Tuesday, February 24, 2015

More Iranian Nuclear Sites?

The MeK announced today that they have more evidence of Iranian nuclear intransigence. According to news reports, a site in northeastern suburban Tehran houses a secret underground facility where uranium enrichment has occurred for nearly a decade.

The MeK press release is available on DropBox, and details their history in revealing information about Iran's nuclear facilities. Strangely enough, in this history they neglect to include another 'revelation' made a mere 16 months ago. At this time it was claimed that an underground facility around 70 km northeast of Tehran under a mountain near the town of Damavand housed more illegal Iranian nuclear activities, though the details were unclear.

I noted a few problems with the claims, notably the notorious unreliability of the MeK, as well as the very suspicious timing. Less than a month prior, the most left-leaning candidate, Hassan Rouhani, was elected president of Iran in a shockingly uncompetitive landslide. This 'revelation' was no doubt intended to ruin any possible good will or potential rapprochement between Iran and the West.

Today as well, the timing is suspicious. Rumblings from both Iranian and international press seem to indicate an optimism that a nuclear deal is imminent. The MeK is trying to remain relevant, while also scuttle any possibility for a nuclear deal while alleging that Iran's actions are so terrible that a nuclear deal would be a terrible thing for the West. They have been right in the past, but this is not always the case, and the example of July 2013 shows, they are not reliable.

I should have trusted my gut and checked the image used for the safe door. Others have noted that it is in fact copied from the website an Iranian company that sells safes. The MeK's website put forward a bizarrely fitting rambling refutation which makes them look like liars, and incompetent ones at that.

While the color appears slightly different in the background it is clear that the image is the exact same as the one on the company sales website. The major difference is that there are horizontal white lines across.

Here is a comparison of the images
It is clear that the coloration and saturation are nearly identical. The image used is clearly the same. 

The MeK claim that this image is taken from one of their sources, yet they have no explanation for why the EXACT same photo, with the same detailed bricks, and spots are used. For this to have happened naturally the picture would have to have been taken from the exact same spot and the camera would have had to have been held at the exact same height. 

The complexities of creating this exact same situation make the MeK claims laughable. Furthermore, the image posted on the Iranian companies site is dated to February 12 of this year so it would have to be a hell of a coincidence for them to have posted photo that is now suddenly relevant.

As I'd mentioned before the MeK is of questionable reliability and this merely serves to reinforce my previous statements.