February 20, 2015

Why America’s Obsession With Iran’s Centrifuges Could Give Tehran the Bomb

By Ilan Goldenberg, and Robert D. Kaplan

Over the past two years, dozens of politicians and prognosticators have drawn various redlines that Iran should not cross lest it be “a screwdriver turn away from having a nuclear weapon,” as Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., said last week.

Mostly they focus on centrifuges, the water-heater-sized machines used to enrich uranium. You can understand why. Centrifuges are part of the elaborate process used to turn uranium ore into the metal core of atomic bombs. They are perhaps the most quantifiable part of the process. They are discrete objects that can be numbered.  

And that is what we do. We count things. It is one of the first skills we teach our children. It helps us put a little order in the universe. How many kids in the classroom? How many votes to elect a president? How many stars in the sky?

Read the full article at Defense One.

  • Ilan Goldenberg

    Senior Fellow and Director, Middle East Security Program

    Ilan Goldenberg is Senior Fellow and Director of the Middle East Security Program at the Center for a New American Security. He is a foreign policy and defense expert with ext...

  • Robert D. Kaplan

    Senior Fellow

    Robert D. Kaplan is a senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security, originally joining the Center in March 2008. He is the bestselling author of fifteen books on fo...