Iran's Increasing Nuclear Threat
by Lauren Stone • Jun 30, 2011 at 10:55 am
Earlier this week Iran unveiled it's first ballistic missile silos built underground. The silos provide the regime with the ability to launch its long-range missiles capable of reaching targets 800 miles away at an increasingly rapid speed and from a better secured position, as underground silos are harder to destroy than on-the-surface launching pads. One day after the announcement, on Tuesday, Iranian news agencies reported that Tehran successfully tested 14 missiles during military drills. The test was held on the second day of Iran's 10 days of planned military exercises.
The United States and Great Britain have increasing concerns about Iran's growing nuclear program. The United States imposed new sanctions on Iran's airlines and international business executives last week. According to Great Britain's Foreign Secretary William Hague, Iran has "been carrying out covert ballistic missiles tests and rocket launches, including testing missiles capable of delivering a nuclear payload." It is Great Britain's belief that Tehran has carried out a minimum of "three secret tests of medium-range ballistic missiles" since October.
June 28: Iranian Revolutionary Guards personnel watch the launch of a Zelzal missile during military maneuvers.
Tehran has also recently announced that it intends to triple it's enriched uranium capacity to 20%
, "enrichment levels far greater that is needed for peaceful nuclear energy," according to Hague. Uranium enriched to 90% purity can be used to develop a nuclear weapon, and reaching that 90% mark is more easily attained from uranium enriched to 20% than from low-enriched material.
Iran proves time and again that it has every intention to continue down its path towards nuclear production, making it imperative for the U.S. and U.K. to pressure Iran by continuing to impose sanctions. It is also important that the United States remain a cut above the rest regarding its nuclear weapons technology and missile defense development. Indeed, as Iran's program continues, its warfare technology will also advance. And it's only a matter of time before an Iranian missile will have the capability of reaching the United States.
Related Topics: Iran, Nuclear Proliferation | Lauren Stone
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