Iran: nuclear weapons in 6 months?!

As spy agencies all over the West hazard guesses as to when Iran will officially join the ranks of nuclear world powers, a report recently issued by Stern, a weekly Hamburg publication, has sped up Iran’s trajectory substantially.

Stern gives Iran 6 months, upon the authority of German’s foreign intelligence service (the Bundesnachrichtendienst or BND) – or at least so says the article. Stern did not name the BND agent who shared the information that Iran could be testing nuclear weapons underground by January 2010, and an official BND spokesperson did not comment on the article.

Iranian nuclear facilityHe did clear up, however, that Germany’s best guesses are in line with those of the U.S. intelligence community, so within the next four to six years – not MONTHS. 2014 sounds a lot farther away than it is, but 2010 it is not. Technically, though, the U.S. estimate predicts anywhere between 2010 and 2015, though probably not before 2013.

Although Iran is adamant about the fact that the sole purpose of its nuclear program is to create electricity, the U.S. – and the rest of the free world – strongly believes that this is just a flimsy cover for nuclear weapons development.

The UN’s three rounds of sanctions – thus far futile attempts to convince Iran to scratch their uranium enrichment plans – are a clear indication that no one is buying Iran’s story about the generation of non-combative power.

Although Iran sticks staunchly by its denials, Mohamed ElBaradei, the director-general of the UN International Atomic Energy Agency, says that the country clearly desires the sort of “technology that would enable it to have nuclear weapons if they decide to do so.”

As Iran speeds up its production of nuclear fuel, installing new centrifuges with which to enrich uranium, spy agencies continue their close watch.

Barack Obama, meanwhile, remains open to negotiations with the Iranians on this very topic, though Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says the U.S. will not remain open to talks forever.

images courtesy of and

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