Assessing the Damage to Iran's Nuclear Weapons Effort

(Institute for National Security Studies-Tel Aviv University) Maj.-Gen. (ret.) Amos Yadlin and Brig.-Gen. (ret.) Assaf Orion - Iranian nuclear weapons were Gen. Mohsen Fakhrizadeh's life's mission. The damage to Iran's nuclear weapons effort, which experts consider to be very significant, is not necessarily due to the loss of scientific knowledge, but due to the loss of project leadership, managerial experience, and access to Iran's top political echelon. It is possible that his departure will lengthen the time Iran needs for a nuclear weapons breakout or sneak-out. Those with such leadership, management, and professional abilities are few and far between, and their loss leaves a void that is difficult to fill. It seems that Mohsen Fakhrizadeh joins others such as Imad Mughniyeh and Qasem Soleimani, whose positions were filled but could not be replaced. While there have been condemnations of the killing as an act of terrorism against civilians, it is perhaps more appropriate to treat it as an offensive operation against a key officer in a strategic sector. Maj.-Gen. (ret.) Amos Yadlin, former head of IDF Military Intelligence, is director of INSS. Brig.-Gen. (ret.) Assaf Orion, former head of the Strategic Division in the Planning Directorate of the IDF General Staff, is a senior research fellow at INSS.

2020-12-03 00:00:00

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