• Iran’s nukesIsrael Warns Iran is Closer to Nuclear Bomb

    Israeli military analysts say that by the end of 2020 Iran will have enough enriched uranium for one nuclear bomb. The assessment comes after recent tensions between the U.S. and Iran brought them to the brink of war. The United States pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal in 2018, and Israeli intelligence officials speculated that Iran would resume its efforts to acquire a nuclear bomb.

  • ArgumentHow Demise of Iranian Nuclear Deal Rekindles Israel’s Dilemma

    For Israel, it may be a case of “careful what you wish for.” Whatever its flaws, the Iran nuclear deal gave Israel a breather of sorts. Now its leaders face a grimly familiar predicament, and a ticking clock.

  • Iran’s nukesFrance: Iran Could Have Nuclear Weapon within One to Two Years

    French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian has warned that Iran could have nuclear weapons in one or two years if Tehran continues to violate a landmark nuclear accord with world powers. Before the nuclear deal between Iran and the leading world powers was signed in October 2015, Iran’s “dash-to-the-bomb” break-out time was estimated to be between two and five months. The various clauses of the nuclear deal had increased Iran’s break-out time to 12-18 months – and the deal would have kept Iran’s nuclear program in that state until 2030. Since the U.S, withdrew from deal on 8 May 2018, Iran has systematically, if carefully and slowly, breached more and more of the restrictions imposed on its nuclear program in 2015.

  • Soleimani killingIran's Attacks on U.S. Assets Could Encourage N. Korea's Nuclear Ambitions: Experts

    Iran’s attacks on Iraqi bases housing U.S. troops as Tehran announced it will no longer comply with restrictions on uranium enrichment may encourage North Korea to perfect its nuclear and missile technologies, experts said.

  • Iran’s nukesIran Abandons 2015 Nuclear Deal

    Iran says it is no longer limiting the number of centrifuges used to enrich uranium— a virtual abandonment of the 2015 nuclear deal. But the Sunday statement did not make any explicit threats that Iran is seeking a nuclear weapon — something Iran has always denied it wants to do. Its statement said Iran will still cooperate with the International Atomic Agency. President Donald Trump pulled the U.S. out in 2018.

  • 2019: Looking back: Iran9. Iran’s Growing Middle East Sway

    The year which ends today saw growing tensions between Iran and the United States. The United States withdrew from the 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran, but the administration’s “maximum pressure” campaign, while causing some economic difficulties inside Iran, has failed to dissuade Iran from pursuing its two related strategic goals: Achieve regional hegemony in the Middle East, and shorten the nuclear weapons break-out time, that is, the time it would take Iran to build a functioning nuclear weapon once a decision to do so has been made.

  • 2019: Looking back: North Korea10. North Korea: The U.S. Top Security Threat

    Developments on the Korean peninsula show that the Trump administration’s policy toward North Korea has been a failure, and that the risk North Korea poses to the United States, and to U.S. allies in the region, has only increased. The administration has portrayed its North Korea policy as its signature initiative, but now bills North Korea as the U.S. top security threat.

  • Perspective: Iran’s nukesUnderstanding Iran’s Nuclear Escalation Strategy

    Iran is back in the nuclear game. Eric Brewer and Ariane Tabatabi write that the United States and the remaining parties to the Iran nuclear deal must prepare for what may be a significantly more challenging year ahead with additional Iranian nuclear escalatory measures. “By withdrawing from the agreement and already firing its most potent rounds (i.e., oil and banking sanctions), the United States is limited in its ability to deter further Iranian nuclear advances. Iran, on the other hand, still has more chips it can play,” they write.

  • Perspective: Nuclear sleuthsToday, Everyone’s a Nuclear Spy

    There was a time when tracking nuclear threats was the domain of secret agents, specialists at high-powered government intelligence agencies, and think-tank experts. Not anymore. Amy Zegart writes that today, the world of new nuclear sleuths looks like the Star Wars bar scene. What has empowered these nuclear detectives and made their work possible is the fact that in the last 15-20 years, commercial satellites have become common – and their capabilities, although not at the level of spy satellites, are not too far behind. Open-source amateur nuclear sleuthing comes with risks, but Zegart says that despite these risks, the democratization of nuclear-threat intelligence is likely to be a boon to the cause of nonproliferation.

  • WMDDealing with the Soviet Nuclear Legacy

    On 29 August 1949, the Soviet Union conducted their first nuclear test. Over a 40-year period, they conducted 456 nuclear explosions at Semipalatinsk, in eastern Kazakhstan — 116 aboveground and 340 underground. After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, many of the scientists and military personnel abandoned the site and fled the country, leaving behind large quantities of nuclear materials, completely unsecured. The Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) has been quietly helping Kazakhstan deal with the Soviet nuclear legacy.

  • Iran’s nukesIran’s Nuclear Weapons “Breakout” Time Getting Shorter: Experts

    The Trump administration’s withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran, and the administration’s “maximum pressure” policy, are failing to yield the desired results, as Iran, pursuing a methodical “creep-out” strategy, is reconstituting its nuclear weapons program. In 2015, Iran’s “breakout” time, that is, the amount of time Iran would need to produce enough weapon-grade uranium for a nuclear weapon, was three months. The 2015 agreement, by imposing serve technical restrictions and intrusive monitoring, increased Iran’s breakout time to about twelve months. Experts now say that since the U.S. withdrawal from the treaty, Iran’s breakout time has been reduced to 6-10 months. “The breakout time will decrease further as Iran increases its stock of enriched uranium and installs more centrifuges,” the experts say.

  • IranWest Has No Response to Iran’s Increasing Dominance of the Middle East

    A new, detailed study says that over the past forty years Iran has built a network of nonstate alliances which has allowed it to turn the balance of “effective” power in the region “in its favor.” In a report released today (7 November), the London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) says the United States and its regional allies retain superiority in conventional forces over Iran, but that Iran has been able to counter both the U.S. military superiority and the ever-more-severe economic sanctions imposed on Iran by building “networks of influence” with proxies which allow Tehran to have a major influence over the affairs of Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, and Yemen.

  • Iran’s nukesIran Begins Uranium Enrichment at Fordow, Says U.S. to Blame

    Iran says it has begun enriching uranium at its Fordow underground nuclear facility, further defying terms of a landmark 2015 nuclear deal with world powers. Tehran has gradually reduced some of its commitments under the 2015 nuclear deal since President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the accord in May 2018. Meanwhile, Washington has reimposed and expanded punishing sanctions as part of a stated campaign of “maximum pressure” against Iran.

  • Perspective: NukesGetting the Nukes Out of Turkey: A How-To Guide

    Almost as soon as Turkish troops began their invasion of Syria, old debates resurfaced about whether or not the United States should withdraw the roughly 50 B61 nuclear gravity bombs at Incirlik Air Base in Turkey also began resurfacing. Unlike in years prior, however, this time such a move may actually be in the offing. Pulling the nuclear weapons out of Turkey may seem like a bold step, but the United States has been reducing the number of tactical nuclear weapons in Europe and consolidating the remaining ones at ever fewer bases since the end of the Cold War.

  • Nuclear weaponsU.S. Nuclear Weapons at Incirlik Air Base, in effect, “Erdogan’s hostages”: U.S. Official

    Trump announced his hasty decision to withdraw U.S. troops from northern Syria in a series of Tweets on Sunday, following a phone call with Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan – despite months of warnings from the Pentagon, the NSC, the U.S. intelligence community, and the Department of State. As a result, no plans were made to deal with the fifty or so tactical nuclear weapons kept under U.S. control at the Incirlik Air Base in south-central Turkey, which the United States shares with Turkey. One official told the New York Times that the nuclear bombs at the base were now effectively Erdogan’s hostages.