[Marxism] Is Israel Really Preparing to Attack Iran?
Dbachmozart at aol.com
Dbachmozart at aol.com
Fri Jun 20 18:52:15 MDT 2008
Huffington Post -- June 20, 2008
Is Israel really preparing to attack Iran? The New York Times today
_describes_ (http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/20/washington/20iran.html) a June
Israeli military exercise U.S. officials say "appeared to be a rehearsal for a
potential bombing attack on Iran's nuclear facilities." A "senior Pentagon
official" said a goal of the exercise "was to send a clear message to the United
States" and Europe that Israel was prepared to act militarily if U.S. pressure
to stop Iran from enriching uranium continued to fail.
If so, retired Air Force Colonel _Sam Gardiner_
(http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Sam_Gardiner) didn't get the message. "The signal I received
is that Israel does NOT have the capability to effectively attack Iran's
nuclear facilities," Col. Gardiner says.
Gardiner says a _2006 MIT paper_
(http://www.henryfarrell.net/polsci/2007/06/raas_and_long_on_whether_israe.html) by Whitney Raas and Austin Long,
"Osirak Redux? Assessing Israeli Capabilities to Destroy Iranian Nuclear
Facilities," is a good representation of how Israeli military planners think about
According to Raas and Long, in a strike on Iran's nuclear facilities Israel
would be interested in three targets - the enrichment facility at Natanz, the
conversion facility at Esfahan and the heavy water plant at Arak. They say
Israel would want to attack these three facilities with a combined total of 36
"Getting 36 bombing aircraft into the targets connects well with the New
York Times description of the early June exercise of 100 aircraft," Gardiner
says. "Three strike packages of F-15I and F-16I aircraft, escorted by F-15A/C's
with other supporting aircraft would be around 100 aircraft."
"An Israeli strike would not be much of a strike," Gardiner says. Israel
would hit approximately 100 aim points, single weapons on a single part of the
target. "I would call the Israeli strike 'disruptive' rather than
'destructive,'" he says. It has taken three to five years to build the three facilities.
"You would have to destroy most of the facilities to come close to setting
back the program three to five years."
The US probably thinks in terms of about 10 times more aim points for a
similar strike, Gardiner notes.
"President Bush likes beehive analogies," Gardiner points out. " An
Israel-only strike would stir up the bees and leave the hives with only limited
If Gardiner's analysis is correct, then Michael Gordon's New York Times
article is deceptive, perhaps deliberately so. It's part of a campaign of
pressure on Congress and European governments - likely orchestrated with the Cheney
faction of the Bush Administration - to forego real negotiations with Iran,
and to push towards U.S. military escalation. If we don't act, the Israelis
will, the argument will be - neglecting the fact that no Israeli action is
possible without a green light from Washington.
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