Mullen: Iran Focused on Developing ‘Nuclear Capability’

Admiral Says Attack 'Still an Option'

Speaking today on the prospect of attacking Iran, Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Admiral Michael Mullen once again said he believes “Iran is very focused on developing” a nuclear capability, cautioning that this would be potentially destabilizing.

Mullen has repeatedly made such accusations in the past, most notably in May during an interview on ABC. when he claimed it was a broad strategic objective of the Iranian government. During that interview Mullen was confronted by the lack of evidence to support his claims, but insisted he was “concerned about what Iran might be doing that we don’t know.”

Mullen says that a military attack on Iran, regularly speculated about lately, “remains on the table,” but that it is not a good option. He believes Iran is “one to three years” away from getting a nuclear weapon.

The Iranian government has an active civilian nuclear program aimed at energy production, but the IAEA has repeatedly certified that it is not diverting any nuclear material to the alleged covert weapons program, nor indeed is there any evidence such a program exists.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.