Attaining the ability to enrich uranium up to 20 percent grade brings Iran dangerously close to "break-out" point for a nuclear weapon capability, debkafile's intelligence sources report. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad promised the "good news" would be announced during the Feb. 1-11 celebrations of the Islamic Revolution. The "news" was the subject of an urgent cabinet meeting in Jerusalem last week.
His announcement is a provocative mark of contempt for the six world powers and their offer to trade Iran's low-grade uranium for 20 pc enriched product overseas. By going public on the banned process and abandoning concealment, Iran's rulers are throwing down the gauntlet to them and Israel.
Our political sources predict that Tehran's provocative move will be met with more of the five months of foot-dragging with which Washington and Jerusalem have met Iran's contempt for one deadline after another for ending nuclear enrichment. Both will continue to dither and pretend that stiff sanctions will scotch the Iranian nuclear threat.