'Iran is now Nuclear'

Discussion in 'Politics' started by wee man, Aug 28, 2007.

  1. Brandonf

    Brandonf ET Sponsor

    No matter how big little brother talks he always knows that big brother can beat the shit out of him and sometimes his only option is to hide behind his mother. I'm speaking from life experiance here, and I think that Iran is a little bit like Brandon vs Curt, not a fair fight ever till I could get mom to come save my ass.
  2. b.s. how quickly you foget Israel and it's WMD, nukes, and US military "aid". not to mention india, pakistan's nukes, and russia.
    Not to mention the US strike force in the gulf area.
    It's like being surrounded by wolves.

    These days, all you need to justify invading and subjegating a country that stands in the way of oil pipelines, is Condy to come on TV and accuse of 'meddling".

    Look at a map - what country stands between Israel, Iran and then Afghanistan geographically? You did read the recent news about the oil pipelines in afghanistan (owned by US interests), didn't you?
  3. lol this is what they don't teach in school.


    Pakistan government awards TAP pipeline contract to US Company
    August 20 - The Pakistan government has awarded the contract of laying the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan (TAP) gas pipeline project to the United States International Oil Company (IOC) with an estimated cost of $10 billion. (Daily Times)

    Geo News quoted a press release issued by the oil company's liaison office stating that the contract for the 2,200-kilometre TAP gas pipeline, scheduled for completion within three years, had been awarded to the US-based company. It said two oil refineries and four thermal powerhouses, with a capacity of 1,000 megawatts, would also be established under this project.
    It further reported that the pipeline would be built up to Gwadar and would supply two million barrels of oil and four billion cubic feet of natural gas to Pakistan every day. APP quoted IOC’s press statement as saying that a $3.5-billion refinery would also be built at Gwadar under the terms of the contract.
    Online reported that the project envisages the construction of a Hydro-cracker to facilitate the production of JP-1 and JP-4 petroleum products in Pakistan for the first time in the nation’s history.
    According to sources in the International Oil Company, the matters of security and insurance in Afghanistan during the laying of the pipeline have been finalised between the oil company and authorities, and a signing ceremony confirming the mega-project agreement would be held shortly.
  4. Sorting out the Middle East

    By William Rusher

    Thursday, August 16, 2007

    If you want to pose as an all-purpose expert on the Middle East, just assume the demeanor of a wise old owl and announce, "It's all about oil." Why did the United States invade Iraq? "Oil." What are the Sunnis and the Shiites battling over? "Oil." What is Iran's motive in its Byzantine power plays? "Oil." Don't try to explain the details of your analysis: Keep it simple, and just blame everything on oil.

    The irritating fact is that there is just enough -- barely enough -- truth in this generic accusation to keep it from being laughed out of any room it crops up in. Oil is indeed the central factor in Middle Eastern geopolitics. There exists, under the ground there, a huge percentage of the oil that the world, at this point in its technological development, depends on. Until it was discovered there scarcely a century ago, the residents of the region played a far less important role in world affairs. If technology develops, as it seems likely to, other large sources of energy, the Arabs, who are currently throwing their weight around so brazenly, will have to get back to tending sheep or whatever else they did for money.

    Meanwhile, access to the oil resources of the Middle East is absolutely essential to the economic well-being of the rest of the world, and especially Europe's. The United States is far less dependent on it, having alternative sources of oil both within its political borders and in other areas easier to deal with. But the United States could not possibly afford to let Europe be starved of oil, so it cannot ignore the importance of this resource.

    On the other hand, there is no serious danger that the oil of the Middle East will suddenly be withheld from the world market. In itself, oil does almost nothing for the nations that sit on top of it. It is useful to them only because, and to the extent that, it can be sold to somebody else. Any interruption in the sale of Middle Eastern oil to Europe would be a terrible blow to Europe, but it would be absolutely catastrophic to the Middle East. The economies of most of the nations there are based almost entirely upon it, and would collapse the moment sales ceased.

    So it is nonsense to say or imply that the United States invaded Iraq to insure a continued supply of its oil, or even to get a better price for it. And other Middle Eastern developments are equally independent of any scenario that hinges on the interruption of the oil supply. There are plenty of other reasons for the problems currently bedeviling the region.

    Religious differences within the Muslim world are ancient and entrenched, and play an enormous role in their current politics. The Sunnis and Shiites in Iraq, for example, have never coexisted affably, and find themselves in the same country only because the borders the British drew when they created that nation after World War I happened to include both of them. This has made it extremely difficult for the United States to bring about an Iraqi government that can truly unite the country.

    Similarly, the Shiite-dominated regime in Iran seems clearly embarked on an effort to make sure that their fellow Shiites, who are numerically dominant in Iraq but long suffered under the Sunnis led by Saddam Hussein, control whatever government finally emerges there. And on the other side of Iraq is Syria, which is also led by Shiites and is plainly sympathetic to Iran's game. Arrayed against these forces, however, are the Sunni-dominated governments of Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Egypt, among others, who are bound to look more kindly on Iraq's Sunnis.

    All this is still further complicated by Iran's evident intention to acquire nuclear weapons and the capacity to deliver them to nearby targets -- an ambition that the Sunni-led nations are absolutely bound to respond to with nuclear efforts of their own.

    No wonder The New York Times reported on Aug. 12 that, despite all their rhetoric about pulling out of Iraq, "the Democratic presidential candidates are setting out positions that could leave the United States engaged in Iraq for years."

    That's putting it mildly.
  5. Study: US preparing 'massive' military attack against Iran

    Raw Story
    Tuesday Aug 28, 2007

    The United States has the capacity for and may be prepared to launch without warning a massive assault on Iranian uranium enrichment facilities, as well as government buildings and infrastructure, using long-range bombers and missiles, according to a new analysis.

    The paper, "Considering a war with Iran: A discussion paper on WMD in the Middle East" Ð written by well-respected British scholar and arms expert Dr. Dan Plesch, Director of the Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy of the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) at the University of London, and Martin Butcher, a former Director of the British American Security Information Council (BASIC) and former adviser to the Foreign Affairs Committee of the European Parliament Ð was exclusively provided to RAW STORY late Friday under embargo.

    "We wrote the report partly as we were surprised that this sort of quite elementary analysis had not been produced by the many well resourced Institutes in the United States," wrote Plesch in an email to Raw Story on Tuesday.

    (Article continues below)

    Plesch and Butcher examine "what the military option might involve if it were picked up off the table and put into action" and conclude that based on open source analysis and their own assessments, the US has prepared its military for a "massive" attack against Iran, requiring little contingency planning and without a ground invasion.

    The study concludes that the US has made military preparations to destroy IranÕs WMD, nuclear energy, regime, armed forces, state apparatus and economic infrastructure within days if not hours of President George W. Bush giving the order. The US is not publicising the scale of these preparations to deter Iran, tending to make confrontation more likely. The US retains the option of avoiding war, but using its forces as part of an overall strategy of shaping IranÕs actions.
    Any attack is likely to be on a massive multi-front scale but avoiding a ground invasion. Attacks focused on WMD facilities would leave Iran too many retaliatory options, leave President Bush open to the charge of using too little force and leave the regime intact.

    US bombers and long range missiles are ready today to destroy 10,000 targets in Iran in a few hours.

    US ground, air and marine forces already in the Gulf, Iraq, and Afghanistan can devastate Iranian forces, the regime and the state at short notice.

    Some form of low level US and possibly UK military action as well as armed popular resistance appear underway inside the Iranian provinces or ethnic areas of the Azeri, Balujistan, Kurdistan and Khuzestan. Iran was unable to prevent sabotage of its offshore-to-shore crude oil pipelines in 2005.

    Nuclear weapons are ready, but most unlikely, to be used by the US, the UK and Israel. The human, political and environmental effects would be devastating, while their military value is limited.

    Israel is determined to prevent Iran acquiring nuclear weapons yet has the conventional military capability only to wound IranÕs WMD programmes.

    The attitude of the UK is uncertain, with the Brown government and public opinion opposed psychologically to more war, yet, were Brown to support an attack he would probably carry a vote in Parliament. The UK is adamant that Iran must not acquire the bomb.

    The US is not publicising the scale of these preparations to deter Iran, tending to make confrontation more likely. The US retains the option of avoiding war, but using its forces as part of an overall strategy of shaping IranÕs actions.
    When asked why the paper seems to indicate a certainty of Iranian WMD, Plesch made clear that "our paper is not, repeat not, about what Iran actually has or not." Yet, he added that "Iran certainly has missiles and probably some chemical capability."

    Most significantly, Plesch and Butcher dispute conventional wisdom that any US attack on Iran would be confined to its nuclear sites. Instead, they foresee a "full-spectrum approach," designed to either instigate an overthrow of the government or reduce Iran to the status of "a weak or failed state." Although they acknowledge potential risks and impediments that might deter the Bush administration from carrying out such a massive attack, they also emphasize that the administration's National Security Strategy includes as a major goal the elimination of Iran as a regional power. They suggest, therefore, that:

    This wider form of air attack would be the most likely to delay the Iranian nuclear program for a sufficiently long period of time to meet the administrationÕs current counterproliferation goals. It would also be consistent with the possible goal of employing military action is to overthrow the current Iranian government, since it would severely degrade the capability of the Iranian military (in particular revolutionary guards units and other ultra-loyalists) to keep armed opposition and separatist movements under control. It would also achieve the US objective of neutralizing Iran as a power in the region for many years to come.

    However, it is the option that contains the greatest risk of increased global tension and hatred of the United States. The US would have few, if any allies for such a mission beyond Israel (and possibly the UK). Once undertaken, the imperatives for success would be enormous.
    Butcher says he does not believe the US would use nuclear weapons, with some exceptions.

    "My opinion is that [nuclear weapons] wouldn't be used unless there was definite evidence that Iran has them too or is about to acquire them in a matter of days/weeks," notes Butcher. "However, the Natanz facility has been so hardened that to destroy it MAY require nuclear weapons, and once an attack had started it may simply be a matter of following military logic and doctrine to full extent, which would call for the use of nukes if all other means failed."

  6. [...]

    Military Strategy

    The bulk of the paper is devoted to a detailed analysis of specific military strategies for such an attack, of ongoing attempts to destabilize Iran by inciting its ethnic minorities, and of the considerations surrounding the possible employment of nuclear weapons.

    In particular, Plesch and Butcher examine what is known as Global Strike Ð the capability to project military power from the United States to anywhere in the world, which was announced by STRATCOM as having initial operational capability in December 2005. It is the that capacity that could provide strategic bombers and missiles to devastate Iran on just a few hours notice.

    Iran has a weak air force and anti aircraft capability, almost all of it is 20-30 years old and it lacks modern integrated communications. Not only will these forces be rapidly destroyed by US air power, but Iranian ground and air forces will have to fight without protection from air attack.

    British military sources stated on condition of anonymity, that "the US military switched its whole focus to Iran" from March 2003. It continued this focus even though it had infantry bogged down in fighting the insurgency in Iraq.
    Global Strike could be combined with already-existing "regional operational plans for limited war with Iran, such as Oplan 1002-04, for an attack on the western province of Kuzhestan, or Oplan 1019 which deals with preventing Iran from closing the Straits of Hormuz, and therefore keeping open oil lanes vital to the US economy."

    The Marines are not all tied down fighting in Iraq. Several Marine forces are assembling in the Gulf, each with its own aircraft carrier. These carrier forces can each conduct a version of the D-Day landings. They come with landing craft, tanks, jump-jets, thousands of troops and hundreds more cruise missiles. Their task is to destroy Iranian forces able to attack oil tankers and to secure oilfields and installations. They have trained for this mission since the Iranian revolution of 1979 as is indicated in this battle map of Hormuz illustrating an advert for combat training software.
    Special Forces units Ð which are believed to already be operating within Iran Ð would be available to carry out search-and-destroy missions and incite internal uprisings, while US Army units in both Iraq and Afghanistan could mount air and missile attacks on Iranian forces, which are heavily concentrated along the Iran-Iraq border, as well as protecting their own supply lines within Iraq:

    A key assessment in any war with Iran concerns Basra province and the Kuwait border. It is likely that Iran and its sympathizers could take control of population centres and interrupt oil supplies, if it was in their interest to do so. However it is unlikely that they could make any sustained effort against Kuwait or interrupt supply lines north from Kuwait to central Iraq. US firepower is simply too great for any Iranian conventional force.
    Experts question the report's conclusions

    Former CIA analyst and Deputy Director for Transportation Security, Antiterrorism Assistance Training, and Special Operations in the State Department's Office of Counterterrorism, Larry Johnson, does not agree with the reportÕs findings.

    "The report seems to accept without question that US air force and navy bombers could effectively destroy Iran and they seem to ignore the fact that US use of air power in Iraq has failed to destroy all major military, political, economic and transport capabilities," said Johnson late Monday after the embargo on the study had been lifted.

    "But at least in their conclusions they still acknowledge that Iran, if attacked, would be able to retaliate. Yet they are vague in terms of detailing the extent of the damage that the Iran is capable of inflicting on the US and fairly assessing what those risks are."

    There is also the situation of US soldiers in Iraq and the supply routes that would have to be protected to ensure that US forces had what they needed. Plesch explains that Ò"firepower is an effective means of securing supply routes during conventional war and in conventional war a higher loss rate is expected."

    "However as we say do not assume that the Iraqi Shiia will rally to Tehran Ð the quietist Shiia tradition favoured by Sistani may regard itself as justified if imploding Iranian power can be argued to reduce US problems in Iraq, not increase them."

    John Pike, Director of Global Security, a Washington-based military, intelligence, and security clearinghouse, says that the question of Iraq is the one issue at the center of any questions regarding Iran.

    "The situation in Iraq is a wild card, though it may be presumed that Iran would mount attacks on the US at some remove, rather than upsetting the apple-cart in its own front yard," wrote Pike in an email.

    Political Considerations

    Plesch and Butcher write with concern about the political context within the United States:

    This debate is bleeding over into the 2008 Presidential election, with evidence mounting that despite the public unpopularity of the war in Iraq, Iran is emerging as an issue over which Presidential candidates in both major American parties can show their strong national security bona fides. ...

    The debate on how to deal with Iran is thus occurring in a political context in the US that is hard for those in Europe or the Middle East to understand. A context that may seem to some to be divorced from reality, but with the US ability to project military power across the globe, the reality of Washington DC is one that matters perhaps above all else. ...

    We should not underestimate the Bush administration's ability to convince itself that an "Iran of the regions" will emerge from a post-rubble Iran. So, do not be in the least surprised if the United States attacks Iran. Timing is an open question, but it is hard to find convincing arguments that war will be avoided, or at least ones that are convincing in Washington.
    Plesch and Butcher are also interested in the attitudes of the current UK government, which has carefully avoided revealing what its position might be in the case of an attack. They point out, however, "One key caution is that regardless of the realities of IranÕs programme, the British public and elite may simply refuse to participate Ð almost out of bloody minded revenge for the Iraq deceit."

    And they conclude that even "if the attack is 'successful' and the US reasserts its global military dominance and reduces Iran to the status of an oil-rich failed state, then the risks to humanity in general and to the states of the Middle East are grave indeed."

    Larisa Alexandrovna is managing editor of investigative news for Raw Story and regularly reports on intelligence and national security stories. Contact: larisa@rawstory.com

    Muriel Kane is research director for Raw Story.