"As long as Iran is left with the capacity to enrich uranium, the right to perform some enrichment activity, and a stockpile of LEU (low-enriched uranium) ... then Iran will have a breakout capability. It could be a breakout window as wide as many months, perhaps even a year, but Iran will have the capability to manufacture the fissile material for a nuclear weapon."
The agreement will not stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons; only a highly unlikely Iranian choice can do that. The agreement may, however, prevent a war to prevent Iran from acquiring such weapons. If Pollack is right, and he certainly is persuasive, we have two choices, war or containment. Those who prefer the former have an obligation to clearly say why its consequences would be more predictable and less dire than those in the disastrous war with Iraq.
George Will's email address is email@example.com.
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