Israel and Iranian nukes, continued

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Within the next 12 months, the Americans or the Israelis, possibly both, are likely to launch military strikes aimed at crippling Iran’s nuclear ambitions. Those strikes may come sooner rather than later. And they will probably be nuclear.

Israeli military analysts say intervention is essential before Iran’s scientists are able to complete the nuclear cycle — some time during 2007 — and start producing weapons-grade uranium. President Ahmadinejad himself has boasted of ‘mastering the fuel cycle’ during the Ten-Day Dawn festival in early February when Iranians mark the anniversary of the 1979 Islamic Revolution. At that moment, Iran will have passed what the Israelis call ‘the point of no return’, when enriched uranium can be extracted, stored far from nuclear facilities and be virtually impossible to find.

It will be another two years, according to intelligence estimates, before Iran is able to accumulate sufficient weapons-grade uranium to make a nuclear bomb. Meanwhile, smaller amounts could be doled out to a multiplicity of Iranian-supported terrorist groups, including Hamas, Hezbollah and Islamic Jihad, to make ‘dirty’ bombs which combine a conventional explosive with radioactive material, such as small amounts of enriched uranium. Just last week the Home Office confirmed that there was to be an increase in the number of police officers trained to deal with ‘dirty’ bombs.

Only the Americans and the Israelis are willing and able to stop the Iranians before they pass the critical enrichment threshold. The United States is this month reported to be deploying an additional aircraft carrier and accompanying strike group to join its existing fleet of cruisers, destroyers and submarines in the Gulf. While senior American officials caution that increased naval power in the region should not be interpreted as preparations for an attack, they acknowledge that their ability to strike at Iran will be enhanced.

But Washington may be too bruised and traumatised by its Iraqi imbroglio to open a fresh front in the Middle East. That leaves Israel. And, after President Ahmadinejad’s repeated calls to ‘wipe Israel off the map’ and his Holocaust-denial conference in Tehran last month, Israel ‘s motivation is sky-high.

‘We are talking here about a threat to the survival of the state of Israel , and on that issue there can be no compromise,’ a senior Israeli source told me. ‘We are the product of the Holocaust in Europe and we will do everything — I mean everything — to prevent another holocaust occurring in Israel. If the Americans do not act, then we will act. And that moment,’ the source added, ‘might be closer than people dare to imagine.’

This is the part that frightens me the most:

In addition to Iran’s indigenous nuclear programme, there have been reports that it has bought several nuclear bombs ‘off the shelf’ from rogue scientists in the former Soviet Union. So, for all the fuss about its nuclear programme, Iran might already have several tactical nuclear weapons stuffed in its armoury.

If Israel is drawn into a pre-emptive strike, the Iranians might reckon that the international community will judge an Iranian nuclear response to be proportionate, even justifiable. With their political compass fixed at the dangerous intersection of ideological fervour and religious zealotry, the mullahs of Tehran could be calculating that such an outcome will succeed in both burnishing their Islamic credentials and realising their cosmic dream of dominance.

It makes you wonder whether the Iranians truly want to destroy Al-Aqsa. We already know they don’t give a damn about palestinian lives, just as they didn’t care about Lebanese lives last summer.

Once again: Bad feeling about this spring.

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9 Responses to Israel and Iranian nukes, continued

  1. I should point out that historically. the Muslims never did care about Al-Aqsa unless someone else was in charge of it. It was only after the Jews took control and there was the possibility that they would want a synagogue built there that it became so “sacred” to the present day Muslims.

    The site was ignored during the Ottoman Empire and the time that Jordan was ruling the “West Banke” and East Jerusalem.

  2. Paul says:

    At some point a nuclear exchange will occur. I just don’t know when. Sad thought to ponder.

  3. Ed Hausman says:

    I agree with Sabba Hillel. The Muslims never cared about Jerusalem itself as long as the Land was desolate. Losers never can stand success showing them up — that’s why the communists built the Berlin Wall.

  4. felix says:

    We are all (myself included) working on the assumption that the Iranian leadership–Almadinijad et al–can’t be deterred by the threat of Israeli or American counterattack if they launch weapons at Israel or our allies in the Gulf, or at who knows…We assume this because Iranian leadership has declared that they are Islamofascists through and through, so it’s ok if they and their people get killed in the process. Dying for allah and all that.

    However, there may be a leadership level below the nutcases we see and here from, say in the Iranian military, where, if they stop to think about it, they would prefer not to get killed and have parts of their destroyed. So I guess one hope in all the sending of aircraft carriers to the Gulf and hearing about Israeli bombing plans, nuclear or otherwise, is to motivate the “sane iranian” leadership (if there is such a thing) to stage a coup.

  5. Michael Lonie says:

    Yes felix, the best hope for Iran as well as those the Mullahs intend to kill is for an Iranian Pinochet to ovethrow the Mullahs. I think the Mullahs have anticipated this and packed the Army with pliant, politically reliable generals.

    There are too many idiots in the world, like Gorilla Boy, who seem to think that the 20th Century was so much fun, with its genocide, mass murders in the name of insane ideologies, mass famines in the name of those same ideologies, continental scale impoverishment, world wars, etc., that we should do it all over again in the 21st Century. This time everybody will have nukes from the start. Won’t that be even more fun? As an added bonus the Shi’a and Sunni can settle their argument over who should have been Caliph in the 7th Century with nukes. And to think there are those who regard the Muslim world as backwards.

  6. felix says:

    Michael, that’s too bad about the Iranian general staff. Another thought I had, and people may laugh at this, is I read somewhere that Aldmadenaj goes to a certain Town where there is a well into which the 12th Imam fell (way back in the 7th century), or out of which he will come after armegedon. Almadenjad drops notes down the well to the 12th Imam.

    So I was thinking why not bomb the well, or send in special forces to blow up the well (if it is in a densly populated area). Which may forestall (in Aldenijad’s mind) the possibility of the 12th imam emerging from the well, and maybe he gives up the idea of starting a war.

  7. It would be far better if this could be done with non-nuclear weapons. The program known as Swift Global Strike involves retrofitting sub-launched Trident II missiles with conventional warheads and GPS precision guidance. It has been stalled by Congresspeople who seem to have psychological hangups about breaking the link between “ballistic missile” and “nuclear weapon.”

  8. Tatterdemalian says:

    The mullahs in Iran came to power through revolution. Unlike the Guevara-wearing leftist “revolutionaries” we are familiar with, who believe you need do nothing more than believe in communism and troll websites on the internet to overthrow a government, the mullahs of Iran know from experience exactly how revolutions succeed, and exactly what it takes to suppress them.

    There will be no successful home-grown revolution in Iran, not in any of our lifetimes. Any revolution in Iran will have to have external support to succeed, and the international “progressives” are doing their damndest to root out and cut off any such supports, too far gone in dreams of perfect, bloodless revolutions to realize that they are bringing about a future with no revolutions, innovations, or progress, ever again.

  9. Brian says:

    Iran is trying to portray itself as the key defender of Islam and spread their revolutionary religious brand across the Middle East. I’m not sure their primary purpose is to develop nuclear weapons capabilities for the purpose of attacking Israel; I think it has more to do with the political influence they would acquire. Nuclear capabilities would help Iran achieve this political ends by giving them a power asset they currently do not have. In the way that violent thugs can commission respect through fear, countries with nuclear capabilities can purchase political influence through their nuclear capabilities. And it’s amazing how well this works–any uninfluential nation, with a tragic economy and no political influence can purchase respect and political weight through the means of mass destruction. It’s sort of like the respect that thugs acquire. The gun was once called the great equalizer because it meant physical strengths no longer dictated power relationships. Nukes do this among nations.

    Should Iran develop nuclear weapons capacities, the primary threat is not an attack on Israel, but a rapid spreading of Iran’s brand of intolerant dictatorial ideology, which is based on a perverted interpretation of their religion. Should they position themselves as the central power figure in the Middle East, or some Nasser II, then the problems will really hit Israel and the rest of the world for that matter.

    Their Holocaust denial campaign is part of their positioning. Both the hate campaign against Israel and Jews; and their bid for nukes are ways to slowly achieve their political objective—to become Nasser II.

    I’m concerned by this threat and have started a campaign to oppose Iranian propaganda: Iran Holocaust Denial

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