A senior US security official Sunday disagreed with the assessment that Iran now knows how to make a nuclear bomb.
According to the Sunday New York Times, a secret International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report says that Iran has “sufficient information to be able to design and produce a workable” atom bomb.
US National Security Adviser James Jones, however, disputed the IAEA’s findings. Asked on CNN’s “State of the Union” if Iran has the data to make a nuclear bomb, he said: “No, we stand by the reports that we’ve put out.” [continued…]
US lawmakers on Sunday vowed quick action against Iran following a report that weapons experts believe Tehran has the know-how to build an atomic bomb — even as a senior US official downplayed the news article.
A chorus of congressional voices, both Republican and Democratic, urged tough action against Tehran following a New York Times report that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has determined Iran now has “sufficient information” to build a nuclear weapon.
US lawmakers said the revelation warranted an immediate and severe response. [continued…]
In June 2005, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s meteoric rise from mayor of Tehran to president of one of the most influential countries in the Middle East took everyone by surprise. One of the main reasons for the astonishment was that so little was known about him.
One recently published claim about his background comes from an article in the Daily Telegraph. Entitled “Mahmoud Ahmadinejad revealed to have Jewish past”, it claims that his family converted to Islam after his birth. The claim is based on a number of arguments, a key one being that his previous surname was Sabourjian which “derives from weaver of the sabour, the name for the Jewish tallit shawl in Persia”.
Professor David Yeroshalmi, author of The Jews of Iran in the 19th century and an expert on Iranian Jewish communities, disputes the validity of this argument. “There is no such meaning for the word ‘sabour’ in any of the Persian Jewish dialects, nor does it mean Jewish prayer shawl in Persian. Also, the name Sabourjian is not a well-known Jewish name,” he stated in a recent interview. In fact, Iranian Jews use the Hebrew word “tzitzit” to describe the Jewish prayer shawl. Yeroshalmi, a scholar at Tel Aviv University’s Center for Iranian Studies, also went on to dispute the article’s findings that the “-jian” ending to the name specifically showed the family had been practising Jews. “This ending is in no way sufficient to judge whether someone has a Jewish background. Many Muslim surnames have the same ending,” he stated. [continued…]