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September 28, 2011
How close is Iran to making the bomb?
As this Reuters piece points out, it depends who you talk to. There are estimates ranging from two months to two years, depending on what kind of bomb we're talking about and whether you believe the Iranians are further along in enrichment technology than we think. There is little doubt that if Iran kicked inspectors out of the country that they could probably enrich their stockpile of LEU - Low Enriched Uranium - to the 85-90% threshold necessary to construct a bomb in a matter of months. The problem is in figuring out how far along they are in building a technologically feasible delivery system like a missile: A paper published by the U.S. Bipartisan Policy Center think-tank said Iran could make 20 kg of HEU -- a quantity it said would be enough for one device -- in two months. It said it remained unclear if Iran had mastered the technology to turn the HEU into a weapon, but that history suggested this could be achieved in less than six months. But another Washington-based...(Read Full Post)