Between 8:48 and 9:07 the speaker says: As much of a threat as Iran with nuclear weapons could conceivably pose to Israel sometime in the near future, as you and I sit here having this conversation, Israel has 200 nuclear weapons, most of them pointed at Tehran. Why wouldn't Iran want nuclear weapons?

I couldn't understand the structure of the sentence above, though I understand its literal meaning. Mostly 'as much of (something) as' is preceded by a noun phrase or 'is', 'are', etc. Check this link for the use of 'as much of a threat as':


But here the sentence begins with it. It would have been okay to me if it were something like this:
As you and I sit here having this conversation, Israel has 200 nuclear weapons, most of them pointed at Tehran which is as much of a threat as Iran with nuclear weapons could conceivably pose to Israel sometime in the near future. Why wouldn't Iran want nuclear weapons?

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Sorry, my sound is down.

As much of a threat as Iran with nuclear weapons could conceivably pose to Israel sometime in the near future, as you and I sit here having this conversation, Israel has 200 nuclear weapons, most of them pointed at Tehran. Why wouldn't Iran want nuclear weapons?

My first impulse was to agree that this is wrong. But I'm now comfortable with it.

Of course this structure is more common:
(As) much as I like you, I can't condone what you have done.

Or,
Even though Iran could be a threat, consider this: etc.

But what we have is more like this:
As big as you are, I still think I can kick your butt.

As dangerous as Iran's plans may be, you must admit they have some justification. (This is closest to original)

Or,
Dangerous though Iran's plans may be, you must etc.
Okay, I see that it's "as much of" that is troubling you.

As much of a threat as Iran IS, = As much as Iran is a threat,

(common expression: You are not much of a threat!)
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
So what you are saying breaks down to the point:

Although Iran with nuclear weapons could conceivably pose a threat to Israel sometime in the near future, as you and I sit here having this conversation, Israel has 200 nuclear weapons, most of them pointed at Tehran. Why wouldn't Iran want nuclear weapons?

Does the sentence above still carry the exact same meaning as the original? If yes, then tell me where can I find such structures to educate myself because I can't find them in a dictionary?
In my opinion your paraphrase is accurate.

The original is a bit awkward, and there's no way I know of to prepare for something like this.

When you're comfortable with English, as the speaker obviously is, you have a sense of where you're going with the sentence, and can decide to elaborate ad libitum, or substitute a longer phrase for the more common shorter one. You sometimes end up with phrases next to each other which don't go well together.
If you had the chance to edit, you might make an improvement.
Thanks a lot, Avangi.

Best wishes
Jack
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