Wednesday, August 18

Looking At Iran II

In a previous post I listed a few responses South Africa can or will likely have to Irans attempt to go Nuclear. Little did I suspect that selling Uranium to Iran and being open about it is going to be the way we go. (Hattip Steve)

Ok, Im calling it. SA Foreign Policy is completely at odds with our national policies. Supporting Mugabe, making excuses for Sudan, holding hands with Fidel Castro. The list goes on. Now selling nuclear material to Iran? It is completely crazy. Nuts. Stupid. Insane. Demented. Its crazier than our AIDS policy has been in recent years. Do we need the money? Hell no. This is purely political.

If Iran gets into a nuclear spat with the US does the ANC really think we can stand aside as a neutral party if we are the guys selling them the uranium they need to make their bombs?

Goddam moonbats!

Update: Well, my first reaction was perhaps a bit severe. (Ok, call it a rant). Seems like SA is only supplying unenriched uranium, which is pretty common (relatively) in return for cheaper oil. Via little green footballs comment section, which is always good if you can avoid the trolls:

As for the uranium, that appears to be yet another SA foreign policy screw-up, but I think some of you are overstating it. The sale is of non-enriched uranium, something Iran can get from almost anywhere and is not forbidden under any IAEA regs from acquiring any, unlike Iraq was. What's more, the story about SA supplying Iraq was a lot of baloney. Some Brit paper saw a report that said Iraq was trying to get yellowcake (uranium ore) from Africa, and immediately thought about SA's nuke program and said: "Oh, oh, I know! It must be SA!" Idiocy. So SA, so far as I know, is not breaking any laws in this sale, though it's being pretty damn stupid. Of course, in return SA gets cheaper oil, that's what this whole "Memorandum of Undestanding" is about. We give you uranium, you give us oil. There is no transfer of nuke technology whatsoever. Besides, all the parts for SA's nuke weapon program were destroyed.
What's more, SA is an active participant on the US side in the War on Terror in the intelligence and policing fields, and though its often silly foreign policy does piss the US off, the two countries have good relations, including a defence co-operation committee, and numerous military exercises have been held between the two nations. Hell, USN ships going to and coming back from Iraq have refuelled and resupplied in SA without any problems, SA was one of the few African countries George W. Bush has visited, and the US military is actively funding the creation and supply of an additional 2000 South African troops for use in peacekeeping deployments.
In fact, it's been theorised at the moment that SA's closer to the US in private than it is in public, for a number of reasons. One, SA cannot show too much public support for the US or it will lose its influence in the African Union and Non-Aligned Movement, and thus allow more radical countries (such as Libya) to gain control, as well as the fact that losing control of the AU means Mbeki loses his dream of an African Renaissance. Yet there is a lot of evidence that the US and SA are indeed working together (I gave some of it above), but doing so quietly. While this is a very thin line for Mbeki to trod if true, and risky, it means SA benefits from decent relations with the US but is able to retain influence amongst countries which dislike the US and thus move organisations like the AU on the correct path.
So come on some of you, at least do a little research before responding. Some of you are equating SA with NK, which is just stupid.

Still, why bother? Is it worth it?

Update: Guess not. A spokesman for Minister Lekota is denying all;

A Spokesman for the South African MOD, Sam Mkhwnazi, confirmed that South Africa will not assist Iran's nuclear development and will not sell any uranium to the Islamic Republic, the South African Defense Ministry told The Jerusalem Post Wednesday.

A spokesman for the South African MOD, Sam Mkhwnazi, confirmed statements made earlier in the day by South Africa's Ambassador to Israel Maj.-Gen Fumanekile (Fumie) Gqiba, who told Army Radio that SA will not aid Iran's nuclear program, and will not support any country wishing to develop nuclear weapons.

My faith in the world is restored and sanity returns (well, whats left of it anyway).


Blogger Vaz said...

I think our reactions are not serve because given who are running in that country.

If a country say, Japan wants lots of element U, then we can give Japan's benefit of doubt. But, can we give Iran the same benefit of doubt?

Besides, Iran is sitting on vast oil/gas reserves which they can use to produce electricity on cheap. Nuclear electricity is expensive in long run. Why need to go nuclear and playing a footsie game with IKEA?

Iran can convert unenriched Uranium into enriched version. Uranium is the last and very difficult missing link to make nukes.

Impi's comment does put in perspective. But I agree with you that dept of forgein affairs are sheer moonbattery! Maybe do a list of moonbat actions they committed latley? Also, I wonder who is really ruuning the show, Dr Zuma or Pahad?

18 August 2004 at 14:39  
Blogger Vaz said...

I meant UN Nuclear Inspection Group not IKEA the furniture chain stores! Doh!

18 August 2004 at 14:46  
Blogger Richard said...

Dont know, but I do know Zuma and Pahad are right up there on my list of 'people I would happily never hear from again'. Lekota on the the othar hand is one of the guys I respect. Wonder if he's enjoying his stay in Tehran?

18 August 2004 at 15:31  
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We all know the effects (and after-effects) of beer. But lifting a glass of cool liquid to your mouth on a scorching hot day, have you ever stopped to consider the processes and ingredients involved in making it? Well maybe not but here is the answer anyway!

Simply, beer is a fermented combination of water, barley, yeast and hops. The major variation in any beer is the type of yeast used in the fermentation process.

Let's look at the properties of this beverage.
Water is the main ingredient of beer. In the past, the purity of the water influenced the final result and was specific to the region of the earth from which it came. Today, water is filtered of these impurities, although pure water supplies are still ideally preferred by elite brewers.

Barley malt is an extremely important ingredient in beer as it is the main source of fermentable sugar. Many new breweries use barley malt extract, in either syrup or powder form, as this form ferments much quicker. It also contains many minerals and vitamins that help the yeast to grow.

Without yeast, beer would not exist. Yeast is a unique single cell organism that eats sugar and expels alcohol and carbon dioxide, two of the more recognizable ingredients of beer. Yeast comes in several variations, of which there are two major categories that determine the type of beer produced; Ale yeast and Lager yeast. If yeast alone were used the beer would be extremely sweet and therefore another ingredient needs to be added to reach the final product.

Hops are the flowers of the hop plant, a climbing vine plant that grows well in many differing climates. Hops contain acids which add bitterness to beer. Adding bitterness to beer helps to balance the sweetness, as well as acting as a natural preservative. Add more hops to the mixture and you will get a more bitter taste. This kind of beer is extremely popular in Britian and is simply referred to as "Bitter" (the original names are always the best!).

Variations of these ingredients create different tasting beers as well as having an affect on the alcoholic content.
When making your own beer many good resources are available which provide home brewing kits. It is important to read the ingredients of the packets in order to ascertain which has the best mixture according to your needs. One quick tip which many home brewers fail to adhere to is this: "Use fresh still water"!

Many have often sought information on how to make beer and the basic homebrewing equipment is not very expensive you can get what you need, for as little as $100.
In order to start making beer, you will need the following: A brewpot, Primary fermenter, Airlock and stopper, Bottling bucket, Bottles, Bottle brush, Bottle capper, and a thermometer.
In addition you can even use items from your kitchen to aid in the beer making. A breakdown of all the equipment is as follows: Brewpot A brewpot is made of stainless steel or enamel-coated metal which has at least 15 litre capacity, but it's no good if it's made of aluminum or if it's a chipped enamelized pot, (these will make the beer taste funny). The brew pot is used to boil the ingredients thus begins the first stage of beer making.

Primary fermenter

The primary fermenter is where the beer begins to ferment and become that fabulous stuff that makes you so funny and charming. The primary fermenter must have a minimum capacity of 26 litres and an air tight seal it must also accommodate the airlock and rubber stopper. Make sure the one you buy is made of food-grade plastic, as it wont allow the bad stuff in or let the good stuff out.

Airlock and stopper

The airlock is a handy gadget which allows carbon dioxide to escape from your primary fermenter during fermentation, it is this process that keeps it from exploding, but it doesn't allow any of the bad air from outside to enter. It fits into a rubber stopper, and is placed into the top of your primary fermenter. The stoppers are numbered according to size, so make sure you use the correct stopper for the correct hole

Plastic hose

This is a food grade plastic hose which measures approximately 5 feet in length. It is needed to transfer the beer from system to system, and it is imperitive that it is kept clean and free from damage or clogs

Bottling bucket

This is a large, food-grade plastic bucket with a tap for drawing water at the bottom, it needs to be as big as your primary fermenter, because you need the capacity to pour all the liquid from your primary fermenter into a bottling bucket prior to bottling up.


After fermentation, you place the beer in bottles for secondary fermentation and storage. You need enough bottles to hold all the beer you're going to make, the best kind of bottles are solid glass ones with smooth tops (not the twist-off kind) that will accept a cap from a bottle capper. You can use plastic ones with screw-on lids, but they arent as good for fermentation and dont look as well.

Whether you use glass or plastic bottles, make sure they are dark-colored. Light damages beer, i would recommend green or brown bottles.

Bottle brush

This is a thin, curvy brush which is used to clean bottles because of the the shape of the brush it makes it very affective at getting the bottle spotless. We haven't even gotten into how clean everything has to be, but we will, and the bottle brush is a specialized bit of cleaning equipment that you will require in order to maintain your bottle kit.

Bottle capper

If you take buy glass bottles, you will need some sort of bottle capper and caps, of course, and you can buy them from any brewing supplies store. The best sort of bottle capper is one which can be affixed to a surface and worked with one hand while you hold the bottle with the other.


This is a thermometer which can be stuck to the side of your fermenter, they are just thin strips of plastic which are self adhesive, and can be found in any brewing supplies store, or from a pet shop or aquarium. Not everything costs money though even some household equipment can be used.

Household items

In addition to the above specialized equipment, you will need the following household items:
* Small bowl
* Saucepan
* Rubber spatula
* Oven mitts/pot handlers
* Big mixing spoon (stainless steel or plastic)
So there you have the ingredients and the method to make your home brew, all you need now is to get yourself a beer making kit and your on the way to beer heaven.
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