|Southwest Asia News Digest
Nuclear Power, Water Desalination Discussed All Over Southwest Asia
Oct. 1 (EIRNS)In Lyndon LaRouche's Sept. 24 webcast, he discussed the NAWAPA (the North American Water and Power Alliance) "platform" as the infrastructure concept that should guide the countries of Southwest Asia and Northern Africa in their plans for nuclear power.
Over the past few weeks there has been extensive activity in Southwest Asia regarding nuclear power and water desalination. Here are some highlights:
* A Vienna conference on Sept. 28-29, "Nuclear Power: Middle East & North Africa 2010," focussed on the plans of Iran, Turkey, Jordan, Egypt, and Tunisia to build nuclear power. However, other countries attending the conference such as Yemen, Kuwait, and the U.A.E., declared that they are planning to build nuclear power plants, with special emphasis on nuclear water desalination. The organizer of the conference was a Singapore group called Synergy Conferences and Exhibitions Asia-Pacific Pte. Ltd., and the conference was sponsored by the Arab-German Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and the U.S.-based nuclear technical corporation Excel Services Corp. Vienna is the headquarters of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
* A conference held on Sept. 28-29 in Damascus, Syria, and organized by the Network of Syrian Scientists, Technicians and Inventors Abroad (NOSSTIA), in cooperation with the Middle East Water Desalination Institute and the International Desalination Association, concluded that the only solution for the water crisis and desertification in Southwest Asia is water desalination. Al-Jazeera.net quotes engineer Basim Halabi of NOSSTIA: "Water desalination is the main solution for the Arab countries, and there is no other alternative." Although there is no report on nuclear power use in this context, due to heavy presence and sponsorship of the conference by European and international organizations, there is no way that Syria, for example, could desalinate seawater without the use of nuclear power.
* A conference held in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on Sept. 12 inaugurated the "King Abdullah City for Nuclear and Renewable Power." One of the main speakers was an Arab-American, Prof. Ahmad Hassan from the New Mexico Institute for Mining and Technology, who is a member of the IAEA. Hassan, who is senior researcher at the institute and a chemical engineer, praised the Saudi decision to launch a nuclear program, referencing the massive positive applications of nuclear power and technology, especially water desalination, medical applications, but most importantly raising the scientific level and productivity of the Saudi labor force.
* Jordanian King Abdullah II on Sept. 28 received a high-level delegation from China, comprised of Trade Minister Chen Deming, the chairman of China's Export-Import Bank, the chairman of China's Industrial Bank, senior officials of the Chinese nuclear power agency, the deputy chairman of the China Development Bank, the chairman of the Chinese railway corporation, and executives from other major infrastructure corporations. The delegation had held a bilateral conference with their Jordanian counterparts on Chinese direct investments and building of nuclear power plants, water desalination, railway and dam building. Jordan is expanding its options to include China and Russia in its nuclear power sector, just in case the United States and Europe drag their feet. Jordan has some of the world's largest unexplored uranium reserves. One of the main foci of the Jordanian government is to launch the nuclear water desalination project on the Gulf of Aqaba and start the industrial mining of its massive uranium and sand-oil reserve.
* Egypt's Irrigation and Water Resources Minister Dr. Mohammed Nasreldin Allam told Egyptian press that President Hosni Mubarak has issued directives that all water supplies in the dry northern coastal regions be provided through the desalination of seawater by nuclear power and solar power. Egypt is planning to build four reactors with 1,000 megawatts each in the coming 20 years. The first will be in Dhabaa on the Mediterranean, as soon as an international bidding company is chosen, later this year.
A note on solar power investments and Desertec: Governments in North Africa are paying lip-service to solar power investments, because they need to receive the subsidies and aid for other local projects in the region. The fact that solar power is ineffective and too expensive is understood by an important layer of economic and political institutions, but if they can get it subsidized by the EU, then they believe that there is no risk in building some solar parks here and there, which would and employ some people and show Europe that they care about the "climate change" scare. This is foolish, since it puts the emphasis on the wrong area, and because it promotes the insane greenie fantasies in Europe and among their own populations. It also prohibits the development of the Biosphere, by keeping the desert brown. The Desertec swindle is a major part of this operation. Desertec's modus operandi is to get some start-up money to build solar parks in Syria, Egypt, Algeria, and Morocco. Then they print some glossy brochures to show these nice projects to the next group of suckers, to get them to put their money into further projects, and so forth.
Iranian Rep Accuses IAEA's Amano of Aiding War Propaganda
Sept. 28 (EIRNS)The director general of Iran's Atomic Energy Agency, Ali Akbar Salehi, asked whether International Atomic Energy Agency director general Yukiya Amano's provocative statements accusing Iran of violating IAEA rules were an attempt to provoke an attack on Iran. In an interview with Der Spiegel Sept. 27, Salehi also accused Amano of bias: "Amano failed a number of times with his application for this position, despite the fact that he comes from a powerful country like Japan. Many countries were concerned that he would yield to external pressure. He was only elected with a slim majority after he expressly promised his integrity. But exactly that is lacking from our point of view. Mr. Amano must be careful not to lose his legitimacy due to his partisanship for certain policies."
Asked if Iran is threatening not to cooperate with Amano, Salehi said, "Amano has simply reheated old accusations. And when we reject two inspectors, which is our right, he presents that as a lack of cooperation. I am trying to accommodate the IAEA, beyond that which is required by our written obligations. Opposition to flexible cooperation with the IAEA has, however, grown significantly in Tehran. We will not accept the new tone.... We are not threatening anyone.... We are asking ourselves: 'Is Mr. Amano interested in providing a pretext for an attack against us?... Is Amano interested in connecting his own name with war? Does he want to see the world beset by catastrophe?' "
In his Sept. 13 statement to the IAEA board of governors, Amano not only accused Iran of failure to cooperate, for objecting to the three IAEA inspectors, who allegedly falsified reports and leaked information to the press; he also demanded that Iran accept 39 other inspectors whom they had disqualified, going back to 2007.
Amano took a very weak stance on Israel's refusal to open itself up to IAEA inspections, or to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), even after the 2010 meeting on the NPT at the United Nations strongly reaffirmed support for a Middle East nuclear-free zone, and a demand that Israel sign the NPT.
Amano told the IAEA board meeting that "there continues to be a general lack of clarity among member states in the region on the substance and modalities of an agreement to establish a Middle East nuclear-weapon-free zone," and would not specifically mention Israel's refusal to sign the NPT. Instead of saying that Israel told him point blank that it would not sign NPT, Amano merely referenced an annex to another document that he had written.
Yet he strongly criticized Iran, going back to 2005, when Iran decided not to extend the additional protocol.
In sharp contrast to what he is now saying, Amano had said, in his opening statement to the NPT meeting on May 3: "I would like to recall that the IAEA General Conference has adopted resolutions in recent years on the establishment of a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East.... Last year's General Conference also adopted a resolution on Israel's nuclear capabilities. I am following up on these resolutions as requested by the General Conference."
Is the difference between Amano's May and September statements related to the mentally unfit President Barack Obama? Initially Obama said he is determined to see the end of nuclear weapons. But after meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in July, Obama made a 180-degree turn and supported Israel's "special" security needsi.e., its secret nuclear arsenalin justification for its not signing the NPT.