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Prime Minister Urges the U.S. to set a “Red Line” on Iran’s Nuclear Program

Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu made a public appearance on U.S. television and warned that Iran is only about half a year away from reaching 90 percent of what is needed in order to complete a nuclear warhead.

Netanyahu has been under sharp criticism all week both at home and abroad for his efforts to get the Obama administration to take a more aggressive stance against Iran. On American airwaves, he stressed that Obama needs to clearly lay out a “red line” that Iran must not cross in its nuclear enrichment activities, and that crossing those lines could result in military force.

Using an American football analogy, the prime minister said that Iran is only 20 yards away from reaching nuclear capability and that we must not let it cross the touchdown line because that would jeopardize the security of the world.

Iran continues to claim that its nuclear ambitions are only for peaceful purposes and warned that any form of military aggression will be met with swift retaliation. General Mohammed Ali Jafari, the commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps in Iran, said in a conference that “nothing will remain” of Israel if it proceeds with an attack on its nation.

Netanyahu also appeared on CNN’s “State of the Union” and suggested that there is a correlation between Iran and the wave of violence spreading in the Middle East over an American-made Youtube video that insults the prophet Mohammed.

In a phone conversation between Obama and Netanyahu, Obama reportedly refused to set conditions for Iran. Netanyahu’s patience with the Obama administration is growing thin, and he continues to demand that the U.S. sets a clear red line that Iran must not cross without facing consequences.

A spokesperson for the White House, however, has insisted that the administration will do whatever is necessary to stop Iran from acquiring an atomic weapon.

Iranian President Ahmadinejad Calls Israel “An Insult to Humanity”

Israel has made it blatantly clear that it is seriously contemplating a military strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities. If Iran wants to avoid the possibility of a military showdown, then it is certainly not helping matters when the country’s president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, openly called Israel’s presence as an “insult to humanity.”

Ahmadinejad spoke in front of a large crowd
at Tehran University following a series of pro-Palestinian marches that swept through the nation.

Israel has long considered Iran a threat due to its nuclear facilities and support for organizations with an anti-Israel agenda. Ahmadinejad, along with the country’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamenei, have made repeated references about the need to bring about Israel’s destruction.

While Israel stated that it hopes for the issue to be resolved through diplomacy, it has also made it clear that it will not hesitate to launch a military assault if Iran does not abandon its nuclear uranium program, which Iran continuously insists is for peaceful purposes. Iran has threatened retaliation if Israel were to proceed with plans of a military strike and has also pledged to do the same to the U.S. if it allies itself with Israel.

In his speech, Ahmadinejad also called Israel “corrupt” and “anti-human.” He also added that Israel needs to be confronted in order to protect “the dignity of all human beings.” During his speech, demonstrators burned the Israel and American flag and chanted “death to Israel and the U.S.”

The White House has publicly condemned Ahmadinejad’s speech and also blasted him for defending Syrian president, Bashar Assad, despite the government’s repeated violation of human rights and the brutal assault on its own people, which claimed over 20,00 lives since March of last year.

Ahmadinejad’s words are really nothing new. In 2005, he denied the events of the Holocaust and called it a myth. He also vowed for Israel to be “wiped off the map”.

Iran to Move Nuclear Facilities to Safer Location


The AP has reported that Iran might be moving their uranium enrichment facilities, as safety becomes an issue. Iran is reportedly concerned against a Western strike on their facilities. Neither Israel nor the US have ruled out a possible military strike again the nuclear program, citing that they believe Iran could be developing atomic weapons. However Iran is adamant that their facilities are creating electricity and radioisotopes for treating cancer patients.

Gholam Reza Jalali, commander of the Revolutionary Guard’s anti-sabotage unit has said that an attack is not probable, but that the move may still occur for protection of the facilities. The Natanz enrichment site is the most central to Iran and most of the site is built underground. The Fordo facility is built into a mountain to protect against aerial attacks. Jalali also said that he believes the West would have already attacked if they intended to do so.

Most of the country’s centrifuges are located at the Natanz site. This is a main concern of Iran because this technology is used for the uranium enrichment procedure. Uranium can be used as a fuel for power plants or it can be used as a fissile material in nuclear warheads.

In 2009 A sophisticated computer worm called Stuxnet targeted the Natanz computers. This specific computer worm is designed to make centrifuges uncontrollable. Iran has since acknowledged that Stuxnet did affect a number of their centrifuges, but that it was neutralized before major damage was inflicted.

Iran has not elaborated on where they might move the enrichment sites. This could be a very large process in moving the equipment and there are not very many sites that could house the equipment safely. In August, Iran moved some of their centrifuges to the Fordo site. This is located just north of Qom. Fordo is known to offer better protection from airstrikes. It is not known if the units cam from Natanz.

Syria and Israel Wax Nuclear in Paris

On Tuesday both Israel and Syria announced ambitions to develop nuclear energy, with Israel facing the prospect that its plan could bring new attention to its secretive nuclear noodling.
The confessions were made at an international conference in Paris on civilian nuclear energy. Nuclear energy contributes far less to global warming than the burning of fossil fuels, none the less though, evokes many concerns about long-term safety issues.Nuclear Power Station

Doubtlessly, both Israel and Syria’s nuclear programs will come under the microscope of international inspectors to ensure that they do not cross-over into weapons programs.
Iran and North Korea were not invited to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development conference.

Israeli Infrastructure Minister Uzi Landau said that nuclear plants built in Israel will be subject to strict safety and security controls. And get this – he even said that his country would like to build them in cooperation with scientists and engineers from “our Arab neighbors.”

“Israel has always considered nuclear power to partially replace its dependence on coal,” spoke Landau.

The program aims to help Israel secure its energy supplies and fight global warming. Israel currently uses coal and natural gas to produce electricity.
Asked if Israel would allow International Atomic Energy Agency inspectors to supervise any new project, Chen Ben Lulu said that Israel would follow all the relevant rules.

The Jewish Country however, has not signed the Nonproliferation Treaty, which aims to limit the number of countries capable of developing nuclear weapons.

Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faysal Mekdad said that his country is looking at “alternative energy sources, including nuclear energy” to meet its growing demands for energy. “The peaceful application of nuclear energy should not be monopolized by the few that own this technology but should be available to all,” Mekdad said.

A few months ago, Landau met with the French Energy Minister Jean-Louis Borloo, and raised the idea of French-Israeli-Jordanian cooperation in developing a nuclear power plant.

France derives more of its electricity from nuclear power than any other country in the world and has a highly developed civilian nuclear industry.

It was France who, beginning in the 1950s, helped Israel build its nuclear reactor at Dimona.

Israel also has a smaller nuclear reactor for research purposes at Nahal Soreq, outside of Tel Aviv.

No Change For Iran – Mousavi Contests Election Results

No sooner had incumbent Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad declared himself victorious in last Friday’s election, his challenger, Mir Hossein Moussavi cried “foul” at the results of the balloting which gave Ahmadinejad 62.5 % of the total vote. Mousavi, a former Iranian president during the 1980’s and who ran under a campaign of economic and social reform, claimed that many election precincts were “managed by untrustworthy monitors”, and many of his supporters rioted in the streets of major cities afterwards.

News in Stories: Iran Elections Boston GlobeSince foreign observers were banned from the actual balloting, there’s no telling what really went on, and many people who stood in long lines for hours at polling stations; and even had their thumb ink dyed when they did get to vote, may have had their vote discarded during the actual counting period once the polls closed. An amazing 85% of the country’s eligible voters went to the polls in an election which had culminated weeks of intense campaigning by supporters of both candidates in a contest that was really a referendum on Ahmadinejad’s handling of the country’s economy, now experiencing 30% inflation and more than 17% “official” unemployment. Many Mousavi supporters were dissatisfied young Iranians, especially academics who can’t find decent jobs after completing university studies.

Ahmadinejad gave one of his usual long victory speeches on Saturday, and gave an even longer one on Sunday during a news conference where he compared the rioting to disturbances that occur “after a football match”. Football match indeed! The streets of Teheran were almost turned into a battle ground as many young protesters battled police and paramilitary personnel, and numerous vehicles and shops were set ablaze. Many of the protestors were arrested, and it was even rumored that Moussavi himself has been detained for questioning for his possible part in the rioting (and may even be under arrest). The protests, according to many observers, were nothing less than many peoples’ dissatisfaction with the way the country has been run under Ahmadinejad, and how Iran has become increasingly isolated by international sanctions due to the ongoing nuclear program; including Ahmadinejad’s tirades against Israel and his denial of the Holocaust.

News in Stories: Iran Elections Boston GlobeThe results of the election come to no surprise with Israeli leaders, and many even hoped that Ahmadinejad would win in order to continue international pressure against Iran, and especially it’s missile and nuclear enrichment program which is now said to have progressed far enough to have enough enriched uranium and plutonium for at least one if not two nuclear bombs. Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is scheduled to give a speech to the country Sunday night, which is said to be a response to both U.S. President Obama’s speech in Cairo, as well as the aftermath of the Iranian elections. Israel has been warned by the Obama administration not to try to “go at it alone” to take out Iran’s nuclear capability; and the country’s leadership is now fully aware that Israel’s current relations with the USA are a far cry from what they were during the Bush administration.

All in all, however, the violent protests which have occurred in many parts of Iran following the election may wind up being a “consolation prize” for Mr. Mousavi and his followers; and are an indication that all is not well in the country. There appears to be a strong “grass roots” movement that could decide it’s had enough with people like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and the Mullahs.

GIANT HAT TIP: Boston Globe Iran’s Presidential Elections in Pictures

Lesser of two evils: Mousavi or Ahmadinejad?

46 million Iranians voted Friday in what was declared to be the first really contested election in that country since the Iranian Revolution of 1979. Incumbent President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, that “lovely” man who continues to say that Israel is an “illegal” state and should be “wiped of the face of the map“, was opposed by former prime minister Mir Hossein Mousavi, who presented himself as a “reformist candidate”, although he still backs his country’s nuclear program. What Mr. Mousavi may have meant as being “reformist” is probably similar to former president Mohammad Khatami, who was really one of the Mullah religious leaders, and said to wield the real power in the Islamic Republic, with people like Ahmadinejad only being front men.

Mahmoud AhmadinejadWhat all this means for Israel is that no great surprises were in store, no matter who would win, and that the anti-Israel rhetoric will continue, as well as the nuclear program, which went into high gear when Ahmadinejad was elected in 2005. Mousavi is even said to have begun the nuclear program back in the 1980’s.

Reform means a lot of different things to different people, especially in a country like Iran, where Sharia Islamic law is practiced to a large extent, although not to the extreme as it is in Saudi Arabia, or in the former Taliban controlled Afghanistan. What this means for Iranian women is that they are allowed to drive, not completely cover their faces (even a bit of fashion is permitted), achieve a higher education, work in most professions, and vote. The voting right by women was definitely exercised in the election, although the way many women exercised their vote was probably influenced by their husband or father (if they are not married yet). The Iranian legal system continues to try, and punish, both men and women according to strict Islamic law, meaning that people committing acts that are contrary to Islamic Law are often given the harshest punishment – including death.

It is well known that the real holder of the reins of power in Iran is the Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who is as bad or worse than the Ayatollah Hasni Komeni, who presided over the country following the Islamic Revolution.

Iran has a number of problems that should be dealt with by no matter who wins this election. These include a 17% unemployment rate, and an energy and industrial infrastructure that is in complete shambles. For a country with the world’s second biggest oil reserves (said to be anywhere from 14 to 25 %) it must import most of its refined petroleum products; and many Iranians still drive around old locally made versions of British Hillman Hunter automobiles from pre-revolutionary days. And at least half of the population is 27 years old or younger, making available careers for university graduates even scarcer.

In the end no earthshaking changes came about, as the “reform candidate” Moussavi didn’t win. As for people living in Israel, being prepared for the worst case scenario is a matter of acute reality in these current times.

Birds of a feather?

What do Ahmadinejad, Kim Jong Il, and Daffy Duck have in common?

mahmoud ahmadinejadThings seem to be getting a bit “interesting” in places like Pyongyang North Korea and Teheran Iran. Both of these countries now have run-away nuclear arms programs, and in North Korea, the situation has reached the boiling point with the test of a 20 kiloton nuclear device, followed by the test launching of at least 7 missiles. Now, the scene in that region may be ready to explode with Pyongyang saying that its neighbor South Korea will be in a “state of war” with North Korea if it tries to intercept any North Korean vessel on suspicion of carrying weapons of mass destruction.

kim jong ilNorth Korea’s fearless leader, Kim Jong Il, seems to have retreated back to his secluded residence to eat lobster (his favorite food) and watch Warner Brothers Looney Tunes cartoons. Looney Tunes, especially ones with Daffy Duck, the Road Runner, and Sargasso Sam, are said to be Kim’s favorite pass time, outside of raunchy sex orgies which he may be getting too old or too demented to participate in. And he may also have to cut down or even forgo the lobster and other rich foods that 95% of his countrymen can only dream about.

So that leaves Daffy Duck and Co. as his only pastime – and possibly his only friends.

daffy duckWhere this ties in with that other nuclear wannabe about 2,500 miles southwest of North Korea is not so difficult to figure out, as the guy sitting in the President’s Chair in Teheran has probably received most of his country’s nuclear technology and even equipment directly from his friend, Kim. Whether Mahmoud also likes Daffy Duck is not certain at this time; but we can bet that he has some interesting “diversions” of his own. Now that Pyongyang has heated things up quite a bit in his neighborhood, nuclear test and all, Ahmadinejad may see this act as a ‘window of opportunity’ to perhaps set off a big “fire cracker” himself. After all, if Kim and Daffy Duck can do it, why can’t Mahmoud?

Both of these scenes are being watched very closely by both the USA and Israel, with Israel having the most to loose if an Iranian IBM comes flying toward Tel Aviv with a bomb like Whylie Coyote might use to get even with his road runner nemesis, Beep Beep. What’s going to happen next is not quite certain, but we can all wonder whether American President Barack Obama will do more than just make condemnations, and whether anything will be done to prevent any of these leaders, from carrying out an act which up to now has been nothing more than intense saber rattling.

If the situation does get out of hand, and nobody stands up to either of these two guys, then there’s going to a something coming down that’s a lot more serious than Daffy Duck and Sargasso Sam. We’re afraid there’s going to be un-leashing of the Tasmanian Devil!

The War That Almost Was – Syria Confirms Nuclear Hit

F151Well, this morning its official. The hit on Syria was a hit on a Nuclear facility, the Syrian Foreign Minister confirmed today. No great surprise there. Still for a country always on the brink of something it was a little closer then even we like it. The Ophthalmologist, unlike his father, seems intent on getting into it with us and he is definitely cruising for a bruising. Assuming that Syria manages to get a nuke, what then?

Someone sent me this (Hat Tip: Joe) and I think its worth a read, “So Close To War”:

A meticulously planned, brilliantly executed surgical strike by Israeli jets on a nuclear installation in Syria on 6 September may have saved the world from a devastating threat. The only problem is that no one outside a tight-lipped knot of top Israeli and American officials knows precisely what that threat involved.

This is apparently what went down:

According to American sources, Israeli intelligence tracked a North Korean vessel carrying a cargo of nuclear material labelled ‘cement’ as it travelled halfway across the world. On 3 September the ship docked at the Syrian port of Tartous and the Israelis continued following the cargo as it was transported to the small town of Dayr as Zawr, near the Turkish border in north-eastern Syria.

The destination was not a complete surprise. It had already been the subject of intense surveillance by an Israeli Ofek spy satellite, and within hours a band of elite Israeli commandos had secretly crossed into Syria and headed for the town. Soil samples and other material they collected there were returned to Israel. Sure enough, they indicated that the cargo was nuclear.

Three days after the North Korean consignment arrived, the final phase of Operation Orchard was launched. With prior approval from Washington, Israeli F151 jets were scrambled and, minutes later, the installation and its newly arrived contents were destroyed.

Virtual Tour Of Israel’s Nuclear Plant In Dimona

I came across this on YouTube and I never even saw this on Channel 10 TV when it originally aired.

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