The spiritual leader of Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, is warning the U.S. to stay out of his country’s business – and, in particular, its nuclear program, which is set to resume this week.
Speaking on a tour of southeast Iran, Khamenei called the U.S. “arrogant,” “rude” and said the country “deserved a punch in the mouth.”
He also said Iran’s presidential elections in June would not make any difference to its nuclear policy.
Khamenei said it was not up to the U.S. to decide which countries needed nuclear technology.
Iran announced yesterday it is likely to resume uranium enrichment-related activities next week, following a breakdown in negotiations between the Shiite regime and the European Union.
Tehran’s announcement after talks in London with European negotiators yielded no results. France, Britain and Germany, acting on behalf of the 25-nation European Union, were seeking guarantees from Iran that it will not use its nuclear program to make weapons.
Top Iranian nuclear negotiator Hasan Rowhani was quoted as saying Tehran expects to restart enrichment activities injecting uranium gas into centrifuges at its uranium-conversion facility in Isfahan.
“It’s unlikely that uranium enrichment … which takes place in Natanz, will be resumed, but it’s likely that some activities at Isfahan Uranium Conversion Facility will restart next week,” Rowhani said today.
The central cities of Natanz and Isfahan house the heart of Iran’s nuclear program. The Isfahan conversion facility reprocesses uranium ore concentrate into gas, which is then taken to Natanz and fed into the centrifuges for enrichment.
Washington agreed to support the EU effort but signaled that Iran, which Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice last month labeled an “outpost of tyranny,” should quickly accept it or face harsh Security Council sanctions.
The breakdown in talks between Iran and Europe puts Tehran’s nuclear program back in the international spotlight and is likely to force Washington to react.
There is increasing concern within the administration and Congress over Iran’s missile program, which has been determined by a commission of U.S. scientists to pose a serious threat to U.S. security.
A report first published in Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin, a weekly, online, premium, intelligence newsletter affiliated with WND, revealed last week that Iran has been seriously considering an unconventional pre-emptive nuclear strike against the U.S.
An Iranian military journal publicly floated the idea of launching an electromagnetic pulse attack as the key to defeating the U.S.
Congress was warned of Iran’s plans last month by Peter Pry, a senior staffer with the Commission to Assess the Threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Pulse Attack in a hearing of Sen. John Kyl’s subcommittee on terrorism, technology and homeland security.
In an article titled, “Electronics to Determine Fate of Future Wars,” the journal explains how an EMP attack on America’s electronic infrastructure, caused by the detonation of a nuclear weapon high above the U.S., would bring the country to its knees.
“Once you confuse the enemy communication network you can also disrupt the work of the enemy command- and decision-making center,” the article states. “Even worse today when you disable a country’s military high command through disruption of communications, you will, in effect, disrupt all the affairs of that country. If the world’s industrial countries fail to devise effective ways to defend themselves against dangerous electronic assaults then they will disintegrate within a few years. American soldiers would not be able to find food to eat nor would they be able to fire a single shot.”
WND reported the Iranian threat last Monday, explaining Tehran is not only covertly developing nuclear weapons, it is already testing ballistic missiles specifically designed to destroy America’s technical infrastructure.
Pry pointed out the Iranians have been testing mid-air detonations of their Shahab-3 medium-range missile over the Caspian Sea. The missiles were fired from ships.
“A nuclear missile concealed in the hold of a freighter would give Iran or terrorists the capability to perform an EMP attack against the United States homeland without developing an ICBM and with some prospect of remaining anonymous,” explained Pry. “Iran’s Shahab-3 medium range missile mentioned earlier is a mobile missile and small enough to be transported in the hold of a freighter. We cannot rule out that Iran, the world’s leading sponsor of international terrorism might provide terrorists with the means to executive an EMP attack against the United States.”
Lowell Wood, acting chairman of the commission, said yesterday that such an attack – by Iran or some other actor – could cripple the U.S. by knocking out electrical power, computers, circuit boards controlling most automobiles and trucks, banking systems, communications and food and water supplies.
“No one can say just how long systems would be down,” he said. “It could be weeks, months or even years.”
EMP attacks are generated when a nuclear weapon is detonated at altitudes above a few dozen kilometers above the Earth’s surface. The explosion, of even a small nuclear warhead, would produce a set of electromagnetic pulses that interact with the Earth’s atmosphere and the Earth’s magnetic field.
“These electromagnetic pulses propagate from the burst point of the nuclear weapon to the line of sight on the Earth’s horizon, potentially covering a vast geographic region in doing so simultaneously, moreover, at the speed of light,” said Wood. “For example, a nuclear weapon detonated at an altitude of 400 kilometers over the central United States would cover, with its primary electromagnetic pulse, the entire continent of the United States and parts of Canada and Mexico.”
The commission, in its work over a period of several years, found that EMP is one of a small number of threats that has the potential to hold American society seriously at risk and that might also result in the defeat of U.S. military forces.
“The electromagnetic field pulses produced by weapons designed and deployed with the intent to produce EMP have a high likelihood of damaging electrical power systems, electronics and information systems upon which any reasonably advanced society, most specifically including our own, depend vitally,” Wood said. “Their effects on systems and infrastructures dependent on electricity and electronics could be sufficiently ruinous as to qualify as catastrophic to the American nation.”