Massive Setbacks to Iranian Nuclear Program

I. Intelligence Coup

While Ahmadinjad’s was in New York for the General Assembly, American intelligence pulled off a real coup by fascilitating the defection of Ahmadinejad’s personal cameraman, Hassan Golkhanban, along with an “intelligence treasure trove of up-to-date photographs and videos of top Iranian leaders visiting their most sensitive and secret nuclear and missile sites.” According to DEBKAFile:

For some years, Golkhanban worked not just as a news cameraman but personally recorded visits by the Iranian president and supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei of top-secret nuclear facilities and Revolutionary Guards installations.

When he left Tehran in the president’s party, his luggage was not searched and so he was able to bring out two suitcases packed with precious film and deliver it safely into waiting hands in New York.

The Iranian cameraman has given US intelligence the most complete and updated footage it has ever obtained of the interiors of Iran’s top secret military facilities and various nuclear installations, including some never revealed to nuclear watchdog inspectors. Among them are exclusive interior shots of the Natanz nuclear complex, the Fordo underground enrichment plant, the Parchin military complex and the small Amir-Abad research reactor in Tehran.

Some of the film depicts Revolutionary Guards and military industry chiefs explaining in detail to the president or supreme leader the working of secret equipment on view. Golkhanban recorded their voices.

II. 25-Nation Armada

Last month a 25-nation armada ran a giant war game in the Strait of Hormuz, simulating the kind of military cooperation which would be required to breach an Iranian blockade keep oil flowing through the Straits in case of war with Iran. This simulation not only provides important military readiness, but it sends a clear message to the Iranians that the international community will not tolerate a blockade.

III. Hyperinflation

As we reported on Wednesday, international sanction are starting to have a serious effect on the Iranian economy. Hyperinflation has caused the Iranian Rial to lose half of its value in a matter of months. The economy is on the “verge of collapse” according to the Israeli foreign ministry as Ahmadinjad’s regime is now faced with domestic unrest.

IV. Disarmament Plan

In desparation Iranian official have reported proposed a disarmament plan. However, this plan has been rejected as insufficient by the Obama administration. According to JTA,

The Iranian offer was to gradually suspend the production of uranium that can quickly be converted to military use. But American officials dismissed the proposal as unworkable because it requires too many concessions by the West, including the dismantling of all sanctions before uranian enrichment would cease, The New York Times reported. The plan calls for a step-by-step lifting of sanctions while the Iranians end work at one of two sites producing highly enriched uranium. Once the Iranians reach the last step, and the sanctions have been entirely lifted, there would be a suspension of the medium-enriched uranium production at the Fordow underground site, according to the plan, the Times reported.

Obama administration officials told the Times that the deal was intended to generate headlines but would not guarantee that Iran could not produce a weapon.