Nuclear Program

Iran’s nuclear program, particularly its advances in uranium enrichment technology, increasingly concerns the U.S. and the international community. In defiance of multiple sanctions programs and in violation of its nuclear nonproliferation treaty obligations, Iran continues to develop and perfect technologies that would allow it to possess a nuclear weapons capability. This section examines the critical issues that Iran’s illicit nuclear program presents: the types and progress of programs; the sources of Iran’s nuclear and weapons technology; critical nuclear facilities; and the development of missile delivery systems.

In this section

Iran Action Plan is No Step Forward

The deal with Iran fails to verifiably eliminate Iran’s ability to develop nuclear weapons. Or more succinctly, in Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s words: “In Geneva agreement world powers surrendered to Iranian nation's will.”

Explaining Iran's Nuclear Deal Win
By Maseh Zarif, New York Daily News, November 25, 2013

The Geneva agreement represents an effort on the part of the Obama administration to try and manage the Iranian nuclear weapons program rather than insist and seek a verifiable dismantling and end to it.

Opening the Door to a Bad Iranian Nuclear Deal
By Maseh Zarif, October 15, 2013

Senior administration officials have said that the U.S. will not be roped into a bad deal with Iran. The emerging framework for this week’s discussions over Iran’s nuclear program, however, all but guarantees that a bad deal – one that leaves Iran marching towards a robust nuclear weapons capability and the U.S. without any meaningful assurances – is in the offing.

The Iranian Nuclear Program: Timelines, Data, and Estimates V7.0
By Maseh Zarif, July 10, 2013

This assessment is the ninth version of a recurring analysis of Iran’s nuclear program. Iran's ability to produce fissile material is no longer the primary bottleneck for its development of a nuclear weapon.

Iran's Centrifuge Plans Would Undermine U.S. Policy Assumptions
By Maseh Zarif, January 31, 2013

Iran has announced its intention to expand its ability to enrich uranium rapidly by installing advanced centrifuges at the Natanz Fuel Enrichment Plant. If Iran carries through on this declaration it will undermine one of the core assumptions of current U.S. policy aimed at preventing Iran’s acquisition of nuclear weapons.

Iran Expanding Nuclear Enrichment Capacity and Stockpiles
By Maseh Zarif, August 30, 2012

The International Atomic Energy Agency’s latest report on Iran’s known nuclear facilities highlights the regime’s progressing and undeterred pursuit of a nuclear weapons capability.

Iran's Denial and Deception at Parchin
By Maseh Zarif, July 31, 2012

The Iranian regime’s refusal to provide the IAEA access to certain nuclear-related facilities and personnel is one element of a broader denial-and-deception campaign intended to obscure its pursuit of nuclear weapons capability.

Iran Nuclear Threat Overshadows Talks
By Maseh Zarif, June 19, 2012

The threat of Iran’s illicit nuclear program continues to grow as another round of meetings between P5+1 and Iranian negotiators ends today. Iran refuses to dismantle and end that program while it simultaneously expands its enrichment output and future capacity.

Iran's Nuclear Weapons Fuel Production Capability
By Maseh Zarif, May 22, 2012

Iran could offer to halt production of 20% enriched uranium in upcoming negotiations. This “concession” would have limited impact on Iran’s ability to quickly produce weapons-grade uranium for one nuclear warhead, however.