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Officials are quietly conceding that new international sanctions targeting Iran's suspect nuclear program, while welcome, are further constraining Israel's ability to take military action — just as a window of opportunity is closing because Tehran is moving more of its installations underground. The officials say that Israel must act by the summer if it wants to effectively attack Iran's program. A key question in the debate is how much damage Israel, or anyone else, can inflict, and whether it would be worth the risk of a possible counterstrike. Israel has been a leading voice in the international calls to curb Iran's nuclear program. Like the West, it believes the Iranians are moving toward nuclear weapons capability — a charge Tehran denies. Israel contends a nuclear-armed Iran would threaten its survival, citing Tehran's calls for the destruction of the Jewish state and its support for anti-Israel militant groups. It also fears an Iranian bomb would touch off a nuclear arms race in a region still largely hostile to Israel. Israeli leaders say they prefer a diplomatic solution. But — skeptical of international resolve — Israel refuses to rule out the use of force, saying frequently that "all options are on the table." In comments Friday to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak called for even tougher sanctions against Iran and said time was running out for the world to act. "We are determined to prevent Iran from turning nuclear," he said. "It seems to us to be urgent, because the Iranians are deliberately drifting into what we call an immunity zone where practically no surgical operation could block them." Returning Monday to Israel, Barak added: "We must not waste time on this matter; the Iranians continue to advance (toward nuclear weapons), identifying every crack and squeezing through. Time is urgently running out." Key Israeli defense officials believe that the time to strike, if such a decision is made, would have to be by the middle of this year. Complicating the task is the assessment that Iran is stepping up efforts to move its work on enriching uranium — a critical component of bombmaking — deep underground. Iran's enrichment site at Fordo near the Iranian city of Qom, for instance, is shielded by about 300 feet (90 meters) of rock. A team of U.N. nuclear inspectors, including senior weapons experts, is in Iran this week, and the findings from the visit could greatly influence Western efforts to expand economic pressures on Tehran over its uranium enrichment. The European Union this month decided to stop importing oil from Iran — just weeks after the U.S. approved, but has yet to enact, new sanctions targeting Iran's Central Bank and, by extension, its ability to sell its oil. Several officials at the heart of the decision-making structure, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were discussing some of Israel's deepest secrets, said they feel compelled to give the sanctions time. In this way, somewhat paradoxically, the new economic sanctions the U.S. and Europe are imposing — while meeting a repeated Israeli request — have emerged as an obstacle to military action.