According to recent publications in the US, for the first time the Iranian regime has enriched uranium to 84%!
Two diplomats has reported to the Bloomberg news agency, that inspectors of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) have found evidence of uranium enrichment up to 84% for the first time in Iran. This is the highest level of uranium enrichment recorded to this day in Iran. We should remind you that nuclear weapons require an enrichment level of 90% or higher, in other words, only 6% more enriched than what was found by the inspectors.
It is now up to the IAEA inspectors to sort out whether this enrichment was the result of a deliberate and consistent process or was result of the unplanned technical malfunction.
For the past two years, Iran has claimed that it has never exceeded the 60 percent enrichment level. Since last May, however, IAEA inspectors had already detected enrichment of up to 63%, although this was not classified by them as organized and controlled enrichment, but as “accidental” and not intentional enrichment. Note that an enrichment exceeding 3% [above 60] could easily occur during the enrichment process.
Now, however, a Bloomberg report suggests a much more serious deviation — not to 63%, but as high as 84%. The proximity to a critical enrichment of up to 90% shows that the Iranian regime is highly capable of enriching, and probably is already enriching, uranium to levels that would lead to the production of nuclear weapons.
The possibility that this is a malfunction or an unintended process still exists, but it is extremely small.
In his famous speech 11 years at the UN ago, Netanyahu drew a kind of “red line” for the Iranian regime against enriching uranium, clearly warning of a military solution if they chose to cross it.
One way or another, until now the Iranian authorities have not enriched uranium to this level. In the years following Netanyahu’s warning, the Obama administration signed a nuclear deal with the Iranian regime that was supposed to keep the Iranians from enriching uranium to military levels. However, the Iranian authorities, who received in advance for agreeing to sign the deal, enormous financial resources in the form of the removal of sanctions and other preferences, did not bother to observe the terms of the agreement. So Trump withdrew from the nuclear agreement and brought back tough sanctions on Iran. Under the Biden administration, however, the sanctions were de facto removed.
Recently, when it became known that the Iranian regime was supplying strike drones to Russia, the U.S. toughened its rhetoric against Tehran somewhat. There were also demonstrative joint U.S.-Israeli large-scale military exercises. These maneuvers have been called the largest joint exercises in the history of relations between the countries. There is no doubt that the U.S. and Israel were trying to send a clear message to the Iranian leadership in this way.
Moreover, the change of government seems to have renewed Israel’s active efforts to put the brakes on the Iranian nuclear project by force, which were reversed under the previous governments of Lapid and Bennett, who did not want to go against the Biden administration.
According to foreign publications, Israeli efforts in the past led to the elimination of a number of Iranian nuclear specialists, severely damaged many Iranian nuclear and missile facilities, and the production of unmanned aerial vehicles.
Now, however, it is apparently the time for a completely different level of action.
It is true, in my estimation, that Israel is not yet going to attack Iranian nuclear infrastructures. This is because IDF military intelligence estimates that the Iranian regime will probably need at least another year and a half before it obtains a capable nuclear bomb.
Nevertheless, the current alarming Iranian activity and the increase in enrichment to 84% (hardly due to the unintentional technical malfunction) requires a relevant, even if not official, Israeli response, which would make Tehran realize that such an provocation with enrichment has a high price.
Here I think it is appropriate to emphasize again: contrary to the loud publications in some media that Iran is “on the edge” of developing nuclear weapons, this is not the case!
The Iranian regime is undoubtedly moving toward this goal, but it is still at least a year or a year and a half from this goal. During this time, various active and sabotaging actions can and should be performed to keep the Iranian authorities from creating nuclear weapons.
This is because it will take between 12 and 18 months to build the bomb because of the long process that the Iranians have to go through before they get the bomb.
First, a significant amount of uranium has to be enriched to the 90% level, which will take them at least a few more months. It can be assumed that such enrichment, which cannot be disguised, will cause a lot of protests in the world and will be viewed (not only in Israel) as a very serious provocation.
The UK, France, and Germany, which have not officially broken the deal with the Iranian government, will not be able to simply ignore this blatant and open violation of the treaty.
Second, after being enriched to 90%, the uranium gas UF6 must be converted into solid uranium metal. The Iranians are expected to do this conversion at the plant that they have built in Esfahan. This facility has already been mysteriously damaged in the past. It is possible that similar events will occur in the future.
As a result, with all the possible disruptions, delays, and damages, such a conversion will take at least a few more months.
Third, thereafter, two hemispheres must be formed from the metallic uranium with high precision. Such production also takes time.
Finally, all of this has to be fit inside the bomb. The Iranians will most likely try to build a missile with a nuclear warhead, since it is unlikely that they will be able to carry the bomb on an airplane.
All these are time consuming processes that require time and experience. It does not appear that Iran today has a complete technical system for a bomb shell or a missile capable of carrying such a warhead. Fitting a missile to a bomb is a complicated process of its own, requiring minimization of the bomb’s dimensions and various corrective processes. In other words, the Iranians need at least another year and a half. In the meantime, Israel will have to act energetically, disrupting and delaying the Iranian nuclear project.
To summarize, it would be appropriate to say the following: there is no room for panic.
Certainly the Israeli security services are working hard, as they did during Netanyahu’s last term, and God willing, they are putting the brakes on the Iranian project.
Moreover, and most importantly:
Lubavitcher Rebbe SHLITA King Moshiach has promised us many times that the Land of Israel is the safest place in the world. Therefore, we can be firmly confident in the mercy of G-d, blessed be His Name, who protects and guards the people of Israel wherever they are. And especially in the Holy Land.
Let me remind you that we saw for ourselves how the Rebbe’s words were fulfilled during the Gulf War (the 32nd anniversary of which we commemorated not too long ago). Dozens of Scud missiles fell on Israel, but the number of casualties, contrary to the gloomy predictions of the experts, however, in full accordance with the Rebbe’s words, was not so great.
It gives us confidence in G-d, blessed be His name, who protects and guards us. Let us not fear unnecessarily, but let us have confidence in G-d and increase our commitment to the Torah and the commandments, with joy and love, in the firm belief that we will soon have true and complete Redemption.