Published on Friday, June 1, 2007 by the BBC
Nuclear Watchdog's Attack Warning
by Rob Broomby
The head of the UN's nuclear watchdog has given one of his sternest warnings
against using military action to halt Iran's uranium enrichment program.

Dr Mohamed ElBaradei, head of the International Atomic Energy Agency,
described those wanting to bomb Iranian nuclear facilities as "new crazies".

After Iraq, Dr ElBaradei said he did not want to see "another war".

He made his comments in an interview for a BBC Radio 4 documentary to be
broadcast at 2000BST on Friday.

This is not the first time that Dr ElBaradei has spoken out against the
possibility of using force against Iran, but it is perhaps his strongest
warning to date.

Tehran is still refusing to bow to demands from the UN Security Council to
halt its uranium enrichment program, which the United States fears would
give it access to material for a bomb.

Dr ElBaradei said a nuclear-armed Iran would be terrible but the jury was
still out as to whether the country even wanted nuclear weapons.

But he said you could not "bomb knowledge", and he was scathing towards
those who still favored air strikes after the experience of intervention in
Iraq.

"I wake every morning and see 100 Iraqis innocent civilians are dying," he
said. "I have no brief other than to make sure we don't go into another war
or that we go crazy into killing each other. You do not want to give
additional argument to new crazies who say 'let's go and bomb Iran.'"

Asked who the "new crazies" were he replied: "Those who have extreme views
and say the only solution is to impose your will by force."

Dr ElBaradei said he was not referring to President George Bush but his
remarks are likely to be interpreted as a swipe at those neo-conservatives
in the US who still favor military action.

In the light of Iran's secretive dealings with black market nuclear
suppliers he said it owed his agency a confession over its once clandestine
activities.

In his latest report, last week, he said Iran continued to enrich uranium
and information on its activities was now "deteriorating."

Dr ElBaradei angered the US, UK, France and Germany backing the idea that
Iran should be allowed limited uranium enrichment under strict supervision.

His comments last week sparked immediate complaints from the countries.

Inside the IAEA - A year with the nuclear detectives will be broadcast BBC
Radio 4, 2000 BST 31 May and 7 June 2000 BST.

BBC MMVII