Foreign Policy

Iran to Build 10 New Uranium Enrichment Sites

| by FrontPage Magazine

The decade-long attempt to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear
weapons may have entered the final round on Sunday when Iran announced
to the world it intended to build ten new uranium enrichment sites.

“This is really a statement of defiance,” a former senior Israeli atomic official told The Wall Street Journal, “telling the world we are going to go ahead with our nuclear program.”

The Iranian government’s statement came only two days after the
world’s major powers condemned Iran’s nuclear program, which, despite
Iranian denials, is believed to be producing nuclear weapons. China and
Russia joined the United States, France, Britain and Germany to support
an International Atomic Energy Agency
(IAEA) resolution ordering Iran to stop construction on the uranium
enrichment plant near Qom, a secret facility whose existence President
Obama revealed last September.

Due to the international criticism, Iranians are now threatening to pull out of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty
and reduce cooperation with the IAEA, the U.N.’s nuclear watchdog.
North Korea is the only other country ever to have pulled out of the

According to news reports, the Iranian decision to thumb their nose
at the U.N. and world opinion and construct new nuclear fuel refinement
facilities was made Sunday evening at a cabinet meeting chaired by
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinijad. The Iranians will start work on
five of the new sites within two months and at an unspecified future
time on the remaining five.

It is believed the reason for the extra facilities is to allow Iran
to build more nuclear bombs. One military analyst says U.N. weapons
inspectors and the U.S. Department of Defense are of the opinion Iran
currently has enough enriched fuel for one nuclear weapon. Iran would
like to have several more in order to present itself as a “credible

The Iranian announcement signals a defeat for President Obama’s
‘soft’ approach towards the Islamic Republic’s leadership. In an
interview with Dubai-based Al-Arabiya satellite television network last
January, Obama said Iran’s leaders would find the extended hand of
diplomacy if they “unclenched” their fists.

“As I said in my inauguration speech, if countries like Iran are
willing to unclench their fist, they will find an extended hand from
us,” Obama said.

But as early as March there were already signs that Iran was in no
mood to unclench and drop the rock it was holding in the form of its
nuclear weapons program. That month, President Obama released a video,
wishing the Iranians a happy New Year, which, in Iran, falls on the
first day of spring. In return for his friendly overture, the American
president received from the Iranian government nothing but a demand for
apologies for America’s past transgressions, real or imagined, against

Sunday’s statement simply proves what most have suspected all along:
One cannot talk to the Iranian leaders and that they are simply
stringing out negotiations to complete their nuclear arms program. And
the fact the Iranians still celebrate the 1979 American embassy seizure
every November, a flagrant and criminal breach of international law,
shows they do not want to talk to the United States in particular and
are still willing to flout international norms.

Essentially, Iran’s leaders are religious fanatics who believe they
have been chosen by God to establish a Shiite hegemony over the
majority Sunni Islamic world and then, hopefully, over the whole
planet. Of the world’s one billion Muslims, about 220 million are
minority Shiites, of whom the largest number, about 62 million, live in
Iran. Pakistan contains the next largest community of Shiites at 33
million, while India is third with 30 million and Iraq fourth with 18

Iran’s mullah regime sees possessing nuclear weapons as instrumental
to its plans for world domination. Nuclear arms would also add
significant muscle to Iran’s security in a part of the world where any
sign of weakness or vulnerability could be dangerous. Iranians have not
forgotten how Iraq took advantage of Iran’s revolutionary turmoil to
launch a devastating eight-year war
against it in 1980. And like Russia with its former Eastern European
satellites, Iran would also use nuclear weapons to intimidate weaker

The Asia Times columnist, Spengler (a literary pseudonym),
gives another reason why Iran is not afraid to seek confrontation over
its nuclear weapons program. Iranian demographics have sunk to West
German levels of about 1.6 children per woman, which would make waging
a war in 20 years impossible. Iran currently has enough young men to
embark on a military adventure, whether internally for nuclear weapons
acquisition or externally against the Sunni world, while in twenty
years it won’t.

Iran’s heavily-subsidized economy is also imploding. Like Argentina with its 1982 Falkland Islands’ invasion
and Germany in 1939, economically it is now or never for Iran to make a
grab for the ring. In a year’s time it may be too late, especially if
oil prices drop dramatically again. Besides, again like Argentina, a
military adventure would probably cause those Iranian people actively
opposed to the regime to put aside their economic and political
grievances and rally around the country’s leadership in nationalistic

But if Iran wants a fight, it will most likely get one. The Islamic
regime’s Holocaust-denying leadership has openly stated it wants to
erase Israel from the map. Facing such a naked threat to their
country’s existence, one military publication states the Israelis are
now openly discussing using a missile attack on Iran’s nuclear
facilities. While Israel’s Jericho missiles
can carry nuclear warheads, they also can be equipped with a
conventional warhead. An attack by Israeli warplanes is also a

The Israelis already have American backing for such a strike if
negotiations fail, as they appear to have. American Vice-President Joe
Biden said in an ABC interview last July America would not prevent an
Israeli strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities. And since the only other
option would be a nuclear-armed Iran, the Israelis will now likely
ensure this last round ends in a knockout.