China Horn fumes over US nuclear sub pact with Britain, Australia Horns:Daniel 7

China fumes over US nuclear sub pact with Britain, Australia

September 16, 2021

WASHINGTON/CANBERRA: China on Thursday denounced a new Indo-Pacific security alliance between the United States, Britain and Australia, saying such partnerships should not target third countries and warning of an intensified arms race in the region.

Under the arrangement,dubbed AUKUS, the United States and Britain will provide Australia with the technology and capability to deploy nuclear-powered submarines.please

The United States and its allies are looking for ways to push back against China’s growing power and influence, particularly its military buildup, pressure on Taiwan and deployments in the contested South China Sea.

U.S. President Joe Biden, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison did not mention China by name in the joint announcement and senior Biden administration officials, who briefed reporters ahead of time, said the partnership was not aimed at countering Beijing.

But Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said the three countries were “severely damaging regional peace and stability, intensifying an arms race, and damaging international nuclear non-proliferation efforts”.

“China always believes that any regional mechanism should conform to the trend of peace and development of the times and help enhance mutual trust and cooperation… It should not target any third party or undermine its interests,” he told a regular briefing in Beijing.

Johnson said the pact was not meant to be adversarial and said it would reduce the costs of Britain’s next generation of nuclear submarines.

“Now that we have created AUKUS we expect to accelerate the development of other advanced defence systems including in cyber, artificial intelligence, quantum computing and undersea capabilities,” Johnson told parliament.

The three leaders stressed Australia would not be fielding nuclear weapons but using nuclear propulsion systems for the vessels to guard against threats.

“We all recognise the imperative of ensuring peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific over the long term,” Biden said.

“We need to be able to address both the current strategic environment in the region, and how it may evolve because the future of each of our nations and indeed the world depends on a free and open Indo-Pacific enduring and flourishing in the decades ahead,” he said.

Morrison said Australia would meet all of its nuclear non-proliferation obligations.

ADVANCED SYSTEMS:

One U.S. official said the partnership was the result of months of engagements by military and political leaders during which Britain – which recently sent an aircraft carrier to Asia – had indicated it wanted to do more in the region.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern welcomed the focus on the Indo-Pacific but said Australia’s nuclear-powered submarines would not be allowed in its territorial waters.

Singapore said it had long had relations with Australia, Britain and the United States and hoped their grouping would contribute to peace and stability.

Japan said the three countries’ strengthening of security and defence cooperation was important for peace and security.

A U.S. official briefing before the announcement said Biden had not mentioned the plans “in any specific terms” to Chinese leader Xi Jinping in a call last Thursday, but did “underscore our determination to play a strong role in the Indo-Pacific”. read more

U.S. officials said nuclear propulsion would allow the Australian navy to operate more quietly, for longer periods, and provide deterrence across the Indo-Pacific.

The partnership ends Australia’s 2016 deal with French shipbuilder Naval Group to build it a new submarine fleet worth $40 billion to replace its more than two-decades-old Collins submarines, a spokesperson for Morrison told Reuters. read more

France accused Biden of stabbing it in the back and acting like his predecessor Donald Trump.

“This brutal, unilateral and unpredictable decision reminds me a lot of what Mr Trump used to do,” Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian told franceinfo radio. “I am angry and bitter. This isn’t done between allies.”

Biden said the three governments would launch an 18-month consultation period “to determine every element of this programme, from workforce, to training requirements, to production timelines” and to ensure full compliance with non-proliferation commitments.

Among the U.S. firms that could benefit are General Dynamics Corp and Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc.

General Dynamics’ Electric Boat business does much of the design work for U.S. submarines, but critical subsystems such as electronics and nuclear power plants are made by BWX Technologies Inc.

U.S. officials did not give a time frame for when Australia would deploy a nuclear-powered submarine, or how many would be built. They said that since Australia does not have any nuclear infrastructure, it would require a sustained effort over years.

A U.S. official said Washington had shared nuclear propulsion technology only once before – with Britain in 1958.

“This is frankly an exception to our policy in many respects. I do not anticipate that this will be undertaken in other circumstances… We view this as a one-off.”

Babylon the Great Prepares the Australian Nuclear Horn: Daniel 7

U.S. will share nuclear submarine technology with Australia as part of new alliance, a direct challenge to China

Biden made the announcement alongside British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, who joined the president virtually, as they unveiled a new three-way defense alliance, which will be known as AUKUS. Britain is the only other nation to share U.S. nuclear submarine propulsion technology, an agreement dating back decades and aimed largely at countering the old Soviet Union.

“We all recognize the imperative of ensuring peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific over the long term,” Biden said Wednesday from the East Room of the White House. “We need to be able to address both the current strategic environment in the region and how it may evolve because the future of each of our nations, and indeed the world, depends on a free and open Indo-Pacific, enduring and flourishing in the decades ahead.”

None of the three leaders mentioned China in their remarks, but the objective of the new alliance was clear: challenging the country’s growing economic and military influence. The effort comes amid rising tensions with China over a range of issues including military ambitions and human rights, and Biden has made it clear he views China as the country’s most significant global competitor. The president spoke with Chinese President Xi Jinping last week. Biden initiated that call, but one administration official said Wednesday that the Australian submarine plan was not discussed “in any specific terms.”

China on Thursday slammed the agreement for “seriously undermining” regional stability and accused the three counties of inciting an “arms race.” At a regular press briefing in Beijing, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian criticized the United States and Britain for “extremely irresponsible” behavior.

The three countries will work over the next 18 months to hash out the details of submarine effort and will pay special attention to safeguards and nonproliferation measures, Biden said Wednesday.

Nuclear-powered submarines are faster, more capable, harder to detect and potentially much more lethal than conventional-powered submarines. The Chinese navy is thought to possess six nuclear attack submarines and many more conventional ones, with plans to expand the nuclear-powered fleet over the next decade.

The United States sails its own nuclear-powered submarines in the Indo-Pacific region, and those and other U.S. ships regularly engage in cat-and-mouse interactions with Chinese vessels that U.S. commanders have long feared could lead to an unintentional conflict.

The Navy’s three most powerful nuclear submarines were all deployed to the Pacific region over the summer. U.S. defense officials have warned of a Chinese naval buildup that challenges U.S. navigation in what the United States and its allies say is international water.

U.S. officials who spoke to reporters ahead of the announcement also avoided any direct mention of China and sidestepped questions about what message the United States was sending to its adversary with the new partnership. The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity to preview the announcement ahead of the president’s remarks.

“I do want to just underscore very clearly this partnership is not aimed or about any one country,” one senior official said. “It’s about advancing our strategic interests, upholding the international rules-based order and promoting peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific.”

Biden declined to answer questions about China after he concluded his remarks.

Countries “should not build exclusionary blocs targeting or harming the interests of third parties. In particular, they should shake off their Cold War mentality and ideological prejudice,” Liu Pengyu, a spokesman at the Chinese embassy in Washington, told Reuters.

The announcement came as a surprise in Australia, where recent reports suggested France, not the United States, would be deepening military ties as it moved ahead with a plan to build $66 billion worth of diesel submarines for Australia. But then news broke late Wednesday in Australia that Morrison had convened top-secret cabinet meetings.

The arrangement could also lead to damaged relations with France, with one former French ambassador to the United States saying on Twitter the countries “stabbed” France in the back.

In a joint statement, the French minister of foreign affairs and minister of the armed forces said the decision was “regrettable” and “contrary to the letter and spirit of the cooperation that prevailed between France and Australia.”

“The American choice to exclude a European ally and partner such as France from a structuring partnership with Australia, at a time when we are facing unprecedented challenges in the Indo-Pacific region, whether in terms of our values or in terms of respect for multilateralism based on the rule of law, shows a lack of coherence that France can only note and regret,” the leaders said.

In response to the announcement, one Australian politician is calling for an inquiry into the agreement, saying it raised questions around nuclear nonproliferation.

“If it’s a U.S. submarine, they have highly enriched uranium in their reactors and that creates a proliferation issue in terms of Australia standing up saying, no one should have this sort of fuel available to them,” Australian Sen. Rex Patrick, a former submariner in the Australian navy, told his country’s ABC.

Nuclear propulsion is different from nuclear weaponry, and Morrison said Australia remains committed to remaining a nonnuclear weapons state.

“Let me be clear,” he said. “Australia is not seeking to acquire nuclear weapons or establish a civil nuclear capability, and we will continue to meet all our nuclear nonproliferation obligations.”

But some experts worry about how the new arrangement will impact the global nuclear power landscape.

“I think if Australia goes down this route and builds nuclear-powered submarines and removes nuclear material from safeguards, it sets a very damaging precedent,” said James Acton, the co-director of the Nuclear Policy Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

Acton said he is particularly concerned about how Iran will react to the announcement and whether the country will attempt to skirt safeguards of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) by saying it is using nuclear material to build a submarine. Before the U.S. announcement, Acton said he would expect China and Russia to vehemently oppose any efforts by Iran to take such actions, but he said the calculus could change after the United States shares nuclear propulsion technology with Australia.

“I do believe the damage to the nuclear nonproliferation regime will be very significant, and I strongly believe it will outweigh the defense benefits of Australia acquiring nuclear-powered submarines,” he said.

The Biden administration said the United States has informed the IAEA about the announcement and will pay close attention to any nonproliferation implications from the effort.

“I do want to underscore that the Biden administration remains deeply committed to American leadership in nonproliferation,” the senior official said. “This is nuclear propulsion. Australia has no intention of pursuing nuclear weapons, and Australia is, in fact, the leader in all nonproliferation efforts in the NPT and elsewhere.”

The agreement also marks an expansion of U.S. military cooperation with Australia. The country has long been a close military ally, but it is now more on a par with Great Britain, America’s foremost military ally. The United States and Australia have an existing military and diplomatic partnership known as Ausmin, short for the annual ministerial level meetings among the four defense and foreign secretaries. Australia and Britain are also part of the select intelligence grouping known as the Five Eyes.

“This new architecture is really about deepening cooperation on a range of defense capabilities for the 21st century and again these relationships with Great Britain and Australia are time-tested, our oldest allies generally,” the senior administration official said. “This is designed not only to strengthen our capabilities in the Indo-Pacific but to link Europe and particularly Great Britain more closely with our strategic pursuits in the region as a whole.”

Matt Pottinger, the former deputy national security adviser in the Trump administration and chairman of the China program at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, praised the new effort.

“We are going to be pooling technological advances in important defensive capabilities,” he said, making “the sum of the alliance greater than its parts.”

Pottinger, who was briefed by the White House ahead of the announcement, added the new alliance also fulfills Biden’s promise to make the Indo-Pacific region a priority of his foreign policy.

“It adds more teeth to our collective deterrence and that helps give confidence to countries in the region to stand up for their sovereignty and push back against coercion from Beijing,” he said.

Biden and Xi have only spoken twice since Biden took office, the second call taking place last week. The 90-minute call, which an administration official described as familiar and candid, did not yield any specific announcements, including whether Biden and Xi would hold an in-person summit later this fall.

Both leaders had been expected to travel to Europe for a climate summit in Scotland, but whether Xi still plans to attend remains unclear. Biden has confirmed his attendance, which will come just after a Group of 20 meeting in Rome.

Michael Miller in Sydney and Lily Kuo in Taipei contributed to this report.

The apocalyptic scenario unfolding in the Middle East: Revelation 16

US Afghanistan Withdrawal Aided Iran in Its Apocalyptic Mideast Vision

Rabbi Abraham Cooper and Reverend Johnnie Moore

Rabbi Abraham Cooper is the associate dean and director of the Global Social Action Agenda at the Simon Wiesenthal Center. Rev. Johnnie Moore is president of the Congress of Christian Leaders and founder of the KAIROS Company.

The ignoble withdrawal of the US military from Afghanistan – a withdrawal commanded before vulnerable American civilians and military assets were safely evacuated – only served to benefit Iran’s apocalyptic vision for the Middle East, despite the Biden administration’s efforts to frame the decision differently.

Whatever Washington says about Afghanistan, Americans need to recognize this withdrawal was never about numbers. It was about a creeping change of heart, and it augurs potential disengagement from America’s loyal friends and allies and an eroding resolve to defend endangered minorities from threats of oblivion.

Before we get to the potential losers, we want to be crystal clear: If the Biden administration continues this course, there will be only one big winner – Iran’s megalomaniac Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, whose innate hatred for the United States is only matched by his genocidal loathing for Israel and Saudi Arabia.

Only one nation in the world has been the target of more terrorist missiles than the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia: the State of Israel. In the case of Israel, the treatment is courtesy of Hamas, Islamic Jihad and Hizbullah. In the case of Saudi Arabia, it comes from the Houthis in Yemen.

Whatever the source of the deadly trajectories, the missiles flung toward Saudi Arabia and Israel are virtually identical. That’s because they come from the same source: Iran. They also serve the same purpose: Kill innocent people to destabilize the Middle East in order to advance a Khamenei-led Iranian apocalyptic death cult. Khamenei’s vision – whatever his numerous suave puppets and apologists profess – involves the total destruction of the State of Israel and the total subjugation of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Khamenei’s vision hasn’t changed despite the change of presidential administrations in the United States.

Now, the Biden presidency is seeking to tread down a disastrous path that will empower Khamenei in pursuing his vision. Indeed, President Joe Biden’s Iran envoy Robert Malley may have discovered that the administration can leverage America’s exhaustion with wars in the Middle East, and in Afghanistan, to grant Iran the ultimate prize without most Americans even noticing: a near-total American withdrawal from the Middle East.

This is why the Biden administration announced on July 27 its intention to also withdraw from Iraq altogether (another dream of Tehran), and why their “come hell or high water” approach to withdrawing from Afghanistan, whatever the human or reputational cost, continued undeterred. Could the US contingent in Syria be far behind?

It’s a new version of an old idea often floated by former Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif. He advocated for a so-called “new security framework” in the Middle East which – as a prerequisite – involved the expulsion of the Americans.

“We need a strong region, not a strong man in the region. We have to recognize, all of us in the [Arabian] Gulf region, need to join Iran in recognizing that nobody can be the hegemon of the region. All of us need to work together in a strong region,” Zarif said in 2018.

With a heavy dose of Persian chutzpah, Zarif lauded with a straight face the virtues of “territorial integrity” and called for “no interference in the internal affairs of others” and “respect for national boundaries.”

All one needed to do was to start with “confidence-building measures.”

The confidence-building measures imagined by Zarif look a lot like what we’re seeing in the Middle East today as America disengages while Iran plays host to a regime whose new government is the most extreme since the onset of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s revolution.

No one seems to notice or care but one party in the Gulf isn’t buying it: the actual Iranian people. Iranians have had it with less food on the table, less water to drink, more misery, and more repression. This is why Iran’s summer was marked by more protests and more brutal crackdowns by the regime’s revolutionary guards. While the rest of the Gulf is planning for a brighter 21st century, the Iranian people are stuck with a regime fueled by the hatreds of the 12th century.

Rather than expending so much energy trying to change the Iranian government’s trajectory, it’s time for the Biden administration to read the region and amplify the voices of those in the line of Tehran’s fire, beginning with the Iranian people and continuing with those whose cities face Iranian rocket fire and the threat of nuclear blackmail.

Instead of pushing its Arab allies into normalizing their relations with Iran, the Biden administration ought to be building upon the peace-through-strength successes of the Abraham Accords. That’s what the American people supported and that’s what our allies in the Middle East desperately need. The nations of the Gulf, along with Egypt, Israel and other nations near Iran, don’t have the luxury of waiting for the results of the 2022 midterm US elections, let alone the 2024 presidential elections. They will instead have to forge their own collective path to defend themselves from more “confidence-building” demands from Tehran.

And if Washington is unwilling to do so then it may be time for the Arab countries to just move forward in the right direction without the Americans. They shouldn’t care too much about it either because Washington won’t be able to resist taking credit for their successes during midterm elections in 2022 and presidential elections in 2024.

In the meantime, it behooves American citizens – Democrats and Republicans – to demand action from their elected representatives in Congress. They must declare in a clear bipartisan voice: There will be no deals with Iran that endanger our allies. It’s time to show the pollsters and pundits at least that the American people are paying attention and do care about the fate of the Middle East.

If there is an actual, attainable deal with Iran that really reduces terrorism, violence, and nuclear threats, share those details with the American people, but from where we sit all we see are American diplomats promising Tehran everything they’ve demanded and more for the privilege of a useless piece of paper and the privilege of being serially lied to.

The author of this blog or other opinion piece is a third-party contributor who is independent of The Media Line Ltd and its partners or supporters. All assertions, opinions, facts, and information presented in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and are not necessarily those of The Media Line and/or all parties related thereto, none of whom assumes any responsibility for its content.

The Australian Horn is about to go Nuclear: Daniel 7

Australia Needs To Reconsider Acquisition Of Nuclear Weapons – Analysis

September 13, 2021Flag of Australia.

There is a risk Australia may be alone in the region

It has been fifty years since Australia made a formal decision not to acquire nuclear weapons. However, since then the regional geo-political environment has starkly changed, and is likely to become more turbulent over the next few decades, as balances are changing. 

US reliance as an alley, and the inferred nuclear protection Australia has been given is uncertain in the future. The competitive strategic positions of China and the US will change drastically over the next decade. US interests under different presidencies are also fluid. Australia is now in the frontline of a strategically changing region, where Australia’s self-perception as a middle power has vanished with some regional military forces much more potent than Australia. 

Australia’s bilateral relationship with its largest trading partner China has greatly deteriorated over recent times, with few signs of improving. Australia is alone in its trade dispute with China, ironically with the US benefitting from Chinese embargoes on Australian goods. Minister to minister communications has long been suspended, as China is decoupling Australia. 

There are a number of potential trouble spots in the region. These include Chinese intentions over Taiwan, North Korea’s acquisition of long-range nuclear weapon delivery systems, and a potentially unstable nuclear Pakistan with Taliban designs of creating a Pashtun Taliban Caliphate in Pakistan.

The nuclear equilibrium in the region is shifting. China’s rise in military force is prompting countries like India to upgrade its nuclear arsenal to much more powerful thermonuclear weapons.

Probably of greatest importance is Indonesian nuclear weapon development intentions. Former Indonesian army four-star general and minister for maritime affairs and investment has been reported as saying Indonesia is underestimated because it doesn’t have nuclear weapons. Indonesia’s development of facilities capable of manufacturing weapons grade materials are well underway. A nuclear Indonesia with a growing Wahhabi-Salafism in Indonesia may one day leave Australia with a government to the north, vastly different to what exists now. 

Australia needs to discuss strategy options in the new realities it faces in the region. There needs to be re-assessments of a post-Afghanistan US alley, very close neighbours to Australia which are adopting a placating response to China, a super-power that is bullying Australia, and the likelihood of a potential nuclear armed neighbour. 

Australia’s past stance on nuclear weapons

Since the early 1970s, Australian Governments have been strongly supportive of nuclear non-proliferation under the definitions of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), signed by the McMahon Government in 1970 and ratified by the incoming Labor Whitlam Government in 1973. Australia’s anti-nuclear position was even strengthened under Liberal-Coalition Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser, as the “green/anti-nuclear” movement was quickly growing in Australia at the time. With the exception of Prime Minister John Howard, who saw a changing Asia-Pacific nuclear balance, subsequent prime ministers Hawke, Keating, Rudd, and Gillard also strongly followed the non-proliferation line.

Paradoxically, every prime minister supported to various degrees, the development of uranium mining and export as an economic driver. The Fraser and later Rudd Governments argued that uranium exports should be used as a means to strengthen non-proliferation by demanding safeguards from customers.

Uranium exports have been controversial, with strong domestic protests over the years, governments trampling over indigenous wills, and deep party rifts within the Labor movement. Yet on the issue on non-proliferation, Australia had always been at the forefront in international forums.

Prior to the 1970s, Australia took a different view towards nuclear non-proliferation. In 1944, Australia supplied uranium ore to the Manhattan Project. Australian physicist Mark Oliphant played a major role in pushing the atomic bomb program in both Britain and the US before the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941.

However, after World War II, the US Government reneged on its agreement to share nuclear technology with its allies. Then Australian Prime Minister Robert Menzies, granted Australia’s assistance to Britain in its quest for autonomous nuclear weapons, giving technical assistance and allowing nuclear tests in the Mont Bello Islands, Emu Field and Maralinga, on Australian soil between 1952 and 1963. Australia also participated in the development of the Blue Streak and bloodhound missiles, which were potential nuclear weapon delivery systems with Britain during this era.

The significance of Australian participation, which didn’t go unnoticed by Australian bureaucrats and politicians at the time, was that under section IX.3 of the proposed NPT, Australia would be able to claim nuclear status as it had participated in the production and detonation of nuclear weapons prior to 1st January 1967. Historical reports indicate that the Australian Government’s main motivation at the time, (including US pressure), was to prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons in the local hemisphere, rather than seeking the abolishment of nuclear weapons.

Bureaucratic support from within the Australian defence and security establishment for a nuclear hedging position was strong at the. Wikileaks publication of diplomatic cables between Australia and the US on Iran’s bid to develop nuclear weapons indicated this. Notable Australian diplomat and former Director-General of the Office of National Assessments, Peter Varghese was reported as saying in his briefings to the United States that Australia didn’t see Iran as a ‘rogue state’ in its development of nuclear weapons as “Tehran’s nuclear program (was) within the paradigm of the laws of difference, noting that Iran’s ability to produce a nuclear weapon may be enough to meet its security objectives”.

Attempts during the 1950s and 1960s were made by a number of defence personnel, high placed public servants, academics, and right-wing elements of the Liberal-Country Party to acquire nuclear weapons. Initially purchasing them from either Britain or the United States was advocated. Later developing an independent nuclear deterrent was favoured.

Most of the active proponents for nuclear weapons were defence related personnel. They developed a number of plans to acquire nuclear weapons from the British, or have the United States deploy them on Australian soil. Sir Philip Baxter, who was head of the Australian Atomic Energy Commission (AAEC) at the time, operated a clandestine research program to isolate the isotope U-235 from uranium, the quality needed in the production of nuclear weapons. 

Some academics like Professor A. L. Burns of the Australian National University also advocated an Australian nuclear option which was aired by the Australian media at the time, especially in relation to the Chinese testing a nuclear bomb and the belief that Indonesia was also developing nuclear weapons. Pressure groups like the Democratic Labor Party and Returned Soldiers League which were both influential during the 1960s also strongly advocated an Australian nuclear weapon option.

The reluctance of the Australian Government to go ahead with the development of its own nuclear weapons all changed after Prime Minister Menzies retirement, when John Gorton unexpectedly became prime minister after the disappearance of Prime Minister Harold Holt in 1967. John Gorton, an ex-RAAF pilot strongly believed that Australia should have its own independent nuclear deterrent with the Chinese in possession of nuclear weapons in the region. Plans went underway to develop a nuclear facility at Jervis Bay on the South Coast of New South Wales that would house both a nuclear reactor, which could produce weapons grade plutonium, and bomb manufacturing facilities.

Gorton tried to develop an Australian nuclear weapon capability before the NPT was signed. However, in March 1971, he was disposed by William McMahon, who cancelled all nuclear weapon development plans. It will always remain a matter of conjecture how much influence the US had in his decision.

Moving back to more contemporary times, two recent reactions to recent events by the former Turnbull Government briefly hinted of a change in thinking about Australia’s strong non-proliferation position.

Firstly, Australia’s tradition of supporting non-proliferation in international forums was broken. Australia failed to support the recent United Nations resolution to outlaw nuclear weapons on the floor of the General Assembly in 2016, to the surprise and astonishment of many interested in this issue. Secondly, former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull failed to give Melbourne based International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) director Beatrice Fihn a congratulatory call after been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. This seems significant in what can be considered Australia’s first Nobel Peace Prize.

In addition, former Foreign Minister Julie Bishop’s rhetoric about nuclear weapons soon about to spread through the region indicates a change in Canberra’s world view. The Morrison Australian government is currently opposed to signing the new intentional Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

Over the last two years, there have been open public debates on the need of an Australian nuclear deterrent, something that hasn’t occurred for decades. Influential Australian National University academic Hugh White, published a book two years ago, which openly canvassed the possibility of Australia acquiring a nuclear deterrent. Given his close consulting with the Australian government on the subject of national strategic defence, this hints that the topic is being discussed at the highest levels of government. Former National Party deputy prime minister John Anderson openly advocated Australia acquiring a nuclear deterrent very recently.  

This is not yet a policy shift, but perhaps recognition that nuclear weapons for Australia may need to be an option. Today, with Australian citizen perception of China, and as more news of an Indonesian nuclear weapons program intentions surface, public support will increase. Australian society has changed since the anti-nuclear days of French testing in the Pacific, and the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. 

Are nuclear weapons technically possible for Australia?

Australia’s capability to develop nuclear weapons is better than most. The Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organization (ANSTO) at Lucas Heights, replacing the AAEC in 1987 is an internationally renowned centre of nuclear research. Australia has also developed some advanced indigenous uranium refining technology, the SILEX process using lasers, which is much more economical and cheaper than the traditional centrifuge technology.

Australia has large reserves of uranium and a stockpile of semi-refined uranium at Lucas heights. Australia also has a certain degree of bomb making technology that it gained from participation with Britain in the nuclear tests during the 1950s and its own endeavours back in the 1970s. Australia has the Lockheed Martin F-35A Lightning II fighter, Boeing F/A-18a & B Hornet, and the F/A 18F Super Hornet as capable medium range delivery systems.  Australia also has a range of nuclear capable cruise missiles which can be launched from aircraft, ships, and submarines. Submarines are today by far the most stealthy method of delivering nuclear weapons, as they are the most difficult to detect, and delivery time from launch to target is short. 

However, this doesn’t mean developing a nuclear arsenal would be an easy project for any future government. The project would be a major one requiring special budgeting, which would mean curtailing other budget expenditure. This could be very difficult in today’s economic environment.

In the absence of some form of threat to Australia’s security, public debate would probably be one of the most heated and passionate within Australian society. This would be reflected in the finely balanced Australian Parliament. This debate would have the potential to bring down the Government.

In the absence of bi-partisanship between the major parties on the issue, a Labor Government on current policy would firmly squash any potential nuclear program. It may not even need a change of government, a change of leader within the Liberal Party maybe enough to force the cancellation of any nuclear program.

The nuclear weapon debate is an issue politicians can use to gain power, which would prevent Australia developing nuclear weapons. That’s the dynamics of a democratic system. If France or Britain had to develop nuclear weapons from scratch today, it would almost be impossible through their democratic processes.

Even if Australia decided to go ahead with a nuclear program, tacit approval would be needed from the United States. The US has for years been hedging on this. However, with the Biden view of the region, the US may support allies in the Asia-Pacific taking more responsibility for their own defence. The proposal by Australia to develop its own nuclear arsenal may bring big offers of concessions from the US. There are possibilities that the US could deploy nuclear weapons on Australian soil as a deterrent, with joint control or leasing scheme. 

The strongest argument for Australia developing a nuclear deterrent is to gain strategic respect in the region. Australia cannot afford to project itself militarily into the South China Sea in any significant manner on its own. This would need spending 4-5 percent of GDP on defence over a decade. Australia’s transactional diplomacy within the region hasn’t developed close regional military alliances that it should have by now. China is using Australia as a decoupling experiment to see how isolated they can make the country. Australia must quickly see how alone it is now, as no country has jumped to Australia’s assistance. A nuclear deterrent will make it easier for Australia to stand alone. This will now very quickly develop into a serious option.  

Murray’s blog can be accessed here

Babylon the Great prepares for nuclear war under the sea: Revelation 16

A ‘persistent, proximate threat’: Why the Navy is preparing for a fight under the sea

Sep 10, 12:44 AM

As Russia and China bolster their own submarine fleets and capabilities, the U.S. Navy has renewed its focus on undersea threats and has labeled anti-submarine warfare a priority for all sailors — and perhaps some Marines, too.

In August, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced plans to acquire two nuclear submarines equipped with intercontinental ballistic missiles, and two diesel-powered submarines. And China, which owns four ballistic missile submarines, boasts a force of 50 diesel-electric attack submarines, the Nuclear Threat Initiative reported in February.

To counter these threats, the Navy reactivated its 2nd Fleet in 2018 to focus on threats from Russia — including those under the ocean — and more recently it has held exercises to improve its ability to fight enemy submarines.

“This is where the fight is … where the competition is,” retired Vice Adm. Andrew Lewis, then the commander of U.S. 2nd Fleet, told reporters in September 2020.

“Anti-submarine warfare is a primary mission for everybody in the United States Navy, regardless of what you wear on your chest,” Lewis said.

In recent years, Navy leaders have cautioned about increased Russian undersea activity in the Atlantic Ocean, and have warned that the continental United States is no longer a sanctuarysafe from such threats.

“Over the past several years, we’ve realized that there is a persistent proximate threat in the western Atlantic, primarily from Russian Federation Navy Forces, that has drawn a lot more attention due to the challenges that poses to our homeland defense,” Rear Adm. Brian Davies, commanding officer of Submarine Group 2 and deputy commander of the 2nd Fleet, told Navy Times.

“Specifically, Russian submarines now have advanced cruise missiles that have the range and accuracy to strike military and civilian targets throughout the U.S. and Canada and as a result, we put a lot more focus in the area of theater undersea warfare,” Davies said.

The Virginia-class fast-attack submarine Illinois (departs Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam for a scheduled deployment in U.S. 7th Fleet March 30. (MC1 Michael B. Zingaro/US Navy) 

Although the Russian submarine fleet is dramatically smaller than it was at the height of the Cold War, it still has 11 ballistic missile submarines and 17 nuclear-powered attack submarines, according to the Nuclear Threat Initiative. These ballistic missile submarines are capable and technologically on par — at least in some ways — with the U.S. submarine fleet, said Bryan Clark, a retired submarine officer and a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute.

“You’ve got this numbers challenge from the China side, the capability challenge from the Russian side, which in some ways demands different approaches to anti-submarine warfare, but it creates for both cases a big problem,” Clark said.

Bryan McGrath, a former destroyer captain who runs the FerryBridge Group, a defense consulting firm, noted that while the Chinese fleet is not as technologically advanced nor as capable as the Russian fleet, they do have a “ridiculously capable shipbuilding base” that’s churning out submarines.

The undersea threat has become critical now, given the investment Russia and China have made into expanding their submarine forces, McGrath said.

“Bottom line for why now is that both of our major competitors are putting money, resources and technology into this domain,” McGrath said.

Why the Navy re-established the 2nd Fleet

When the U.S. 2nd Fleet was dissolved in 2011 amid the war on terror, undersea warfare was put on the backburner. But the command was resurrected in 2018in response to greater levels of Russian activity in the North Atlantic and Arctic, including undersea.

For the same reason, NATO’s Joint Force Command Norfolk was stood up and the command reached full operational capability in July 2021. According to Lewis, who was also the commanding officer of JFC Norfolk, the command “creates a link between North America and Europe and helps to further develop the desired 360-degree approach for our collective defense and security.”

It is the only operational NATO command on the North American continent, and has air, surface and subsurface capabilities.

The Virginia-class attack submarine Indiana departs Newport News Shipbuilding in 2018 to conduct Alpha sea trials in the Atlantic Ocean. (Matt Hildreth/General Dynamics Electric Boat via Navy) 

The Navy also revived Submarine Group 2 in September 2019 to streamline the Navy’s ability to command and control undersea warfare assets in the Western Atlantic.

Similar to combatant commands, the Navy has theater undersea warfare commanders in Naples, Italy, working with the 6th Fleet, and a theater undersea warfare commander in Yokosuka, Japan, working with 5th Fleet and 7th Fleet. Still another in Pearl Harbor works primarily with the 3rd Fleet. But that same structure was absent for 2nd and 4th Fleet, Davies said.

“We really didn’t have a theater undersea warfare commander that was dedicated to a fleet on this side of the Atlantic serving, basically, NORTHCOM and U.S. Fleet Forces Command, and that made it a natural fill in,” Davies said, referring to SUBGRU2.

The command will soon celebrate its second anniversary, and recently became the organization responsible for training and certifying the other theater undersea warfare commanders to ensure they are fully trained, have all the necessary equipment they need and have the appropriate personnel.

“The command, although not in final operating capability yet, is getting closer every day as we get to train and exercise like we would one day fight,” Davies said.

The Navy had the opportunity to do just that while honing its undersea warfare skills in a new exercise called Black Widow — which just wrapped up its second iteration in August. The exercise aimed to explore new tactics, techniques and procedures, and refine existing ones, Davies said.

An unmanned aerial vehicle delivers a payload to the Ohio-class ballistic-missile submarine Henry M. Jackson around the Hawaiian Islands. (MC1 Devin M. Langer/Navy) 

Specifically, the exercise relied on a mixture of scripted scenarios, coupled with cutting edge technologies and existing force structure technology that will be used for the next decade, Davies said.

While many of the concepts tested were classified, Davies said “our tactics, techniques and procedures really centered on finding an undersea threat that was very adept at using the environment and the topography to their advantage.”

The Undersea Warfighting Development Center in Groton, Connecticut, is responsible for establishing the exercise’s objectives, and will then use the data collected from Black Widow to provide an assessment of the exercise.

Those results will then be shared with the Naval Aviation Warfighting Development Center and the Naval Surface and Mine Warfighting Development Center, he said.

“One of the things that the Navy can continue to work on is looking for every available opportunity to train together as this system of systems or team of teams, however you want to refer to it,” Davies said.

“When we have available bandwidth, we ought to be continuing to scratch and claw for every opportunity to get out there and work together in advancing this art of undersea warfare,” Davies said.

Will the Marine Corps get involved in anti-submarine warfare?

Although the U.S. Navy has historically been the service primarily responsible for anti-submarine warfare, that could change since the Marine Corps wants to become involved.

Commandant Gen. David Berger said in November it’s imperative for the Marine Corps to step in and suggested the service could provide logistics support and air defense as ways to counter the undersea threat.

“The undersea fight will be so critical in the High North and in the western Pacific that the Marine Corps must be part of it,” Berger wrote in a U.S. Naval Institute article from November 2020.

Specifically, Berger proposed that the Marine Corps deploy to bases in the Atlantic’s North Sea or the South China Sea to restrict the movement of Russian or Chinese submarines in the event of undersea war.

“By offering forward logistics and support, as well as sensor and strike capabilities, Marine expeditionary advanced bases (EABs) could make a significant contribution to undersea warfare campaigns, including holding Chinese and Russian submarines at risk,” Berger said.

These EABs could also house Navy P-8A Poseidons and MH-60R Seahawks, and the Marine Corps could offer air-defense and logistical support for these aircraft, Berger said.

Another role the Marine Corps could assume is operating unmanned aerial vehicles outfitted with anti-submarine warfare sensors and sonobuoys, and then “deploy and operate passive and active acoustic arrays in adjacent littoral waters,” Berger said.

“In the event of hostilities, when cued by these organic sensors or other joint ISR capabilities, EABs could harass and potentially neutralize Russian submarines with ground-launched ASW missiles or light torpedoes from Marine aircraft,” Berger said.

McGrath agreed there’s benefit in having Marine EABs equipped with a series of launchers with land-attack weapons, along with weapons that could sink ships and take down ballistic missiles, as part of a larger architecture within the joint force.

But McGrath has reservations about the Marine Corps becoming too involved in undersea warfare, given the cost of purchasing anti-submarine warfare platforms like P-8 Poseidons and Virginia-class submarines.

“Anti-submarine warfare is a science and an art and it’s difficult, and it is a mission that pretty much only the United States Navy does within the Joint Force,” McGrath said.

“There’s a lot of money that goes into that, and I want the Marine Corps busy doing Marine Corps things,” McGrath said. “And I don’t think finding submarines is among them.”

Clark believes the Navy first must get down to business incorporating unmanned systems before the Marine Corps jumps in to tackle anti-submarine warfare.

Cmdr. Bennett Christman, commanding officer of the Virginia-class attack submarine New Hampshire gives visitors a tour of the boat’s torpedo room. (MC2 Cameron Stoner/Navy) 

“The Navy’s going to have to first work through the use of unmanned systems to a greater degree, because the Marines aren’t going to be doing anti-submarine warfare unless they’re able to tap into what unmanned systems are going to be doing for the sensing,” Clark said.

The role of unmanned vehicles

Experts believe one solution to modernize anti-submarine warfare is to use autonomous systems to track, trail and potentially engage enemy submarines to neutralize the threat, which would then free up other resources like destroyers for other tasks and cut down on operating costs.

“The unmanned systems give you this ability to do persistent anti-submarine warfare, at a lower cost in peacetime than your manned systems,” Clark said.

According to a report from the Hudson Institute issued in September 2020, the U.S. Navy’s anti-submarine warfare approach likely can’t contend with undersea threats in the event of a conflict or crisis.

The report detailed how the Navy currently relies on a complex web for anti-submarine warfare involving seabed sensors, maritime patrol aircraft, destroyers and ultimately, submarines. But that approach could become challenging in the event these manned platforms are required elsewhere — such as in a time of crisis, the report said.

This strategy could also run into problems if enemy submarines were to overwhelm an area. In addition, the cost of operating systems such as a destroyer and a P-8 Poseidon aircraft could become too expensive if there’s a persistent need during periods of flat or declining budgets, the report says.

For example, Clark said it is cheaper to purchase a medium unmanned surface vessel than a destroyer, and then use the unmanned vessel either infrequently or not at all. However, in the event of a conflict, that medium unmanned surface vessel could be deployed while destroyers are conducting other engagements not related to anti-submarine warfare, he said.

The General Atomics MQ-9B is in development for maritime use. A modified MQ-9A was recently used in an anti-submarine warfare demonstration. (Rendering via General Atomics) 

“ASW is really a lot of searching around and following and chasing submarines,” Clark said. “It’s not like air defense where it happens very quickly, and so it’s more like just a long-term surveillance mission. So, in peacetime, it is a lot of just waiting around for a submarine to come by, detecting the submarine, and then following the submarine.”

The report called for using unmanned systems, including medium unmanned surface vessels and medium-altitude long endurance unmanned aerial vehicles like the MQ-9B SeaGuardian, but noted that not all of the systems it cited are employed operationally yet. As a result, the report suggests that this unmanned approach could occur over the next five to 10 years to allow such systems to mature.

The Navy has focused on developing drones that could participate in anti-submarine warfare, and has started to test out unmanned systems that could be used in tracking submarines.

In November 2020, during the development process for the MQ-9B SeaGuardian drone, the Navy and General Atomics deployed 10 sonobuoys from an MQ-9A Block V Reaper and tracked a simulated submarine target.

Never before had an aerial drone dropped a self-contained anti-submarine warfare system. The testing “paves the way” for additional development of more anti-submarine warfare capabilities from MQ-9s, according to General Atomics.

What’s next for the Navy?

Safe havens don’t exist anymore, and that means the Navy must be poised to carry out combat near its home turf, according to Vice Adm. Daryl Caudle, the head of Submarine Force Atlantic.

“Russia took a knee for over a decade and allowed a lot of folks to think the homeland is a sanctuary from Russian forces,” Caudle told reporters in September 2020. “Our homeland is no longer a sanctuary. We have to be prepared to conduct high-end combat operations in local waters.”

If faced with a crisis or outright hostilities, Clark envisions Russia capitalizing on its submarine force, including threatening the continental United States or heading toward Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay in Georgia to harass U.S. ballistic missile submarines trying to get in or out of port.

Meanwhile, the Chinese’s large submarine fleet would likely try to “flood the zone” to overwhelm U.S. undersea warfare assets, threaten U.S. Naval forces with attack, or try to blockade Guam or Taiwan, he said.

“For the U.S., going against the Chinese, the goal is just keep them away from ships,” Clark said. “It doesn’t matter if they continue to operate or not, as long as they stay away from the ships.”

“Whereas with the Russians, there may be a need to actually sink those submarines because they will — once they get towards the East Coast — they’re going to be a constant threat,” Clark said.

A Russian nuclear submarine breaks through Arctic ice during military drills March 26 at an unspecified location. (Russian Defence Ministry via AP) 

McGrath is worried that the type of equipment to deal with these potential threats won’t receive adequate support in future budgets. The Navy’s proposed budget for fiscal 2022 includes a request for two Virginia-class attack submarines with a topline budget of $211.7 billion — an overall increase of $3.8 billion from what was enacted in FY2021.

Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Michael Gilday has emphasized that the service can afford a fleet of approximately 300 ships, but has said that the request aligns with the U.S. Navy’s future fleet design plans.

“My fear is that the expense associated with building the Navy that seriously contends with these threats will not receive the attention it deserves, in and among all of the other priorities that our nation seems to have,” McGrath said.

For the future, McGrath suggested the U.S. build unmanned acoustic sensors, both for undersea and surface vessels, and for the Navy to acquire more P-8 Poseidon aircraft and attack submarines. That’s what “we do better than anyone else in the world is attack submarines,” he said.

“That advantage is something that I think we need to never forget, we need to continue to invest in, and we need to double down on.”

The French Nuclear Horn Is A Powerful – But Fragile – Ally Against Russia

French Leclerc tank.

France’s Military Is A Powerful – But Fragile – Ally Against Russia, Says U.S. Study

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France fields a powerful military with sophisticated capabilities, including advanced jets, well-trained commandos and nuclear weapons.

But the French military is also fragile, lacking reserves of munitions and manpower for a sustained conflict with Russia, according to a study by a U.S. think tank. 

“France currently possesses one of Western Europe’s most capable militaries, owing to the country’s commitment to maintaining as wide a range of military capabilities as possible and preserving its capacity to handle any kind of conflict, including high-intensity conventional warfare, without the necessity of allies,” according to a report by U.S. think tank RAND Corp.

France has always been the odd bird of the Western alliance. A founding member of NATO in 1949, it withdrew its troops from NATO command in 1966 – only to rejoin in 2009. Mindful of its history as a great power – the armies of Louis XIV and Napoleon once dominated Europe – France since 1945 has pursued a fiercely independent foreign policy that has sometimes exasperated U.S. leaders.

But facing possible conflict with Moscow over Eastern Europe and the Baltic States – and with the U.S. calling for Europe to spend more on its own defense – NATO needs all the help it can get. 

France is well-positioned to help. With around 300,000 active-duty military personnel backed by the world’s seventh-largest economy, France boasts an impressive range of capabilities for a medium-sized power. Its Leclerc tanks, Rafale jet fighters and CAESAR 155-millimeter self-propelled howitzers are in the same league as advanced American or Russian equipment. France has a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier and four nuclear-powered submarines armed with nuclear-tipped ICBMs, as well as spy satellites and cyberwarfare capabilities. 

France’s problem isn’t breadth of capabilities, but depth. Not just limited numbers of weapons and munitions, but also crucial support services, such as electronic warfare, air defense and airlift capacity. 

“France’s capacity to sustain a high-end, conventional conflict is limited,” RAND said. “The French military might be able to accomplish all its assigned missions at once, but it lacks depth, meaning that such demanding operations would quickly exhaust both its human and material resources.”

Ironically, while France and America have had their squabbles, both find themselves caught in the same dilemma. Like the U.S. military, the French armed forces entered the post-9/11 era configured for Cold War mechanized combat. And like the U.S. military, they had to reorient themselves for counterinsurgency warfare. For years, France has been fighting Islamic militants in the former French colonies in the Sahel — or Saharan — region of Africa, including the nations of Mali, Mauritania, Chad, Niger and Burkina Faso. Since Operation Barkhane began in 2014, up to 5,000 French soldiers have been deployed in Africa, as well as small numbers of troops fighting Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

TOPSHOT – Soldiers from the French Army holds [+]AFP via Getty Images

But in June 2021, French President Emmanuel Macron announced that Operation Barkhane would end, though France will still maintain a military presence in the Sahel. France now has to prepare for both major-power conflict and small wars. 

The result is that the French military is designed for segment median, or “middle-segment” warfare, defined as “heavy enough to survive on a conventional battlefield yet light enough to remain expeditionary—i.e., deployable to austere environments, such as Mali, in the absence of ample logistical capabilities,” RAND noted.

“France has been careful to maintain the ability to do full spectrum operations, including for a conventional war in Europe,” Stephanie Pezard, a RAND researcher who co-authored the study, told me. “However, this ability has not been their main focus over the past few years, resulting recently in a new turn toward high-intensity conflict and the means necessary to wage this type of war.”

U.S. leaders such as Donald Trump have long accused Europe of not spending enough on European defense, forcing American taxpayers to pick up the tab. Yet France does see itself as defending Europe – just not in Europe. “The French consider their military’s active overseas operations, especially in the Sahel but also in Iraq and Syria, as burden-sharing—a form of in-kind contribution that enhances NATO and European security even when not conducted under a NATO or European Union mandate,” RAND noted. 

Nonetheless, NATO since its inception has focused on the Russian threat. And the French military would be an invaluable asset in a NATO-Russia conflict. “France could support a U.S.-led war in Eastern Europe; it has and is developing the capabilities required to take on a sophisticated peer and help meet some of the needs identified to participate in high-intensity conventional warfare,” RAND noted.

But France couldn’t battle Russia for long without U.S. support. “France is able to conduct military operations across the full spectrum of conflict, but it does not have the ability to sustain the fight during a protracted conflict against a highly capable adversary, such as Russia,” said RAND. “From a U.S. perspective, this means that France could participate in a large-scale conventional war in Eastern Europe for a limited time. Several capability areas, such as electronic warfare and air defenses, might benefit from increased U.S.-French collaboration and could improve France’s ability to sustain this type of conflict.”

Which leads to an even deeper question: how willing would France be to fight Russia? That depends, says Pezard. “If France becomes convinced that the security situation in Europe warrants a larger presence, then this would likely take precedence over overseas commitments — unless these overseas commitments aim at securing France’s overseas territories. Until France becomes convinced that the situation in Europe warrants more involvement on its part, it will continue to secure the next circle, such as the Mediterranean and the Sahel.”

Here come the Bowls of Wrath! Revelation 16

Iran’s Nuclear Weapons Weeks Away

3 Tishri 5782 – September 9, 2021

Photo Credit: Asher Schwartz

Since the Biden administration assumed office, the nuclear talks with Iran have gone nowhere. Six rounds of negotiations have been concluded with no results. In contrast, two other issues have gone too far: the Biden administration’s appeasement policies towards the Iranian regime, and the advancement of the mullahs’ nuclear program.When the Biden administration took office, it announced that it would curb Iran’s nuclear program by returning to the 2015 nuclear deal — known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), which by the way Iran never signed — and by subsequently lifting sanctions against the Iranian government.Advertisement Apparently desperate to revive the nuclear pact, the Biden administration at once began appeasing the ruling clerics of Iran. The first concession was delivered when the administration changed the previous administration’s policy of maximum pressure toward Iran’s proxy militia group, the Houthis. Even as the evidence — including a report by the United Nations — showed that the Iranian regime was delivering sophisticated weapons to the Houthis in Yemen, the Biden administration suspended some of the sanctions against terrorism that the previous administration had imposed on the Houthis.Soon after, the Biden administration revoked the designation of Yemen’s Houthis as a terrorist group. In addition, in June 2021, the Biden administration lifted sanctions on three former Iranian officials and several energy companies. Then, in a blow to the Iranian people and advocates of democracy and human rights — a few days after the Iranian regime handpicked a mass murderer to be its next president — the Biden administration announced that it was also considering lifting sanctions against Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.From the perspective of Iran’s mullahs, Biden’s desperate efforts to resurrect the nuclear deal manifested his weak leadership and therefore a delectable opportunity for Tehran to buy time, get more concessions, advance its nuclear program and become a nuclear state.Notwithstanding all these policies of incentives and appeasements, Iran’s mullahs continued to make excuses seemingly to drag out the nuclear talks. One of the latest overtures was that the world powers ought to wait until Iran’s newly elected president, Ebrahim Raisi, took office before resuming the nuclear talks.By now, Raisi has been president of Iran for more than a month but there has not been the slightest effort by the Islamic Republic to restart any talks; in fact, all the while, the regime appears to have accelerated its enrichment of uranium to weapons-grade. This escalation has even caused concerns among some European leaders and has, surprisingly, led the EU to pressure Tehran immediately to return to the negotiating table. “We vehemently ask Iran to return to the negotiating table constructively and as soon as possible. We are ready to do so, but the time window won’t be open indefinitely” a ministry spokesperson from Germany warned.After stating that they would resume talks when Raisi assumed office, Iran’s leaders are now saying that they are not likely to restart the nuclear negotiations for another 2-3 months. “the… government considers a real negotiation is a negotiation that produces palpable results allowing the rights of the Iranian nation to be guaranteed,” Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said during an interview broadcast by Iran’s state television. He added that the nuclear talks are “one of the questions on the foreign policy and government agenda… the other party knows full well that a process of two to three months is required for the new government to establish itself and to start taking decisions.”As Iran’s nuclear policy, however, is not set by the president or its foreign minister, this declaration sounded like just another excuse by the regime to buy time and advance enrichment. It is, of course, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei who enjoys the final say in Iran’s nuclear and foreign policy issues.At the moment, the Iranian regime is reportedly 8-10 weeks away from obtaining the weapons-grade materials necessary for a nuclear weapon. “Iran has violated all of the guidelines set in the JCPOA and is only around 10 weeks away from acquiring weapons-grade materials necessary for a nuclear weapon,” Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz told ambassadors from countries on the United Nations Security Council during a briefing at the Israeli Foreign Ministry in Jerusalem on August 4, 2021. “Now is the time for deeds – words are not enough. It is time for diplomatic, economic and even military deeds, otherwise the attacks will continue.”Once again it seems that the mullahs of Iran are masterfully playing the Biden administration and the EU by stalling the nuclear talks, buying time to get more concessions, and accelerating their enrichment of uranium and nuclear program to reach a weapons-grade nuclear breakout.{Reposted from the Gatestone Institutewebsite}

Russia builds up her nuclear horn: Daniel 7

Russia building up nuclear potential – Stoltenberg

Russia building up nuclear potential – Stoltenberg

07.09.2021 09:20

That’s according to NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg who addressed via video link the annual NATO conference on non-proliferation, held in Copenhagen on September 6.

The full text of Jens Stoltenberg’s address has been published on the NATO website.

“[W]e must be clear-eyed about the challenges before us. Russia continues to ignore and bend the rules. It undermines key treaties. Russia is also modernizing its dual-capable and nuclear capabilities, including intercontinental ballistic missiles. Its hypersonic glide vehicle is now operational. And it has tested a new air-launched ballistic missile, and a nuclear-powered cruise missile,” Stoltenberg said.

Among other challenges in the non-proliferation field, the NATO chief called the rapid expansion of China’s nuclear arsenal, with more warheads and more sophisticated delivery systems.

Moreover, Stoltenberg added, China is building a large number of missile silos, “which can significantly increase its nuclear capability.”

He also noted other international actors fielding nuclear weapons and advanced missile systems. As an example, he cited North Korea and Iran, “who are blatantly ignoring or breaking the global rules.”

“All of this is happening without any limitation or constraint. And with a complete lack of transparency <…> So the world is rapidly becoming more unpredictable, more competitive, and more dangerous. NATO is adapting to this changing world,” said Stoltenberg.

As Ukrinform reported earlier, at the Brussels Summit in 2021, the Allies agreed to further strengthen the system of nuclear non-proliferation control. They praised the extension of the START nuclear arms reduction treaty between the U.S. and Russia, which should be viewed not as a completion but as a beginning of new efforts to strengthen international non-proliferation.

START was extended on February 3, 2021, until February 5, 2026.

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The upcoming nuclear war: Revelation 16

China, North Korea and Who's next in Line? Nuclear War?

China, North Korea and Who s next in Line? Nuclear War?

North Korea has indeed turned into the discussion of the world. The justification this is that the nation is continuing atomic weapons tasks. Regardless of assents on weapons of mass obliteration, north korea has been working enthusiastically to foster atomic weapons. The country’s fundamental atomic complex has begun to get back to work at the UN atomic guard dog office said. Specialists say Pyongyang is by implication notice them to lift sanctions on their country.
What’s going on with North Korea?
The international Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said in a report in august that it had noticed atomic movement at the Angbian Experimental Nuclear Power Plant, which is basic to North Korea’s atomic program. This spot is found 100 km north of the public capital Pyongyang. The IAEA has uncovered that atomic weapons programs have continued here after numerous years. The IAEA clarified that there were no signs that the 5MW reactor was in reactor activity from december 2018 to July 2021 … in any case, that a few signs, including the cooling water release from July 2021, were functional.
It is accounted for that tasks occurred in the radiochemical research center from february to July. The reactor communicated worry that Angbion was creating plutonium. It is one of the two key materials used to make atomic weapons. The IAEA has remarked that the continuation of North Korea’s atomic exercises involves genuine concern. The IAEA reports that work is in progress in north korea to re-measure the fuel bars eliminated from the reactors into plutonium.
Why Nuclear weapons during Corona ?
As the crown blast, north korea shut every one of its lines. It has additionally disavowed adjoining China. The country’s economy has been hit hard by the suspension of exchange. The nation was hit by a food emergency with twisters and floods. With that, it was inescapable to confront the monetary emergency. Truth be told, recuperating from this is anything but a simple errand for North Korea. With that, it appears to be that President Kim Jong Un needs to restart the atomic program and carry the world to haggling. Specialists say they are doing this to support the country from the monetary emergency.
How large is the thermal energy station in North Korea?
The capital says it has everything from intercontinental long range rockets to atomic gadgets. Be that as it may, there is practically no lucidity about its armory. The Nuclear Threat Initiative says north korea is the solitary country that requirements to pull out of a consent to seek after an atomic program and secure further developed atomic weapons.
What is the current status of atomic discussions and harmony talks?
The U.S., UN, and different nations have forced various assents because of North Korea’s opening to atomic exercises. In any case, north korea is disregarding UN security runs as though nothing had occurred. north korea has not held its statement to the world in such manner. Joe Biden has as of now reported that he won’t give any global acknowledgment to North Korea. north korea is turning out to be more provocative in this unique circumstance.

The Iranian Horn is Nuclear Ready: Daniel 8

Official website of Ali Khamenei / Wikimedia Commons

Many countries are keeping tabs on the ongoing nuclear activities of Iran especially through the nuclear deal that was established in 2015. A probe on the Islamic nation’s nuclear activities reveals that it has enough enriched uranium to develop a nuclear weapon in days.

A report is set to confirm that Iran has enriched enough uranium to develop a nuclear weapon of its own in a span of fewer than two weeks. Former deputy director-general of the International Atomic Energy Agency Oli Heinonen warned that it was time for a more robust approach to the nuclear threat that Iran now poses. Heinonen said that the findings mean that Iran no longer cares what western nations think of them as they push through with their nuclear program.

“Moreover, in a couple of days, the new IAEA report will be an eye-opener. I predict it will show that stocks of 60 percent enriched uranium and 20 percent enriched uranium, when combined, are enough to produce one nuclear device in just a few weeks — less than two months,” said Heinonen. “This means Iran has already achieved a kind of immunity.”

Heinonen went on to accuse France, Germany, and the United Kingdom, as well as US President Joe Biden — who was the vice president when Barack Obama oversaw the nuclear deal — of living in the past. Heinonen said that it was time to move on from the nuclear agreement that was established years ago. With the US having withdrawn from the deal in 2018, it was up to the three other European nations to take action.

“But this is also an opportunity to find a different approach. Iran has no real interest in nuclear weapons, but it does want to end all sanctions,” added Heinonen.

This probe comes at the heels of the initially chaotic evacuation of US troops along with other allies and concerned Afghans from Afghanistan as the war-torn country has now fallen to the insurgent group Taliban. Thousands of Afghans who still fear the hardline regime of the Taliban have looked to flee the country, including fleeing to Iran, which has said it would provide shelter to Afghan refugees.

It should be noted that the Islamic beliefs of Iran and the Taliban have made the two rivals as Iranians despise the Sunni Muslim Taliban.