Iranian top military official warned on Saturday of a “heavy price” for aggressors according state media, after a report of U.S and Israeli plans for possible military drills to prepare for air strikes against Iran’s nuclear facilities if diplomacy fails.
“Providing conditions for military commanders to test Iranian missiles with real targets will cost the aggressors a heavy price,” Nournews which has connections with Iran’s top security body said on Twitter citing an unnamed military official.
A senior U.S. official told Reuters on Thursday that U.S. and Israeli defense chiefs were expected to discus possible military exercise that would prepare for a worst-case scenario to destroy Iran’s nuclear facilities should diplomacy fail and if their nation’s leaders request it.
The scheduled U.S. talks with visiting Israeli defense minister Benny Gant follow an October 25 briefing by Pentagon leaders to white house national security adviser Jake Sullivan on the full set of military options available to ensure that Iran would not be able to produce a nuclear weapon.
Iran has for many years been denying seeking to acquire nuclear weapons saying it wanted to master nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.
U.S.and Israeli officials’ plan of air strikes against Iran’s nuclear sites indicates the difficulty in nuclear talks to revive Iran’s nuclear deal reached in 2015 but the U.S. under the Trump administration abandoned it in 2018.
While U.S and EU talk much, Iran’s nuclear program has been advancing despite a few cyber attacks against its nuclear facilities by Israel and reports indicate that Iran might have enough enriched uranium very soon if talks to revive Iran nuclear deal fails.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said last week that Iran had started the process of enriching Uranium to up to 20% purity with one cascade or cluster of 166 advanced IR-6 machines at its secret nuclear facility, Fordow plant which is built under the mountain making it harder to attack.
In 2015, Iran had agreed to strick limits its uranium enrichment activities for sanction relief which extended the time it would need for Iran to produce enough fissile materials for a nuclear weapon if it wanted to at least from one year from 3 to 2 months which was shorter according to military experts.
Although U.S. President Joe Biden has repeatedly said that Iran will never be allowed to get a nuclear weapon, U.S. options to stop Iran from developing the weapon seems limited except the U.S carrying out air strikes against Iran nuclear facilities which do not grantee the destruction of all Iranian fissile materials but may result into an all-out war between two countries threatening regional stability.
According to CIA director Bill Burns said on Monday that the CIA doesn’t believe Iran’s supreme leader has decided to take steps to weaponize a nuclear device but noted advances in its ability to enrich uranium, one pathway to the fissile material for a bomb.
“But they are further a long in their mastery of the nuclear fuel cycle and that’s the kind of Knowledge that is very difficult to sanction away or make disappear as well.
U.S. military officials have also long been worried about U.S’s ability to detect and destroy dispersed components of Iran’s nuclear weaponization program once enough fissile material for a bomb were produced.
Iran so far has the largest numbers of ballistic missiles in the region numbering in their thousands and many of them can reach its neighbouring countries.
If a war breaks out between Iran and U.S and Israel, people have all along feared that it may turn in to a regional war if not world war III.