Iran May Be Building a Different Kind of Bomb
US and European officials fear switch to plutonium
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Aug 5, 2013 12:06 PM CDT
Iran's heavy water nuclear facility near the central city of Arak is backdropped by mountains in this file photo dated Jan. 15, 2011.   (AP Photo/ISNA, Hamid Foroutan, File)

(Newser) – There's more than one way to skin an atom, and apparently Iran is trying them all. The rogue state may have weapons grade plutonium by next summer, US and European officials tell the Wall Street Journal, which is something of a surprise, given that until now the international community has been focused on Iran's uranium enrichment. To generate plutonium, Iran will need a heavy water reactor—like the one it's been building in recent months in Arak.

The site is above ground, and hence vulnerable to airstrikes—and officials worry that the development makes it even more likely that Israel will launch one. While the IAEA has been monitoring the Arak site from the start, the Journal says its potential importance "has vastly shot up" for Western officials recently. "It really crept up on us," an IAEA official says.

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Showing 3 of 47 comments
Joe_American
Aug 10, 2013 7:21 AM CDT
Iran is a silly country. The world should pass more economic sanctions against Iran.
Berzelius
Aug 6, 2013 1:30 AM CDT
Most Americans aren't stupid but are oblivious. They don't know what sanctions are. This is just rabblerousing. Iran just wants the embargo lifted.
Vincebus
Aug 6, 2013 12:18 AM CDT
And on it goes... Why not just nip it in the bud? Like now!