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Sunday, September 02, 2012

Iran's nuclear win-win

This analysis, from a senior US official quoted by Laura Rozen, appears to be spot-on.
To me, the most important/interesting aspects of the IAEA report are the following facts:

1. Iran is massively expanding its capacity at Fordow (2,100 of 3,000 centrifuges installed).

2. They have not expanded the number of machines spinning to 20% and have converted a bunch of 20% to fuel for the [Tehran Research Reactor] TRR, meaning no net increase of material they can use to rapidly produce bomb-grade material.

This is a brilliant combo, since #1 moves Iran closer to the zone of immunity (giving them a greater capacity Israel can’t destroy), approaching an Israeli red line. But #2 self-consciously avoids approaching a U.S. red line.

[For Iran], the very difference between pushing up against Israel’s red line while staying far short of Washington’s is a win-win: it guarantees Israeli-U.S. friction in the near-term (which we are seeing); and, if Israel attacks, it tees Iran up to play the victim on the back end and break-out of their isolation. The upshot: they are daring the Israelis to attack in a context where the strike would be viewed as premature by the U.S. (and everybody else).
What could go wrong?

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At 11:40 PM, Blogger Nomadic100 said...

I am sure Obama appreciates this example of Iranian genius, too. I know nothing about Uranium enrichment. Why are the respective "red lines" of Israel and the U.S. so disparate? To what extent is the difference politically determined versus militarily determined?


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