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Iran and nuclear weapons

  1. Dec 4, 2004 #1


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    Recently Powell talked about the US concern about Iran and their missiles.

    The fact that Iran desires nuclear weapons is a virtual given. Many Arab countries resent having an Israeli nuclear power with no one else in the region to balance them. Iran and Iraq, having fought a long war against each other in which Iraq's missiles and chemical weapons were considered to be the deciding factor, have both considered a WMD program essential to their country's security. Iran, being a fundamentalist theocratic government, has also had a fairly close relationship with fundamentalist terrorist groups (at least, closer than Hussein had).

    From single source intelligence provided by Iranian exiles, it looks like Iran is already working on methods to mate nuclear warheads to missiles. The original source is apparently provided by an Iranian opposition group currently listed as a terrorist organization, but one that hasn't been actively involved in terrorist activities for some time.

    More traditional intel estimates Iran shouldn't be able to develop nuclear weapons until the end of the decade, at the earliest.

    If the US administration discovers that Iran could have a viable nuclear missile by the end of 2005, instead of the end of the decade....

    Would you trust their assessment? Is the issue of 'end of the decade' or 'end of 2005' trivial anyway, since most intel suggests that we'll have to confront the possibility of Iranian nuclear weapons within the 5-10 years, maximum, so why wait?

    Is the idea of Iran, one of the members of the 'Axis of Evil', possessing nuclear weapons 'intolerable' as some leaders have said? Or will an Arab nuclear power in the area bring greater stability by balancing out Israel's nuclear weapons?

    Do you think the US is currently able to do anything about Iranian nuclear weapons, if they have them?

    Should the US resort to military action to eliminate Iran's nuclear program if diplomatic negotiations don't show rapid concrete progess?

    Is Iran a big enough threat to warrant abandoning our efforts in Afghanistan and Iraq in order to face off militarily against Iran?
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 4, 2004 #2
  4. Dec 4, 2004 #3


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    The issue is quite interesting and concerning as well. I, of course, see another war, this time with Iran, very unlikely. As you have stated, Iran and other nations alike are looking for nuclear weapons to empower themselves and there is little the United States can do about it.

    For example, Dr. Khan, considered a national hero in Pakistan, was pardoned by the government for disclosing nuclear secrets. What did the U.S. do? Nothing. In fact, there was nothing it could do.

    I always see diplomacy as the key to solve problems of this magnitude but as we all know, this doesn't always work. However, The United States can't fight on all fronts and try to make everyone cooperate. Let's face it, Iran is no Afghanistan, and it certainly is no Iraq.

    If, and when Iran succeeds in developing a very strong nuclear arsenal, in a decade or less, there is little diplomacy can do, or even force for that matter. War has evolved so much that you just can't demand anyone anymore to comply, even if it is for the world's sake.

    Another important thing mentioned is whether this inevitable growth in nations with nuclear weaponry capacity will either balance or unbalance the region. I believe that it balances by means of intimidation the whole region. But unfortunately, it also creates a very tense and unsafe environment. Somebody is going to loose control and eventually attack. Look at India and Pakistan, the only thing stopping each other from erasing themselves from the face of the earth with nuclear weapons is their nuclear arsenal itself. But tensions are there and are unavoidable.

    I just hope that someday we finally get a break from all this and hear some good news.
  5. Dec 4, 2004 #4
    What? Good News? No No No No, not with the Neo-Conservatives in power, your fear is what gives them their power.
  6. Dec 4, 2004 #5


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    My prediction: Iran will get the bomb, everyone will fuss and turn blue, and nothing will happen. Oh, Iran will spend less of its GDP on fostering terrorism, since it will now be a "big power", and have access to a trough that marginal powers don't, provided it behaves itself.
  7. Dec 4, 2004 #6
    Do you think if Iran gets the bomb will Pakistan enlarge it's nuclear arsenal? and thus India as well, and then possibly China?
  8. Dec 4, 2004 #7


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    I agree with Lorentz, but still would stop referencing Lew Rockwell if I were Polly.
  9. Dec 5, 2004 #8
    Sorry pal, I didn't mean to upset you. But I can't see why any body on the forum would not go for intellectually exciting stuff.
  10. Dec 5, 2004 #9
    Israel/USA will attack Iran's nuclear facillities.I bet on it!
  11. Dec 5, 2004 #10
    Sadly, that is my fear too.
  12. Dec 5, 2004 #11


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    Israel has shown in the past that it is willing to do so, by taking out Iraqi reactors in the 80's. Thankfully, it probably turned out to be the right thing to do, since Saddam showed he was more than willing to use whatever weapons he had available when he was involved in military conflicts or ethnic cleansing events, and he was involved in his fair share.
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