Iranian scientist Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan was murdered apparently for his work on the Iranian nuclear program. It is unclear whether it was an foreign covert operation. It is possible the Iranian government is responsible for the attack intended to put the blame on Israel. It was very unfortunate that an Israeli military spokesperson said he is “definitely not shedding a tear” over the murdered scientist.
This attitude of tolerance of violence toward scientists and engineers working on controversial project is completely unacceptable. US should reevaluate its support for the Israeli government if there is evidence it condones this type of attack.
Iran claims its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes, but it is likely its goal is development of weapons. It is understandable that the governments that have nuclear weapons want to keep their weapons but keep others from getting them. This creates a perverse incentive for governments to want to join the nuclear weapons club.
Regardless of the politics, scientists and engineers should never be targets of violence for the programs they work on. Eight years ago I casually talked to someone from the US nuclear weapons program about work for them. They assured me the job was to control access to existing weapons not to develop new ones. I suspect that was correct, although found a different job and never learned any more about the nuclear job. If I had worked on the project, foreign powers might have felt like I was military target, but they would be wrong. Engineers and scientists have a responsibility to limit their work projects they believe are moral and ethical. They should never be part of geopolitical power games.
Photo from Fars News Agency/European Pressphoto Agency