In another pretty provocative (after last month’s demand for ‘bombing Iran’ by Alan J. Kuperman) and, I suppose intentionally meant, alarming New York Times op-ed William J. Broad assumes that, over the years, Iran had largely expanded a tunnel system, thus enabling the regime in Tehran to fortify its (allegedly clandestine) nuclear program and hide it from possible attacks.
Even given that there has no evidence been provided declassified so far that Iran has further, hidden, nuclear sites the International Atomic Energy Agency is unaware of, President Ahmadinejad, who seems to be a ‘tunnel expert’, had announced already end of November 2009 that the country will now largely increase its enrichment activities with 500’000 new centrifuges spinning in another ten or so sites other than those in Natanz and Fordow near Qom. Thus, Iran seems to directly respond to threats by Israel and the US to attack the already known sites by digging in: a classic example for the counter-productive effects of lack of diplomacy.
Broad mentions six tunnel entrances in the nearby mountain(s) of Esfahan’s uranium conversion plant, which can easily be traced by GoogleEarth. By the way: on the other side of the mountain, the Khorasgan branch of Islamic Azad University is located.
In 2007 and 2008 I was guest at Islamic Azad University Khorasgan. I experienced great hospitality as usual when in Iran. My host, the Dean of the Faculty, expressed his grave concern about possible military strikes. He told me that the uranium conversion facilities are very close to his University. I didn’t know but tried to calm him down. “They do surgical strikes now”, I told him. “You will be safe.”