Regard this as a supplement to War Warning, part 4.
[This is a document under construction in at least twenty-five parts over the next many months. (Caveat: this is not for Queasy Anonymous.)]
1. Below find the most helpful and signals intelligence meaty part of the Broad/Sanger version, published NYT Monday 17, of the status of Iran’s nuclear fuel production ability.
2. Significant is that A.Q. Khan is mentioned prominently. Best signals source points to Khan as the centerpiece of the new information with regard what Iran has and how soon it can convert its tech into weapons grade material for a production line of uranium warheads.
3. Last December, Khan provided a lengthy description of his work with Iran. Best signals source regards Khan as an honorable gentleman who gave up his lucrative opportunities to enable the building of the Arab bomb for clients that included not only Pakistan but also Iraq, Iran, Libya, Sudan, Syria, Saudi Arabia and the ever ambitious North Korea.
4. The Khan network includes technicians from all these countires, chiefly Iraq, North Korea, Iran, working together to produce the production line for uranium based bombs. North Korea has plutonium bombs. But Iran wants the uranium bombs from a full production cycle.
5. Best signals source says that Iran likely has one or two or three hand made nuclear warheads. Handmade. See the Broad/Sanger mention of a document that “sketches out how to shape uranium into perfect spheres, the tell-tale shape for a primitive weapon.”
6. China is the proliferator in chief. China knows — the PLA is the source — that Iran has the capability of producing uranium bomb production sooner, not later.
7. Iran works with Chinese bomb designs and with North Korean techs because it must build a weapon that fits the North Korean ballistic missile design warhead. The Fajar 3, recently launched in the wargames, has a North Korean warhead design.
8. Khan has fully cooperated, according to best signals source. Mushareff knows, Iran knows, North Korea knows, China knows, Russia knows, that the bomb construction in Iran is a consortium effort. Khan also knows that there is Saudi money in the pipeline for this success. (The Saudi princes bow to the Tehran apocalyptic vision. The Saudi princes pay both sides, pay all sides. The Saudi princes want to survive the UN-US-IRGC conflict.)
9. The suggestion is that the Natanz/Isfahan/Arak facilities are ruses. The suggestion is that the major effort is at another location: joined in by techs from all the above nationalisites and more (there are bomb-for-hire techs from many nations: South African source says that the rump of the Afrikaner bomb team may be in Iran) .
10. The suggestion also is that Iran knows that it needs time to produce the production line, and that it cannot risk the US coalition attacking first. Hence the germ of the Iran-will-pre-empt attack.
11. Note: Khan “sold” the Iranians nothing: he followed orders. The scale of the intrigue is Ummah wide and at least twenty years old.
12. Supplement necessarily incomplete. Am checking with best signals within twenty-four hours. Understand that the Broad/Sanger version serves as a confirmation that State and the National Security Apparatus are now working from good scripts. Khan is the key. Khan confirms Iran has the bomb apparatus and the bomb-makers. Khan confirms. Khan confirms. The Iran will have a self-produced nuclear warhead in five to ten year scenario does not appear sound when submitted to Khan Speaks.
“At the same time, intelligence reports circulating inside the American government, according to several officials who were granted anonymity because of the sensitivity of the information, have raised questions of whether the Iranian government’s decision to boast about its progress is part of an effort to hide more significant activity. They suspect that a clandestine program, if it exists, would concentrate on the P-2 because it can produce enriched uranium so fast. I.A.E.A. officials say solving the mystery of the P-2 shipments has become one of the most critical issues on which they need answers in the next two weeks, before Mr. ElBaradei issues a report to the United Nations Security Council on April 28. Other pressing questions include Iran’s reluctance to discuss a document found by inspectors – one that the Iranians were not willing to let the inspectors take out of the country – that sketches out how to shape uranium into perfect spheres, the tell-tale shape for a primitive weapon. Investigators say that document, too, appears to have come from the Khan network. It is also unclear whether Dr. Khan sold the Iranians a complete Chinese-made bomb design similar to the one Libya turned over to the United States when it gave up its weapons program. Questions about other copies of the bomb design have been met with silence, in Iran and in Pakistan. “Frankly, I don’t know whether he has passed these bomb designs to others,” Mr. Musharraf said. Even under a loose form of house arrest for the past two years, he said, Dr. Khan “sometimes has been hiding the facts.”
–Broad/Sanger, NYT, Mon 17 April