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Iran boasts of capability to attack Israeli base after nuclear official indicates ability to create bomb

iran-boasts-of-capability-to-attack-israeli-base-after-nuclear-official-indicates-ability-to-create-bomb
Iran boasts of capability to attack Israeli base after nuclear official indicates ability to create bomb

Iran is drawing closer to possible conflict as it simulates attacks on an Israeli base and signals that it could create a nuclear weapon if officials ordered it.. 

“Iranian braggadocio about their nuclear program is reaching new and unprecedented levels,” Behnam Ben Taleblu, a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, told Fox News Digital. 

“Iran’s former atomic energy chief is essentially hinting that Tehran has all the pieces of a nuclear weapon in place but disassembled,” Taleblu said. “This commentary should be raising red flags for anyone who thought diversion of fissile material was the only thing that needed to be prevented and accounted for with international monitoring.”

“The quiet part out loud here is that Tehran does not fear the Biden administration’s response to these claims,” Taleblu stressed. “By tipping their hand about mastered but dispersed nuclear capabilities, Iranian officials may be gunning for a nuclear sweet spot: benefiting from the deterrent dividends of a nuclear weapon without the political and military costs of weaponization.”

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Ali-Akbar Salehi, former head of Iran’s nuclear agency, implied in a broadcast on Monday that Tehran has everything necessary to create an atomic weapon, saying, “We have [crossed] all the thresholds of nuclear science and technology,” Iran International reported.  

Iran Nuclear official

Rafael Grossi, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, listens to Iran’s atomic energy vice president, Ali Akbar Salehi, virtually addresses the 64th General Conference of the IAEA in Vienna, Austria, on Sept. 21, 2020. (Joe Klamar/AFP via Getty Images)

“Here’s an example: Imagine what a car needs; it needs a chassis, an engine, a steering wheel, a gearbox,” Salehi explained. “You’re asking if we’ve made the gearbox, I say yes. Have we made the engine? Yes, but each one serves its own purpose.” 

The Institute for Science and International Security, an Iran watchdog group, last week published findings that claimed Tehran had enough weapons-grade material to build a nuclear weapon in just one week, ramping up to a total of six bombs per month in what the group warned was a “volatile situation.” 

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“Iran’s nuclear weapons capabilities are more dangerous than they have ever been, while its relations with the West are at a low point,” the report said. 

Iran International noted that Tehran officials have previously claimed to have the capability to build a bomb while insisting they had no intention to make one. 

Kamal Kharrazi, head of the Strategic Council for Foreign Relations of the Islamic Republic, in 2022 said, “We have increased the level of uranium enrichment from 20% to 60% in just a few days, and it can easily be enriched to 90%.”

The new warnings have caused greater distress after Qatar’s state-backed Al Jazeera reported that Iran had run naval drills simulating an attack on an Israeli base. Tensions in the region remain high as Israel presses forward with its operation in the Gaza Strip, with all eyes on Rafah as Jerusalem moves closer to an attack on the city. 

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“Tehran also continues to use missile drills and tests as a form of political communication and as a signal of its long-term ambitions,” Taleblu warned. “The recent launches targeted a mockup of an Israeli F-35 air base.”

The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) posted video of the test, in which an Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) vessel launched a ballistic missile that struck a target that resembled Israel’s Palmachim airbase on the mainland in the middle of the desert. 

Iran Israel navy

Israeli navy ships patrol off the coast of northern Israel on Oct. 12, 2023. (Thomas Coex/AFP via Getty Images)

IRGC Chief-Commander Hossein Salami on Wednesday announced that his force stands “fully prepared for naval warfare and ready to engage with 100% readiness.” 

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“We have acquired long-range warfare capabilities, enabling us to destroy the enemy from far away,” Salami said, according to an Iran International translation.

“In any situation where we are attacked, we will not leave it unanswered, and there might be occasions where we choose not to publicize our response,” Salami insisted. 

Fox News Digital’s Anders Hagstrom contributed to this report. 

Peter Aitken is a Fox News Digital reporter with a focus on national and global news. 

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