Tuesday, April 24, 2007
Iran Nuclear In Four Years?
Could Iran be nuclear in a few short years?
Scientists at Sussex University speculate that Iran could be producing weapons-grade uranium in four years, and in eight they could be able to deploy an operational nuclear weapon.
That's a lot longer than Ahmadinejad would have us believe, but too soon as far as I'm concerned!
"It's very difficult to enrich uranium," said Norman Dombey, emeritus professor of theoretical physics at Sussex University. "It calls for several different scientific and engineering disciplines. Iran hasn't yet shown that it has mastered the problem."
But the smallest particle of dust - even a fingerprint - can disrupt enrichment. Iran will have to spin all the centrifuges inside a vacuum without any interruption for a period of about one year.
If any machine breaks down - or if dust enters the system or if the power supply is lost - the process must halt and start again.
Prof Dombey estimates that Iran will need about two years simply to master the process of running centrifuges. Then, making allowances for interruptions caused by breakdowns, it could take another two years to produce enough weapons-grade uranium for one bomb.
Prof Dombey said: "At the moment, their programme doesn't constitute a threat. It would constitute a threat if they were enriching substantial amounts to more than five per cent and they're not. In fact they're not enriching anything very much. This talk about industrial scale enrichment is misleading."
Despite Mr Ahmadinejad's public threat to wipe it from the map, Israel also plays down the progress that Iran has made. On Sunday, Ehud Olmert, the prime minister, said: "Iran is far from attaining the technology threshhold and this country is not close to getting it, contrary to statements by its leadership."
So let me get this straight... Diplomacy is nothing more than a stall tactic for Iran, who is less than a decade (if we're lucky) from possibly deploying a nuke. Ahmadenijad has sworn to "wipe Israel from the map," and Olmert isn't the slightest bit concerned?
Am I the only one who's got a bad feeling about all of this?