Israel Targeting Iran's Nuclear Processing Plant

Inside The Ring

By Bill Gertz and Rowan Scarborough

August 29, 2003

Israel has ready a plan to bomb Iran's Bushehr nuclear-power plant should the Persian Gulf coast facility, now under construction, begin producing weapons-grade material, an insider tells us.

This source says Israel has mapped out a route its jet fighters would take to destroy what is designed to be a two-reactor plant. A successful strike would ensure that the radical Tehran regime does not develop nuclear weapons. Iran has tested 600-mile-range ballistic missiles that can reach Israel and carry nuclear, biological or chemical warheads.

Russia has signed an $800 million contract to provide two reactors for the plant near the port city of Bushehr. The United States opposes the deal, as well as any nuclear program in Iran.

Israeli F-16s penetrated Iraqi airspace in 1981 to bomb the Osiraq nuclear-power plant, at the Tuwaitha nuclear center near Baghdad. Analysts believe the action, while condemned by the international community, kept Saddam Hussein from acquiring the bomb.
U.S. Central Command has contingency plans for war with Iran, but there is no active discussion of invading a country that President Bush has put in the "axis of evil." Still, some in the Pentagon talk unofficially of what would be needed to take out the Bushehr plant.