In an interview with Haaretz, on the occasion of the anniversary of the self-proclaimed state of Israel, General Benny Gantz stated his view that Iran is not pursuing a nuclear weapon, as follows:
"Iran is going step by step to the place where it will be able to decide whether to manufacture a nuclear bomb. It hasn’t yet decided whether to go the extra mile."
As long as its facilities are not bomb-proof, ’the program is too vulnerable, in Iran’s view. If the supreme religious leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei wants, he will advance it to the acquisition of a nuclear bomb, but the decision must first be taken. It will happen if Khamenei judges that he is invulnerable to a response. I believe he would be making an enormous mistake, and I don’t think he will want to go the extra mile. I think the Iranian leadership is composed of very rational people. But I agree that such a capability, in the hands of Islamic fundamentalists who at particular moments could make different calculations, is dangerous." .
Since 1991, Israel has been waging a campaign in the international press to alert public opinion to the impending attainment of the nuclear bomb by the Islamic Republic of Iran. However, in 21 years, this "imminent" danger has never materialized.
During this period, Iranian leaders have incessantly repeated that the use, threat, storage and manufacture of nuclear weapons are prohibited in accordance with the principles promulgated by Imam Ruhollah Khomeini. This prohibition was made into law through a decree issued by Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on 9 August 2005.
Moreover, Iran’s leaders pointed out that even if they had such a weapon, they couldn’t use it against their opponents since, if they bombed Saudi Arabia, they would also be destroyed, and, in the case of a bombardment against Israel, they would also be destroying the Palestinians.
The United States and its allies have repeatedly accused Iran of concealing a nuclear weapons program. Since 2006, they obtained the adoption of various Security Council resolutions (1696, 1737, 1747, 1803, 1929) and imposed unilateral sanctions against Iran . They also spread disinformation to mask their bellicose intentions, in particular regarding the deployment of missiles against Russia, behind the guise of an anti-Iranian missile.
Fearing that the disinformation drive may actually lead to war, since 2007 a faction of the U.S. state apparatus has issued multiple denials. Recently, on 29 January 2012, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta confirmed to 60 Minutes on CBS News that Iran had not made a decision to develop the bomb . On 31 January 2012, U.S. National Director of Intelligence, James Clapper, reiterated this in writing before the Senate Intelligence Committee . Nevertheless, negotiations led by the Europeans to convince Iran to stop its nuclear weapons program are still being pursued.
Thus, while many IAEA inspections have never found any indication of the existence of an Iranian military nuclear program, and that no competent U.S. or Israeli authority still believes in this scam, the Europeans have scheduled another meeting to negotiate with Iran, on May 23 in Baghdad.
Hareetz, 25 April 2012
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