The Wall Street Journal said on Friday that the Pentagon has been upgrading the biggest bunker-buster bomb in its arsenal as talks with Iran continued over Tehran's nuclear program, readying a weapon that could destroy Iran's facilities if negotiations failed.
The bomb was created to give US President Obama options for attacking fortified facilities like Iran's Fordow nuclear installation, which is built into a mountain, or one of it's two underground nuclear weapons facilities - one near the city of Natanz and the other on a mountainside near the city of Qom.
“The Pentagon continues to be focused on being able to provide military options for Iran if needed,” a senior US official was quoted as saying. “We have not taken our eyes off the ball.”
Nonetheless, officials note that even a destructive attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities would only set its nuclear program back a few years. “You can destroy hardware. But if you have the human capital, programs can be rebuilt,” a military official reportedly said.
Split over Iran
Meanwhile, POLITICO reported that Obama's aides are split on the Iranian deal, with some saying it will usher in a new era of regional politics and others saying it will only encourage Iran's regional aspirations.
Netanyahu, who has the ear of Republicans who control both houses of the US Congress, said the powers negotiating with Iran must add a new demand that Tehran specifically recognize Israel's right to exist.
Asked about Netanyahu's demand, White House spokesman Eric Schultz said he had not seen the request but was aware of Israel's ongoing concerns. "We understand his position," Schultz told reporters. "The president would never sign onto a deal that he felt was a threat to the state of Israel."