It’s pretty phenomenal to watch the world taking any claims that Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu makes as being serious; he has a very long history of spreading false intelligence reports or projections. It isn’t that he lacks intelligence; he graduated at the lauded MIT and went to the best schools. The fundamental problem is far worse than a matter of intelligence; in short – he’s a liar.
Over several decades – he’s been quite successful with putting on a magic show. Even though this isn’t his chosen profession – he has been fairly successful keeping the world’s attention focused with his left hand (Iran/Iraq) so no one is paying attention to his right hand (land theft in Palestine). It may be the longest running magic trick on record.
It’s also important to note the nature of nuclear programs. Iran is a signatory to the Treaty on Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons or NPT; under the treaty – it has the right to build a peaceful nuclear program and regularly has inspections on its program (with some issues and concerns). The Israeli government is widely known to have a nuclear stockpile and it has refused to sign the Non-Proliferation Treaty and has zero inspections by the IAEA. Having said that – here are several sourced quotes from Bibi Netanyahu regarding the always imminent, always dangerous Iranian nuclear program.
1992 via the Christian Science Monitor:
Israeli parliamentarian Benjamin Netanyahu tells his colleagues that Iran is 3 to 5 years from being able to produce a nuclear weapon – and that the threat had to be “uprooted by an international front headed by the US.”
1995 via Benjamin Netanyahu’s book Fighting Terrorism:
The best estimates at this time place Iran between three and fve years away from possessing the prerequisites required for the independent production of nuclear weapons. After this time, the Iranian Islamic republic will have the ability to construct atomic weapons without the importation of materials or technology from abroad.
1995 via Jerusalem Post:
Within three to five years, we can assume that Iran will become autonomous in its ability to develop and produce a nuclear bomb, without having to import either the technology or the material. [The nuclear threat] must be uprooted by an international front headed by the US. It necessitates economic sanctions on Iran.
1996 in his speech to the United States Congress:
The most dangerous of these regimes is Iran, that has wed a cruel despotism to a fanatic militancy. If this regime, or its despotic neighbor Iraq, were to acquire nuclear weapons, this could presage catastrophic consequences, not only for my country, and not only for the Middle East, but for all mankind.
Only the United States can lead this vital international effort to stop the nuclearization of terrorist states. But the deadline for attaining this goal is getting extremely close.
1997 in his interview with David Frost at the BBC:
Iran is unseen, unperturbed and undisturbed … building a formidable arsenal of ballistic missiles, actually inter-continental ballistic missiles” that initially will reach the rest of the Middle East …. Stage two it would reach Britain and stage three, believe it or not, they actually plan to reach the eastern seaboard of the United States, Manhattan … Now this sounds fantastic, but Iran is, wants to be a world power with the world ideology of fundamentalist domination, seeing the West as its great enemy and it seeks to have the weapons to back up that ideology.’
1998 Netanyahu quoted via the NY Daily News:
You have to ask yourself what will happen in the Middle East if Iran detonates a nuclear weapon. The whole face of the Middle East will change at once … efforts must be redoubled to prevent Iran from acquiring missile and nuclear technology that could destabilize the world.
September 24th, 2001 – thirteen days after the September 11th terrorist attacks – Netanyahu spoke to the U.S. House Government Reform Committee where he compared Iran, Iraq, Syria and Palestine to Osama Bin Laden; he also stated:
The US must do everything in its power to prevent regimes like Iran and Iraq from developing nuclear weapons, and disarm them of their weapons of mass destruction.
2009 via Wikileaks:
Netanyahu said he did not know for certain how close Iran was to developing a nuclear weapons capability, but that “our experts” say Iran was probably only one or two years away and that was why they wanted open ended negotiations.
2009 via Wikileaks:
Netanyahu responded that Iran has the capability now to make one bomb or they could wait and make several bombs in a year or two.
2009 via an interview with the Atlantic:
You don’t want a messianic apocalyptic cult controlling atomic bombs. When the wide-eyed believer gets hold of the reins of power and the weapons of mass death, then the world should start worrying, and that’s what is happening in Iran.
2010 via Fox News:
I can tell you one thing, Iran is closer to developing nuclear weapons today than it was a week ago, or a month ago or a year ago. It’s just moving on with its efforts. And I think there is a great danger to the world, not only to my country but to the United States, to the Middle East, to peace, to all of humanity, from the prospect that such a regime that brutalizes its own people, that sponsors terrorism more than any other regime in the world — that this regime acquires atomic bombs is very, very dangerous.
2012 via the Jerusalem Post:
[An Iranian nuclear bomb] was a lot further away 15 years ago when I started talking about it. It was a lot further away 10 years ago. It was a lot further away five years. It was a lot further away five months ago. They are getting there, and they are getting very, very close.
September 28th, 2012 at the United Nations:
By next spring, at most by next summer at current enrichment rates, [Iran] will have finished the medium enrichment and move on to the final stage. From there, it’s only a few months, possibly a few weeks before they get enough enriched uranium for the first bomb.
2013 during his interview with Charlie Rose:
Iran, Charlie, would not be interested in having one bomb or two bombs. They’re gearing up with their infrastructure for 200 bombs. And they’re not developing those ICBMs for us. They can reach us with what they have. It’s for you.
2014 on Fox News responding to Iran’s statement they are not building nuclear weapons:
It’s a joke. Of course, they’re developing nuclear weapons. They’ve invested, if not billions, you can start counting it in maybe in hundreds of billions of dollars — for what, for creating medical isotopes for Iranian patients circling the Earth? What are they developing ICBMs for if not for nuclear warheads? What are they developing these — building these enormous underground nuclear facilities if not for nuclear weapons?
So, this is a sham. I mean, I don’t think anybody could take this seriously.
And now – the Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu is coming to speak to the U.S. Congress to undermine President Obama’s attempts to negotiate a peaceful resolution with the Iranian government regarding the details of their nuclear program. Quite simply – he’s coming to the United States to explain to the American people why the only solution with Iran is a military solution. His main goal is to push Congress to pass a bill with sanctions against the Iranian government with enough votes to override a veto by President Obama and thus completely undermining the authority of the most powerful office in the world – the President of the United States.
Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu is also telling the U.S. media that President Obama’s negotiations (which he doesn’t have the details on) would only delay an Iranian nuclear weapons program by six weeks (source). And not that it’s surprising but someone leaked Israeli intelligence reports that contradict Prime Minister Netanyahu’s claims that Iran is building a nuclear problem (source).
And it isn’t just Bibi Netanyahu – various members of the Israeli government have been claiming this since the early 1990’s as chronicled by Salon. PolicyMic did a great job showing a timeline of inaccurate predictions i.e. lies made by various Israeli government officials HERE.
I can’t look at him [Netanyahu] anymore, he’s a liar.
~French President Sarkozy
Other Nuclear Facts You Should Know About Netanyahu
In 2002 – then Mr. Netanyahu testified to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform where he made the same definitive claims regarding an Iraqi nuclear program:
There is no question whatsoever that Saddam is seeking and is working and is advancing towards the development of nuclear weapons – no question whatsoever.
You can watch that starting at 1:32 below:
In between accusations that Iran and Iraq had been developing a nuclear program – Bibi Neanyahu spent his time conducting espionage against the U.S. government. The FBI declassified files showing Benjamin Netanyahu’s involvement in “Project Pinto” where he along with other Israelis participated in the clandestine program to smuggle nuclear triggers out of the United States:
A 1985–2002 investigation into how a network of front companies connected to the Israeli Ministry of Defense illegally smuggled nuclear triggers out of the U.S.* The newly released FBI files detail how Richard Kelly Smyth — who was convicted of running a U.S. front company — met with Benjamin Netanyahu in Israel during the smuggling operation. At that time, Netanyahu worked at the Israeli node of the smuggling network, Heli Trading Company. Netanyahu, who currently serves as Israel’s prime minister, recently issued a gag order that the smuggling network’s unindicted ringleader refrain from discussing “Project Pinto.
As for the truth – Nuclear weapons expert wrote the following letter to Prime Minister Netanyahu in 2012 via Veterans Today:
Dear Prime Minister Netanyahu:
Iran may be in your red zone, but can not score. Sure, Iran could divert a few tons of 3.5% or a ton of 20% enriched uranium hexaflouride gas for enrichment to 90+%. But what then? No one has ever made a nuclear weapon from gas. It must be converted to metal and fabricated into components which are then assembled with high explosives.
Iran lacks experience with and facilities for these processes which are very dangerous because of potential for a criticality accident or nuclear explosion. Iran would not jeopardize its important, fully safeguarded nuclear programs by an attempt to have a deliverable, one kiloton yield nuclear weapon ten to fifteen years later.
IMPORTANT NOTE: North Korea was able to make and test a nuclear explosive soon after withdrawing from safeguards because plutonium for reactor recycle was in a form usable for a weapon. Israeli Consul-General for the South East United States Reda Mansour and I discussed these and related issues about nuclear technology in a March 2009 meeting. Earlier, I had provided information to him from experiences with nuclear weapons and knowledge of nuclear programs in other nations that there was no potential weapon threat from Iran’s nuclear programs
Soon after my meeting with Consul General Mansour, I sent information about lack of an Iranian nuclear weapon threat by e-mail to you and President Obama and discussed the issue with then IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei. Dr. ElBaradei was aware that IAEA inspectors do not understand technology for designing and producing weapons but instead rely on long ‘trigger’ lists of items that could – but mostly do not – indicate work on weapons. He agreed with me that there was no weapon threat from Iran’s fully safeguarded nuclear programs.
President Obama asked U.S. FBI special agents to meet with me to verify my information. Responses from your office indicated awareness that my information was accurate. The New York Times published three of my letters explaining no Iranian nuclear weapon threat and including my experiences with weapons and weapon threat assessment.
A major problem is that very few understand the complex chemical engineering technology used to produce nuclear materials and components for weapons. Israel’s weapons are plutonium-based, implosion-type. Israeli officials do not understand the technology for a uranium-based, gun-type nuclear weapon that Iran could hypothetically build.
During discussions with officials and staff of US national security agencies and others in Washington, DC, and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in Vienna, Austria from 1972 to 1997, I never met anyone who understood the technology used for producing nuclear materials and nuclear components for weapons.
All chemical companies who managed and all government chemical engineers (such as myself) who directed programs for production of nuclear materials and components have left the US government, which has lost the ability to produce most nuclear materials and components for weapons and assess ability of other nations to do so.
Current IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano does not appreciate the limitations of inspectors and accepts their findings of suspicious activities that are not. For example, testing of high explosives at the Parchin military site could indicate testing for more sophisticated plutonium-based, implosion-type weapons, but not the simple hypothetical weapon of Iran Appropriate denial of access to inspectors leads to further criticism and false claims.
Please share this information with all Israelis and end threats of military actions against important, fully safeguarded nuclear facilities.
I would be pleased to provide clarification or additional information about these issues.
Best wishes for peace! Clinton Bastin
Copies to US President Barack Obama and IAEA Director General Yukiya Amato
The fact is that the Israeli government has been concerned about three neighboring countries which have been able to compete militarily with it over many decades: Syria, Iran and Iraq. Outside of those three countries – there are no neighboring countries that pose a conventional military threat to it.
With the support of the Israeli neo-hawks and flawed intelligence provided by the Israeli government – the United States deposed Saddam Hussein ultimately ending any near term threat from an Iraqi government for decades. The Syrian government has been the target of a proxy war (not a civil war) funded by Saudi Arabia and Qatar with an assist from the U.S., Israel, Egypt and Turkey at least. Syria’s borders don’t even exist anymore thanks to years of terrorism and now ISIS. Iran is the proverbial last man standing to challenge Israeli military superiority and influence in the region.
That is until the United States is “forced to defend itself” with a pre-emptive, unilateral attack to stop the imminent threat of a nuclear weapon of course. But keep watching Dancing with the Stars….