This is an interesting story:
One of Iran's top nuclear scientists, Ardeshir Hassanpour, a professor at the university of Shiraz, has died under mysterious circumstances. Hassanpour's death was announced by Iranian state television, a week late, on Thursday. No reason was given for his death. The scientist was proclaimed the best scientist in the military field in the Islamic Republic in 2003. Hassanpour directed the centre for nuclear electromagnetic studies he had founded in 2005.
He had also co-founded the center for atomic research in Isfahan, the most important in the country, Iranian state television reported.
Last year, Ardeshir Hassanpour was awarded Iran's most prestigious scientific award, the Kharazmi prize.
The Times UK posits a theory:
An intelligence source suggested that Ardeshire Hassanpour, 44, a nuclear physicist, had been assassinated by Mossad, the Israeli security service.
Hassanpour worked at a plant in Isfahan where uranium hexafluoride gas is produced. The gas is needed to enrich uranium in another plant at Natanz which has become the focus of concerns that Iran may be developing nuclear weapons.
Rheva Bhalla of Stratfor, the US intelligence company, claimed on Friday that Hassanpour had been targeted by Mossad and that there was “very strong intelligence” to suggest that he had been assassinated by the Israelis, who have repeatedly threatened to prevent Iran acquiring the bomb.
Did Hassenpour die from sloppy work with his gasses, or was he knocked off by the Israelis? Hard to tell, as we know the Mossad is to blame for every sparrow that falls in every corner of the globe, but this tale has a ring of truth to it; this is the type of work that the Mossad specializes in.
Although based on the following, it is more than possible that simple sloppiness in the rush to build 'dem nukes could have had a key role in poor Mr. Hassanpour's passing:
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is expected to announce next Sunday — the 28th anniversary of the Islamic revolution — that 3,000 centrifuges have been installed at Natanz, enabling Iran to move closer to industrial scale uranium enrichment.
Inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency say that hundreds of technicians and labourers have been “working feverishly” to assemble equipment at the plant.
Well, geee, I don't know...maybe Israel should be condemned should this story be true, because after all, the Washington Post's cringing chicken de jour, Paul R. Pillar, tells us:
Iran is still several years from acquiring a nuclear weapon...
How malleable (and how well-defined) are Tehran's intentions...?
Well, Paul, they are working "feverishly", as per your precious UN, and have openly declared their ambition to "wipe Israel off the map". That doesn't sound like "years", and their aims are pretty well defined to anyone who has picked up a newspaper in the last two years...
Awww...little Pauli's scared, that all, and it is OK for a Holocaust to be perpetuated, as long as we don't get our pretty pink toes burned:
How would Tehran respond to an act of war? What terrorism might it launch against the United States?
Thank God for Israel, and the Mossad.