GROSS: If you're just joining us, my guest is William Broad, science reporter for The New York Times and author of the new book "The Science of Yoga: The Risks and the Rewards."
So let me move to a completely different subject now. One of the things you've been writing about for the Times is the state of Iran's nuclear program. And with talk that Israel might try to bomb that program, I'm really interested in hearing what you know about how advanced Iran's nuclear program is.
BROAD: Well, you know, one reason I do yoga and enjoy it is because of these de-stressing effects, right? And, as I said, I spent a lot of time for The New York Times and have done so for decades on these nuclear matters. Iran, compared to lots of nuclear states, is in the kindergarten stage of advancement. They're not where the United States or Russia or China or France or Britain or a lot of people are; Pakistan, Israel. But they have been making lots of progress across lots of fields - not just nuclear but also with long-range rockets, which they're pushing for. To me, the evidence is overwhelming. There's no question that they are positioning themselves to go for a bomb if they decide to do that. The whole enrichment of uranium that they're doing clearly points in that direction. They're not really interested in making reactor fuel. They'd do it a different way if they were.
They're developing a capability to get bomb fuel if they decide to do that. And they haven't. And guess what? They're not breaking any laws in doing that. The Non-Proliferation Treaty, the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, lets countries do enrichment and only if you divert that material. It's only if you divert that enriched uranium to a bomb-making program that you've violated the law. And the atomic inspectors have found no evidence of that.
GROSS: But they suspect it's happening anyways.
BROAD: They suspect that Iran is getting to the point where it could make a bomb if it wants to, but that it hasn't gotten there yet. Right, they're clearly doing all the research that would get them there.
So did you follow that? Terry's talking about a "bomb" and Broad's explaining to her that Iran's not necessarily trying for a bomb, that there's no evidence it is, etc.
Now watch her next question (which comes right after the above but I broke it up so you would catch what she's doing):
GROSS: So is there an estimate of how far away they are from actually having a bomb?
BROAD: You know, Terry, I can't go there. There's so many wild estimates, right?
GROSS: Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm.