Iran reaches nuclear capabilities: Israel has under six months to block Iran from the A-bomb
29.01.2023 | By Yishai Gelb
For decades Israel’s leaders attempted to thwart the Iranian regime's quest to develop nuclear weapons. The problem was that most of the world didn’t join Israel’s concerns and chose not to deter Iran with harsh penalties. Consequently, over the past few years Iran successfully produced highly enriched Uranium, and this past December, successfully produces enriched Uranium for a nuclear bomb. The estimate is that within six months Iran will have a working crude nuclear weapon. What will the next six months bring us, and what will the region look like in six months if Iran finally reaches its desired nuclear weapons?
After years of world leaders discussing possible options to block Iran’s road to a nuclear weapon, such efforts failed. The past few years enabled the Iranian regime to complete the enrichment faze successfully. Iran is on the highway toward reaching their first nuclear weapon, joining the exclusive club of nine other countries that poses the weapon.
Once Iran reaches nuclear capabilities, will the regime actually use them?
You never really know. So far Mutually Assured Destruction has worked to prevent countries from using their nuclear weapons. However, countries with nuclear weapons have the flexibility to act with fewer consequences. North Korea achieved nuclear capabilities in 2006. Having such weapons allows the regime to pursue domestic policies without outside interference granting the regime stability with an iron fist. Additionally, nuclear capabilities allow North Korea to act aggressively on the world stage without fearing military countermeasures that could threaten its existence.
For the Iranian regime, nuclear weapons are a must for regional domination. As an authoritarian state, the regime has no problem using force to preserve its power, and with a nuclear weapon, it won’t fear outside influence to topple the regime further strengthening the ayatollah's grip on the Persian empire.
Externally, Iran will have a much easier time spreading its influence in the region with minimal opposition. Iran already funds and support terror groups all over the Middle East, from Hammas in Gaza, Hizballah in Lebanon, and the Assad regime in Syria. With nuclear capabilities, Iran will have the confidence to act more aggressively without fearing retaliation. Israel will no longer have the confidence to attack Iranian positions within Iran, and assassinations will become extremely risky. The same goes for other countries in the Middle East that suffer from Iranian aggression.
Israel, the US, and the Gulf states have around six months to prevent an Iranian nuclear weapon. In mid-January, Israel and the US conducted their historically largest joint military operation named Juniper Oak. the exercise integrated unmanned aerial vehicles, strategic bombers, jet fighters, and precision fires. U.S. and Israeli forces conducted long-range strikes, suppression of enemy air defense, electronic attacks, offensive counter and air interdiction, and air operations in the maritime domain. In four days, these troops dropped more than 180,000 pounds of live munitions.
Such an exercise seems to establish military action against Iran as realistic. Such an operation will in all likelihood include some of the Gulf States, including Saudi Arabia. If such an attack doesn’t come before Iran completes its first nuclear bomb, then it might never come.
We are entering a dangerous time with world-changing consequences. Expect 2023 to be a turbulent year geopolitically, and a possible expansion of the European war to other regions in the world.