Washington accuses Iran of attaining nuclear weapon capability

Timed to follow on the delivery of Tehran’s response to the big powers’ offer of nuclear talks, US intelligence agencies informed the New York Times Thursday, Sept. 10, that they have concluded in recent months that “Iran has created enough nuclear fuel to make a rapid, if risky, spring for a nuclear weapon.”
The White House is quoted as saying that “Iran has deliberately stopped short of the critical last steps to make a bomb.”
A few hours earlier, a US diplomat warned that Iran is close to producing its first nuclear bomb.
debkafile‘s military sources say these steps add up to a new US intelligence assessment that Iran is now in position for deciding at any moment to take that last, extremely short step, toward making a bomb – or even two.
Wednesday, Sept. 9, Iranian foreign minister Manouchehr Mottaki finally handed representatives of the six-nation group of nuclear negotiators (P5 + Germany) his government’s long-promised reply to the package of incentives it offered for talks to resolve the dispute on Tehran’s nuclear program.
Although the contents of the package were not published, debkafile‘s Washington sources report extreme US frustration with the document which bars any discussion of its nuclear issues
According to our Iranian sources, it consists of a long-winded, sanctimonious treatise, with no proposals for solving the nuclear issue, but rather a sermon on the need for a new world order based on Iranian revolutionary Islamic tenets. Iran’s rulers offer to discuss reforming the new world order with the big powers and “reaching a comprehensive agreement on issues beyond the nuclear file,” including the crises in Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon and the Palestinian territories.
From the document’s tone, Iran is putting itself forward as the seventh world power and demands a key role in all important international political, economic, social and cultural policy-making.
The document has only three things to say on the nuclear subject:
First, Iran is fully entitled by the Non-Proliferation Treaty to carry out uranium enrichment without interference or limitations.
Second, Iran is not ready to discuss its nuclear activities with any foreign power.
Third, It is willing to discuss the worldwide nuclear problem.
The package follows on Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s public declaration that his country’s “nuclear rights” are not open to negotiation; the UN nuclear watchdog’s determination that its interaction with Iran is in stalemate; and the statement by US chief envoy to the IAEA, Glyn Davis, that ongoing enrichment activity is moving Iran “closer to a dangerous and destabilizing possible breakout capacity.”
Iran’s “package” takes the entire controversy into a fresh blind alley. President Barack Obama must now decide on his reaction to Iran’s virtual slap in the face in response to his offer of direct nuclear dialogue.

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