New intelligence continues to blast away like a sledgehammer at Iran's rocklike insistence that its nuclear program is purely peaceful and not a nuclear weapons effort as many strongly believe.
Regrettably, the nuclear weapons shoe increasingly fits Iran's foot quite snuggly.
Based on 18 hard-copy and electronic documents provided to the IAEA, the nuclear-monitoring agency revealed in its report in late May several deeply disturbing concerns on the nature of Iran's nuclear program, especially possible military dimensions. In its first formal assessment of Iran's nuclear efforts since February, the IAEA states: "The agency is of the view that Iran may have additional information, in particular on high explosives testing and missile-related activities, which could shed more light on the nature of these alleged studies and which Iran should share with the agency."
The IAEA considers these unanswered questions on Iran's nuclear work "a matter of serious concern," because the existence of this sort of activity might indicate Tehran is secretly developing a nuclear weapon, contrary to its repeated public protestations.
Another IAEA concern is work on a new ballistic missile warhead, known as Project 111, for Iran's medium-range ballistic missile, the Shahab-3, which can range all of the Middle East, as well as parts of southern Europe. According to six technical documents in the IAEA's possession, Iran appears to have been involved in the redesign of the payload chamber of the current "Shahab-3 missile re-entry vehicle to accommodate a nuclear warhead."
- Iran has continued to operate the original unit at the fuel enrichment plant and installation work has continued on four other units; it also has reported and installed a new generation sub-critical centrifuge.
- As of May 12, about 11 metric tons of uranium had been produced since Feb. 3, bringing the total amount of uranium produced since March 2004 to 320 metric tons, all of which remains under IAEA containment and surveillance.
- Iran has not agreed to IAEA's request for access to additional locations related to nuclear processing.
- Iran's alleged studies on the green salt project (converting uranium dioxide to uranium tetrafluoride, or green salt, an important component the uranium refining industry), and its alleged high explosives testing and a missile re-entry vehicle project remain of "serious concern."
- Substantive explanations are required, but not forthcoming, from Iran to support its statements on alleged studies and other information with possible military dimensions.
- Iran has not suspended its enrichments related activities,
contrary to decisions of the U.N. Security Council.
First appeared on familysecuritymatters.com