Monday, February 22, 2010

Trying to cool down Israel , Mullen says: 'Military strike won't stop Iran's nuclear program'

(Haaretz).A military strike will not completely stop Iran's nuclear program, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen said in a Pentagon briefing on Monday.

"No strike, however effective, will be in and of itself decisive," Admiral Mike Mullen said, adding that he supported using diplomatic and economic pressure against Iran.

Iran's uranium enrichment, in defiance of several rounds of Security Council sanctions, has spurred world powers to consider tougher diplomatic measures, against the backdrop of threatened military action by Israel as a last resort.

When asked on what steps the U.S. intended to take to thwart Iran's nuclear ambitions, State Department spokesman Philip Crowley told reporters Monday that Washington was "continuing to look at other steps that we can take both multilaterally and prospectively on a national basis."

Crowley added that the U.S. was "looking at the full range of possibilities."

"We want to see effective sanctions that have the impact that we want to put pressure on Iran. And as the Secretary has said, we will be paying specific attention to the Revolutionary Guard Corps that is playing a more - a growing role in Iranian society and in the Iranian economy," Crowley said.