August 9, 2013
To the Editor:
In a column criticizing members of Congress who voted to ratchet up economic sanctions against Iran (“Tehran calculations,” Op-ed, Aug. 6), Farah Stockman writes, “The more Americans talk of war, the faster the Iranians build their centrifuges,” and says that “it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand why.”
Stockman has it precisely backward. Iran covertly began its nuclear program and commenced to deceive the international community about it long before the United States invaded Iraq. The United States, the European Union, and the international community instituted sanctions against Iran over its nuclearization in order to stop it, contrary to Stockman’s peculiar suggestion that Iran’s nuclear program was in response to American bellicosity.
And her broadside against “hawks who don’t believe in a deal” with Iran is notable for its disregard of the record. The United States and the international community have repeatedly sought to engage with Iran and explore a deal. Iran has repeatedly rejected these efforts, opting instead not merely to continue its march toward nuclear weapons, but to accelerate it.
Most of the world, including the Muslim world, regards Iran’s pursuit of a nuclear weapon as a profound threat, requiring immediate and serious attention. This has nothing to do with being a hawk. It has a great deal to do with confronting reality, rather than brushing it aside.
New England Region
New England Regional Director