Who’s killing Iran’s scientists?

In other words, these are not your run-of-the-mill, mid-level nuclear physicists. These two men are key figures in what most of the international community believes is Iran’s drive to build nuclear weapons. And they were very likely attacked, brazenly and in broad daylight, as part of a joint American and Israeli covert program to sabotage Iran’s nuclear program. (The rumors that the two scientists—one of whom is a Revolutionary Guard member—may have been targeted by the Iranian government itself because of their political views seems to have no basis in reality)…

If that is true and Monday’s assassination attempt of Iranian nationals signals a shift in U.S. or Israeli strategy toward Iran (perhaps emboldened by what the recent WikiLeaks dump shows is growing Arab government support for a harder line toward Iran’s nuclear program), then we may be entering a new and extremely dangerous phase in the nuclear standoff with Iran—one that could quickly get out of hand. The head of Iran’s nuclear program, Ali Akbar Salehi, sounded a dire warning to the U.S. and Israel. “Don’t play with fire,” he said. “The patience of the Iranian people has its limits. If our patience runs out, you will suffer the consequences.”

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