Iran’s satellite launch earlier this month should have been a wake-up call. Instead, the West has reached over and hit the snooze button.
Swift, vigorous measures need to be taken to deal with the new reality that Iranians, who could possess a nuclear weapon by the end of next year, have demonstrated that their Safir 2 rocket, which was used as the launch vehicle, is able to deliver a warhead to southern Europe.
The New York Times reported:
The Iranian rocket had two stages, Mr. [Charles] Vick said. If it were carrying a small warhead, he said, the Iranian missile could fire the weapon about 2,500 kilometers, or slightly more than 1,550 miles. The rocket could send a weapon to targets in Israel, but experts said that Iran had already possessed that capability.
That falls short of the range of an intercontinental ballistic missile, Mr. Vick said. For Iran to achieve that technical step, he added, it would have to develop a more powerful basic rocket or more upper stages — two goals that weapons experts think it is pursuing.
Dr. [Charles] Ferguson of the Council on Foreign Relations said that Iran’s technical advance, if translated into a military missile, might put a warhead within range of southern Europe, including Turkey, Greece, and Italy.
Heritage Foundation senior fellow and former deputy assistant secretary of defense Peter Brookes’ reaction to the launch: “In theory, if you can launch a ballistic missile that can place a satellite into Earth orbit, you have the scientific wherewithal to hit a target anywhere on Earth with a warhead.”
Most Europeans and Americans are not keenly aware that Iran is on track to having the ability to threaten Kuwait City, Riyadh, Dubai, Istanbul, Athens, Rome, Berlin, Paris, London, New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles with nuclear weapons. They are oblivious to the ultimate aim of the Iranian nuclear weapons program: to transform Iran into the dominant global superpower by enabling its regime to attain hegemonic control of the petroleum production of all of the Gulf region’s oil states, while preventing the West from taking military action against Iran by deploying missiles that can obliterate Western cities. Instead, Americans and Europeans are under the impression that the program’s main goal is the destruction of Israel.