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The IAEA's Curious Uranium Find At Destroyed Syrian Facility Site

A strange note to make about IAEA head Mohamed ElBaradei's confirmation that traces of uranium were found at the Syrian nuclear site destroyed by an Israeli airstrike.

It was reportedly - according to intelligence sources - a plutonium plant; a joint operation consisting of Syrian hosting, Iranian funding and North Korean construction.

So, how is it that uranium is found?

Either the reports of it being a plutonium facility were false, or the uranium source could be traces of depleted uranium from Israeli ordnance, or perhaps something more, or at least different.

But that was my first thought on reading the uranium find in Syria.

Syria has, of course, weeks ago suggested that nuclear material was planted by Israeli intelligence for the IAEA to find. I find that about as believable as suggesting the Iranians and North Koreans killed in the strike were innocent tourists looking for the Disney Syria theme park.

That said, a curious bit of information that I've heard no one yet question.

For a flashback reference, readers may like to see the following from earlier this year as well:

  1. NRO: At The Improv: IAEA Righteous Indignation
  2. NRO: Whew! IAEA 'Satisfied' With Syria Trip
  3. Der Spiegel: Assad's Risky Nuclear Game

UPDATE: I am surprised that no one has challenged and asked me, "Well, how do you think they were going to make plutonium, from sand?" The answer to my own unasked rhetorical question, of course, is by recycling spent uranium fuel. So the enrichment level and traceable origins of the uranium traces sampled is important. Not conclusive either way, but important.