“Iran is moving ‘very quickly’ towards production of a nuclear bomb and could have a weapon within two years,” the United Press International reported.The following October, former US President Barack Obama followed with a new deadline – that Iran is a year away from making a nuclear bomb.
The quote was published in a 1984 article headlined “‘Ayatollah’ bomb in production for Iran” but it might as well have been published today.
For more than three decades Western politicians and the press have been claiming that Iran is a nuclear threat.
Israeli leaders Benjamin Netanyahu and Shimon Peres echoed this claim numerous times in the 1990s, warning that Iran would build an atomic bomb by the next decade.
In the fall of 2012, Netanyahu declared at the United Nations General Assembly meeting – with his infamous bomb cartoon – that Iran would be able to build a nuclear weapon by June 2013.
Most recently, the press reported earlier this month that Yossi Cohen, head of Israel’s Mossad intelligence agency, stated he is “100 percent certain” that Iran is seeking to build a nuclear weapon. And yet, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has released eight statements over the years confirming that Tehran has been meeting its nuclear commitments fully.
In July 2015, a landmark nuclear deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) was reached between Iran and the P5+1 countries: China, France, Russia, the UK, the US plus Germany, in which Iran agreed to reduce its enrichment of uranium, curbing its nuclear programme and ending decades of sanctions on the country.
While Iran has proved to be following its commitments, US President Donald Trump has found a new threat – Iran’s ballistic missile programme – and has threatened to scrap the nuclear agreement, which he has called the “worst deal ever”.