Iran is just a heartbeat away from the A-bomb.Last Friday the Daily Telegraph reported Teheran has surreptitiously removed a sufficient amount of uranium from its nuclear production facility in Isfahan to produce six nuclear bombs. Given Iran's already acknowledged uranium enrichment capabilities, the Telegraph's report indicates that the Islamic Republic is now in the late stages of assembling nuclear bombs.
It would be a simple matter for Iran to assemble those bombs without anyone noticing. US spy satellites recently discovered what the US believes are covert nuclear facilities in Iran. The mullocracy has not disclosed these sites to the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency, which is charged with inspecting Iran's nuclear sites.
As to the IAEA, this week it presented its latest report on Teheran's nuclear program to its board members in Vienna. The IAEA's report claimed that Iran has taken steps to enable its Shihab-3 ballistic missiles to carry nuclear warheads. With their range of 1,300 kilometers, Shihab-3 missiles are capable of reaching Israel and other countries throughout the region.
In support of its swiftly progressing nuclear program, Iran has escalated both its conventional military and terroristic adventurism. It has also ratcheted up its diplomatic assault on the US. This week, Teheran conducted a countrywide air defense exercise. Gen. Khatim al-Anbiaa, the commander of Iran's Air Defense Corps, explained that the exercise was aimed at defending against both electronic jamming systems and actual bombing strikes.
Also this week, Yahya Rahim Safavi, the former commander of the Revolutionary Guards Corps and current senior adviser to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei for security affairs, announced that Iran has shifted responsibility for naval warfare on the Persian Gulf from its regular naval forces to its more fanatical Revolutionary Guards. The Iranian navy will now be deployed only in the Gulf of Oman and along the Caspian Sea.
The deployment of the Guards along the Persian Gulf means that the force will be responsible for naval operations in the narrow Strait of Hormuz, through which 40 percent of global oil shipments travel. Issuing Iran's most explicit threat to US naval forces in the area and global oil shipments to date, Safavi declared, "The entire Strait of Hormuz is under the tight control of the Iranian security forces, which are ready to defend Iran against any threat."
As for terror, al-Qaida boss Ayman Zawahiri's recent tirade against the Islamic Republic notwithstanding, Iran has apparently intensified its cooperation with al-Qaida. Over the past two weeks, Israeli counterterror officials have issued explicit warnings to Israeli vacationers to immediately depart from Sinai. They have stated that terror cells from al-Qaida and Hamas are working with Iran's Hizbullah to abduct groups of Israeli vacationers to Gaza. Moreover, as Hamas and Teheran have openly acknowledged their "brotherly" ties, more and more reports have been published about al-Qaida's escalating presence in Gaza...
Today, there is only one way to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. Israel must bomb Iran's nuclear installations. Such a strike will not end Iran's nuclear program. It will not overthrow the regime. It will not cripple Iran's economy. It will not end Iran's active support for international terrorist groups.
All an Israeli air strike against Iran's nuclear facilities will do is set its nuclear program back for a couple of years. Such a strike will buy Israel and the rest of the world time. And during that time, Iran will no doubt expand its diplomatic, terror and political offensives against Israel and the US. But if Israel and the US are wise, they can use the time as well.
If Israel and the US are wise, they will use the extra time to ratchet up international economic sanctions on Iran. They will use the time to conduct covert operations against nuclear and regime targets. They will use the time to increase international pressure on countries that do business with Iran and sell it arms. And they will use the time that an Israeli military strike against Iran's nuclear facilities will buy to support Iranian democracy movements and so weaken the regime and perhaps eventually topple it.
Saturday, September 20, 2008
And Because There Hasn't Been Enough Bad News...
From an op-ed in the Jerusalem Post: