Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Iran Increases Nuclear Stockpile

While we're focusing on whether some small time preacher burns some Qu'rans, the real game continues under the radar.

The centrifuges continue to run and Iran has increased it's stockpile of enriched uranium by 15%.A stockpile of this size means that if Iran decided to further enrich this uranium to weapons grade - 20% or higher - they would have the material needed to manufacture three nuclear weapons in fairly short order.

According to the IAEA's latest report, Iran is actively preventing surveillance of its nuclear program by vetoing the nomination of inspectors an dby simply not allowing the inspectors it does vet to see certain facilities. “[This] hampers the inspection process and thereby detracts from the agency’s capability to implement effective and efficient safeguards in Iran,” the report said.

The report also said that Iran had continued improving its heavy water reactor at Arak site, but without allowing inspectors full access to it. A heavy water reactor, by the way, has no real peaceful application.

“The passage of time and the possible deterioration in the availability of some relevant information increases the urgency of this matter,” according to the report. “Iran has not provided the necessary co-operation to permit the agency to confirm that all nuclear material in Iran is in peaceful activities.”

Gee, what a surprise!

Meanwhile, in a related development the Chinese are building a direct rail link to Iran and are signing a $2 billion deal with Iran to do it.

A direct rail line would allow China to continue to actively trade with Iran even if we eventually wise up and institute a naval blockade.Oh, and it would directly connect North Korea and Pakistan to Iran as well.

Sanctions? What sanctions?

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