The mysterious Stuxnet worm attack on Iranian nuclear centrifuges was devastatingly effective—until the centrifuges it destroyed were quickly replaced, the Washington Post reports. UN cameras recorded cartloads of equipment being removed after they were rendered useless by the cyber-weapon—more than 900 centrifuges are thought have been destroyed—but replacements were then brought in and installed in short order.
"They have been able to quickly replace broken machines," a US diplomat said. "The Iranians appeared to be working hard to maintain a constant, stable output" of low-enriched uranium. A report by the Institute for Science and International security found that Iran's production remained on track. As a result, foes might have to settle for a moral victory: "If nothing else, it hit their confidence," said a co-author of the report, "and it will make them feel more vulnerable in the future."