Iran has begun construction on a new nuclear facility in the mountainous region of Natanz. Satellite images show the country is moving full steam ahead with its nuclear program despite repeated warnings from President Trump. The US and Iran nearly went to war at the beginning of the year and tensions are still running high.
Preparing for war
Satellite surveillance footage taken over Iran shows active construction taking place at the Natanz nuclear facility.
The images were made public by the UN’s nuclear agency who confirmed that Tehran is currently building an underground advanced centrifuge assembly plant. The last plant exploded in a sabotage attack in 2019. It appears the new facility will be built underground for added defense against airstrikes.
The satellite images show new roads being developed to multiple locations around the site and excavation taking place into the mountains of Natanz. Last month, Iran’s UN representative told reporters that the damaged base in Natanz would be replaced with a new underground base “in the heart of the mountains.”
President Trump has been tough on Iran and its top Ayatollah, vowing they would never be allowed to develop a nuclear weapon as long as he’s in charge.
President Trump accused Iran of being a state sponsor of terrorism targeting US soldiers in the middle east. On January 3, 2020, the United States launched a drone strike that killed Qasam Soleimani in Baghdad, Iraq.
Soleimani was an Iranian Major General in the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps of Iran from 1998 until his death. He was considered the second most powerful man in Iran behind Ayatollah Khmenei.
Iran not backing down
Tehran was furious about the assassination and vowed to retaliate against the United States. After holding a country-wide funeral service for the slain general, Iran struck back. On January 7th, just hours after Soleimani’s burial, Tehran pounded US bases in Iraq with missiles causing damage to several facilities.
The military personnel stationed at the bases received advanced warning of the attack and thankfully there were no reported casualties.
The US presidential election is currently underway and there’s no doubt that Iran is hoping for a Biden win. In 2018, President Trump withdrew the United States from Iran’s nuclear deal with world powers, in which Iran agreed to limit its uranium enrichment program in exchange for lifting economic sanctions.
The US then placed more sanctions on Iran as they began ramping up their nuclear program. Joe Biden has said he would be willing to enter the US into the nuclear accord with Iran again.
Despite Trump’s tough talk with Iran, the President has mostly promoted peace in the region. He’s negotiated peace deals between Israel and several middle eastern countries, earning him a Nobel Peace Prize nomination. He’s also committed to ending the decades long war in Afghanistan by steadily reducing the number of troops we have stationed there.