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11 September 2015

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William R. Cumming

Two more who once had power that don't get it IMO! Should we rank all the nuclear powers based on quality of their safety and safeguards? Or Command and Control?

Where falls Israel on that list?

oofda

And yesterday Joe was stating that the "U.S. had to protect Israel." Totally oblivious to the fact that there is no mutual protection treaty between the two countries- and the reasons why.

gemini33

I don't normally watch the shows in the morning anymore but caught the end of Hayden's appearance today. Heard him say that the phrase "all options are on the table" is just an empty phrase now and he's very concerned about that, thinks we need to do something to impress.

I was always nervous about neocon hawks but lately I'm getting downright scared. That's an understatement, actually.

Grizziz

Does Israel's nuclear armed submarines count for anything in the calculus? Because Israel's nuclear program is secret and therefore cannot be discussed on TV does not make it any less a deterrent to the Iranians.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dolphin-class_submarine

confusedponderer

In this context the subs are useless for Israel actually, since IMO the nukes they carry are useful as a deterrent only.

The conventional warheads they can carry are not sufficiently destructive enough for targets like those buried facilities in Natanz. They could complement an air strike by taking out known fixed targets like radars or attack known Iranian air defence sites, but that's about it.

The same goes for Israels IRBM which can reach into Iran at a moment's notice. It is cannot be stressed enough:

The Israelis do have the military capability to use their nuclear missiles against Iran and annihilate the Iranians as an ethicity at any time they wish to. There is nothing that Iran could do against that. That is just how threatened Israel is by Iran.

Iran accepts that situation with far more dignity than Israel does accept the yet nonexistent and perhaps sometime in the future manifesting prospect of Iran acquiring a nuclear capability.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jericho_%28missile%29
http://www.conflictandhealth.com/content/7/1/10

A first use of nukes, limited (only nuclear sites - or Adelson's nuke in the desert with demands for unconditional surrender) or unlimited (population centers), by Israel against Iran would be considered by about anybody but a few moonhowling lunatics in the US (Adelson & McCain types) and perhaps by some 30% of Israelis and of course the Saudis as beyond the pale and mass murder without cause.

The Israelis understand that their nukes are useless to deal with their Iran problem, and the idiots calling for them getting the B52 and the MOP are taking the unusability of Israel's nukes at into account and want to give the Izzies a weapon they may actually use, under the erroneous rationale that this 'option' increases Israeli deterrence. With Bibi it just gives him funny ideas.

It is worthwhile to recall what exactly Israel's problem with Iran is about - not nukes, but a relativation of their own power through Iran regaining theirs.

The Israelis can't use their nuclear option, and not even their conventional options, to deal with the normalisation of Iranian relations with the rest of the world, and their corresponding increase in regional influence and power.

Giving Bibi B52s and MOPs can't fix that. But driving the Iranians out of the deal and back into the box might. That is IMO what this proposal is about.

Absent Israeli and Gulfie sanbagging it is inevitable that Iran will have a greater regional influence than the Gulfies who sit at their periphery and only have their oil wealth to show for. As far as their cultural pull is concerned they have nothing that attracts anybody. The Iranian much maligned 'theocrats' are progressive compared to the folks running Kuwait, Qatar, UAE or the Saudis.

C L

The MOP is of more use to Israel military against Hezbollah's under-mountain rocket munitions dumps.
The expensive specialised airplanes are not needed, a quick adaption of a C-130 (wheel it out of the back midflight) or suspend it from a Chinook skycrane will suffice for a bombing run over Lebanon.
If they are mad enough to try bombing Iran then a converted boeing 7?7 or hired Russian bomber will do.
A little improvisation goes a long way is the Middle East, see helicopter barrel bombs, IEDs etc...

gemini33

The clarity in this comment is the kind of clarity I so wish we had in our media.

I don't know Iran very well but it seems that their chances for reforms and improvements in civil liberties are much more likely to happen than in Gulf States because they at least have empowered, influential factions working toward that goal. And the world has now been exposed to two of their representatives (Zarif, Rouhani) because of the long Iran deal negotiations.

Re: "It is worthwhile to recall what exactly Israel's problem with Iran is about - not nukes, but a relativation of their own power through Iran regaining theirs." How much of this is about Hezbollah vs broader relative power issues? Lebanon is an enigma to me. I'm not sure that I understand what Israel's goal is with respect to Lebanon. A friendly regime in control there, occupation, or some other option.

turcopolier

CL

Hizbullah has their gear scattered about and not all that deep. The Izzies would need a lot of these to make a dent in that. Also, Hayden was quite specific that these MOPs would have an Iranian address painted on them. pl

robt willmann

Once again, Mordechai Vanunu has been arrested for engaging in speech in the free [sic] state of Israel. He gave an interview with a TV station in Israel and, apparently, the subject matter had been cleared by the censors so that he could engage in "free speech" [sarcasm alert]. However, it seems as if the Department of Homeland Security of Israel wants the outtakes and the tapes of his interview that were not broadcast. He is now supposedly under "house arrest". He is the person who publicly revealed Israel's nuclear weapons program, as opposed to Iran's nuclear power program--

http://www.timesofisrael.com/nuclear-spy-vanunu-arrested-for-tv-interview/

Actually, he is under "nationwide arrest", since the Israeli government says he is not to leave the country. This is pretty funny -- although not for Mr. Vanunu -- because the state of Israel through its government has never declared its borders. So, technically, Mr. Vanunu could just start walking or hitch a ride and go anywhere on earth and not cross the border of Israel. Nevertheless, the Israeli government, not restrained by hypocrisy, would not see it that way and would try to grab him again.

Since Donald Trump likes to talk about "deals", and how we should avoid "getting nothing" in them, then perhaps rather than just letting Jonathan Pollard go back to Israel and his $5 million, or whatever it is, the U.S. could exchange Pollard for Vanunu.

Croesus

--- Dennis Ross and Nicholas Burns on Diane Rehm last week rolled out the theme: "US must guarantee Israel's qualitative military edge"

--- listening to Congress/Senate debates (term used loosely) yesterday & today. One of the talking points GOP deployed repeatedly was how much we all love Israel (No , I love Israel more) and how much we trust Netanyahu. And how Israel needs more money and weapons now that Iran will get "a gift of $150 billion that it will likely spend on terror, Iran being the greatest state sponsor of terror ever, in the whole world, in all time." Repeated and repeated and repeated.

--- Josh Block news briefing this afternoon (Sept 11, 2015) "Obama & Bibi will meet later this years ... Increase in Israel's defenses to maintain its qualitative military edge will be discussed . . .so that our allies and friends in the region can protect themselves against an Iran emboldened and enriched [by access to more of their own money]"

Bibi, the zionists & neoconservatives have played the Congress like a fiddle and have won this round.

Iran is in great peril, and, imo, so is USA -- as Andrew Bacevich reminds us, Israel acts for Israel's interests. Unfortunately, USA acts for Israel's interests as well.
Please don't forget that Iran was Israel's best friend before it started acting in its own interest. Now, Israel is intent on destroying Iran. One of Bibi's favorite bible stories is that of Esther. That did not end well for Iranians.

In his discussions about his book on Israel's periphery doctrine, Yossi Alpher cites Purim/Esther as the sign of the "close relationship" between Jews and Iran. The way I read the story, it's one of spying, perfidy, betrayal and slaughter of those who had been supportive "friends."

DeWitt

Beyond the biblical boilerplate desire to absorb Lebanon into 'Eretz Israel,' the Izzies have long desired control of the water resources of the Litani River. They have tried all the options you describe, and each time have seen them ultimately defeated and forced to retreat. Their hatred of Hizbullah is part and parcel of their hatred towards Iran, that is, a local power that prevents full regional hegemony by the Israelis. Even worse, Hizbullah lives next door. Ultimately, imo Israel has no strategy, only tactics, thus creating a continual state of chaos is the best they can do.

Grizziz

CP,
Thank you for your cogent remarks. I am in agreement with your assessment and am helped by your understanding of the submarine's capability.
Now that this negotiation with the Iranians is over, on what will the Hasbara machine concentrate?

oofda

Regarding the Israeli submarine fleet- when Israel took possession of a German-made submarine last fall, Bibi made a point of saying it was 'nuclear-capable.' This didn't get a lot of play in the U.S. media, as usual.

confusedponderer

IMO Vanunus punishment and perscution are so harsh because he committed the ultimate unforgivable crime in a society as deeply tribal as Israel - to speak about family business to the goyim.

rkka

I don't fancy the chances of a B-52 vs an S-300.

Or a B-1, for that matter.

To deliver that behemoth bomb, they gotta get reeeal lose...

Imagine

subs had special structural mods requested for larger missiles (older post)
http://www.wrmea.org/2003-december/israel-expands-its-nuclear-threat-thanks-to-german-donation-of-dolphin-subs.html

Imagine

http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/israel-deploys-nuclear-weapons-on-german-built-submarines-a-836784.html
http://www.richardsilverstein.com/2012/06/04/germany-financed-israels-race-to-get-nukes-and-now-its-nuke-armed-submarines/
3 nuke subs based in rotation off the coast of Iran, from 2010:
http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3896024,00.html
which seems to be an enlarged version of
http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/report-israel-to-deploy-nuclear-armed-submarines-off-iran-coast-1.293005

traducteur

If the Iranians were to conclude that the Zionists seriously intended to undertake a nuclear attack against their country, they would undoubtedly take preventive measures:

http://www.stuartwilde.com/2013/02/america-iran-and-the-possible-end-of-israel/

That might be a good idea in any case.

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