In 2010, the Netherlands helped Israel and the United States attack the Iranian nuclear program, de Volkskrant writes on Monday based on four sources and a book by journalist Huib Modderkolk, which will be released Tuesday. An AIVD agent would have invaded the atomic complex at Natanz with a digital virus called Stuxnet.

The virus was able to sabotage nuclear centrifuges, causing major problems for Iran to enrich uranium and delaying its nuclear program for at least one year. Engineers initially did not notice anything, because the virus also caused them to see "normal" data.

The Iranian authorities soon suspected that the virus came from the US and Israeli secret services. However, it was unclear how the computer virus entered the nuclear complex, since it did not have internet connections to the outside world.

Modderkolk writes that Israel and the US ended up at the AIVD for that task because the Dutch organization could work under the radar more easily in Iran. In addition, the AIVD knew a lot about Iran and the centrifuges used, according to the journalist.

A technician finally brought the virus in with a USB stick. It is unclear whether that person is also responsible for implementing the virus in the operating systems.


  • Want to know what you missed at night? And an update on the most important news around lunch? Subscribe now to our daily newsletter!