United States presidential election, 2008: Staying tough on Iran

The National Intelligence Estimate report on Iran’s nuclear capabilities states:

“We judge with moderate confidence that the earliest possible date Iran would be technically capable of producing enough HEU for a weapon is late 2009, but that this is very unlikely. We judge with moderate confidence Iran probably would be technically capable of producing enough HEU for a weapon sometime during the 2010-2015 time frame. (INR judges Iran is unlikely to achieve this capability before 2013 because of foreseeable technical and programmatic problems.) All agencies recognize the possibility that this capability may not be attained until after 2015.”

Rudy Giuliani released a new campaign ad in which he remembers the Iran hostage crisis and the significance of an incoming tough-talking president. Hostages were held for 444 days, he recounts, but “the one hour in which they released them was the one hour in which Ronald Reagan was taking the oath of office for the president of the United States.”

Rudy Giuliani also said the United States must “make it clear” that Iran will not be allowed to gain nuclear capabilities. “If we’re clear about that, I think the sanctions would have a better chance of working. If we become ambiguous, if we go back to a more defensive posture … it would seem to me that would be a mistake,” he said.

In a commentary released yesterday, Fred Thompson wrote that the National Intelligence Estimate on Iran “doesn’t change my view of that we need to restrain Iran.”


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