Western Strike on Iranian Nuclear Sites More Likely

Earlier this week, The New York Times reported that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) possesses evidence that the Iranians worked on nuclear triggering technology.

This technology has only one purpose: to set off a nuclear weapon.

More importantly, the inspectors concluded that Iran has started recovering from the Stuxnet cyber worm that infected its nuclear program two years ago. The country is now producing “low-enriched uranium at rates slightly exceeding what it produced before” the attack.

The IAEA also has evidence that Iran conducted “studies involving the removal of the conventional high explosive payload from the warhead of the Shahab-3 missile and replac[ing] it with a spherical nuclear payload.”

Now Western intelligence estimates Iran is at least a year, and most likely, several years away from assembling a nuclear weapon.

With American forces drawing down in Iraq, the United States is in a much better strategic position to deny Iran nuclear capability. Furthermore, there is widespread Arab support for a strike on Iran’s nuclear infrastructure, especially among the Gulf Arabs.

Additionally, the Israelis will likely continue to push for military action on the basis that a nuclear-armed Iran would pose an existential threat to Israel.

Whether it is the right policy or not, I fear that the conditions are ripe for action against Iran in the next several years.

Only time will tell.

About Sean Patrick Hazlett

Finance executive, engineer, former military officer, and science fiction and horror writer. Editor of the Weird World War III anthology.
This entry was posted in Defense, Energy Security, International Security, Middle East, Nuclear Power, Nuclear proliferation, Policy, Politics, Terrorism, War and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Western Strike on Iranian Nuclear Sites More Likely

  1. pino says:

    Whether it is the right policy or not, I fear that the conditions are ripe for action against Iran in the next several years.

    Right or wrong, it’ll be interesting to see if Obama has the …. the … “marbles” for such a strike.

    • He already did it by potentially authorizing Stuxnet (we will never know if he or Bush authorized it, but he could have blocked it, yet didn’t).

      Believe it or not, DOD recommended a precision strike against the North Koreans under Clinton in 1994, but Jimmy Carter rolled in and negotiated a peace at the 11th hour.

      Believe it or not, the left and right are a lot closer on this issue than you might think. Check out my master’s thesis on my media kit page to find out why.

  2. Will even a strike on Iran stop them from, at least eventually, getting the bomb?

    I’m surprise that more nations don’t have the bomb than do since the technology has been in existence for almost 70 years now.

    Should we be planning for more nuclear armed states, even ones we think are pariahs.

    • No it won’t, but it would certainly delay their getting a nuclear device. Furthermore, the policy would likely be much like it was with Saddam’s no-fly zone. The U.S. would periodically bomb Iranian nuclear sites until they stopped their weapons program. Not an ideal policy, but the alternative is strategic adjustment. This policy essentially means learning to live with the Iranian bomb and making the appropriate adjustments.

      This would mean extending a nuclear umbrella over the entire Middle East except for Israel to prevent a regional proliferation spiral among Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Turkey. It would also mean a dramatically increased American troop presence in the region to combat heightened Iranian regional adventurism emboldened by possession of a nuclear weapon. There is also the dramatic increase in the probability of a regional nuclear war as Israel has no time to determine if any Iranian missile launch is a test or a real attack.

      As ugly as a precision strike on Iran’s nuclear program may be, I fear the dynamics created by a nuclear-armed Iran are worse. This topic was actually my master’s thesis, which you can find on my Media Kit page.

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