An Iranian scientist long suspected by the West of masterminding a secret nuclear bomb program was killed in an ambush near Tehran on Friday that could provoke confrontation between Iran and its foes in the last weeks of Donald Trump's presidency. It is believed that Israeli agents assassinated the scientist possibly with U.S. knowledge. If Iran retaliates against Israeli or U.S. targets, it could block any future attempts to improve relations under President-elect Joe Biden.
Class discussion: Israel, which is believed to have a stockpile of about 90 nuclear warheads, has carried out several attacks to keep its neighbors from building the weapons. Could assassinating the scientists or leaders of rival nations be considered an act of self-defense? Why or why not? Could it be considered self-defense if foreign agents killed U.S. leaders or scientists? What about a nation killing its own citizens as traitors? When did an assassination lead to the deaths of millions of people?