Reality Check

In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

Obama vowed to prevent a nuclear Iran; Iran promised to show who's boss

By Roy Gutman

Guess who is about to win |

GENEVA — (MCT) Shortly before flying here for the most important talks yet about Iran's controversial nuclear program, Iran's foreign minister stated firmly that his country would never give up its capability to enrich uranium — even though it already has enough to break out of the nonproliferation treaty and build a nuclear weapon.

Javad Zarif's argument was that Iran's enrichment program is a reality that Iran cannot abandon.

"With all the scientists we have, we now have indigenous technology you cannot kill the program you cannot kill thousands of scientists, you cannot destroy the technology. You cannot sweep it under the rug," he told a forum in Istanbul.

The best way to build international confidence in Iran's intentions, he said, is to allow the country to enrich uranium in total transparency, while encouraging it to deploy its scientists to work openly on peaceful programs.

Those words may soon become reality. The United States and its major European partners, along with Russia and China, appear prepared to accept the Iranian position and offer some relief from harsh economic sanctions in return.

Zarif said Thursday night that diplomats will begin Friday morning drafting an initial agreement that will lead to a long-term understanding about Iran's nuclear program, and that an agreement could be reached before the talks end later in the day. He said its terms would leave everyone "very happy."

"Iran's right to enrichment is respected, and Iran continues to exercise that right," he told Christiane Amanpour on CNN. "At the same time, we address the immediate concerns" of the international community "and agree on the objectives and an endgame that we can work to towards a comprehensive solution."

For years, the United States has demanded that Iran halt all enrichment and send abroad its stockpiles of low-enriched uranium and uranium enriched to 20 percent purity — just a few steps short of the 90 percent required for a nuclear weapon. The U.S. position was that Iran had no right to enrich.

That's history, however.

A U.S. top official said in Geneva on Tuesday that the U.S. goal is to prevent the Iranian program from advancing further, not to roll it back.

Iranians "currently have an enrichment program. Whether one thinks they have a right to it or not, they have one right now," said the senior official in the delegation to the talks headed by Undersecretary of State Wendy Sherman.

"What we are trying to do in the first step is to make sure that that program that they have, and their nuclear program as it's currently constructed, does not continue to advance during a period during which we could come to a comprehensive agreement that would address all the concerns of the international community," the official said. Under terms of the briefing, the official could not be identified by name or title.

In a certain sense, Iran's position has prevailed. As Zarif put it in the Amanpour interview, the international community must "deal with the situation on the basis of realities, not on the basis of illusions."

Yet the mystery remains: If Iran is determined to use nuclear materials only for peaceful purposes, why has it built up stockpiles of uranium for which it has minimal, if any, need?

Mark Hibbs of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Berlin noted that Iran has made an enormous investment, of $4 billion to $5 billion over many years, in building its enrichment program and "has a bevy of highly qualified scientists who have developed know-how over two decades," so it would "highly unrealistic" to say Iran has no right to engage in enrichment.

Yet, they actually have no need even for the 6.6 tons of uranium enriched to 5 percent purity, he said. The "narrative calls for Iran to build a fleet of nuclear reactors," said Hibbs. "The trouble with the narrative from a real world point of view is that no vendor in the world will supply a nuclear power plant" under the current international sanctions.


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But the second reason the large uranium stockpile makes little sense is that to be used as fuel for a reactor, it has to be fabricated into fuel rods. "But Iran has neglected the development of fuel fabrication infrastructure and the know-how to produce the fuel for the reactor," he said.

Iran has one nuclear reactor, at Bushehr, but Russia built that and is supplying the fuel.

As for the 440 pounds of uranium enriched to 20 percent purity, which Iran says it needs for special reactors, Hibbs said that would be useful at best for use in a research reactor to produce medical isotopes. Even then, he said, such reactors primarily use uranium oxide fuel, which is not enriched.

So what is the explanation for Iran's production of enriched uranium?

Dina Esfendari, an Iran expert with the International Institute for Strategic Studies, a London-based think tank, says Iran may in fact have no real reason for building such a stockpile. "I would argue they're not doing it for a purpose, but they are more or less plodding along," she told McClatchy.

"They've painted themselves in a corner and can't stop the program," she said. "They wouldn't be able to save face in Iran. So it's not an option anymore."

To turn around and in 24 hours to declare enrichment unnecessary would mean a loss of face, she said.

And that may be at the heart of the conundrum of how to bring Iran into conformity with its own declared goals.

There's a similar conundrum with regard to the U.S. and international response, which has been to impose crippling economic sanctions on Iran that will be very difficult to lift even if Iran does uphold its part of the interim understanding that Zarif says can be completed this week,

"There's no question that the sanctions regime imposed on Iran has brought Iran to the table," said Hibbs. "Its economy and society are hurting badly because of sanctions." At the same time, "the sanctions have not persuaded Iran to shift the direction of its nuclear program."

Zarif made the same point in his interview with Amanpour. He said the U.S. and international policy of putting pressures on Iran have "produced no result." In the course of ever-tougher economic sanctions, "instead of 160 centrifuges" to enrich uranium eight years ago, "today we have 19,000 centrifuges."

He called it a "failed policy that needs to be changed." He added: "Tomorrow we have a chance to change that policy."

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© 2013, McClatchy Washington Bureau Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.