Top Iranian nuclear scientist assassinated amid war rumors

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27 Nov 2020, 5:19 pm

Iran's top nuclear scientist killed in apparent assassination, state media reports

Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, considered one of the masterminds of Iran's controversial nuclear program, died after his car was apparently ambushed in a district east of Tehran. Photos from the scene showed the shattered windshield of a car, and blood on the road.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office declined to comment to CNN.
Fakhrizadeh was head of the research center of new technology in the elite Revolutionary Guards, and was a leading figure in Iran's nuclear program for many years.

US President Donald Trump retweeted prominent Israeli journalist Yossi Melman, who wrote: "Fakhrizadeh-Mahabadi assassinated in Damavand, east of Tehran according to reports in Iran. He was head of Iran's secret military program and wanted for many years by Mossad. His death is a major psychological and professional blow for Iran."
The Trump administration said it was closely monitoring the apparent assassination. The death "would be a big deal," a US official told CNN.

Several top-level Iranian officials have condemned the attack and threatened to retaliate. The head of Iran's Revolutionary Guards Corps, Hossein Salami, issued a statement calling the killing a "terrorist operation", according to ISNA.

Trita Parsi, the co-founder and executive vice president of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, said it was not clear who was behind the apparent assassination, but that "there are not that many candidates."

"At the end of the day the only countries that actually have the intent, the motivation and the capacity -- and the capacity is really important -- really reduces the number of candidates to no more than Israel and potentially the United States," he told CNN's Becky Anderson.
In April 2018, Netanyahu mentioned Fakhrizadeh by name when he unveiled a nuclear archive he said Mossad agents had taken from Tehran. He called him the head of a secret nuclear project called Project Amad. "Remember that name, Fakhrizadeh," Netanyahu told reporters.

There are just over 50 days left in the Trump administration, before President-elect Joe Biden is inaugurated and diplomatic contacts between Tehran and Washington are likely to pick up again.

There are many in Israel and the US who see the current "maximum pressure" policy of sanctions and hostility as the only route to stop Iran from expanding its influence and getting the bomb eventually.

Fakhrizadeh's killing makes that kind of diplomacy harder, and gives voice to hawks in Iran that peacemaking is futile. It also gives voice to Iran's enemies, who can argue that taking on Iran head first is possible and can be palpably a deterrent.

Netanyahu met MBS, Pompeo in Saudi Arabia: Israeli media
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu secretly flew to Saudi Arabia on Sunday to meet Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Israeli media said.

A member of Netanyahu’s cabinet and Likud party on Monday confirmed reports that the Israeli leader had held a meeting in Saudi Arabia, calling it an “amazing achievement”.

The very fact the meeting happened, and was outed publicly, even if half-officially right now, is a matter of great importance,” Education Minister Yoav Gallant told Army Radio when asked about the visit.

However, Faisal bin Farhan al-Saud, Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister, denied reports that a meeting took place between MBS and Israeli officials in a tweet later on Sunday.

Earlier on Monday, Israel’s Kan public radio and Army Radio said Mossad chief Yossi Cohen also attended the meeting, which was reportedly held in Neom on Saudi Arabia’s Red Sea coast.

According to Israeli daily Haaretz, aviation tracking data showed that a private jet had made a brief trip from Tel Aviv to Neom, where MBS and Pompeo had a scheduled meeting on Sunday.

Flight-tracking websites showed that the plane was grounded for approximately two hours before it returned to Israel about half an hour past midnight.

The jet, according to Haaretz, is the same private plane Netanyahu took several times for his visits to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Israeli military instructed to prepare for Trump strike on Iran: report
Israel's military is preparing for the possibility that the Trump administration will launch a military strike against Iran, Axios reported on Wednesday.

Senior Israeli officials told the outlet that the Israeli government instructed military commanders to prepare for a potential strike during the “very sensitive period” between now and when President-elect Joe Biden takes office on Jan. 20.

Israel is reportedly making preparations with the expectation that they would receive advance notice from the U.S. regarding any military action, but with concerns that such notification might come too close to the attack.

Israel is also preparing for the possibility of a retaliatory strike by Iran, either directly or through proxies in nearby countries.

The New York Times reported last week that President Trump was considering a military strike against Iran in an attempt to stop Tehran's growing nuclear program.

Trump reportedly held a meeting Thursday in the Oval Office to discuss his options, but Vice President Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, acting Secretary of Defense Christopher Miller and Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, dissuaded him against such actions.

Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz has spoken twice over the past two weeks with Miller to discuss Iran, Syria and defense cooperation.

State Department officials, meanwhile, told reporters that “all options are on the table” regarding Iran.

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27 Nov 2020, 5:42 pm

ASPartOfMe wrote:

Mossad, is my best bet. 8)

Laughter is the best medicine. Age-appropriate behaviour is an arbitrary NT social construct.
Don't tell me white lies. Gaslight me at your peril. Don't give me your bad attitude.
If I'm so bad, pass me by. ;)

And one more thing,

"A stranger is a friend gang-stalker you haven't met yet."

Truth may be inconvenient but it is never politically incorrect...The Oracle of Truth has spoken...8)



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29 Nov 2020, 1:02 pm ... ously-2247

Come here to get the Block functionality for Wrongplanet:


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29 Nov 2020, 6:09 pm

Are you suggesting that all of those scientists were done in by the Israelies?


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01 Dec 2020, 1:10 pm

If trump strikes Iran they may Say it was to curtail a nuclear weapons program, and in part it might be, but I bet they do it in such a way as to cause maximum problems for Biden to have to deal with the moment he’s inaugurated.

Just like firing tons of US gov’t workers to screw things up at home, it’ll be part of his petty temper tantrum scorched earth crap on the way out the door - breaking things just to break them & cause chaos for the Biden administration to have to clean up, hindering their ability to both govern Or look into the trump administration’s grift and theft.

No :heart: for supporting trump. Because doing so is deplorable.