Nuclear Power and Iran

Here’s the thing, Iran,

I can totally respect your desire for a predominantly nuclear energy based society despite sitting on a black goldmine of a landscape. It is difficult to not use that oil directly and reap the benefits of such a stable fuel source, it usually makes nations powerful in the region. But clever you, using nuclear power, get a continuous flow of energy for your developing cities, a variety of new isotopes for your research and medical divisions, and all of that precious oil can now be exported to less developed societies. With planning, you could be the model nuclear economy of the world and through a handful of state-run reactors, banish the need to ever draw a drop of oil out of the ground again. By purchasing a few million electric cars from Detroit and plugging them all into these reactors, you could eliminate your ghastly consumption of gasoline, and end the need for the expensive subsidies you provide. It might still be a tender subject, but it was Shah who said in 1974, “Petroleum is a noble material, much too valuable to burn.”

It turns out he was right, wasn’t he? Petroleum products form the best precursors for an increasingly chemical lifestyle. Everyday, scientists around the world are finding new ways to bend, flex, and twist hydrocarbons into new medicines, plastics, and products. Why do we still put them into our car engines? Combustion engine technology was invented by a visionary, short-sighted society and we need to start facing facts that oil is becoming too precious to burn anymore. That was the goal within sight of the Shah. Twenty-two nuclear power plants were planned to be constructed by American and European firms, with the nuclear powers providing the nuclear fuel. You even managed to convince President Ford to give you a reprocessing plant for your nuclear fuels, giving you everything you needed to live a peaceful nuclear lifestyle.

But then some scary things started happening. In the 1979 revolution, the King, who was very open and trusting of western powers, was removed from power and replaced with an Islamic regime less trusting and open. In fact, in recent years they have been associating America and it’s allies as demonic, corrupting influences. Ever since then, we halted all construction on nuclear power plants, despite having been paid in full, and used our influence to prevent any other nations from helping you get any further. Although Russia did give you the most impressive arsenal of ballistic missiles in the region and China gave you the construction plans for a nuclear fuel enrichment plant, neither of which did much to assuage our fears. Our biggest concern was that you would try to get a nuclear weapon to counter India or Israel, and, ya know… use it.

Time drags on decade after decade, and nuclear information is a genie that doesn’t go back into it bottle. India and Pakistan hate each other, and they both have nukes. America hated Russia for a long time, both of us had nukes and fought a series of proxy wars. Israel most likely has nukes and is surrounded by a dozen nations that hate its existence, including you, and yet it still doesn’t resort to nukes. The point is, an important prerequisite for having a nuclear weapon is the knowledge that it should never be used. America destroyed two cities in lieu of another amphibious invasion of Japan, and it doesn’t feel good being the only nation to use it on something other than a barren wasteland. The largest nuke ever detonated, the Soviet’s goliath ‘Tsar Bomba’, released as much energy as a fourth of all explosives used in WWII, including those two nukes. That would instantly create a humanitarian crisis on a scale that would require international relief efforts. Nuclear bombs are the crown jewel of a mindset humanity is trying its hardest to outgrow. Therefore, your current foreign policies must change; they drip of malice towards others.

Frankly, Iran, you are a cool customer. The difference between a nuclear bomb and nuclear powered street lights are intention, and you won’t say that you won’t build a bomb. It would just be nice if we could put our cultural hostilities aside, help each other move towards a more sustainable existence on this planet, and champion human rights all around the world for Muslims, Christians, and everyone else, too. It would also go a long way if you would start respecting the rights of women, homosexuals, and all minorities that live within your borders. How can we trust a stone-age people with destructive, first-world technology?