UPDATE: Is the IAEA Director General Trying to Scuttle the Middle East WMD Free Zone Program?Posted: September 17, 2013 Filed under: Nuclear 5 Comments
I wanted to provide an update to this piece that I wrote last week and that has gotten a good bit of attention. I have just been sent an Addendum to the 2013 Middle East report, which re-inserts the language specifying the states to be included in a ME WMD FZ, back into footnote 1 of the report. See the document attached.
This is an interesting development. I know that some people have argued that leaving the language out was just an honest oversight. I don’t buy that. Anyone who has worked on legal documents knows that any minimally competent lawyer will be sure to reference the template that has been used in the past for the same document, and will in fact probably use that template when constructing the new document. So the idea that a footnote that has been part of the report template for the past eight years would have just been forgotten in the newest version of the report, evidences one of only two possible facts: either 1) the OLA lawyers who wrote the document were incompetent; or 2) the language was removed intentionally, on instruction. I think that the latter is by far the more likely.
As I said in my last post, I suspect the drafters simply hoped no one would notice the change. And now that it has been noticed, and objected to formally by a member state (the UAE from what I understand), they have had to re-insert the language.
It’s really a pity that such petty games are still being played. In parallel with bigger ones. I do not see a more effective way of stopping this, than by somebody from the civil society detecting such tricks and ringing the alarm. Thanks, Dan
Now we can have the correct footnote for another eight years of inaction, correctness being relative seeing that the footnote places Comoros, Algeria, Mauritania, Tunisia and Morocco in the Middle East.
In fact any minimally qualified lawyer would FIRST go to the “definitions” section of any legal contract, which of course defines all the terms used in the rest of the contract and as such are key to understanding the document.