Today's News, Tomorrow's Lesson - November 26, 2013

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Iran has reached an agreement with the West that will see the Middle
East nation halt some of its uranium enrichment program and neutralize
the country’s stockpile of uranium that is near nuclear bomb capability.

Representatives from Iran have also agreed to new transparency
measures, which include allowing inspectors from the International
Atomic Energy Agency to inspect their nuclear facilities on a daily
basis. In return, the US and other countries will lift economic
sanctions that have all but destroyed Iran’s economy; the sanctions
have made it hard for Iranians to buy basic necessities and do business
on the global market.

Although the Obama administration is hailing the deal as a major
breakthrough, Secretary of State John Kerry acknowledged that their
work was far from over.

“The next phase, let me be clear, will be even more difficult, and
we need to be honest about it,” he said. “But it will also be even more

The administration is also hoping Iran’s concessions will encourage
lawmakers to halt attempts at pushing new economic sanctions on Iran.

Iranian officials also welcomed the deal, with President Hassan
Rouhani emphasizing the right of his country to enrich uranium for
peaceful purposes.

“Let anyone make his own reading, but this right is clearly stated
in the text of the agreement that Iran can continue its enrichment, and
I announce to our people that our enrichment activities will continue
as before,” he said.

Tensions between Iran and Western countries and their allies have
lessened since President Rouhani, a moderate, took over from his
predecessor Mahmoud Ahmadinejad earlier this year.

This video describes the lead up to negotiations, the goals of
international diplomats and opposition from Israeli Prime Minister
Benjamin Netanyahu, who said a deal would be "a mistake of historic


Who: Iran and leaders around the world came to the
negotiation table to hopefully come to an agreement about the
discontinuation of Iran’s nuclear program.

What: Meetings to address the Iranian nuclear
program and to come to a resolution about ending their attempts to
create nuclear weapons.

Where: The meeting took place in Geneva,
Switzerland. Iran is located in the Middle East.

When: The talks taking place over the last month
have been a historic breakthrough as the U.S. and Iran have not engaged
in conversation in 30 years.

Why: The Iranian government’s nuclear program has
troubled leaders around the world and harsh economic sanctions have
been imposed as a means to stop them. At present Israel, a close ally
of the US, is the only country in the Middle East who has nuclear
weapons and the US would like to keep it that way at all costs.

How: Although the US relationship with Iran has
been cool for the last few decades, the new president of Iran, Hassan
Rouhani, has reached out and there is hope that a positive change could
transform the relationship.


1. Where is Iran? What do you know about the country’s government,
people, culture, history and religion?

2. What is the relationship between Iran and the United States? Why has
the US enforced sanctions on Iran?

3. What have the recent talks between Iran and the world leaders been

4. What are economic sanctions and how are they implemented?

5. What is the P5 +1?

  • The term refers to the P5 or five permanent members of the UN
    Security Council, namely United States, Russia, China, United Kingdom,
    and France, plus Germany.(Source: Wikipedia)