Drudge misrepresents article to assert "Iran Nuke 'This Year' "

››› ››› HANNAH DREIER

The Drudge Report featured the headline, "Iran Nuke 'This Year'..." linking to an article on the British-based Sky News website. But contrary to Drudge's headline, the Sky News article did not report that Iran would obtain a nuclear weapon this year; it reported that a study by the International Institute for Strategic Studies predicts that sometime in 2009, Iran "will probably reach the point at which it has produced enough low-enriched uranium to make a nuclear bomb -- though it would first have to enrich it further." The article quoted the study's author saying that "being able to enrich uranium is not the same as having a nuclear weapon."

On January 27 and 28, the Drudge Report featured the headline, "Iran Nuke 'This Year'..." linking to a January 27 article on the British-based Sky News website. But contrary to Drudge's headline, the Sky News article did not report that Iran would obtain a nuclear weapon this year; rather, the article, headlined, "Uranium For Iran Nuke In 2009," discussed a report by the International Institute for Strategic Studies predicting that "during 2009, Iran will probably reach the point at which it has produced enough low-enriched uranium to make a nuclear bomb -- though it would first have to enrich it further." The article quoted Mark Fitzpatrick, IISS senior fellow for non-proliferation and the author of the paper, saying that "being able to enrich uranium is not the same as having a nuclear weapon."

The article also quoted Sky News foreign affairs editor Tim Marshall saying, "The intelligence agencies are more reluctant to put a time frame on it, and the report itself says having enough enriched Uranium to build the warhead is not the same as building the warhead itself."

The January 27 Sky News article in its entirety:

Iran will have enough enriched uranium to make a single nuclear weapon later this year, the prestigious International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) predicts.

The think tank's Mark Fitzpatrick made the announcement at today's launch of its annual global review of military powers.

Sky News pullquote

"But being able to enrich uranium is not the same as having a nuclear weapon."

However, the survey reports doubts over US Intelligence estimates that Iran halted its work on nuclear weapons six years ago.

This points to Tehran's continued development of long-range ballistic missiles able to reach targets in Israel and beyond.

The IISS recommends a mixture of carrot and stick as the best international response.

It concluded a dual policy of engagement and sanctions, testing possibilities for Iranian cooperation while adopting targeted containment strategies, is the best way to deal with Iran's nuclear programme.

Foreign affairs editor Tim Marshall said: "Several think-tanks have come to the same conclusion.

"The intelligence agencies are more reluctant to put a time frame on it, and the report itself says having enough enriched Uranium to build the warhead is not the same as building the warhead itself."

The Drudge Report's headline on January 27:

Drudge Report image, Iran

Posted In
National Security & Foreign Policy, International Conflicts
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The Drudge Report
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