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Obama Policy Retains Right to Nuke Iran

By Jason Ditz | April 05, 2010

Much has been made in the past few weeks of the Obama Administration’s plan to issue a new nuclear weapons doctrine, replacing the Bush Doctrine that included the possibility of using nuclear weapons against non-nuclear states.

But while the Obama Administration formally renouncing that option on the surface and claiming its arsenal is for “deterrence” only, it appears that the doctrine will include an enormous loophole that will mean the nominal policy shift will ultimately mean very little.

The loophole will insist that the only non-nuclear states free of preemptive nuking are those which are “in compliance with their nonproliferation obligations.” This would, at least from the administration’s perspective, leave open the possibility of attacking Iran with nuclear weapons.

Iran would certainly argue that they are in compliance, of course, but exactly what these obligations are is never altogether clear to the public (the IAEA safeguards agreements are not made public) and President Obama has made clear that he believes Iran is not.

At the end of the day this policy is only a guideline anyhow, and if the president decided to nuke Iran the after the fact argument of if they were really non-compliant will likely be very much beside the point. But while the president still claims to have a goal of a nuclear-free world, the manufacture of such a deliberate loophole for a nuclear first strike is beyond troubling.

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April 6, 2010 - Posted by | "Hope and Change", Militarism

3 Comments »

  1. Sorry, but I fail to see the point of publishing this posture review.

    Nobody (including US citizens) would believe that the government would stick by terms of this declared policy if g-d forbid, under attack, when after 911 there was little written on paper, be it the constitution, Geneva Convention, or Magna Carta, that was not shredded.

    As for Iran, it seems fairly clear that no western provocation will be deemed too much in order to get Iran to test a weapon. Iran, of course, will never test a weapon. http://www.bibijon.org/iranimage/#Nuclear

    So, if anyone can enlighten me as to the utility of publishing this review, I say thanks in advance.

    Comment by BiBiJon | April 6, 2010 | Reply

  2. Maybe this was true before, but the new policy lets the good ol’ USA attack a small allied nation that’s located on the eastern end of the Mediterranean, north of Egypt & south of Syria, since that nation has about 200 nuclear warheads but hasn’t signed on to any non-proliferation agreements

    Comment by horacemanoor | April 6, 2010 | Reply

    • horacemanoor, they didn’t want to accidentally entangle their `bestest friend`, hence the careful wording,` in compliance with their non proliferation obligations`, but this has no applicability to them at all, since, as you too say, they haven’t signed any NP agreements.

      There is no requirement that they now sign on, so no obligations.

      Comment by michael mazur | April 7, 2010 | Reply


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