Monday, December 03, 2007

U.S. report: Iran stopped nuclear weapons work in 2003

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Iran halted work toward a nuclear weapon under international scrutiny in 2003 and is unlikely to be able to produce enough enriched uranium for a bomb until 2010 to 2015, a U.S. intelligence report says.

A declassified summary of the latest National Intelligence Estimate found with "high confidence" that the Islamic republic stopped an effort to develop nuclear weapons in the fall of 2003.
There have been reports that this National Intelligence Estimate had been held up or kicked back because Dick Cheney didn't like it. (As in this article Spooks refuse to toe Cheney's line on Iran.) It looks like the intelligence community held firm. This makes an attack on Iran less likely.

Iran has no nuke program, U.S. intel says (LA Times)

The National Intelligence Estimate: Iran: Nuclear Intentions and Capabilities

We judge with high confidence that in fall 2003, Tehran halted its nuclear weapons program; we also assess with moderate-to-high confidence that Tehran at a minimum is keeping open the option to develop nuclear weapons. We judge with high confidence that the halt, and Tehran’s announcement of its decision to suspend its declared uranium enrichment program and sign an Additional Protocol to its Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Safeguards Agreement, was directed primarily in response to increasing international scrutiny and pressure resulting from exposure of Iran’s previously undeclared nuclear work.
Tehran’s decision to halt its nuclear weapons program suggests it is less determined to develop nuclear weapons than we have been judging since 2005. Our assessment that the program probably was halted primarily in response to international pressure suggests Iran may be more vulnerable to influence on the issue than we judged previously.
Atrios summarizes it: CIA To Dick Cheney: Suck. On. This.


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