Analysis: CIA chief confirms Syrian reactor could produce fuel for 1-2 weapons – not bombs

debkafile‘s military sources note that the CIA director Michael Hayden said: “In the course of a year after they got full up they would have produced enough plutonium for one or two weapons.” Speaking to reporters after a speech at Georgetown University, Hayden did not say “bombs” – but “weapons.”
This would appear to confirm the conclusion of US and Israel that Syria was on the way to producing radioactive “dirty bombs” – not a nuclear bomb – at the facility which Israel destroyed last September. Its product, radiological dispersal devices (RDD) – which cause more disruption than destruction – would have been made available to terrorist groups for use against Israel, used by Syria itself or if Iran so decided, against American or other targets.
Israeli air force commander Maj. Gen. Eliezer Shkedy warned in a CBS interview Sunday, April 27, that Iran’s schemes are a danger not only to Israel, but to the world.
Last week, US officials disclosed that the covert nuclear reactor Syria had been building with North Korean assistance was modeled on the shuttered North Korean reactor at Yongbyon, which produced a small amount of plutonium. This disclosure turned the heat not only on Damascus but also on Pyongyang to make good on its denuclearization pledge and come clean on its nuclear ties with Syria. Washington wants North Korea on record as promising to refrain from similar acts of proliferation in the future.
Monday also, the US opened a new front against Iran and Syria when its UN ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad accused them at the Security Council of destabilizing Iraq. He urged them to stop the flow of weapons and foreign fighters to their embattled neighbor. The Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps known as the al Qods Brigade continues to arm, train and fund illegal armed groups in Iraq, the US ambassador charged. “This lethal aid poses a significant threat to Iraqi and multinational forces and the stability and sovereignty of Iraq.”
Khalilzad pointed out that Syria is the only entry point for “90 percent of all known foreign terrorists in Iraq,” adding “we know that al Qaeda terrorist facilitators continue to operate inside Syria.”
debkafile‘s sources at UN headquarters stress the exceptional severity of the US ambassador’s charges against Syria, with the potential of laying the ground for US military or other reprisal.

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