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You're arguing that the organization Mossad is acting irrationally.

No, I'm arguing that Mossad's claims about when Iran will have a weapon tell us nothing about the effectiveness of Stuxnet. This is a matter of logic.

I also don't know where this perception comes from

Reading books about intelligence services...like Legacy of Ashes http://www.amazon.com/Legacy-Ashes-History-Tim-Weiner/dp/038...

Beyond that, this is really basic systems theory. Intelligence service oversight, at least in the US, is very lax. The people doing oversight know a lot less about operations than the people being overseen. So when they screw up, they can spin their nominal bosses so that no one gets fired or goes to jail. It is really hard to keep secret and highly compartmentalized organizations honest. The principal agent problem is a big deal.




> This is a matter of logic.

Which brings me to my question above: what evidence would you accept? I agree there is no concrete link (just as there is no concrete link between Israel and Stuxnet), but Iran is not going to a) announce their nuclear weapons program and b) detail how far Stuxnet has set them back.

> So when they screw up, they can spin their nominal bosses so that no one gets fired or goes to jail. It is really hard to keep secret and highly compartmentalized organizations honest.

I guess we just disagree on the reasons Mossad is making these statements. It makes no sense to me why Mossad would subject Israel to threat of annihilation in order to make Mossad leaders look good.

Let's assume Mossad isn't behaving pettily. Why would they make these statements unless they believed them to be true?


At the very least, to make a Mossad claim plausible, you'd need to have:

(1) a statement by Mossad issued before Stuxnet was released forecasting that Iran would have a weapon by time T_0

(2) a statement by Mossad issued after Stuxnet was released forecasting that Iran would have a weapon by time T_1

(3) T_1 larger than T_0 by at least a year

(4) a statement by Mossad claiming that there were no significant impediments to progress besides Stuxnet

Again, this all assumes that Mossad is not lying. These are the requirements just as a matter of logic. If you don't have all these elements, you can't claim that Mossad's statements prove that Stuxnet was effective at significantly delaying Iran. At best, you have (2), but without (1), (3), and (4), that proves nothing.


To add another source, John Bolton said last August that Israel had 'a week' to attack Iran as the nuclear fuel would be ready to load at that point:

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/08/17/israel-weeks-end-...

That timeframe has now been extended from 'a week' to 2014+ (according to the NYT quoting both Mossad chief and Clinton)

What happen between these two statements to shift the timeframe estimates so dramatically? Stuxnet.


1) According to the Wikileaks cables, Israel's spy agency Mossad's latest claims foreshadowed that Iran would be nuclear armed by 2011.

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/159244.html

2) Iran not able to build nuclear bomb before 2015

http://www.alarabiya.net/articles/2011/01/07/132525.html

3) 2015 > 2011

4) Israel refuses to take credit for stuxnet. So this is impossible.




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