Sunday, March 26, 2006

The clock strikes midnight: Iran goes nuclear

Iran announced last night it would go nuclear this year.

It is now only weeks away from finishing the centrifuges necessary to process the uranium needed to produce atomic bombs.

We are now in the most dangerous period of American history since the Cuban missile crisis.

Michael Ledeen warned us it would probably happen this spring. The CIA and an army of experts got it wrong (see the CSIS report pages 114-120).

From RegimeChangeIran (H/T: RedState)

Iran would fully go nuclear with the current Persian year, which started simultaneously with spring on March 20 [of 2006], Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Saturday.

"Our enemies try to prevent our scientific progress through wide-spread propaganda but inshallah (God willing) this (new) year will be the year when the Islamic Republic of Iran will fully avail itself of peaceful nuclear technology," Ahmadinejad was quoted as saying by the news agency ISNA.

In a meeting with visiting Syrian Vice President Farouq al-Shara, Ahmadinejad said Iran's use of peaceful nuclear energy will be to the benefit of the Islamic world and the "friends of Iran."

Earlier on Saturday Iran thanked Russia and China for their stance in the ongoing dispute over Iran's controversial nuclear programme, state news agency IRNA reported.

Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki thanked his Russian and Chinese counterparts by telephone for their "logical stance" and persistence to evaluate the issue within the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Russia and China have so far refused plans for ultimatums or deadlines put by the United Nations Security Council on Iran for suspending all its uranium enrichment programmes.

Mottaki reiterated Iran's wish to find a broad-based agreement through negotiations and criticized any political approach in the UN Security Council towards the issue.

The sand has run out on the clock, and it is time to act.

1) The Army has a collection of papers looking for options.

2) Winds of Change calls for a full scale invasion.

3) The Officers' Club looked at this last year. In Feb 2006 they looked at the Israeli option. They also assessed Iran's strategy against the West.

4) Military historian Victor Davis Hanson cautions about the dangers of air strikes.

5) Clifford May looks at Iran's vow to destroy "Anglo-Saxon civilization". No, they're not bluffing.

6) But Alexander Coburn thinks Bush probably won't attack.

7) The German press thinks that the US has been laying the groundwork for an attack since at least December of 2005.

8) And Al-Jazeera believes the German press.

9) RCP looks at Iran's defensive strategy.

10) James Fallows in the Atlantic Monthly offers a first-rate article on a US military war game of an attack on Iran.

11)Military expert Austin Bay comments here and here. With this on bombing details.

12)Military expert Ralph Peters looks at "Nukes for Allah".

13) The Cato Institute is concerned that the mullahs are tricking us into a trap. Carpenter critiques the conventional wisdom.

14) Senator Brownback and Rademaker of the State Department address AEI on the crisis.

15) The Heritage Foundation looks at the Iranian crisis. Heritage notes that Iran may already have material for ten nuclear weapons. Peter Brookes of Heritage notes that Iran is hiding circa 25 senior Al Qaeda leaders and that the military option has serious drawbacks.

16) At the Brookings Institution Martin Indyk thinks we can't go to war in Iran with troops in Iraq. Flynt Leverett calls for diplomacy. Dalder and Gordon call for sanctions.

17) Global Security offers an important set of studies here. This includes a look at a blockade, air strikes, and "The Khuzestan Gambit" or seizing Iran's oil fields.

18) There is finally the option for a quarantine/no-fly zone strategy to promote internal revolution in Iran.

19) Neo-con Robert Kagan thinks air strikes would backfire.

20) John Tabin at American Spectator is more sympathetic. His colleague at AmSpec Jed Babbin sounds the alarm: must we wait until Iran has nukes to act?