"Iran has not yet perfected (uranium) enrichment," said Burns, "and, as a direct result of U.N. sanctions, Iran's ability to procure technology or items of significance to its missile programs, even dual-use items, is being impaired."
Though the ex-head of Mossad, Shabtai Shavit, says Iran may be one year away from a bomb -- and will use it on Israel -- according to the latest U.S. National Intelligence Estimate, Iran shut down its nuclear weapons program in 2003.
Iran, says Burns, has not yet mastered the technology of converting uranium gas into fuel for use in power plants, let alone the stuff of bombs. And even if Iran is one day able to enrich to weapons grade, she would still have to build and test a nuclear device, then weaponize it to fit atop a missile and deploy a missile force. All in all, says Burns, Iran's progress with uranium enrichment has been "modest."
There is thus no imminent crisis to justify war on Iran.
Yet, what is Nancy Pelosi's Democratic House doing?
Some 220 members, a majority, have endorsed House Concurrent Resolution 362. This virtual war resolution "demands" that President Bush initiate a blockade to halt all Iranian imports of refined petroleum products and impose "stringent inspection requirements on all persons, vehicles, ships, planes, trains, and cargo entering or departing Iran."
A Democratic House that came to power denouncing the rush to war on Iraq is about to vote to demand that Bush commit an act of war against Iran.
The front men for 362 are liberal Gary Ackerman of New York and conservative Mike Pence of Indiana. But the juice behind them is that of the Israeli lobby AIPAC, which is marching in step with Israel.
Last week, Mossad's chief, Meir Dagan, was here to make the case for war on Iran. This week, Defense Minister Ehud Barak visits Dick Cheney and maybe Bush. Next week, it is the head of Israel's armed forces.
Israel and its Fifth Column in this city seek to stampede us into war with Iran. Bush should rebuff them, and the American people should tell their congressmen: You vote for 362, we don't vote for you.