The Iranian regime is closer than ever before to creating a nuclear bomb, according to RAND Corporation researcher Gregory S. Jones.
At its current rate of uranium enrichment, Tehran could have enough for its first bomb within eight weeks, Jones said in a report published this week.
He added that despite reports of setbacks in its nuclear program, the Iranian regime is steadily progressing towards a bomb. Unfortunately, Jones says, there is nothing the US can do to stop Tehran, short of military occupation.
The researcher based his report on recent findings by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), published two weeks ago. Making the bomb will take around two months, he says, because constructing a nuclear warhead is a complicated step in the process.
Jones stresses that stopping Iran will require deploying forces on the ground, because airstrikes are no longer sufficient. The reality is that the US and Israel have failed to keep Iran from developing a nuclear warhead whenever it wants, Jones says.
It's time to recognize that this policy has failed and decide on the following steps, based on realistic assessment of Iranian uranium-enrichment efforts, he adds.
According to Jones, Tehran has produced 38.3 kg of uranium enriched at 19.7%. If its centrifuges continue to work at the current capacity, it will take around two months for the Iranian regime to produce the 20 kg of uranium enriched to 90% required for the production of a nuclear warhead.