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"An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last."
Sir Winston Churchill

10.08.2006

Is the 4th Horseman of the Apocalypse Mounting Up?

A dire prediction courtesy of Bill Gertz' "Inside the Ring" column:

Iran option
A former Navy intelligence officer weighs in on how the world will stop Iran from building nuclear bombs:

"I really believe the Israelis are going to strike [Iran's] several uranium processing factories soon. They cannot survive a first strike. This time, unlike when they sent eight F-16s to destroy the Iraqi reactor Osirak, I think they will use the Jericho missiles and the submarine-launched, nuclear-tipped Tomahawks to do nuclear strikes. Most of the factories are 150 meters underground and too deep for bunker busters."


Ehud Olmert won't be the one to pull the trigger, for sure. This would have to be done by a Likudnik.

As the Israelis have not openly claimed to have nukes, much less submarine-carried nukes, one presumes they'd have to view the Tehran threat as existential to take such a course. They would of course be right, but the aftermath of such an action would be utterly unpredictable, quite possibly triggering a wider war.

3 Comments:

Blogger linearthinker said...

A former Navy intelligence officer might have inside poop. Open source information I have is that the nuclear capable version of the Tomahawk was withheld over Israeli protests, and the conventional warhead model was provided. The issue could be moot.

Olmert doesn't have the cojones.
He's heavily involved in "government reforms" right now, to deflect attention from his administration's performance last summer.

Assuming the Israeli right gains power, and a Likud-led coalition takes control, an assault using the quoted weapons mix might be feasible for a short time. Recall the Big George and Big Rummy scenarios from last spring when this subject heated up. (How long ago that seems.) Conventional modern precision munitions, including bunker busters, were proposed to damage Iran's nuclear infrastructure and their C&C capabilities badly enough to set the program back a few years. Israel has both, but their inventory after last summer could be severely depleted.

If Israel goes it alone, a strike at the mullahs' palaces in Qom is likely, with regime change an objective.

A three pronged offensive, Jericho missiles, sub launched Tomahawks, and an IAF long ranged campaign from temporary advanced tactical bases in the northeast of Syria would be my guess, assuming the IAF could neutralize Syria in the early stages of the offensive and accomplish the logistics of supporting the tactical sites by airlift. All this is easy to contemplate from the comfort of my kitchen. How much logistic capability the IAF has could be a problem.

Nothing will happen until late January, in any event.

Incidently, Soros is busy stirring up opposition to US support for Israeli defenses among liberal Jews and the other usual suspects here in the US. "...coordinated efforts earlier this year to counter the Palestinian Anti-Terrorism Act, legislation that essentially would cut off the Palestinian Authority from U.S. assistance until it renounces terrorism and recognizes Israel. The act is effectively dead, and insiders credit the dovish counterattack."

11:47 PM  
Blogger linearthinker said...

p.s.

Teflon,
Hold your nose and vote Republican this November. The stakes are too high to see Pelosi and her crowd take even one house in Congress.
Do what you will in '08.
LT

11:54 PM  
Blogger Teflon said...

LT-

Great info as always.

One thing to consider is that the Israelis are world-class modders. We sold the Israelis F-16s back in the day with kill switches and other capability-disabling hardware designed to reduce the risk of the planes being used effectively against us. They ripped all of it out and upgraded the electronics to boot. They may have done the same with Tomahawks to make them nuke-capable.

I think you're 100% correct on Olmert, unfortunately. The Israelis are unlikely to do our dirty work, for political rather than logistical reasons (we'd help with the latter for sure).

I don't think Israel would ever invade Iran---not enough troops, supply lines too long. The most we could get would be an airstrike or a Mossad hit on the mullahs (the latter unlikely because the Iranian intelligence service is quite good).

Patriotism and self-preservation are as good a reason as any to vote GOP in 2006. My problem is I'm no longer sure Republicans will protect us from terrorists, given the re-emergence of Jim Baker and the Brent Scrowcroft wing of the "realists" in the foreign policy establishment and Condi's awful performance at State lately.

9:28 AM  

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