A group of non-proliferation experts on Monday warned Iran will be able to produce enough weapons-grade uranium for a nuclear bomb by mid-2014, and recommended that the United States enforce an international embargo on all trade and investments with Iran.
The 155-page report, titled "U.S. Nonproliferation Strategy for the Changing Middle East," also urges President Obama to send a "crystal clear" message to the Iranian leadership that the U.S. will bomb the country if it does not abandon its alleged program. Obama has repeatedly said that a nuclear-armed Iran is unacceptable and that "we will never take military options off the table."
"The president should explicitly declare that he will use military force to destroy Iran's nuclear program if Iran takes additional decisive steps toward producing a bomb," the report recommends.
"The United States," it adds, "should ramp up sanctions against Iran so as to bring the date of maximal economic pressure nearer by significantly increasing the sanctions' impact on Iran's international trade and investment, Iranian government revenue, capital flows, inflation, foreign exchange rates, and overall macroeconomic stability, with any necessary calibrations to reflect concessions Iran may make in the course of negotiations."
The report's conclusions aren't as imminent as those from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has said Iran will have enough uranium to produce a bomb by this spring or early summer.
The report was written by David Albright of the Institute for Science and International Security; Mark Dubowitz, executive director of The Foundation for the Defense of Democracies; Orde Kittrie, law professor at the Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law; Leonard Spector, deputy director of the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies; and Michael Yaffe of the Near East, South Asia Center for Strategic Studies at the National Defense University.