Iran might briefly accumulate more low-enriched uranium under new limits, as it still cannot change the material to a less bomb-suitable form, Reuters reports.
Envoys and analysts said there is no immediate cause for alarm over a possible short-term boost in the stocks under Iran’s accord with the five permanent U.N. Security Council member nations and Germany.
One diplomat, though, predicted careful global scrutiny of Iran’s preparations to turn its gaseous uranium into solid oxide.
A site for carrying out that task was scheduled to enter trials last month, and then to launch “immediately after” vetting was complete, according to an International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards assessment from November. However, the nation appears to have fallen behind in preparing the so-called Enriched UO2 Powder Plant, according to Reuters.
The facility would allow Iran to limit its low-enriched reserves by processing the material into oxide powder, which would be less suited for conversion into bomb-grade, highly enriched uranium.
Washington says Iran has pledged to possess no more low-enriched uranium gas at the end of the pact’s six-month duration than the nation held this week, when the interim nuclear agreement took effect. The deal is intended to carve out space for negotiators to address suspicions that Iran is pursuing a nuclear-arms capability under the guise of a peaceful atomic program.
A high-level Obama administration official said the nation would hold less than 16,865 pounds in July, when the deal is slated to expire. Postponing the oxide plant’s activation means the site would have to operate faster than planned, if Tehran is to fall in line with the stockpile restriction after six months. Iran is believed to produce roughly 550 pounds of low-enriched uranium each month, so it would have to process at least that amount into powder monthly to stay within limits.
Meanwhile, energy-industry observers say the November nuclear deal appears to have slightly boosted Iran’s petroleum sales, Reuters reported separately. The news agency valued the increase at roughly $150 million each month, and linked the change to growing confidence among oil purchasers in anticipation of the atomic accord.
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Before we get to the specifics of this exposé about escorts working the Iowa and New Hampshire primary crowds, let’s get three things out of the way: 1.) It’s from Cosmopolitan; 2.) most of the women quoted use fake (if colorful) names; and 3.) again, it’s from Cosmopolitan. That said, here’s what we learned:
- Business was booming: one escort who says she typically gets two inquiries a weekend got 15 requests in the pre-primary weekend.
- Their primary season clientele is a bit older than normal—”40s through mid-60s, compared with mostly twentysomething regulars” and “they’ve clearly done this before.”
- They seemed more nervous than other clients, because “the stakes are higher when you’re working for a possible future president” but “all practiced impeccable manners.”
- One escort “typically enjoy[s] the company of Democrats more, just because I feel like our views line up a lot more.”
No matter where you stand on mandating companies to include a backdoor in encryption technologies, it doesn’t make sense to allow that decision to be made on a state level. “The problem with state-level legislation of this nature is that it manages to be both wildly impractical and entirely unenforceable,” writes Brian Barrett at Wired. There is a solution to this problem. “California Congressman Ted Lieu has introduced the ‘Ensuring National Constitutional Rights for Your Private Telecommunications Act of 2016,’ which we’ll call ENCRYPT. It’s a short, straightforward bill with a simple aim: to preempt states from attempting to implement their own anti-encryption policies at a state level.”
Much has been made of David Brooks’s recent New York Times column, in which confesses to missing already the civility and humanity of Barack Obama, compared to who might take his place. In NewYorker.com, Jeffrey Frank reminds us how critical such attributes are to foreign policy. “It’s hard to imagine Kennedy so casually referring to the leader of Russia as a gangster or a thug. For that matter, it’s hard to imagine any president comparing the Russian leader to Hitler [as] Hillary Clinton did at a private fund-raiser. … Kennedy, who always worried that miscalculation could lead to war, paid close attention to the language of diplomacy.”
The New Covenant. The Third Way. The Democratic Leadership Council style. Call it what you will, but whatever centrist triangulation Bill Clinton embraced in 1992, Hillary Clinton wants no part of it in 2016. Writing for Bloomberg, Sasha Issenberg and Margaret Talev explore how Hillary’s campaign has “diverged pointedly” from what made Bill so successful: “For Hillary to survive, Clintonism had to die.” Bill’s positions in 1992—from capital punishment to free trade—“represented a carefully calibrated diversion from the liberal orthodoxy of the previous decade.” But in New Hampshire, Hillary “worked to juggle nostalgia for past Clinton primary campaigns in the state with the fact that the Bill of 1992 or the Hillary of 2008 would likely be a marginal figure within today’s Democratic politics.”
At first, “it was pleasant” to see Trevor Noah “smiling away and deeply dimpling in the Stewart seat, the seat that had lately grown gray hairs,” writes The Atlantic‘s James Parker in assessing the new host of the once-indispensable Daily Show. But where Jon Stewart was a heavyweight, Noah is “a very able lightweight, [who] needs time too. But he won’t get any. As a culture, we’re not about to nurture this talent, to give it room to grow. Our patience was exhausted long ago, by some other guy. We’re going to pass judgment and move on. There’s a reason Simon Cowell is so rich. Impress us today or get thee hence. So it comes to this: It’s now or never, Trevor.”