MI Chief: Iran Has Crossed Nuclear Threshold

Military Intelligence chief Amos Yadlin told lawmakers yesterday that Iran has "crossed the technological threshold" for making a nuclear bomb.

He told the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee that the Islamic Republic has developed surface-to-surface missiles that can carry nuclear warheads.

Yadlin said achieving military nuclear capacity "was mainly dependent on a political decision by Iran."

According to Yadlin, the bottleneck in Iran's nuclear weapons program was in obtaining fissionable material.

He said the Islamic Republic's strategy is not merely to produce one bomb, which could force it into a conflict with the world, but to enrich a large amount of fissionable material at a low level of 4.5 percent. Iran claims it needs to do this for civilian purposes only, Yadlin said.

Once they decide to bring their low-grade uranium to weapon-grade enrichment levels (93%), they could produce the amount needed for a bomb within several months to a year, Yadlin said. However, the MI chief claimed that the "battle to prevent a nuclear Iran is not lost.The right combination of talks and sanctions, the carrot and the stick, could change Iran's policies," he said.