Iran Digs in With Its Uranium Enrichment Facilities

“Iran may move its uranium enrichment facilities to safer locations if this becomes necessary, a senior military commander said Wednesday,” reports the Associated Press. Gholam Reza Jalali, commander of a Revolutionary Guard anti-sabotage unit “did not elaborate on possible sites for the relocation of nuclear facilities.” But Iran had already announced that

… it was moving some of its centrifuges to Fordo, just north of the holy city of Qom, because that site offered better protection from possible airstrikes but did not later elaborate on the move or say whether the centrifuges came from Natanz.

A Reuters piece referred to “the commander of the elite Revolutionary Guards [who] was quoted … on Wednesday as saying that Iran will move its uranium enrichment plants to safer sites if necessary, without elaborating.” Jumping into the void, reporter Fredrik Dahl elaborated. [I know: fourth time that word has been used in this post thus far -- Ed.]

Iranian experts have carried out the necessary preparations at Fordow … paving the way for the Islamic Republic to start higher-grade uranium enrichment. … “They are ready to start feeding,” a diplomatic source said, referring to the process in which low-enriched uranium gas is [weaponized].

Still

… it is unclear whether Tehran, subject to increasingly strict international sanctions restricting its ability to obtain nuclear technology abroad, has the means and components to make the more sophisticated machines in bigger numbers. “We should not overestimate the progress,” one diplomatic source said.

The West assumes that Iran is taking its enrichment facilities underground to hide high enrichment of uranium for nuclear weapons. But, as mentioned above, the “site offered better protection from possible airstrike.” As the AP reports, “Jalili said the existing infrastructure has already been ‘a kind of deterrent’ against attacks.”

Meanwhile, in the United States, the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal survey posed this question to 1,000 respondents:

If Iran continues with its nuclear research and is close to developing a nuclear weapon, do you believe that the United States should or should not initiate military action to destroy Iran’s ability to make nuclear weapons? … And do you feel strongly about that, or not?

Should Initiate Military Action

Feel strongly ……………………………….. 40 40

Do not feel strongly ………………………. 14 12

Should NOT Initiate Military Action

Do not feel strongly ………………………. 15 12

Feel strongly ……………………………….. 23 23

The mainstream media takes on faith that the new report on Iran’s nuclear work is proof that Iran is developing nuclear weapons. Thus, it’s curious that, under “Should Initiate Military Action,” the new column of figures (left) hasn’t changed much from the second column of figures, which is from four months ago. One would think that in response to media reports on the IAEA report that the number in favor of war would increase.

Perhaps it’s good news that the number who feel strongly for war hasn’t increased and the number who do not feel strongly has increased, suggesting doubts about war rather than succumbing to saber rattling. But the number who feel strongly about “Should NOT Initiate Military Action” remains the same. Maybe, then, any optimism is unwarranted and the public has, for the most part, simply tuned the subject out because of concerns about the economy.