Iranian nuclear program chief scientist assassinated, Israel charges were behind the murder in Tehran, working on the program which was shut down in 2003.
The assassination of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, Iran’s chief nuclear scientist, shook the country deeply. Even Hausen Dehgan, the military adviser to the country’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Al Khamani, vowed revenge for the murder. He warned that electricity would wreak havoc on his culprits. In such a situation, why is Fakhrizadeh so important to Tehran?
Fakhrizadeh has been viewed by Western and Israeli intelligence agencies as the secret head of the country’s ‘Amad’ nuclear bomb program, which was shut down in 2003. Iran has been accused of attempting to revive the program. , while Iran has denied the accusation of manufacturing weapons from nuclear energy. He says he uses nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.
No public profile
Iran’s agenda is so smart that Fakhrizadeh’s death has been a public profile. However, the United Nations watchdog and US intelligence agencies see him as the head of Iran’s nuclear program. He was the only Iranian scientist named in the 2015 International Energy Agency final assessment. In this, Iran’s nuclear program has been openly called into question. The report claimed that Fakhrizadeh was attending activities that supported the military dimension of Iran’s nuclear program.
‘Remember the name’
In 2018, Netanyahu mentioned Fakhrizadeh during a presentation accusing Iran of building nuclear weapons, according to a Reuters report. He had said, “Remember that name, Fakhrizadeh.” Netanyahu had said he had thousands of documents strapped to his hand which he described as Iran’s “atomic records”.
Israel sees Iran as a crisis in itself and has always opposed Iran being armed with nuclear weapons. Iran’s expansion into the Middle East has been a source of concern to its leaders. This is why Israel is monitoring Iran’s nuclear program and Fakhrizadeh.
Fakhrizadeh, an officer with the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), was in charge of several nuclear research and development efforts that Iran has described as being devoted to peaceful civilian service. The US and Israeli governments have called these programs a duel and have claimed that their goal is to develop nuclear weapons. According to reports, Fakhrizadeh was also the head of the Organization for Defense Innovation and Research, which was banned by the United States, alleging his involvement in nuclear weapons.
Fakhrizadeh had his eyes on Israel as well as America. President Donald Trump also shared the post of Mossad expert Yossi Melman, in which he described the murder as a “psychological and professional blow to Iran”. Michael Mulroy, a senior Pentagon official in the Trump administration, said Fakhrizadeh’s death would shock Iran’s nuclear program.
He also said an alert should be issued in countries where Iran can retaliate. John Brennan, former head of the US Intelligence Agency (CIA), called the incident criminal and reckless, which could cause tensions in the region. He warns that this presents a risk of fatal reaction.