US President Joe Biden has been given a chilling nuclear warning over attacking Iran after three US soldiers were killed by a ‘kamikaze’ drone.
Ex-UN weapons inspector David Albright said the rogue state could be led into thinking that building nuclear warheads is their “best way out” if they are directly targeted by the US in retaliation for the deaths.
US Central Command confirmed the killings today and said a further 25 were wounded in the attack by Iran-backed militia – who Mr Albright said would have used a kamikaze drone. President Biden said the US would “hold all those responsible to account at a time and in a manner of our choosing” in a statement.
Mr Albright, who has previously claimed that Iran is just five months away from building 12 nuclear weapons, agreed it was important that the US sent a “clear message” by targeting the militants who were responsible for killings. But he urged Biden not to launch any direct strikes on Iran to avert a wider conflict amid heightened tensions.
He said: “You certainly don’t want to attack Iran now by any means, but you do need to retaliate. Certainly, any retaliation should be directed at the group, with a message to Iran: ‘Control your proxies.’ One of the reasons to do that is you don’t want Iran to feel it’s being backed into a corner where it feels that building nuclear weapons is its best way out. Iran has quite a nuclear weapons capability that they’ve put together over the last 20-something years.”
The attack took place in the northeast of Jordan near the Syrian border, US Central Command said. American troops have long used the country as a basing point – with some 3,000 soldiers typically stationed there.
Bloomberg via Getty Images)
Mr Albright shed some light on the types of capabilities Kamikaze drones created by Iran possessed – which it’s thought were responsible for the fatal strike. And he said it was “expected” that one would kill Americans eventually as the crude missiles were often used in swarms to overpower their targets.
He said: “It was expected that at some point one of these kamikaze drones was going to kill Americans. They carry quite a bit of high explosives and they’re pre-programmed to hit stationary targets, so they can hit pretty precisely a military base. And Iran knows the US will retaliate.
“They’re pretty effective drones, they’re not fast. I’m sure the ones they copied probably had a jet engine, but the ones they’ve reverse-engineered ended up having a propeller. It’s well-documented that the engine sounds like a lawnmower. But it has a very good guidance system and an anti-jamming system too. So it can often reach the target.
“They can be shot down, and they often are, but as this case shows, they can also get through. Typically, when they’ve been launched in Ukraine, they’re launched in barrages, in the hope that ten percent or 20 percent will hit their targets.”
Iranian Supreme Leader’S Office/ZUMA Press Wire/REX/Shutterstock)
Mr Albright previously said the rogue state’s enrichment of uranium was a “hair’s breadth from 90 percent” – the level most desired to create a nuclear bomb. He said that it was now an “unfortunate reality” that Iran’s scientists already possessed the knowledge to build the earth-shattering doomsday weapon. And he revealed that the state could have enough of the radioactive material within one month for six weapons. While after five months, he said this could double.
Writing in a report published on the Institute for Science and International Security, which he founded, Mr Albright said: “The unfortunate reality is that Iran already knows how to build nuclear weapons, although there are some unfinished tasks related to the actual construction of them.
“Today, it would need only about a week to produce enough for its first nuclear weapon. It could have enough weapon-grade uranium for six weapons in one month, and after five months of producing weapon-grade uranium, it could have enough for twelve.”