Sunday, March 30, 2008

CIA Chief's Personal Beliefs about Iran

The Jerusalem Post reported that CIA Director Michael Hayden believes Iran is pursuing a nuclear weapon.

Asked whether he believed Iranians were trying to develop a nuclear weapons program, Hayden replied: "Personal belief? Yes." "Why would the Iranians be willing to pay the international tariff they appear willing to pay for what they're doing now if they did not have, at a minimum...the desire to keep the option open to...develop a nuclear weapon and perhaps even more so, that they've already decided to do that," Hayden said.

"Why the continuing production of fissile material, and Natanz? They say it's for civilian purposes, and yet...states around the world have offered them fissile material under controls so they can have their...civilian nuclear program. But the Iranians have rejected that," he stated. "When you start looking at that, and you get, not just the United States, but you get the UN Security Council imposing sanctions on them, why would they go through that if it were not to develop the technology that would allow them to create fissile material not under international control," Hayden asked.

Hayden acknowledged the fact that many may be skeptical of this type of reasoning, as Saddam Hussein had also been uncooperative with international efforts to monitor Iraq's nuclear program, but no nuclear weapons were eventually found after the US invasion.

So we've been wrong before using such logic. What makes Mr. Hayden think he got it right this time? It's odd he used "personal belief." That is not a professional assessment. Could it be just another dice roll in George Bush's Middle East RISK game? Watch out when the boys pull out the lighter just hours after downing a jalapeno cheese steak burrito. The board could become aflame. Some things are hard to contain, including George W.'s propensity to solve problems via violence.