|Senator Menendez, New Jersey Democrat, leads effort to toughen US negotiations with Iran|
Senators Urge Obama to Cut Off Iran Negotiations -Josh Rogin
Nearly half the Senate told President Barack Obama that unless Iran gives three specific concessions at talks with world powers in Moscow, he should abandon the ongoing negotiations over the country's nuclear program.
"It is past time for the Iranians to take the concrete steps that would reassure the world that their nuclear program is, as they claim, exclusively peaceful," wrote 44 senators in a bipartisan letter organized by Sens. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Roy Blunt (R-MO). "Absent these steps, we must conclude that Tehran is using the talks as a cover to buy time as it continues to advance toward nuclear weapons capability."
The senators wrote that the "absolute minimum" Iran must do immediately to justify further talks is to shut down the Fordo uranium enrichment facility near Qom, freeze all uranium enrichment above 5 percent, and ship all uranium enriched above 5 percent out of the country.
(The Cable, Foreign Policy)
Iran Negotiates a Nuclear Bomb -Ray Takeyh
Given that he seems disinclined to adjust his objective of nuclear empowerment, Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, is confident of his strategy: In the past decade he has managed to cross successive Western “red lines.” Through similar persistence and patience, he perceives that he can once more obtain the deal that he wants — a deal that is a prelude to the bomb.
Nuke Talks Fail, Obama Urged Toward Military Option -Natasha Mozgovaya
American officials and experts urged U.S. President Barack Obama to take a tougher stance on the Islamic Republic's nuclear program, with some advising the administration to provide Israel with the arms needed for an attack on Iran's nuclear facilities.
[One] suggestion was "augmenting Israeli offensive and defensive capabilities, including the sale to Israel of three KC-135 aerial refueling tankers and 200 GBU-31 bunker-busting munitions needed in whatever missile defense systems are needed."
Vice Prime Minister Shaul Mofaz, who is currently on visit to Washington, said that if there will be no other resort with Iran but [a] military strike, U.S. and other Western powers should lead it.