Weekly roundup

Articles and reports from the past week
“US media hyping Iranian nuclear threat”
Scott Lucas strongly criticizes a recent New York Times report claiming that Western intelligence agencies believe Iran is planning two new nuclear sites. The same edition of the Times also features an article on the possibility of an Israeli strike on Iran, and Lucus criticizes the juxtaposition as “dangerous journalism” designed to gain support for military action against Iran (Enduring America).
Glenn Greenwald criticizes Fox News coverage of an unclassified US intelligence report. The intelligence report states that Iran expanded its nuclear infrastructure in 2009 and is “keeping open the option to develop nuclear weapons…if a decision is made to do so”, but Fox claims the report concludes Iran is working toward a nuclear weapon (Salon).

“Questioning Turkey’s ability to mediate Iran issue”
The National reports that Turkish officials are becoming frustrated with Iran’s inability to offer solutions to resolve the nuclear issue (The National). Zaman suggests that, due to traditional rivalry and Turkey’s close relations with Arab states, it is not clear whether Iran trusts Turkey enough to act as a mediator (Zaman).
David Kenner writes that Turkey, despite its strong rhetoric of independence in regional issues, is more a “developing power caught between two stronger poles” and will ultimately side with its Western allies if pressed (Foreign Policy).

“US and Iran courting China ahead of sanctions vote”
The New York Times outlines recent tensions and thaws in US-China relations, including China’s move toward supporting UN sanctions against Iran (New York Times). While US President Obama spoke with Chinese President Hu Jintao for an hour to discuss ties, Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili visited Beijing to speak against sanctions and call for continued international negotiations (Wall Street Journal).

Iran nuclear scientist defects to US in CIA ‘intelligence coup’ (ABC News)
ABC News reports that Iranian nuclear scientist Shahram Amiri, who disappeared last year, defected to the US in an “intelligence coup” for the CIA. Iran had accused the US of abducting Amiri, while the US denied any involvement [previously covered here].

IAEA Chief: Iran sanctions will make life hard for agency (German Press Agency)
In an interview, IAEA chief Yukiya Amano stated that sanctions against Iran would make the efforts of nuclear inspectors more difficult in the short term. Amano added that Iran had yet to provide an adequate response regarding several outstanding issues.

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