Former United Nations Ambassador John Bolton published an op-ed Thursday arguing that bombing Iran is the best method for halting its nuclear arms research.
Bolton’s piece, titled “To Stop Iran’s Bomb, Bomb Iran,” appeared in Thursday’s edition of The New York Times. In it, he argued that neither diplomacy nor economic sanctions would prevent an atomic Tehran.
“The inescapable conclusion is that Iran will not negotiate away its nuclear program,” Bolton wrote.
“Nor will sanctions block its building a broad and deep weapons infrastructure,” he continued.
The best solution, Bolton argued, is targeted air strikes on Iran’s nuclear production facilities. This “inconvenient truth,” he added, could set Tehran’s march to atomic weapons back three to five years.
“Time is terribly short, but a strike can still succeed,” Bolton warned.
Bolton, who is considering a run for president in 2016, proposed attacking four sites involved in Iran’s nuclear weapons initiative. These included a heavy-water production facility at Arak and a uranium-conversion center at Isfahan.
He also advocated strikes on Natanz and Fordow, two of Iran’s uranium-enrichment installations.
The hawkish op-ed comes amid the Obama’s administrations negotiations with Iran over its quest for nuclear weapons. Secretary of State John Kerry traveled to Lausanne, Switzerland, Thursday to resume talks with Iranian diplomats.
The Obama administration hopes Iran will slow or stop its nuclear weapons research in exchange for reduced sanctions. Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia are helping the U.S. on its side of the bargaining table.
Bolton has been a vocal critic of President Obama’s Iran strategy, calling it “fundamentally flawed” during a speech at the South Carolina National Security Action Summit in West Columbia on March 14.
The White House is racing toward a self-imposed March 31 deadline for a tentative outline with Iran. It has set a June 30 finish line for a final agreement.