The diverse trajectories of the "Arab spring", from Syria's suppression of dissent to Libya's civil war, continue to dominate the attention of analysts and policymakers concerned with the middle east. In these circumstances, the evolving relationship between Iran and its most populous Arab neighbour, Iraq, is receiving less attention than the region's current conflicts--though its long-term impact may be equally great. Most international worry over Iran continues to relate to Tehran's civil-nuclear programme and its possible use in a covert weapon-building project. There are reports that Iran is planning to treble its production of uranium enriched to a 20% level (see Simon Morgan, "World powers concerned over Iran nuclear programme", AFP, 9 June 2011). This is substantially higher than the enrichment level required for power-reactors, though it is also appropriate for a reactor that can produce radio-isotopes for medical, industrial or agricultural purposes. In a familiar pattern, the development is unsettling to western states without itself proving that Iran is working to manufacture nuclear weapons.