Us Military Chief Clock Is Ticking On Irans Nuclear Program

07.08.09 | FL News Team

The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff says time is running out for a dialogue with Tehran to avoid a nuclear-armed Iran, or a possible military strike against the Islamic Republic. Admiral Mike Mullen said some forecasters believe Iran could be as little as a year away from developing a nuclear bomb, and emphasized the clock is ticking. Mullen said it is critical for diplomatic efforts to reach a solution before Iran develops a nuclear weapon. Otherwise, Iran could face an Israeli or U.S. strike to stop it's nuclear program. Israel has said a nuclear-armed Iran would be a threat to its existence, and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has called for Israel to be wiped off the map. That has raised concerns that Israel could ultimately carry out an attack on nuclear sites in Iran.

Washington and its allies believe Iran's agenda is to obtain nuclear weapons, but the Islamic Republic insists it is a civilian electricity program. Vice President Biden said earlier this week that Israel has a sovereign right to decide what is in its best interests in dealing with Iran's nuclear ambitions, whether the U.S. agrees with it or not.