By Julie Lévesque – A report published in The Sunday Times on March 25 suggests that “Israel is using a permanent base in Iraqi Kurdistan to launch cross-border intelligence missions in an attempt to find ‘smoking gun’ evidence that Iran is building a nuclear warhead.” (Israeli spies scour Iran in nuclear hunt, The Sunday Times, March 25, 2012)
Western sources told the Times Israel was monitoring “radioactivity and magnitude of explosives tests” and that “special forces used Black Hawk helicopters to carry commandos disguised as members of the Iranian military and using Iranian military vehicles”. The sources believe “Iranians are trying to hide evidence of warhead tests in preparation for a possible IAEA visit”. (Cited in Report: Israeli soldiers scour Iran for nukes, Ynet, March 25, 2012)
The number of Israeli intelligence missions at the Parchin military base in Iran has increased in the past few months, according to the article. During that period, Tehran has been negotiating with the IAEA which had requested to visit Parchin. According to Iran’s permanent representative to the IAEA, Ali Asghar Soltanieh, both parties had agreed in early February that the visit would take place in March. (Gareth Porter, Details of Talks with IAEA Belie Charge Iran Refused Cooperation, IPS, March 21, 2012)
The IAEA requested to visit Parchin in late January and late February, after having agreed to a visit in March. The IAEA thus requested to visit the military complex exactly at the same time Israel was intensifying its secret operations to allegedly search for a “smoking gun”.
A few years ago it has been suggested that Israel was the source of fake intelligence, a stolen laptop, related to Iran’s alleged nuclear program. The New York Times reported in 2005 on what was presented as “the strongest evidence” Iran was building nuclear weapons:
American intelligence officials called the leaders of the international atomic inspection agency to the top of a skyscraper overlooking the Danube in Vienna and unveiled the contents of what they said was a stolen Iranian laptop computer.
They presented them as the strongest evidence yet that, despite Iran’s insistence that its nuclear program is peaceful, the country is trying to develop a compact warhead to fit atop its Shahab missile, which can reach Israel and other countries in the Middle East. (William J. Broad and David E. Sanger Relying on Computer, U.S. Seeks to Prove Iran’s Nuclear Aims – New York Times, November 13, 2005)
In 2010, an investigative report suggested that those documents were fake:
The warhead shown in the schematics had the familiar “dunce cap” shape of the original North Korean No Dong missile, which Iran had acquired in the mid-1990s […]
The laptop documents had depicted the wrong re-entry vehicle being redesigned […]
The origin of the laptop documents may never be proven conclusively, but the accumulated evidence points to Israel as the source. As early as 1995, the head of the Israel Defense Forces’ military intelligence research and assessment division, Yaakov Amidror, tried unsuccessfully to persuade his American counterparts that Iran was planning to “go nuclear.” By 2003-2004, Mossad’s reporting on the Iranian nuclear program was viewed by high-ranking CIA officials as an effort to pressure the Bush administration into considering military action against Iran’s nuclear sites, according to Israeli sources cited by a pro-Israeli news service.” (Gareth Porter,Exclusive Report: Evidence of Iran Nuclear Weapons Program May Be Fraudulent, Global Research, November 18, 2010).
The fact that Israeli intelligence officers were on a secret mission in Parchin, dressed up as Iranians and driving Iranian military vehicles, while the IAEA was pressuring Tehran to visit that precise location, raises serious questions. The stated goal of those secret missions is the search for a smoking gun. The smoking gun allegations regarding Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction have proven that such evidence can be fabricated and used to launch so-called pre-emptive wars.