According to Haaretz, a new US intelligence report shows that the American intelligence community has begun to adopt Israel’s assessment, that Iran is making notable strides in its development of a nuclear weapon.
The National Intelligence Estimate (NIE), recently presented to US President Barack Obama, includes “alarming” intelligence about Iran’s nuclear programme, including marked progress on key elements of its weaponisation drive, Haaretz reports this morning.
The report is in stark contrast to the 2007 NIE on Iran, which reported Tehran had given up on its nuclear weapons programme in 2003 and had not returned to it. The 2007 report on the Iranian issue included a non-classified abstract, but since then all NIEs on Iran have been kept away from the public eye.
The new NIE, compiled by the staff in the Director of National Intelligence office, represents the coordinated judgments of the 16 separate agencies that make up the US intelligence community. Since NIEs are classified documents they are not released to the public, and the Haaretz report is based on unnamed Western diplomats and Israeli officials.
Earlier this week, Haaretz reported that new intelligence showed a surprising speeding up of military elements of Iran’s nuclear programme, a view accepted by Israel, the US, Britain, France and Germany.