Thursday, July 10, 2008

Iran's nuclear threat to Europe

General Henry A. Obering, who heads the U.S. Missile Defense Agency, says in an interview for Radio Free Europe that he expects Iranian missiles will soon have a range to target all of Europe:
“Iran is obviously investing a lot of money in developing and fielding more and more capable missiles of longer and longer range," Obering said. "It doesn’t make sense to me that they would be making those investments, unless they had a weapons-of-mass-destruction program to match up with that, because that would justify that investment. Without that, only flying a conventional warhead of even a thousand kilograms or whatever the payload size may be, would not make sense.”

Obering also questions why Iran, if it is only concerned about regional threats, is seeking missiles with ranges that would extend well beyond the region.

“When you reach 2,000 kilometers, that is well beyond a range that you would need for a regional conflict with Israel," he said. "Within even 1,300 kilometers, you could reach most of the U.S. bases in the region. So it doesn’t make any sense in a regional context for them to be developing longer and longer range weapons. So I think it adds to the urgency as to why it’s important that we signed the agreement with the Czech Republic ... and that we continue to make progress in the development of these capabilities.”
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