may also know that since Iran’s nuclear program has been operating for 20 years then Iran probably already has the bomb, the only question is how many, especially in terms of how many of their ballistic missiles have nuclear warheads.

We will have some idea before this year is over. Next on Tehran’s timetable is the, expanded round of fighting against Israel which will include Syria and some Iranian units. Supporting Pakistan in its next major war with India is another foreign policy priority. That will start this month with the end of the monsoon. And before this year is over Tehran may decide to activate its security agreement it signed with Belgrade in January. That will direct the European Union’s attention much closer to home.

Steinmeier may realize that most international affairs analysts go off when they conclude that the problem with Iran’s nuclear weapons program won’t have to be militarily confronted until several years from now. As stated earlier it has existed for two decades. There is no luxury of time anymore, which is why my own analysis has such a sense of immediacy and urgency.

Willard Payne is an international affairs analyst who specializes in International Relations. A graduate of Western Illinois University with a concentration in East-West Trade and East-West Industrial Cooperation, he has been providing incisive analysis to NewsBlaze. He is the author of Imagery: The Day Before.