April 14, 2015
Originally published in the New York Jewish Week
As the world’s largest kosher food certification agency, we at the Orthodox Union know a few things about inspection programs. Our “OU” logo is on nearly one million food products made in more than 90 countries, and some age-old Jewish rules about kosher supervision are relevant to the current debate over the proposed Iran nuclear deal.
For purposes of this discussion, let’s take President Obama at his word and assume a negotiated deal with Iran along the lines of the framework announced last week is the best avenue to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon. In advocating for the deal, Obama said it will provide “vigorous, unprecedented inspections and we [will] know at every point along their nuclear chain exactly what they’re doing … for 20 years … and … even if they wanted to cheat … we would have insights into their program we’ve never had before.”
Yet, when New York Times columnist Tom Friedman asked whether IAEA inspectors will be able to go anywhere in Iran anytime to ensure compliance, the president replied that “Iran could object” to an inspection and it would be left to “some sort of international mechanism” to determine whether Iran’s objection stands or the inspection goes ahead, and belatedly for certain.