Saudi Arabia’s Nuclear Race (Daniel 8:8)

Protection rocket Saudi Arabia’s missile race

A new rocket factory is stoking fears of nuclear proliferation

IN 2016 Muhammad bin Salman, Saudi Arabia’s crown prince and de facto ruler, announced the latest stage of “Saudisation”—the replacement of foreign workers with Saudi ones. It now appears the policy does not stop at swapping out bankers and bakers, but extends to ballistic missiles.

Satellite photos analysed by researchers from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies, and reported by the Washington Post, appear to show that Saudi Arabia has been building a factory for rocket engines, at an existing missile base in al-Watah, south-west of Riyadh. It seems to be configured for solid-fuel rockets, which can be launched more quickly than liquid-fuelled ones.

Saudi Arabia is no newcomer to missiles. Having watched Iran and Iraq fling them at each other during the 1980s, it bought a few dozen DF-3 missiles from China in 1987. It came close to unleashing them after being struck by Iraqi Scud missiles during the Gulf war in 1991. In the 2000s it probably picked up a batch of newer, more accurate Chinese DF-21s.

Iran, the kingdom’s arch-rival, has been honing its missile force despite Western opposition and UN rebukes, conducting 135 test launches since 1990. On December 1st it tested one thought capable of comfortably reaching any corner of Saudi soil (see map). In January Ali Shamkhani, the head of Iran’s national security council, insisted that although his country was not looking to expand the range of its missiles, “it is continuously working on increasing the precision.” That is reassuring for Europeans and Americans; less so for Saudis.

Nor is Iran the only concern. Hizbullah, a Lebanese militant group nurtured and armed by Iran, has a growing arsenal of missiles; some can already reach the north-western parts of Saudi Arabia. Israel is also armed to the teeth. Though Prince Muhammad is on good terms with the Jewish state, satellite images published in 2013 reportedly showed that one of the Saudi DF-3 launching pads at al-Watah was set in the direction of Tel Aviv.

Because missiles are ideal delivery systems for nuclear weapons, news of the plant has also revived worries about Saudi Arabia’s atomic intentions. America’s abandonment of a multinational nuclear deal with Iran last year has increased the risk that Iran will resume large-scale enrichment of uranium. Saudi Arabia has vowed to keep pace. It wants to build two nuclear reactors and insists on its right to enrich uranium (and to reprocess spent fuel from those reactors, another path to a bomb). “Without a doubt if Iran developed a nuclear bomb,” warned Prince Muhammad last March, “we will follow suit.” The Trump administration has refused to sell civil nuclear technology on these terms.

So the Saudis may turn to other nuclear friends. Western diplomats and spooks have long been concerned that Pakistan, whose own nuclear programme was bankrolled by Saudi Arabia, might be a ready supplier of know-how, fuel or bombs. In 1999 Saudi Arabia’s then defence minister horrified American officials by touring Pakistan’s nuclear facilities and meeting A.Q. Khan, the scientist who sold nuclear technology to North Korea, Iran and Libya. Ties remain close. Prince Muhammad was due to agree on $14bn of investment in Pakistan during a visit to the country on February 16th.

Another option lies further east. Michael Elleman, a missile expert at IISS, a think-tank, says he is almost certain that the apparent rocket factory was “designed, equipped and constructed by an outside entity”. Saudi Arabia has “no capacity” for such a project. The facility, he notes, closely resembles a Chinese one in Lantian. Saudisation, evidently, has some way to go.

This article appeared in the Middle East and Africa section of the print edition under the headline “Protection rocket”

Iran WILL Resume Uranium Enrichment

Iran May Resume Uranium Enrichment, Israeli Intel Assesses

Amos Harel13.02.2019 | 17:00

Israel’s 2019 military intelligence estimate says Iran has not violated the nuclear agreement, but pressure from economic sanctions and the American withdrawal from the deal may change that

Iran’s President Hassan Rohani speaks during a ceremony to mark the 40th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution in Tehran, Iran, February 11, 2019.Presidential Website/Handout via Reuters

The Israeli army’s intelligence assessment for 2019 states that Iran could adopt a more defiant approach on its nuclear project. Nevertheless, the intelligence branch of the army’s general staff says Iran has not yet decided to blatantly violate its nuclear accord with the major powers, an accord from which the United States withdrew last May.

The army’s Intelligence Corps sees a historic opportunity in the coming year, in which the West can increase pressure on Iran and curb Tehran’s actions. It also describes the Iranians as the “cornerstone” of the security challenges facing Israel.

As Haaretz reported in October 2018, military intelligence officials believe that the economic pressure being applied on Iran by the United States via the resumption of sanctions is working well and having a major impact on the Iranian economy and the Iranian regime’s circumstances. The renewed sanctions are putting unprecedented pressure on the regime and creating a level of crisis unlike anything it has experienced in the 40 years since the Islamic Revolution. In recent months, the price of meat, for example, has gone up by 50 percent and prices for some fruits and vegetables have more than doubled.

The Intelligence Corps does not foresee a popular uprising against the regime, but it has seen an increase in the number of protests in which a large number of professional associations have been involved. Some of the demonstrations are occurring in areas that up to now had been considered power centers of the Iranian authorities. These domestic developments are believed to reflect a significant change in the situation in Iran, as military intelligence sees it, but the regime has so far been able to cope skillfully and effectively.

The intelligence assessment is that Iran has not violated the international nuclear accord so far. If Tehran does decide to stray from the accord, it will take it at least a year to produce enough fissile material to manufacture a nuclear bomb and a total of two years to make a bomb.

There is disagreement among Iranian leaders about whether they should signal their displeasure with the sanctions and the situation that followed the American withdrawal from the accord by renewing enrichment activity, in violation of the pact. If the sanctions pressure continues, a decision could be made to go ahead with enrichment.

But some in Tehran predict that Donald Trump will be a one-term president and that the best approach is to wait until he leaves office in 2021 and avoid a direct confrontation with the world powers over a violation of the accord. Military intelligence officials see an intention on Iran’s part to expand the operations of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards in Iraq, which is also an alternative path of influence in light of how the Iranians’ efforts to entrench themselves militarily in Syria are being thwarted by Israeli actions. In western Iraq, the Iranians are seeking to deploy Shi’ite militias, medium-range missiles and other weaponry that will enable them to threaten Israel from there and at the same time safeguard a land corridor for the transfer of weapons and forces from Iran to Syria and Lebanon.

Israeli officials are pleased with the relative success of the efforts against Iran in Syria. The economic crisis in Iran caused by the sanctions has also led to a sharp reduction in the monetary assistance sent to the Lebanese-based Hezbollah militia group. That is causing hardship in the ranks of the group, providing Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah less room for maneuver.

Iran is Prepared to Strike Israel

Khamenei: Iran has presence near Israel’s borders, talks with US can only ‘harm’

In statement ahead of US-led Mideast conference in Warsaw, supreme leader says any negotiations with Washington would be an ‘unforgivable mistake’

By Agencies and TOI staff

13 Feb 2019, 6:40 pm

Iran’s supreme leader said Wednesday the Islamic Republic has a presence near Israel’s borders and is supporting militant groups throughout the region, adding that any negotiations with the US will “bring nothing but material and spiritual harm,” in remarks ahead of an American-led meeting on the Middle East in Warsaw.

The comments from Ayatollah Ali Khamenei were part of a seven-page statement read word for word on Iranian state television and heavily promoted in the run-up to its release. They also come two days after Iran marked the 40th anniversary of its 1979 Islamic Revolution amid heightened tensions between Tehran and Washington.

“Today the challenges concern Iran’s strong presence near the borders of the Zionist regime, putting an end to the United States’ unlawful infiltration in Western Asia, the Islamic Republic’s support for the Palestinian people’s resistance at the heart of the occupied territories as well as defending the high-flying flag of Hezbollah and the resistance throughout this region,” Khamenei said.

The US said it was confronting Iran’s influence in the Middle East and that it was currently concentrating on “preventing the transference of sophisticated Iranian weapons to resistance forces,” a reference to Lebanon’s Iran-backed Hezbollah and other terrorist groups.

Hezbollah supporters watch a video screening of a speech by the group’s head, Hassan Nasrallah, to mark the 11th anniversary of the end of the 2006 war with Israel, in the village of Khiam in southern Lebanon, August 13, 2017. (AFP/Mahmoud Zayyat)

Israel has carried out hundreds of airstrikes in Syria to thwart attempts to smuggle weapons to the Hezbollah terror group and keep Iranian-backed forces from entrenching themselves near the border.

“About the United States, the resolution of any issues is not imaginable and negotiations with it will bring nothing but material and spiritual harm,” Khamenei added.

The supreme leader went on to describe any negotiations as an “unforgivable mistake.” He also said any talks would be akin to “going on your knees before the enemy and kissing the claws of the wolf.”

In 2015 Khamenei approved talks between Iran and the United States that resulted in the nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers. The deal saw Iran limit its enrichment of uranium in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions.

However, that deal came under the administration of former US president Barack Obama. His successor Donald Trump last year quit the agreement, saying it provided Iran with relief without any substantial gains.

Since then, the United Nations says Iran has kept up its side of the bargain, though officials in Tehran have increasingly threatened to resume higher enrichment.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, during a cabinet meeting Wednesday, echoed Khamenei’s remarks, saying: “If the Iranian nation surrenders to the United States, it should surrender until the end.”

He said “Iran is about negotiation, but we are not ready to accept imposition, bullying, pressure and the trampling of our national rights.”

Amid the new tensions, Iran’s already-weakened economy has been further challenged. There have been sporadic protests in the country as well, incidents applauded by Trump amid Washington’s maximalist approach to Tehran.

However, some have suggested Iranian leaders meet with Trump in a summit, much like North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. Amir Mousavi, a former Iranian diplomat, has claimed that Trump sent a message to Rouhani last week requesting direct talks. Mousavi, speaking with Lebanese television station al-Mayadeen, said Trump is ready to visit Tehran and had sent several messages through intermediaries in Oman.

There has been no acknowledgment of such a request from Washington.

Iranian pro-government supporters burn the Israeli and US flags during a rally in Mashhad in support of the regime after authorities declared the end of the recent protests, on January 4, 2018. (AFP Photo/Tasnim News/Nima Najafzadeh)

The Warsaw summit, which started Wednesday, was initially pegged as focusing entirely on Iran. However, the US subsequently made it about the broader Middle East, to boost participation.

Before departing for Poland on Tuesday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told reporters that the focus of the conference will be Iran, an issue he said “unites Israel, the United States, many countries in the world.”

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif predicted the Warsaw summit would not be productive for the US. “I believe it’s dead on arrival or dead before arrival,” he said.

Baghdad will follow the Antichrist’s lead concerning US troops

Baghdad will follow parliament’s lead concerning US troops: Iraqi PM

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region — The Iraqi government will have no choice but to “obey” legislation from the parliament, but can still have its opinion concerning the US presence in Iraq, announced Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi.

Within the framework of US-Iraqi-coalition cooperation Abdul-Mahdi explained during his press conference on Tuesday that he sees no mission besides training Iraqi forces and assisting in the ISIS fight.

He added that his meeting in Baghdad on Tuesday with US acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan was “good and fruitful.” 

They will “respect” and “obey” whatever decision the Iraqi parliament makes about the US troop presence. 

However, he insisted that the government can still have an opinion on the matter.

“Thus, what is being said in the press shouldn’t be taken as the final truth,” Abdul-Mahdi added.

US President Donald Trump has floated the idea of using bases in Iraq to watch Iran. Iraqi politicians quickly called the move unconstitutional and repeated that they do not want the country to be used as a battlefield between the United States or regional Arab countries and Iran. 

The PM’s remarks come at a potentially pivotal moment. Shiite parties allied with Iran insist that they will introduce legislation to the parliament when its recess ends to force US troops out of the country.

The majority of Shiite parties, including Muqtada al-Sadr’s Sayirun Alliance and Hadi al-Amiri’s Iran-linked Fatih have all rejected a US presence — many even before previous PM Haider al-Abadi declared the defeat of ISIS in December 2017.

The Sunnis and Kurds, however, have been more silent, but they generally agree that the US presence is needed in order to prevent pre-2014 conditions from returning and to continue efforts to train and professionalize Iraqi security apparatus. For Sunnis and Kurds, it is also a counterbalance to Shiite and Iranian hegemony in Iraq.

Abdul-Mahdi added they are “following” the battles against ISIS across Syria. And Iraq has set up “proactive” plans to protect its borders from any possible ISIS movements.

“The other side, the Syrian Democratic Forces, have large a number of Iraqi Daesh members. We will have repatriation actions for them,” the PM added, referring to ISIS suspects in SDF custody.

ISIS fighters remain in a 2 square-kilometer pocket in the border town of Baghouz, Syria. According to SDF’s spokesperson Mustafa Bali, the most “experienced” ISIS foreign fighters are there.

Logistical preparations are underway for the families of Iraqi members of ISIS to be relocated, Abdul-Mahdi added.

“Thus, we are getting prepared for everything. There are good military and security preparations,” added the PM.

Relations between the federal government and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) are “good,” according to Abdul-Mahdi. Reports of the Peshmerga returning to Kirkuk and other areas are “clamor with no basis,” he said.

“Things remain as they are. Actually, we have even bolstered the economic conditions in Kirkuk. We are closing any gaps that terror could exploit,” the premier added.

Last week there were sub-committees formed between the Iraqi Ministry of Defense and KRG Ministry of Peshmerga for cooperation, joint patrols, joint administration, and joint operation rooms in the disputed territories that could see the return of Peshmerga forces.

As for the oil export agreement with KRG, he added that there is an agreed upon “mechanism” and he reiterated KRG has to handover 250,000 bpd to SOMO.

Iraqi water improves in quantity and quality

“We pay great attention to water pollution,” said the Iraqi PM.  Five million cubic-meters of waste water runs into the Tigris.

He further added that the waste water has settled at the bottom of Diyala’s river. Because of recent flash flooding, the water has made its way into the desalination plants.

“The desalination plants became unhealthy. We had to stop distributing this water,” added the PM, saying they have resorted to water wells.

Still, he called the rain this year a “blessing” saying the water reserves of Iraq are being replenished and filled with this amount of rain water.

He also struck an optimistic view of agricultural yields. Baghdad expects them to increase this year due to a strong rainy season.

“In addition, the abundance of rain helped in elevating the quality of water,” claimed the PM, citing weekly water reports.

He also added that they estimate there are “5 billion cubic-meters” of water from the accumulated snow that will eventually melt. Thus Iraq might receive up to 30 billion cubic meters of water in total.

Iraq’s water problems sent thousands of Iraqis in Basra to hospitals last summer. It led to widespread protests which dashed the hopes of the former Iraqi PM’s reelection.

Turkey’s mega dam projects, and droughts, have all negatively impacted Iraq’s water reserves and the decreased water levels in the Euphrates and Tigris have damaged Iraqi agriculture. 

China Ready for Nuclear War (Daniel 7:7)

Tensions are building between the US and China in the disputed South China Sea (Image: GETTY)

Nuclear competition between the US and China has been building for years as Beijing takes steps towards the development of nuclear weapons. Meanwhile, Washington is attempting to limit China’s military build-up in the South China Sea. The contested strategic strait in the Pacific Ocean is claimed by China and neighbouring Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan.

A successful test of China’s new submarine-launched ballistic missile, the JL-3, is cause for concern in Washington, The South China Morning Post reports.

The test has sent a message to the world China is ploughing on with a new class of strategic submarines, SSBNs, which could be equipped with nuclear-armed JL-3s.

Hong Kong-based military expert Song Zhongping said: “China needs to strengthen and improve its at-sea nuclear deterrent capability by increasing both the quality and quantity of its SSBNs and attack subs because the US is making every effort to restrain Chinese strategic subs from sailing further.”

He said the US’s moves “are aimed at undermining Beijing’s second-strike capability”, adding Beijing’s decision to develop more nuclear subs “was also pushed by the massive replacement of old generation submarine-launched ballistic missiles”.

South China Sea

Chinese aircraft carrier fleet operates during a training at South China Sea (Image: GETTY)

Donald Trump

Donald Trump on a visit to China in 2017 (Image: GETTY)

 

According to Zhao Tong, a fellow in Carnegie’s Nuclear Policy Programme, based at the Carnegie–Tsinghua Centre for Global Policy, the US and its allies are stepping up their anti-submarine warfare in the South China Sea and the Indian Ocean.

Zhao said in a report the US stepping up its nuclear ambitions was contributing to mistrust between the two superpowers and raising the possibility Beijing may re-think its “no first use” nuclear weapons policy, which has been in place since the first Chinese nuclear test in 1964.

In a separate report, the Washington-based US-China Economic and Security Review Commission said Beijing was looking at expanding its nuclear delivery systems, setting off debate in China over whether its nuclear arms should be used only as a deterrent and not as a “first strike”.

The threat of escalating tensions between China and the US comes after the Trump administration withdrew from a historic nuclear weapons accord struck between the US and Russia.

 

South China Sea: China are ‘bullying’ US allies claims Jack Keane

In October when he announced plans to withdraw from the decades-old deal, Trump said his decision had been influenced by a need to respond to China’s nuclear build up.

Meanwhile Bryan Clark of the Centre for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments has argued China already has the ability to control the South China Sea.

He said: “China has the ability to control the South China Sea because it has established escalation dominance in that area.

“China now has the world’s largest navy, which has more than 300 ships.

“If you want to be able to conduct sea control in a region, having a big navy is a valuable part of that.

“China is able to focus the attention of that navy on near seas to an extent that its competitors like the US cannot.”

Bolton Pulls a Cheney on Iran


“At that time shall arise Michael, the great prince who has charge of your people. And there shall be a time of trouble, such as never has been since there was a nation till that time. But at that time your people shall be delivered, everyone whose name shall be found written in the book. Daniel 12:1 (The Israel Bible™)

Trump’s National Security Adviser, John Bolton John Bolton speaking at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in 2014. (Shutterstock)

In the wake of reaffirmation of Tehran’s readiness to attack Israel and America by top-ranking Iranian officials, U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton told Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, who celebrated 40 years since the Islamic revolution in Iran, that “I don’t think you’ll have many more anniversaries to enjoy.”

“This week, Iran marks the 40th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution, and what a 40 years it’s been. Tyrannizing its own people and terrorizing the world. Iran continues to seek nuclear weapons, to intimidate peaceful people all around the globe and ballistic missiles to use as delivery systems,” Bolton said in a video uploaded by the White House.

He accused the ayatollahs of funding terror across the Middle East and causing massive suffering inside their own country, which features record high unemployment rates and a low-valued currency.

“So, Ayatollah Khamenei, for all your boasts, for all your threats to the life of the American president, you are responsible for terrorizing your own people and terrorizing the world as a whole. I don’t think you’ll have many more anniversaries to enjoy,” Bolton said.

Last week, Khamenei explained that the “Death to America” slogan is directed at U.S. President Donald Trump and Bolton, and will stand “as long as America continues its wickedness.”

Bolton’s remarks came the same day as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned Iran that “if this regime makes the terrible mistake and tries to destroy Tel Aviv or Haifa, it won’t be successful, and it will be the last anniversary of their revolution they will ever celebrate.”

Netanyahu’s video response came following a threat by deputy head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps political bureau, Yadollah Javani, that “the United States does not have the courage to shoot a single bullet at us despite all its defensive and military assets. But if they attack us, we will raze Tel Aviv and Haifa to the ground.”

The Ramapo: The Sixth Seal Fault Line (Revelation 6:12)

The Ramapo fault and other New York City area faults 

 Map depicting the extent of the Ramapo Fault System in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania

The Ramapo Fault, which marks the western boundary of the Newark rift basin, has been argued to be a major seismically active feature of this region, but it is difficult to discern the extent to which the Ramapo fault (or any other specific mapped fault in the area) might be any more of a source of future earthquakes than any other parts of the region. The Ramapo Fault zone spans more than 185 miles (300 kilometers) in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. It is a system of faults between the northern Appalachian Mountains and Piedmont areas to the east. This fault is perhaps the best known fault zone in the Mid-Atlantic region, and some small earthquakes have been known to occur in its vicinity. Recently, public knowledge about the fault has increased – especially after the 1970s, when the fault’s proximity to the Indian Point nuclear plant in New York was noticed.

There is insufficient evidence to unequivocally demonstrate any strong correlation of earthquakes in the New York City area with specific faults or other geologic structures in this region. The damaging earthquake affecting New York City in 1884 was probably not associated with the Ramapo fault because the strongest shaking from that earthquake occurred on Long Island (quite far from the trace of the Ramapo fault). The relationship between faults and earthquakes in the New York City area is currently understood to be more complex than any simple association of a specific earthquake with a specific mapped fault.

A 2008 study argued that a magnitude 6 or 7 earthquake might originate from the Ramapo fault zone, which would almost definitely spawn hundreds or even thousands of fatalities and billions of dollars in damage.Studying around 400 earthquakes over the past 300 years, the study also argued that there was an additional fault zone extending from the Ramapo Fault zone into southwestern Connecticut. As can be seen in the above figure of seismicity, earthquakes are scattered throughout this region, with no particular concentration of activity along the Ramapo fault, or along the hypothesized fault zone extending into southwestern Connecticut.

Just off the northern terminus of the Ramapo fault is the Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant, built between 1956 and 1960 by Consolidated Edison Company. The plant began operating in 1963, and it has been the subject of a controversy over concerns that an earthquake from the Ramapo fault will affect the power plant. Whether or not the Ramapo fault actually does pose a threat to this nuclear power plant remains an open question.

Israeli military report predicts clashes outside the Temple Walls (Revelation 11)

FILE- Palestinian protesters run from tear gas fired by Israeli soldiers during a protest at the entrance of Erez border crossing between Gaza and Israel, in the northern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2018. AP Photo/Felipe Dana
Israel is facing possible military escalations against Palestinian factions in both Gaza and the West Bank in 2019, an assessment by the Military Intelligence Directorate revealed on Wednesday.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ worsening health as well as the release of the United States peace plan could cause chaos in the West Bank, according to the assessment.

The 83-year-old leader’s hospitalization in 2018 led to widespread speculation over his condition, particularly with no successor publicly in line for the Palestinian presidency.

The US peace plan, which is expected to be revealed later this year, has already been dismissed by Abbas, who said Washington “is no longer qualified to act as the sole mediator due to its bias toward Israel and its decisions against international law on Jerusalem, refugees and others.”

The Israeli military intelligence also warned that Hamas may attempt to drag Israel into a limited operation in the Gaza Strip to gain further economic benefits. After months of fighting last year, Israel and Hamas agreed on a ceasefire which included financial support for Gaza by Qatar.

Islamic Jihad’s operations in Gaza may also pose a threat to Israel in the near future, the assessment found, since it’s not under direct control of Hamas, but rather serves its own interests.

AP Photo/ Khalil Hamra Masked Palestinian Hamas gunmen take part in the funeral of Hamas militant, Jan. 23, 2019  AP Photo/ Khalil Hamra

 

NATO Plans For Russian Nuclear Escalation

NATO planning for more Russian missiles: Stoltenberg

by Agencies , (Last Updated 8 hours ago)

BRUSSELS: NATO is planning for “more Russian missiles” after the collapse of a landmark Cold War arms treaty, but will not deploy new nuclear warheads in Europe, the organisation’s chief said Tuesday.

Fears are growing of a new arms race in Europe after Washington started the process of exiting the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty claiming that Russia violated the pact with a new missile system.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said the alliance would beef up its defences but insisted this did not mean “mirroring” any Russian build-up of missiles.

The fate of the INF treaty, signed by the US and the Soviet Union in 1987 to ban ground-launched mid-range missiles, will be high on the agenda as NATO defence ministers meet in Brussels on Wednesday.

Western capitals want Russia to return to compliance with the treaty by abandoning its new 9M729 missile system.

“We are both urging Russia to come back in compliance but at the same time we are planning for a world without the INF treaty and with more Russian missiles,” Stoltenberg said.

“We don’t have to mirror what Russia does but we need to make sure we have effective deterrence and defence.”

Stoltenberg repeated warnings that the new Russian missiles made nuclear conflict more likely because they are mobile, hard to detect, and give little warning time.

The US Ambassador to NATO, Kay Bailey Hutchison, said the Pentagon has already started looking at how best to defend against the new missiles.

“America felt it was time for us to have a defence and not be left without a defence with Russia having missiles that were in violation,” she said.

“What is going to happen going forward? First of all, the defence we would be working on is conventional, not nuclear.”

The INF treaty banned ground-launched missiles with a range of 500 to 5,500 kilometres (310 to 3,400 miles), ending a dangerous build-up of warheads on mainland Europe.

Russian President Vladimir Putin responded to the US pullout by saying Moscow would also leave the treaty, and his defence minister announced plans for new missiles — prompting Trump to vow to outspend Moscow.

While pointing the finger at each other, both Washington and the Kremlin have voiced concern that the bilateral INF treaty does nothing to constrain China, whose rapidly growing military relies on medium-range missiles as a core part of its defence strategy.

Bolton: None of US Will Have Many More Anniversaries

Bolton to Khamenei: You won’t have many more anniversaries

US National Security Adviser sends message to Iran’s Supreme Leader.

US National Security Adviser John Bolton on Monday had a message for Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who continues to verbally attack US leaders.

“This week, Iran marks the 40th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution, and what a 40 years it’s been. Tyrannizing its own people and terrorizing the world. Iran continues to seek nuclear weapons, to intimidate peaceful people all around the globe and ballistic missiles to use as delivery systems,” Bolton said in a video posted by the White House.

“Iran under the Ayatollahs remains the central banker of international terrorism, and its conventional military forces are all over the Middle East: In Yemen, Iraq and Syria. Perhaps worst of all, the people of Iran have suffered grievously. Right now, unemployment is at record levels, inflation is at all time highs, the Iranian currency has gone through the floor,” he continued.

“So, Ayatollah Khamenei, for all your boasts, for all your threats to the life of the American president, you are responsible for terrorizing your own people and terrorizing the world as a whole. I don’t think you’ll have many more anniversaries to enjoy,” concluded Bolton.

Khamenei explained last week that the slogan “Death to America”, which Iranians regularly shout at rallies, is directed at President Donald Trump and US leaders including Bolton, and not the American nation.

“As long as America continues its wickedness, the Iranian nation will not abandon ‘Death to America,’” he told a gathering of Iranian Air Force officers marking the 40th anniversary of Iran’s Islamic Revolution.

“‘Death to America’ means death to Trump, (National Security Adviser) John Bolton, and (Secretary of State Mike) Pompeo. It means death to American rulers,” he explained.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, often touted as a “moderate” president, has personally presided over “Death to America” chants during rallies in Iran, even though he claimed that Iranians “respect the American people”.

Similarly, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, with whom the Obama administration negotiated the 2015 nuclear deal, was caught on camera last year joining in a public chant against the US, UK, and Israel.