- - Friday, April 5, 2013

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Although a new round of talks begin on Friday in Almaty, Kazakhstan, between the six world powers and Iran, the Islamic regime has no intention of giving up its goal of achieving nuclear weapons status.

Despite years of failed negotiations, the P5-plus-1 group of nations (the United States, China, Russia, Britain, France plus Germany) will once again try to solve the nuclear impasse diplomatically.

It won’t work.

Mashregh News, a media outlet run by the Revolutionary Guards’ intelligence unit, dissected why the Obama administration’s plan will continue to fail.

“Barack Obama’s look on Iran in his second term of presidency is that he will want to achieve some results,” a Mashregh analysis said. “He, of course, does not want to reach an agreement with Iran but rather wants to force Iran to retreat. As he said himself: ‘We don’t want to control Iran but rather stop it.’ He believes that since science cannot be bombed, Iran can be stopped before reaching full nuclear science.

“It is obvious [the United States is] not after an agreement and believes if they present a reduction of sanctions to Iran [in the negotiations], the Islamic Republic will change its nuclear direction, which [already] is completely in line with the regulations of [the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty].”

U.S. pressure on Iran will only increase, the analysis said, although President Obama knows that pressure for sanctions within the United Nations has peaked and that he does not have many cards to play. Despite the sanctions, Mr. Obama has failed to persuade Iran to change course, the report said, and Iran has left no doubt about the direction of its nuclear program.

The analysis, which reflects the view of the Islamic regime, concludes that the continuation of the nuclear program will help expand the country’s anti-American policies in the region, which would force the United States to leave the Islamic world, from the Persian Gulf to the Mediterranean Sea and the Indian Ocean, and it would not be farfetched to conclude that in the near future, the region would be controlled by the Islamic movement.

I have believed for a long time that the Islamic regime truly believes the West and, specifically, the United States under Mr. Obama has a military confrontation as a red line they won’t cross and that, ultimately, containment will be their policy of choice. That policy is already failing, though, because the regime is close to developing nuclear weapons.

I revealed recently that Iran has built a new, secret nuclear site. A high-ranking intelligence officer in the regime’s Ministry of Defense provided me with the coordinates to the site and said Iran’s scientists have succeeded in not only enriching to weapons-grade but have converted the highly enriched uranium to metal and are now working on a neutron reflector, which is one of the final stages in making nuclear bombs.

Satellite imagery of this vast site clearly shows facilities were hidden deep in a mountain similar to what Iran did at Fordow and that an array of missiles protects it. Experts who viewed the imagery warned of the imminent danger.

“[The satellite images] suggest the possibility that Iran may, in fact, be further along in its nuclear weapons program than is generally assumed,” said David Trachtenberg, who for 30 years served in the national security policy field and who, as principal deputy assistant secretary of defense, played a leadership role in nuclear forces and arms-control policy. “It is clear they have gone to great lengths to bury and protect high-value assets at this site, which also complicates the possibility of direct military action and illustrates the risks of allowing years to pass while hoping diplomacy will work. An accelerating train is harder to slow and takes longer to stop. These images reinforce my concern that Iranian nuclear progress is accelerating.”

“[This] imagery strongly suggests that Iran is working on what we used to call an ‘objective force.’ That is the objective of a deployed force of nuclear weapons on mobile missiles, normally based in deep underground sites for survivability against even nuclear attack, capable of rapid deployment,” said Fritz Ermarth, who served in the CIA and as chairman of the National Intelligence Council.

“This open-source analysis by itself illustrates that Iran is very serious about building survivable facilities for its nuclear enterprise,” said Peter Vincent Pry, executive director of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security and an expert on nuclear strategy and weapons who served on several strategic congressional commissions and in the CIA.

“A nuclear Iran is such a grave threat to U.S. and global security that, at minimum, Congress should hold hearings on this matter,” Mr. Pry said after reviewing the imagery and information from the source.

It is clear that the Islamic regime is determined to achieve its goals by becoming not only a nuclear-armed state but also by creating an “objective force” where it can become a major player in world politics. Regime history shows that if Iran is allowed to achieve such stature, world peace and the global economy will, at the least, become its hostage.

Reza Kahlili is a pseudonym for a former CIA operative in Iran’s Revolutionary Guards and author of the award winning book “A Time to Betray” (Simon & Schuster, 2010).

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