Obama's Forced Iran Announcement

Unexpected circumstances forced President Obama into making the major intelligence disclosure Friday morning that the U.S. has known for years about Iran’s secret nuclear facility, Politico reports. The president did not want to announce his suspicions about the facility before beginning talks with Iran next week, administration officials say, but his hand was forced when Iran admitted in a letter to a U.N. watchdog agency, the International Atomic Energy Agency, that it was building the site. The New York Times reports that the IAEA notified the president of the letter on Tuesday, when the White House quickly began meeting with G-20 leaders about how to handle the information. Obama made the announcement flanked by Gordon Brown and Nicolas Sarkozy, but many key officials on Iran were still in New York, unable to arrive for the hastily organized press conference, Politico reports. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said the nuclear facility had never been secret, and called Obama’s decision to chastise Iran a “mistake.”