Iran terrorism and Nuclear Threat
The Iranian government’s extreme interpretation of Islamic law and its anti-Western philosophy, inspire the rise of Islamic extremists across the world.
Iran is also one of the principal state sponsors of terror, proudly delivering weapons to Hezbollah and Palestinian terrorists, and the regime also continues to provide safe haven for many international terrorists, including senior al-Qaeda leaders Yasin al-Suri, Saif al-Adel and Abu Muhammad al-Masri.
But above all these concerns, the most menacing threat Iran poses to international security is it’s harnessing of nuclear energy for the purpose of developing a nuclear bomb.
The International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) reports about Iran’s nuclear program have consistently found that Iran has failed – and continues to fail – to fully cooperate with the IAEA, pointing to a military dimension to Iran’s nuclear program.
In its report issued on May 25, 2012, the IAEA indicated that Iran continues to expand its nuclear work. The report point out the following advances: Iran significantly increased the production of 3.5% enriched uranium; Iran continues to increase its stock of 19.75% LEU; the testing of advanced centrifuge production-scale cascades at the Natanz pilot plant has made some progress; (iv) IR-1 centrifuge performance is improving. Lastly, the IAEA has also found traces of uranium enriched up to 27 percent at the Fordow enrichment plant.
There is now little disagreement as to the intentions of the Iranians. In the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) report from November 2011, the UN agency confirmed that Iran is developing nuclear weapons and reiterated the need to address this situation as soon as possible. Director General Yukiya Amano said “It is my responsibility to alert the world. From the indicators I had, I draw the conclusion that it is time to call the world’s attention to this risk.”
Across the Arab Middle East, the Iranian nuclear program is raising grave concerns, primarily with regards to Iran’s intentions for regional dominance.
In 2009, then-Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak said, “A nuclear armed Iran with hegemonic ambitions is the greatest threat to Arab nations today.”
In 2011, Saudi Arabian government officials noted, “We cannot live in a situation where Iran has nuclear weapons … If Iran develops a nuclear weapon that will be unacceptable to us. Already, at least twelve Arab nations, including Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Turkey and the UAE, have begun to explore nuclear energy.
For Israel, a nuclear armed Iran is not tolerable. Iranian government officials have openly expressed their desire to confront the West and destroy the State of Israel.
Not only would Iranian nuclear weapons create an existential threat to Israel’s existence (Iranian Chief of Staff Major General Hassan Firouzabadi said, “The Iranian nation is standing for its cause that is the full annihilation of Israel”), it would also limit Israel ability to protect itself from Iranian terror proxies such as Hezbollah and Hamas.
In May 2012, IDF intelligence reported that Iran, together with Syria and Hezbollah, had nearly 65,000 rockets and missiles assembled within striking distance of Israel.