Tag Archive for War with Iran

Russian transfer of S-300 Air Defense System may force Israeli to initiate war with Iran before winter

Over two decades ago, I began warning that United States’ policies in the Middle East could set the US and world on a trajectory for a major war. Unfortunately, every major policy decision the US has made has exclusively served the interests of the global elite to the detriment of humanity. The trajectory set by these policy decisions has moved the world closer and closer to a full blown world war. More recently, I have warned that the Obama Administration was walking a dangerous foreign policy line in the Middle East that if mismanaged, could lead to horrific consequences. Today, it is become blatantly clear to all but the most ideologically blinded that Obama and his amateur staff have chosen incorrectly and created a perfect storm in the Middle East that will likely lead to a full scale regional war. The culmination of these decisions, no matter their motivation, has set the stage for a showdown between Israel and Iran that is now most likely irreversible. This showdown is what I have previously described as the worst case scenario that must be avoided at all costs. The consequences of which will be catastrophic for not just the Middle East, but the US and the rest of the world. As recently as August, news broke that could finally force Israel into unilateral action against Iran, which will pull the entire region and the US into war, collapse the already sick global economy, and usher in the New World Order.

The event I am speaking of is the Russian announcement that it will move forward with the transfer of S-300 Air Defense Systems to Iran. These sophisticated air defense systems are capable of detecting and successfully interdicting aircraft flown by the Israeli Air Force (IAF) as well as ballistic missiles, drones, and cruise missiles. The potency of this air defense system will alternate the current military balance of the region and has Israel on edge. Read more

Peace with Iran will lead to war: Part 2

Hardened Iranian Nuclear Facility at Fordo(w)

Hardened Iranian Nuclear Facility at Fordo(w)

Last week I discussed why peace with Iran was the preferred option.  I outlined a number of salient points uninformed talking heads in the media and well paid Israel lobbyists such as the former US Ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton, will never bring up.  In short, the costs of a war with Iran will far outweigh the costs of accepting a turbulent peace.  Even a successful war against Iran will be a Pyric victory and cause an economic collapse in the US.  Further, even if Iran did test a nuclear weapon, we would still have plenty of time to exercise the war option should it be necessary.  Unfortunately, even if the US does manage to broker a peace deal with Iran, war is now close to a certainty.  In the event of a war with Iran, there will be dire implications for the US.  Today I will discuss why war is now imminent, how it will likely be initiated, and the catastrophic effects on the US you must prepare to endure. Read more

Peace with Iran will lead to war, but not why you think: Part 1

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, right, speaks with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in Geneva, Switzerland, in January. Kerry will meet again with Zarif this weekend in the Swiss capital as March deadline approaches. (Keystone/ Martial Trezzini/file/Associated Press)

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, right, speaks with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in Geneva, Switzerland, in January. Kerry will meet again with Zarif this weekend in the Swiss capital as March deadline approaches. (Keystone/ Martial Trezzini/file/Associated Press)

Over the last decade, I have produced many papers and articles analyzing events in the Middle East and their geopolitical impact for academia, commercial publications, think tanks, and government agencies.  I stand by my track record as one of the most prescient in the business.  To that end, predicting chaos in the Middle East has been easy, but combining the what (violence) with the who, when, why, and how are the far more demanding predictions.  One the worst case scenarios for a broad outbreak of violence in the Middle East has been the possibility of a major war between Israel and Iran.  This conflict would immediately go regional with the on-going proxy war between Iran and Saudi Arabia pulling in the remaining Middle Eastern countries.  Once it goes regional, it will be nearly impossible for the U.S., Europe, and Russia to remain on the sidelines.  I have described in detail how this would likely play out as well as how it could be prevented in previous posts (see a partial list below).  I am writing today again with a dire warning for anyone willing to listen.  The most recent events occurring across the Middle East are now signaling the worst case scenario of a major conflict with Iran will come to pass as I have previously predicted.  This first article discusses why war with Iran is unnecessary and must be avoided.  Part II will discuss why even with an Iranian deal, war is inevitable and the dire consequences we can expect.  Read more

U.S. Government Actively Supplying Chemical Weapons to Al Qaeda Terrorists in Syria

The US Government and mass media would like the public to believe that Syrian President Assad is a threat worth committing US forces to war.  However, it is in fact the US Government that has recklessly endangered the security and safety of millions of lives.  This will include the lives of not just Syrians, but Israelis, Europeans, and Americans.  In what may prove to be one of the greatest foreign policy disasters, the US has not only allowed known Al Qaeda terrorists to capture and take control of one of the largest Syrian chemical weapons stockpiles, but actively aided it in doing so.  Contrary to the media threats and warnings about President Assad using chemical weapons, it is in fact the US backed Al Qaeda terrorists that pose, by far, the greatest threat to US interests.

The US is directly responsible for fomenting the chaos and bloodshed in Syria by covertly backing known Al Qaeda terrorists in a bid to overthrow President Assad.  This same playbook was used in Libya resulting in the disastrous proliferation of over 20,000 manportable surface-to-air missiles that have yet to be recovered and the spread of Al Qaeda to Libya.   By “backing,” one should recognize this includes providing weapons, equipment, training, medical aid, facilities, money, intelligence, and advisors to known terrorists.  Initially, this unconventional warfare was being carried out from across the border in Turkey and Jordan, but now is being actively waged on the ground inside Syria.  As we have repeatedly warned, the conflict in Syria has always been and is still aimed at creating the conditions necessary to expand the endless wars in the Middle East to Iran.  In fact, the initial targets that the “rebels” targeted in exchange for US support were Syrian air defense installations.  The seizure and destruction of these air defense facilities laid the groundwork for opening an air corridor from Israel directly into Iran once the next phase of the US engineered conflict is entered.

Most worrisome is the fact that known Al Qaeda terrorists now have chemical and possibly biological weapons under their control as a direct result of US support.  The threat this poses to America is massive.  Those responsible for allowing this have committed the gravest of dereliction in their responsibilities and duties to protect America.  This situation nearly guarantees that at least one of the belligerents in Syria will use a weapon of mass destruction and will provide the long sought pretext for US intervention and a greater war with Iran.  No matter who the weapons are used against, the result will be spun to support the “necessity for military action.”

For perspective, consider if a citizen actively aided terrorists in acquiring chemical weapons.  That person would not only be treated as a terrorist, but likely targeted and executed in a drone strike without due process.  However, when our political leaders acting in secret for dubious special interests commit the same traitorous acts, we are told that they are heroes and their aims are in our best interests.  It is time for the public to demand answers and accountability.  Please write your elected individuals, press, and collectively organize to put an end to this treasonous policy.

http://www.timesofisrael.com/syrian-rebels-attack-base-near-military-factories/

http://www.presstv.com/detail/2012/12/23/279711/syria-militants-use-chemical-weapons/

http://rt.com/news/syria-chemical-weapons-plot-532/

More Clues War with Iran is Near: Tapping Strategic Petroleum Reserves

President Obama recently announced his desire to dust off plans for tapping the United States’ Strategic Petroleum Reserves.  This is the latest in a series of actions by the Administration suggesting the U.S. is quietly preparing for a war with Iran in the near future.  Further, this closely held knowledge is a tell-tale indicator that senior U.S. planners expect a war with Iran to disrupt oil supplies.  As such, Americans should prepare to see gas prices easily double and rationing as early as this fall if Israel is not prevented from attacking.  Prepare now.

The Obama Administration suggested this move was to help bring the gas prices down and counter heavy speculation on the futures market.  The problem is this explanation fails to neither make sense nor justify its use.  Tapping the reserves will have only minimal impact on prices and the U.S. will ultimately need to replenish the used petroleum so the purchasing of petroleum by the U.S. will actually show no net change.  Granted, the cost of gasoline in the U.S. is at oppressive levels, but has been for years now without any need to draw from strategic reserves.  If this was effective, it could have been done years ago.

Others have suggested political motives stating Obama wanted to lower gas prices before the election and to help the economy, but for the already aforementioned reasons, this at best, would be limited and short-term.  At current consumption rates for imported petroleum, U.S. reserves would barely last two months.  However, even that is misleading because the maximum withdrawal capacity is only around 4.4 million barrels per day…roughly a fifth of what the U.S. uses per day in unrefined capacity.  Production is currently above demand so additional reserves being added to the already abundant oil market will again do little.  Further, U.S. refineries already operate at peak capacity so the “extra” oil would go nowhere.  If this was actually a feasible plan for jump starting the economy, why didn’t Obama do this long ago?

Finally, some Administration insiders have leaked that this was in fact a way to drive down increased oil prices to hurt Iran.  Since additional sanctions went into place on July 1st against Iran, oil prices have climbed due in part to approximately 1 million barrels per day of oil being taken off the market.  However, Iran has still found markets, as we predicted and is actually enjoying increased revenue from the price spike.  If the U.S. was serious about sanctioning Iran, they would not have given exemptions to nearly every country, such as China and Japan, that were already importing Iranian oil.   Considering that the markets had over a year ago priced in this event, the Saudis have increased production, and the U.S. has a surplus of oil, as identified above, this explanation too fails to justify tapping the reserves.

In reality, the Obama Administration is “dusting off” plans to draw on the strategic reserves because they are expecting disruptions to oil supplies in the near future.  The strategic reserves serve one purpose.  This purpose is to provide essential petroleum to refineries to support critical U.S. infrastructure including power generation plants, key industry, heating, and transportation.  Oh, and the military is who gets first dibs!  This is only done to supplement imports during emergency situations such as war or natural disaster.  The last two uses were to supplement production knocked offline by Hurricane Katrina and the temporary loss of Libyan production during the height of its civil war.

The major disruption that the U.S. is getting ready for without setting off alarms is an attack on Iran.  The U.S. knows that even in the best of outcomes, a military strike on Iran will spike fuel costs and cause at least a temporary disruption in global oil supplies.  At worst, production throughout the entire Gulf region could be destroyed and the world would face a chain of catastrophic events beginning with a massive price spike and shortages.  Further, the U.S. (taxpayer) most likely is going to get stuck with resupplying Israel with oil as it has previously done when oil to Israel has been cut off due to its wars.  Either way, it is a prudent move for any commander about to attack a country with one of the largest reserves of oil to be ready for supplies to be shut off.  A war is the single reasonable answer to this so be forewarned.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2012%5C08%5C19%5Cstory_19-8-2012_pg5_25

 

U.S. and Israeli Navies Prepare for War with Iran in Latest Exercise

Continuing with our exclusive reporting of the secret preparations for a war with Iran, Chinese news disclosed a joint military exercise in the Mediterranean Sea this week.  Although the U.S. military downplayed the report as a scheduled annual exercise to improve search and rescue coordination for humanitarian operations, it included live fire of weapons and tests of the Aegis shipboard RADAR.  Aegis plays a critical role in missile defense and its role in the drill seemed to be suspiciously absent from U.S. and Israel mass media news outlets.  The Navy can make a case for their inclusion, but it appears that the exercise wasn’t for promoting “humanitarian” operations unless now doctrine dictates shooting down missiles and firing naval guns during the evacuation of refugees.

Notably absent this year from the joint exercise was Turkey.  Understandably, relations between Israel and Turkey have not been good and makes for a legitimate reason for their failure to participate.  However, the U.S. could have still conducted independent operations with the Turkish Navy and this was not the case.

We offer another explanation for this drill and Turkey’s absence.  The U.S. and Israel don’t trust Turkey and were rehearsing operations in preparation for a war with Iran.  They don’t want that information to “somehow” get back to Iran.  NATO in particular has known for years that Turkey has been playing both sides in the escalating Iran conflict and according to many reports, has not only passed sensitive military secrets to Iran, but allowed Iran to move weapons and equipment through its airspace in support of Syria.  Turkey’s questionable loyalties may have been the real reason operations excluded them this year.  Further, the use of Aegis RADAR is a clear signal that this exercise was more about missile defense than humanitarian anything.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/world/2012-08/20/c_131795059.htm

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/159039

War with Iran will not achieve decisive results.

This article is one of a multi-part series on the immense folly of what appears to be an imminent war now with Iran.  This article discusses the feasibility of a successful strike to stop Iran’s nuclear development.  Naturally, if a nation is going to be led into another war, the public deserves in advance a vigorous debate on what it will take to accomplish the aims of the war.  In previous exclusive articles, the Israeli offensive attack plan for Iran was exposed. In upcoming articles, the threat Iran actually presents will be debunked, the likely costs of an Iran War will be tallied, and alternative options to war will be presented. 

Over a decade of continuous global wars should have shown Americans that there are no clean, quick, bloodless wars.  American invasions of both Iraq and Afghanistan have led to hundreds of thousands of dead and wounded, trillions of dollars in debt, a virtual police state domestically, and anything but decisive and favorable ends to those wars.  Yet, once again the United States sits on the edge of plunging head first into the dangerous waters of an even bigger war.  War propaganda and poorly informed, but well spun rhetoric from the media, AIPAC lobbyists, and bought politicians would lead the public to believe a single strike or short lived military campaign against Iran would lead to a swift end of its alleged nuclear aspirations.  Before American citizens and their shrinking capital are committed to another utterly disastrous war, the public deserves a fair accounting of the true situation from a military perspective on whether or not a military strike will achieve a decisive and favorable end for the United States.

To gain this understanding, it is essential to dismiss the rhetoric that a quick and bloodless campaign could achieve decisive results.  Decisive results would require the military to achieve a permanent end to Iran’s nuclear ambitions, which most likely involves a concurrent regime change.  This article will demonstrate that neither a decisive end to Iran’s nuclear capabilities nor a change in regime is even remotely likely or possible without a massive, long term, costly, and bloody war.  The fact that decisive short term effects are neither possible nor expected should forewarn the reader that the military options respective of effecting U.S. strategic goals toward Iran are simply not viable.  Short of an imminent threat to the United States homeland by a nuclear armed Iran, where a total war would both be necessary and justifiable, war will not solve this problem for America.  As such, alternative, non-military options toward Iran must be sought.

Contemporary military history is an apt starting point for this analysis.  American military disasters in both Iraq and Afghanistan simply do not justify any belief that the U.S. will be able to achieve decisive ends in Iran via a short surgical strike.  For comparison, consider Iran’s neighbors Iraq and Afghanistan, which were far less militarily capable or technologically sophisticated when invaded.  These two relatively weak countries have tied down the U.S. military for over a decade.  To date, neither war has achieved decisive strategic ends favorable for the United States.  Based on the significant expenditure of time, money, material, and lives spent to prosecute wars in Afghanistan and Iraq for a gain of nothing and loss of much, one must estimate that any future war with Iran would end up costing at least as much and likely significantly more than Iraq and Afghanistan.  Even worse, the strategic planners and senior policy makers that left the U.S. military drifting aimlessly without real leadership or a winning strategy from the very outset are still occupying the halls of the Pentagon and government.   Combined, it is difficult to conceive of a scenario short of a nuclear strike that would not lead to an even greater indecisive and costly war for the U.S.  To be specific, neither regime change nor a permanent end to Iran’s nuclear ambitions will be achieved by a limited surgical strike.  Iran is too big, too populous, too distributed, and too determined for a single limited strike to be effective.

Delving further into the viability of a military strategy respective of Iran, the timeline and details of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq provide even clearer evidence a strike won’t work or at least a more realistic view of the investment a war with Iran will require.  The situation in Iraq is particularly telling.  It began over two decades ago with Operations Desert Shield and Storm (The Gulf War), which were a massive coalition offensive using conventional military force numbers established for a war with the Soviet Union and a worldwide coalition.  To put this in perspective, this war was begun before most of your young military recruits today were even alive!  This war of limited objectives still required a massive military buildup, long term bombing campaigns, and then a massive land attack to achieve Iraq’s withdrawal from Kuwait.  However, the Iraq war required another decade of lower level military operations enforcing embargoes and no fly zones that tied down immense military resources and then another full blown war to verifiably disarm Iraq of weapons of mass destruction and remove Saddam Hussein.  Even now, after more than 20 years, the U.S. is still embroiled in an Iraq; a country that is not permissive for Americans to walk without fear of murder on the streets, acts contrary to U.S. interests, and still may likely split into independent nations with Kurdistan being the most likely candidate to break away first.  Iraq is not an anomaly as our tenuous and deteriorating situation in Afghanistan after a decade of war per the latest National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) assessed.  Those that believe the hollow cheers from the Obama administration that Afghans have taken the lead and things are improving in Afghanistan should take a moment to speak with returning ground soldiers or intelligence analysts.  The all know the game is over and the U.S. is leaving the country in defeat just as the Soviets did over two decades earlier.  Still skeptical believers might also consider reading a recent GAO study on the condition of Afghanistan’s military and police forces to operate on their own.  According to the GAO study, barely 10% of Afghanistan’s military and police forces are capable of operations.  Of these, they still require advisors and support.  When the U.S. leaves, they will not be able to rely on the other 90% of units not capable of operation.  Also, consider that the Taliban have been operating just fine against the U.S. and NATO forces without advisors or support for over a ten years and are actually gaining, not losing ground.  It does not take Napoleon to see how this conflict will end after the U.S. retreat.  The Afghan forces are simply incapable of defeating the Taliban on their own and the nation will break back down into the civil war that was ongoing at the time of the U.S. invasion once America completes its retreat.  Now again, consider that Iran is a much larger, more populous, and much more technologically sophisticated country than either Iraq or Afghanistan.  One would have to be ignorant of reality to thing a short lived attack on Iran would work.

Iraq and Afghanistan also should have taught policy makers and military planners a thing or two about how a population could be expected to react to being attacked or invaded.  Iran’s population that maintains pro-western leanings is not insignificant and concentrated in the urban centers of Iran.  Iran and the United States pre-1979 had good relations and many Iranians have over the generations moved to the U.S. and become fine citizens serving in the military, intelligence, and commercial realms with distinction.  However, no matter how “noble” our excuse for war this time will be, just as in Iraq and Afghanistan, the population will turn decidedly against the U.S. and rally around the current regime should any attack take place.  To plan or believe differently is to totally disregard the most basic of human natures.  Further, even Iran’s pro-Western population also happen to overwhelmingly support Iran’s nuclear ambitions making any U.S. plans for winning popular Iranian support for an attack near zero.  To the east in Afghanistan and Pakistan, the U.S. has also witnessed a steadily growing anti-American sentiment that has coalesced around a still vigorous Taliban centered resistance.  This coupled with the sustained combat casualties, increasing Taliban control of regions, and growing calls for the withdrawal of the occupiers throughout the country should make it clear Americans are persona non grata in the region and will leave in defeat.  If a policy goal of the U.S. is to replace the current Iranian regime, an attack alone would be significantly counterproductive and actually bolster the Iranian regime.  It is important to note the case for regime change in Iran is fundamentally different than the support provided to Libyan rebels after a full scale civil war had already broke out with sides pro-regime and anti-regime.  Nonetheless, one need not debate the questionable benefits of supporting a rebel force, be it in Libya or Syria, comprised of Islamic extremists that have committed numerous atrocities and are still fighting amongst themselves with tons of extremely dangerous weapons left unaccounted for and now fueling insurgencies, terrorist actions, and conflicts from Nigeria to Turkey.  This should illustrate that even in the “best” of cases; things don’t ever work out as planned with regime change.  On this note, one should also consider how one could possibly secure all of Iran’s military weaponry without an occupation force.  Imagine the effect of the proliferation of millions of weapons ranging from surface-to-air missile to chemical weapons on the region and world for decades to come.

The historical evidence is convincing enough that the U.S. will again fall into the trap of an indecisive quagmire if it initiates a war with Iran, but is alone not enough to close the case.  Going beyond dismissing the rhetoric of the viability of a swift strike on Iran being feasible based on past experience, one should consider today’s specific military implications and hurdles.  To begin, statements from those in the know, leaders of military and intelligence communities, think a military option against Iran is in short, a bad idea.  These statements from both American and Israeli leaders regarding how bad the idea of war with Iran is range from “not feasible” to “stupid.”  These leaders include former U.S. Secretaries of Defense, Chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, senior Israeli politicians, and even the former head of Mossad.  They all say an attack is a bad idea and should be avoided.

In defense of the “surprise surgical strike” option, mislead and ill-informed people often point out how successful the surprise Israeli strikes on Iraq’s Osirak nuclear facility and Syria’s allegedly nuclear facility were and suggest this could be duplicated.  The problem with this logic is that these operations are not even remotely comparable in scope, complexity, difficulty, and risk.  For starters, Iran has an unknown number of nuclear related facilities spread across the entire country to ensure continuity of operations even after an expected attack.  These sites range from major gas/oil fields and remote mountain facilities, to downtown Tehran.  This means that any attack will cause significant collateral damage to both civilians and world petroleum production.  An attack would also result in a major environmental disaster.  Radioactive clouds of debris (fallout) would spread throughout the Persian Gulf region if sites like the nuclear fueled and operational reactor at Bushehr are hit.  For those that doubt this, look at the elaborate precautions the Department of Energy has taken to fortify and defend U.S. nuclear facilities.  This is necessary because very bad things happen when you bomb a fueled nuclear reactor…like meltdowns.  Next, most of these sites are hardened facilities buried underneath mountains and are ringed by layers of air defense systems. Finally, any credible attack will obliterate Iran’s infrastructure.  There is no doubt the damage and chaos this will cause will extend beyond Iran’s borders.  One can expect it to include disruption to regional power generation, disruption of oil and gas deliveries necessary for industry in India and China, global economic failures, massive regional ethnic unrest and upheaval, millions of refugees, empowerment of even more extreme Sunni regimes taking power throughout the Middle East and North Africa, and massive proliferation of former state controlled weapon systems throughout the region and world.

Beyond the nuclear related facilities, Iranian deterrence and defense capabilities have evolved greatly over a decade of watching and learning from American follies and operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.  Most visible is Iran’s mines that could be used to choke off the Straits of Hormuz.  Supporting any mining operation is a large number of anti-ship missiles, fast attack boats, and naval attack aircraft.  Much of this Iran has taken great effort to clandestinely emplace.  Of course the U.S. military could mitigate and or destroy most of these capabilities, but it would require a massive sustained operation to first destroy Iran’s air defense systems and command and control nodes.  This could take many months and will cost billions of dollars to speak nothing of the global economic fallout from a disruption in oil supplies…even if short term.  Some will no doubt argue that our F-22 Raptors and Stealth bombers, to include drones, could penetrate Iran’s air defenses and successfully attack many of Iran’s nuclear sites.  This is true, but is reckless in the fact it completely disregards Iran’s ability to counterattack, which would still be fully intact.  Until Iran’s counter attack capabilities are neutralized, the ability to overcome its defensive systems is a moot point.  This is especially true if the U.S. Navy is expected to quickly clear the Straits of Hormuz of mines and open it to oil shipments without significant naval losses.  Any ship in the Straits or the Persian Gulf is within range of Iranian anti-ship missiles, which can be volley fired and overwhelm ship anti-missile defenses.  It is hard to imagine the American public agreeing that a strike on Iran would be worth the loss of an aircraft carrier, but the risk is very real.  Even if America used highly secretive and technical electronic warfare capabilities to neutralize or destroy Iranian electronic hardware in its air defense and missile systems, it is doubtful that they would be effective enough across all spectrums to not leave exploiting gaps.  It will also require wide spread destruction of Iran’s electrical grid creating a massive humanitarian crisis.

Iran also maintains a large land army capable of attacking Americans and American interests in the region either directly or by surface to surface missiles.  These missiles would no doubt inflict serious casualties on military installations in the region and could carry chemical or biological weapons as retaliation if Iran was hit by Israeli tactical nuclear weapons.  Iran’s largest missiles are capable of reaching as far as Europe and anywhere in the Middle East so it is doubtful our missile defense systems, even as advanced as they have become, would stop every missile over this large area before it hit its target.  Domestically, Iran has invested heavily in training and equipping what amounts to a very dispersed standing civilian guerilla army with a decentralized command structure to augment its active duty military forces in the event of invasion.  These forces have been provided a host of nasty weapons that would inflict unsustainable casualties on American ground forces should an attack become an occupation of any Iranian soil.  These weapons include a range of anti-armor weapons proven against Israel in the 2006 War in Lebanon that are capable of destroying American armor vehicles to include the vaunted MRAP trucks deployed to protect against roadside bombs and even main battle tanks.  Specifically, these include modified rocket propelled grenades (RPGs) and anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs) using tandem warheads and bombs designed to produce an explosively formed penetrators (EFPs), which cuts through armor like a hot knife through butter.

Iran also has the ability to massively increase its support to insurgent groups around the world to attack American interests.  There is little the U.S. could do to stop this short of an occupation so the costs of this Iranian retaliation option must be calculated.  Insurgent groups in Afghanistan will probably be the first to benefit from this.  Iran’s 5th column, Hezbollah, is also prepared to cause havoc.  In the event of an attack, Hezbollah is likely to bombard Israel with an array of rockets and carrying out terrorist style attacks against Americans and American interests globally.  This would effectively open an entirely new front to the “War on Terror” with an organization that is much more capable and sophisticated than Al Qaeda, but to date, has only focused its attacks on Israel.  The notable exception to this was when the U.S. attempted to militarily occupy Lebanon and take sides in an ugly civil war.  The results of this American folly resulted in the Marine Barracks and the U.S. Embassy in Lebanon being bombed by Hezbollah linked militants and the U.S. forces retreating out of the country.

The above are just some of the known military capabilities Iran possesses, which it is likely to deploy in the event of an attack.  However, Iran may have a number of other devastating secret weapons.  One valid offensive capability Iran has demonstrated is the ability to launch a satellite into orbit.  Given this ability, Iran also has the ability to detonate a weapon in orbit in close enough proximity to critical U.S. satellites that it could effectively destroy them with a debris field.  Depending on the extent of these anti-satellite operations, Iran could inflict serious damage on not just the U.S., but global tele-communications, positioning, and reconnaissance capabilities.  Iran also may have developed an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) weapon.  A strong EMP has the ability to destroy electronics by inducing a current that essentially burns out the micro chips and their miniature circuitry.  Such a weapon would be impervious to our missile defenses and most likely disable many of them if used.  Even worse, it would be capable of destroying much of the computerized oil pumping and distribution infrastructure in the region.  This would cause an immediate global economic collapse, fuel shortages, and massive unrest abroad and domestically. Much more remote, but still possible would be for Iran to deploy and detonate an EMP over North America.  If Iran was able to successfully accomplish this, life as we know it in America would cease and we would be thrown back into a literal dark age.  Disturbingly, this possibility is actually feasible and within Iranian capabilities and has been briefed to Congressional members, policy makers, and the military.

Discussion of Israel on this matter has been intentionally minimal since it is critical to divest U.S. interests from Israeli interests.  No matter how much propaganda is generated to the contrary, Israeli and American interests do not align in a mutually beneficial way.  Those that believe they have a biblical obligation to start wars and die for Israel are welcome to renounce American citizenship, move to Israel, and join the Israel Defense Forces, which are hurting for quality recruits from even their own people, but please, please, leave the rest of us out of it.  However, before embarking on a crusade, one should consider that the majority of Israeli Jews do not want a war with Iran and rightfully consider it bad for their country.  Coming back to the issue at hand, the U.S. can’t hope to ignore the situation either.  It is bad for the U.S to attack Iran, but even worse if Israel attacks Iran without coordinating with the U.S.  Hoping to avert a war by pawning it off to Israel will not work.  Israel will act and it will pull America into the war without an overt and radical policy shift to prevent both Iran and Israel from attacking each other.  The notion that any initial attack by Israel would be a clearly attributable air attack that would provide the United States with the “option” to become involved is just not realistic.  Any Israeli strategy that didn’t attempt to achieve U.S. entrance into the conflict as a primary goal is not consistent with Israeli doctrine, capabilities, or national strategy.  Short of a plan reliant on U.S. entry, Israel would be pressed to use nuclear weapons against Iran if its initial attack did not achieve decisive effects, which in and of itself would be a global disaster.  For this reason alone, the U.S. should act quickly and decisively to prevent either Iran or Israel from entering into war.

It is important to note the political effects of an attack as well.  Whether or not Iran actually was seeking a nuclear weapon before any attack, and the releasable intelligence right now is clear that Iran is not, the case for a nuclear weapon after an attack as a defensive capability would be easily justified from an Iranian perspective.  This incidentally would achieve the opposite of desired U.S. goals.  Iran, like Iraq, would almost certainly close down its known nuclear operations to inspections making any further information regarding Iranian nuclear developments even more rare and unreliable.  Further, Iran would likely withdraw from international treaties on nuclear weapons.  To then attempt to force inspections and disclosure would, like in Iraq, involve further, sustained, and ultimately costly military operations over a massive area.  Politically, Iran has not missed the fact that U.S. policy toward adversarial nations with a nuclear weapon such as North Korea and Pakistan is decidedly less hostile than against nations without a weapon such as Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya.  Iran has also correctly identified that the American public’s appetite, military capability, and money for another decade long conflict of occupation and massive financial debt is simply not existent.  The U.S. military is in a period of fiscal debt crisis and budget cutbacks.  It is simply not capable of projecting the necessary force for any sustained period of time across what amounts to North and Central Africa, the entire Middle East, South West Asia, and the Pacific to include South Korea.  Whether or not the U.S. decides to call Iran’s bluff will not change the ground truth inside the U.S. military that cutbacks to personnel coupled with current heavy overseas demands and an unfinished reset of the forces leaves the U.S. dangerously overextended.  It also will not change the fact that a war could add another trillion dollars or more to the U.S. deficit, which is just not affordable.

Finally, an attack prior to clear cut evidence made available for public review that overwhelming proves Iran is developing a nuclear “weapon” with the “intent” and “ability” to “effectively” use it “offensively” against the “U.S.” would become a lightning rod for further domestic and international condemnation and resistance to any war.  The abuse of the public trust in the run-up to the Iraq War has not been repaired.  Through propaganda, hyped fear mongering, special interest lobbying, and false intelligence, claims of a continued Iraqi pursuit of weapons of mass destruction with the intent to pass them to terrorist organizations were used to justify a war against Iraq that would have never been justified on the grounds of regime change alone.  The cost in dead, wounded, and dollars was too steep and shouldered by too few to follow this course again.  The case being built against Iran has an all too familiar ring of a classic case of the boy that cried wolf.  Thus, the case for war must be absolute and never again should the American public believe the government when it tells the public that you have to “trust” us because the evidence is “classified.”  No, the U.S. government must present its full case to the public for analysis and debate before another war is begun.

Now, if anyone is still thinking that an attack on Iran is going to be easy, short, or bloodless, they are officially ignorant of the facts.  Further, if one thinks a war with Iran will achieve the desired objectives, they probably also own ocean front real estate in Arizona or are being heavily subsidized by AIPAC and like lobbies.  Only through a long term, sustained, and costly full scale war of attrition or a nuclear strike can the U.S. achieve the stated goals of regime change and destruction of Iranian nuclear capability development.  In conclusion, allowing America to be led blindly into a war with Iran will prove to be the capstone foreign policy disaster of American history and may well be the event historians point to as what led to the collapse of our Republic.

The war with Iran has begun: Israel’s Battle Plan for Iran

 

Media and intelligence reports suggest war between Israel and Iran appears imminent within the coming months, but in fact, has already begun.  Perhaps, this reality has been completely missed because the media convinced itself and the public the opening salvos for an Israeli attack on Iran would look like an air force bombing raid of Iranian nuclear installations.  We have pointed out for years this air force centric battle plan has been a deception operation as a true bombing raid would be too likely to fail and not achieve decisive long term effects.  Further, a limited Osirak type raid would leave the Israeli homeland completely vulnerable to organized and sustained retaliatory strikes.  Contrary to how the ill-informed pundits thought this war would play out, Israel has a much better war plan to support “its interests” that is unfolding as you read this piece. Whether or not the United States willing joins the war will affect this battle plan and impact “how bad” it will be for the U.S.  The best case would be an immediate move by Washington to decisively prevent war between Israel and Iran, but that seems highly unlikely now.  As such, one must assume the U.S. maintains its current policy towards Iran and will attempt to stay on the sidelines “hoping” Israel won’t attack.  Under those conditions, the following Israeli battle plan will likely be executed within the next 4-8 weeks.

The basic plan is as follows:

  • Phase I:  Prepare the populace and the military for war.  Obtain needed intelligence of the battlefield and attempt to build war sentiment inside Israel and the U.S.  Finalize acquisition of weapons systems and ordnance.  Place the military on a war footing.
  • Phase II:  Reduce the near border threat and open a safe flight path to Iran.  Using asymmetric means, degrade Hezbollah and Syria to a minimal threat incapable of sustained, coordinated, state level military operations.  Attempt to leverage the presence of chemical and biological weapons as well as friction with Turkey, a NATO member, to draw the U.S. into the war early.
  • Phase III:  Launch a surprise false flag attack on Iran that appears to emanate from the Americans.  The strike will include initially non-attributable electronic attacks, cyber warfare, and submarine launched missiles.  Limited commando raids may also take place.
  • Phase IV:   Using the plausible deniability of who conducted the initial attack, leverage the Iranian confusion to bait them into attacking the U.S. and forcing America into the war if it hasn’t already joined.

*Note:  If Iran responds discriminately only against Israel and the U.S. is not pulled into the conflict, this will be the signal for immediate, large scale follow-on attacks.  This is necessary to mitigate the potential damage inside Israel from retaliatory strikes.

  • Phase V:  Bring war to rapid closure and hand-off the conflict to the U.S military within 30 days.  If Iran continues to retaliate against Israel, Israel will respond with further massive missile strikes with follow-on strikes by the air force using manned and unmanned platforms.  The Israeli military will relentlessly attack Iran to inflict maximum damage and casualties so as to force U.S. intervention and or the U.N. to broker a cease fire. 

*Should Iran, Hezbollah, or Syria attempt to or actually retaliate using chemical or biological weapons, if Iran is able to heavily attack Israel successfully, or if Israel is unable to achieve its goals in the reduction of Iranian nuclear facilities, Israel plans to use nuclear weapons to achieve victory and protect its homeland.

To understand Israel’s actual battle plan formulation, one must first turn the chessboard around and understand Israel’s goals, perceptions, and capabilities in the manner Israeli decision makers see the pieces.  Foremost in their minds has to be the preservation of the Jewish State.  Any limited attack that achieved indecisive goals, but risked the homeland would not be suitable.  Second, Israeli leadership, specifically, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, perceives Iran as an existential threat that must be destroyed at all costs.  However, Netanyahu is clever and cunning enough to know better than getting into a fair fight with Iran.

Israel’s national capabilities, which relative to other Middle Eastern countries are immense, include a first rate military and renowned air force.  Their navy has also made great strides and has spent a massive amount of money acquiring latest generation retrofitted German-diesel submarines capable of launching long range missiles.  Respective of strategic weapons, Israel has what is believed to be a significant stockpile of nuclear weapons that could provide deterrent, first, and second strike options during a war.  These nuclear weapons could be delivered by aircraft, drones, or missiles launched from the land, sea, or air.  Further, Israel has demonstrated an advanced technological arsenal that includes electronic and cyber warfare capabilities, missile defense systems, surveillance and reconnaissance assets, and is a world leader in the design and production of drones and other autonomous systems.  Nonetheless, Israel still has a very limited power projection capability beyond its shores.  It also has limited natural resources, finances, and industrial capabilities.  Perhaps most worrisome when assessing a war of attrition with Iran, Israel is acutely aware it has relatively limited land area and a small population.  This means any successful deployment of Iranian weapons such as missiles and rockets are more likely to cause significant casualties and damage and quickly reduce the public will and support for a sustained.  In short, Israel can’t domestically endure significant military damage and neither can its elected leaders.  Netanyahu is keenly aware of the fate of former Prime Minister Olmert after the failed 2006 Lebanon War.  Finally, Israel has a powerful international support base of wealthy elites and routinely demonstrates the significant power of its lobbying infrastructure to maneuver political will inside the United States.

Next, one must understand Iran’s capabilities in a similar manner.  Iran’s regime is most afraid of losing power and inversely, is most concerned with maintaining power.  Maintaining power, much like in other countries is predicated on polarizing the masses and using religion as a patriotic call to national defense.  In Iran’s case, painting Israel and the U.S. as the enemy is a relatively easy case in light of the repeated wars on Muslim lands and peoples, three decades of crippling sanctions, assassination of its scientists, and repeatedly addressing Iran as an existential evil threat that must be destroyed.  This demonization of Israel and the U.S. is woven intricately into the fiber of Iran and has no doubt radicalized much of its population.  Iran has used this fervor to build up a substantial military that has grown more and more independent of foreign assistance and military hardware sales.  This has been the result of adapting to decades of sanctions and has to some degree inoculated Iran from further effects of sanctions.  Iran’s large population and land area make it more able to endure and absorb repeated attacks.   Iran also has significant reserves of both oil and gas and enjoys the disproportionate political sway it gains by influencing the global economy.  Regarding Iran’s military, it has a large pool of conscripts, a substandard air force, and inferior weapons technology.  However, Iran has learned from the U.S. and Israeli wars over the last decade and has made itself a much more capable enemy.  It has developed a dispersed, decentralized, civilian militia capable or harassing any occupying military endlessly.  It has also developed robust anti-access technologies to include many anti-ship missiles, naval mines, small fast attack missile boats, significantly improved air defense systems, and surface to surface missiles with significantly improved targeting and range.  Iran also maintains stockpiles of both chemical and biological weapons that could be used in retaliation for an attack.  Most worrisome to Israel though is Iran’s development of a 5th column in Lebanon consisting of Hezbollah, which is reportedly to now be rearmed with hundreds of thousands of shorter range rockets and anti-tank weapons and a client state in Syria with a fully capable conventional military sitting on Israel’s border.

Using the above as a general framework to begin piecing together assumptions about an Israeli war plan, it should be clear that a prolonged war is not in Israel’s interests, an invasion or occupation of Iran would be impossible, and Israel can’t afford to endure prolonged attacks domestically.  Defensively, although Israel’s missile defense systems could likely shield it from most long range Iranian missiles, it would likely be overwhelmed by a massive launch of rockets and missiles from Hezbollah.  A Syrian supported front on Israel’s border would also open a fight bigger than Israel is willing to undertake and allow Iran to continuously resupply Hezbollah.  Iran’s anti-access technologies are not much of a threat to Israel since Israel is located far beyond the range of these weapons, but Iran’s air defense system must be contended with if a manned strike is to be successful.  Israel also can’t afford risking the possibility of an Iranian chemical or biological retaliation.  As such, Hezbollah and Syria must be neutralized before any attack could take place to remove the immediate threat to Israel’s homeland and Iran’s retaliatory capabilities in respect to Israel must be eliminated.  Israel must also seek out a plan that enables its piloted aircraft to successfully make round trip sorties to and from Iran.  Note that how Iran’s response affects “Israel” in this calculus is not the same as how Iran’s response affects the “U.S.”  This is an ominous observation for the U.S.

Moving forward and building out the attack plan, a basic order of operations can be established.  First, the homeland must be prepared to endure retaliatory strikes and the military assets must be in place.  This includes generating the propaganda and domestic support for a war as well as developing and procuring the proper military technology, equipment, and weapons.  Jointly, diplomatic avenues must be exhausted and low-level covert war options must have had a chance to work.  Finally, a thorough intelligence preparation of the battlefield must have been completed.  Second, Hezbollah and Syria’s ability to jointly wage war on Iran’s behalf must be at least neutralized in a way to not spark an outright kinetic war with Iran.  Israel cannot prosecute a war with Iran successfully without first eliminating this close border threat.  Third, Iran must then be attacked violently by surprise in a total fashion that prevents any possibility of it being able to respond with missiles capable of striking Israel.  Fourth, Israel must leverage this initial surprise attack to pull the U.S. into the war.  This will be necessary to achieve more decisive long term effects on Iran’s nuclear development and minimal expense to Israel in manpower and money.  Finally, Israel must bring the hostilities to a rapid closure.  This means either handing off the sustained large scale campaign to the United States or prosecuting further attacks against Iran to increase the amount of damage done and forcing a peace treaty or ceasefire.  This final phase could go as far as delivering a final decisive blow using nuclear weapons (or the threat of it to make sure the U.S. finishes their fight) if Iran has somehow managed to inflict severe damage on Israel proper.

Now that a clear order of operations has been established, it is a relatively simple process of plugging in Israel’s capabilities to their proper place and adding a dash of strategy and deception to achieve surprise.  To be specific, this war plan has already been implemented and is under way.  In fact, we are nearing the end of Phase II.  The destabilization of Syria is the Phase II answer for how to take down Iran’s capabilities to threaten Israel at its border without immediately provoking a war.  Rest assured, under no other lesser circumstances would Israel allow Sunni backed jihadists to overthrow Assad, a ruler that Israel has maintained an awkward détente with for years.  This would be trading a tolerable for horrible.  Phase II will now continue until Syria is assessed to have been rendered incapable of organized, state level, sustained military operations against Israel.  The residual jihadists fighting amongst themselves like in Libya for power will be used as an excuse later to deal with Syria in totality after Iran is attacked and the U.S. is suckered into the war (assuming the U.S. can’t be suckered into the war sooner using Syria as a pretext).  Still though, Israel doesn’t believe Hezbollah will be completely neutralized by this.  Instead, they project that Hezbollah’s ability to sustain combat operations will be extremely degraded without Syria to funnel supplies and support from Iran to them, but still will have the ability to launch attacks for 3-4 weeks.  To mitigate the residual threat from Hezbollah, Israel has implemented Iron Dome, an air defense system capable of shooting down rockets and missiles launched from Hezbollah fighters in Lebanon and Syria.  Israel has also developed in-depth civilian preparedness programs to include alert systems, bunkers, drills, and rapid response capabilities to mitigate any damage from any attacks that are successful.

Phase III of the war is yet to begin, but will likely correlate with the neutralization of Syria before the fall elections in the U.S. This window is critical because Netanyahu knows that any strike before the election essentially forces President Obama to support it or risk losing the election.  Obama has to pull votes of Southern Baptists and conservative Christians from Romney, and most importantly, must have Jewish support in the form of money and votes; especially, in a swing state like Florida, to win.  Should Obama leave Israel hanging, it will open him up to massive attacks from the neo-conservative Zionist Romney as weak and not supportive.  As such, Obama could be cornered into either actively taking part in a war or unwillingly being forced into Israel’s war.  Both situations are catastrophic for the U.S., but good for Israel.  If Netanyahu waits, he risks losing his opportunity to pull the U.S. into the war; especially, if Obama is reelected, which looks to be the case based on current polling numbers.

Phase III will begin the actual kinetic phase of operations against Iran.  It will start with an unprecedented electronic attack that includes wide spread cyber-attacks, disinformation and deception operations, jamming, and potentially the used of targeted electronic pulse weapons to blind and destroy the situational awareness of Iran’s command and control elements.  Nearly simultaneously, Israel will launch its largest missile attack in the nation’s history.  It will include the full range of missiles launched from the air, ground, and sea.  Jericho ballistic missiles with modified heavy payloads and submarine launched missiles will be some of the primary weapons used.  Submarines will likely launch first.  Israel has secretly poured billions of U.S. tax dollars into the development of its submarines and their launch capabilities.  This has not been by accident.  In fact, tracking the location of Israel’s submarines will be one of the best indicators for when Israel is about to strike.  The U.S. should put a premium on shadowing these subs over any other submarine missions currently on-going.  In fact, there is a reasonable argument that the U.S. should use whatever force is necessary to prevent Israeli subs from launching an attack due to the dire consequences it will have for America.  Israel will also likely use a mix of attack drones to carry out some of the initial wave of attacks.  Israel may also use an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) weapon to destroy Iranian electronics and black out their grid.  This could come in the form of a high altitude nuclear detonation.

Phase IV will be executed in parallel with Phase III and leverage the ambiguity and the violence of the initial phase of electronic warfare and submarine strikes to hopefully bait Iran into incorrectly assessing the attack as coming from the U.S.  This is likely as it will be a very advanced attack, primarily submarine launched, and have no humans initially involved.  This looks like a classic sterile American type attack and gives Israel plausible deniability while confusing the Iranian decision cycle.  This false flag, deception operation is classic Israeli military doctrine and emblematic of Israel’s past military operations.  If Iran perceives the attack to be from the U.S., its response is much more likely to be extreme in that it either does nothing and capitulates or retaliates broadly at American and Arab interests in the region instead of Israeli targets.  Military bases, American warships, and oil infrastructure are the most likely targets for Iran and would bring both the U.S. and Iran’s neighbors such as Saudi Arabia into the war against it.  This would allow Israel to bow out of the fight it started successfully.  Further, the operational pause in the Iranian decision cycle allows Israel to assess how it completes Phase III and moves to Phase V.  If Iran does nothing, mission accomplished.  If Iran retaliates against the U.S. and it is clear the Americans will enter the war, mission accomplished.  However, if Iran retaliates against Israel selectively and or the U.S. doesn’t get immediately into the war, Israel must immediately move to mitigate any possible retaliatory damage Iran can inflict.  This means that Israel will complete Phase III with clearly attributable Jericho missile strikes and strikes from drones against a much broader range of targets to include Iranian missile sites, command and control centers, and oil infrastructure in addition to nuclear facilities.

Moving into Phase V, Israel will again attempt to pull the U.S. into the war if it did not succeed in Phases III and IV.  They will most likely threaten to have to use nuclear weapons to finish it or start a bigger war with Syria that risks entire regional destabilization.  In exchange for Israel restraining its attacks, America will enter.  If not, Israel will move into their least desirable portion of the entire operation and begin manned airstrikes against Iranian targets by transiting Syrian airspace.  Israel must plan on losing some of its aircraft and crew during this phase, but ultimately, they will be able to successfully hit targets in in the north and west of Iran.  Jericho missiles will have to attack the more distant targets if the U.S. failed to enter the war.  Once Israel has exhausted its target list and U.S. supplied heavy ordnance penetrators, Israel will enter into United Nations peace negotiations, which undoubtedly will be in full swing to try and stop the “humanitarian suffering.”

The ominous caveat to this five phase war plan comes if from the outset, Israel knows that the U.S. will not get involved, is unable to achieve mission goals, or if Iran, Syria, or Hezbollah appears to be about to retaliate with chemical or biological weapons.  In any of the three scenarios listed, Israel may very well use nuclear weapons to achieve its goals.  The saying no plan survives first contact is absolutely gospel and for Israel, that means they must have a worst case scenario plan at the ready.  Dangerously, their worst case also equals our worst case from an American perspective.  Any war in the Middle East is going to be awful, but a nuclear war will be catastrophic.  Nonetheless, the Israelis see it as acceptable for their nation’s survival even though it probably also means the end of life as we know it in the U.S. as the global economy collapses and we are forced to try and contain the literal fallout of “their” war.

The above war plan is the baseline for Israel’s planning against Iran that they have desperately tried to keep secret.  What Americans must realize, including both the President and his challenger Mitt Romney, is that Israel’s plan for war is fundamentally designed for Israeli interests.  The battle plan does not take into account any equities that the U.S. or other Arab countries may have when it comes to getting caught in the crossfire.  Should the U.S. voluntarily involve itself from the beginning, the battle plan will decidedly shift to take into account American interests and capabilities, but will still be horrible for the U.S. and not achieve decisive long term results.  Still though, the hope that we could control the chaos better may be enough to sucker America into the fight unilaterally on Israel’s behalf.  President Obama, if seriously threatened by Romney, may also opt to create a convenient crisis before the election to distract the voters and spin it to his benefit.  However, should the U.S. be forced into a surprise war with Iran through Israeli deception and a potential false flag attack, the U.S. would suffer much worse and achieve even less decisive results.  Either way, the cost of a war is much too great for Americans to accept.  This is not America’s war.  American policy MUST look out for American interests first.  This means Israel must be stopped from starting a war that will cause global disaster for the U.S.

Israeli submarines will launch the initial strike against Iran.