Former US envoy to the UN John Bolton said Monday that if Israel wants to prevent Iran from acquiring a working nuclear plant, then a military strike must be launched against the Bushehr nuclear power facility within the next eight days. The comments were made in an interview with the Fox Business Network.
Russia, who is supplying the uranium fuel for the plant, announced last week
that they will begin loading the Bushehr reactor on August 21.
Bolton warned that once the Bushehr facility is operational it will be too late for a military air strike against Iran because such an attack would spread radiation and harm Iranian civilians.
"Once that uranium, once those fuel rods are very close to the reactor,
certainly once they're in the reactor, attacking it means a release of
radiation, no question about it," Bolton said.
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"So if Israel is going to do anything against Bushehr it has to move in the next eight days."
Although he didn't think an Israeli attack on Iran was very likely,
Bolton expressed the belief that without such a strike both Israel and
the US would be in trouble.
"Iran will achieve something that no other opponent of Israel, no other
enemy of the United States in the Middle East really has and that is a
functioning nuclear reactor."
Bolton was critical of Russia for aiding Iran in the fueling of the nuclear reactor.
"The Russians are, as they often do, playing both sides against the middle. The idea of being able to stick a thumb in America's eye always figures prominently in Moscow.", Bolton concluded.