Nightly News | February 15, 2012
>>> nuclear program running hot after the president ahmadinejad made a big show at a tehran nuclear site showing off his country's new hardware, claiming other advances at a second nuclear facility , further proof that iran wants to join the club of nuclear nations , despite global treasure and tough sanctions intended to stop it. while the why wants to play down what iran showed the world today, israel does not. there is a lot of speculation, they are ready to launch an attack that. could put the u.s. in a position it does not want to be here. we have two reports tonight beginning with our chief foreign affairs correspondent andrea mitchell in our d.c. newsroom. andrea, good evening.
>> reporter: good evening, brian. iran did put on a big show today of its supposed nuclear progress. u.s. officials are discounting its claims. even as israel accuses of iran of terrorism against its diplomats. iran 's president mahmoud ahmadinejad today showing off new fuel rods at a nuclear reactor in tehran, a plant that produces medical isotopes and claiming major progress on nuclear centrifugens.
>> this is not big news. it seems to have been hyped.
>> reporter: what is iran up to? ali arouzi is in iran .
>> reporter: the announcement was carried live on state tv and was carefully packaged for foreign and domestic consumption. iran wants to show that it can master nuclear technology on its own and that it will, no matter what the rest of the world says.
>> reporter: u.s. officials say iran is blustering while taking a step back from a showdown. today iran said it will finally resume nuclear talks with the west, negotiations they walked out on a year ago. intelligence officials say they penetrated iran 's nuclear programs and they are at least a year or more away from building a weapon. many outside experts agree.
>> we don't think they'll break out and build nuclear weapons this year. we are talking about something off in the future.
>> reporter: israel says iran could pass the point of no return toward developing a bomb within months. israel is on alert against iranian terrorism , after three explosions in bangkok tuesday and attacks on israeli diplomats in india and the former soviet republic of georgia monday, all blamed by israel on iran .
>> this looks like iranian retaliation for killing of iranian scientists over the past two years.
>> reporter: most experts believe were killed by israel despite denials. u.s. officials have been shuttling to tel aviv pleading with israel to not attack iran , even as american warships play cat-and-mouse in the strait of hormuz, the point for 1/5 of the world's oil. janet napolitano told congress that the u.s. knows of no specific or credible threat from iran against the u.s. homeland. at the same time, u.s. officials say if israel were to attack iran , they could retaliate around the world and that could drag the u.s. into the conflict. israel could decide to strike as soon as march or april.
>> andrea mitchell starting us off in washington. thanks. that brings