February 4, 2007

Israeli Assassination of Iranian Nuclear Scientist

Mossad LogoAccording to press reports citing an American-funded Farsi-language radio station, Israeli intelligence service (Mossad) killed an Iranian nuclear physicist involved in Iran's uranium enrichment program. Radio Farda, part of the Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty program funded by the U.S. government, announced that Dr. Ardeshir Hassanpur died on January 15 of mysterious circumstances, hinting that it was actually an assassination orchestrated by the Mossad.

Killing Hassanpur would accomplish several things for the Israelis. Hassanpur worked at the Isfahan nuclear technology center, where uranium hexafluoride gas is produced. After the gas is isolated, it is sent to the enrichment facility at Natanz. The loss of Hassanpur may slow this effort, but more importantly it shows that Israel is both willing and capable of striking individuals inside Iran

There is precedent for this alleged assassination. In March 1990, Israeli agents killed Gerald Bull, a Canadian engineer involved in the Iraqi Scud modification program and the designer of the long-range cannon called Project Babylon. Both of these weapons were designed to allow the delivery of chemical (or possibly biological and nuclear) warheads to Israel. Bull was gunned down outside his home in Belgium

They've done it before - maybe they did it again.