Iran File

The Iran File is a biweekly analysis and assessment of the Islamic Republic of Iran’s strategic efforts domestically and abroad.

Iran File: Iran accelerates nuclear program development

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The Iranian regime has escalated its nuclear program, further violating the 2015 nuclear deal, to increase pressure on the US and Europe. The International Atomic Energy Agency reported that Iran has constructed new underground nuclear infrastructure, where it has begun installing and operating advanced centrifuges in recent weeks. This infrastructure, which is designed to withstand airstrikes, replaces the centrifuge assembly facility allegedly sabotaged in July. Tehran has also accumulated 12 times more low-enriched uranium than permitted by the nuclear deal after beginning to gradually stockpile last year. Iran likely does not seek a nuclear weapon at this time but will use its nuclear progress as a bargaining chip during potential negotiations with the next US administration.

Recent Critical Threats Project publications:


Iran says it is developing ‘offensive’ combat airpower

The Iranian armed forces are preparing to improve their combat airpower. Tehran has sought to develop “offensive” air capabilities since 2017 and is seeking help from China and Russia now that the UN arms embargo has expired. Iran’s air forces are training for their evolving role. Greater airpower would help Iran pursue its objectives in Syria more independently of Russia and potentially compete with Russia for economic and political advantages there.

Read the full article by Nicholas Carl here.


Iran may be shipping military equipment to Venezuela

Iran may have begun providing military equipment to the Nicolás Maduro regime in Venezuela. Qeshm Fars Air, an Iranian airline used by the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps to send weapons to Lebanon and Syria, has sent three flights to Venezuela since late October. The two countries have been laying groundwork for expanded military cooperation in recent months while bolstering economic ties. Should the US interdict Iranian weapons shipments to Venezuela, Iran would likely respond with attacks around the Strait of Hormuz.

Read the full article by Nicholas Carl here.


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