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16 September 2019

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Nuff Sed

The accuracy of the strikes in the spherical pressurized gas storage containers all being in the same place relative to each target is the place to start for those who, unlike me, are capable of analyzing these things.

But regardless, the game has escalated up one more rung up the ladder. How many more will it take for the world to put its interests ahead of Israel's?

Next escalation rung: a loading dock for supertankers: either the port of Yanbu or Ra's Tanura. Followed by desalination facilities, if Western politicians still pretend to turn a blind eye and prefer to follow the dictates of their Israeli masters. Nuff Sed.

jonst

Could the Committee speculate on possible 'steps of retaliation' operating, for theoretical purposes, at the moment, on the assumption that regardless of where the 'bullets' were fired from, or from what 'gun' they were fired, Iran paid for deed. What steps are open for action? I am assuming, myself, personally, this action was taken to prevent a meeting in NYC between Trump and the President of Iran. That is my guess.

eakens

https://gifyu.com/image/hofq

turcopolier

jonst

So, you believe that the damage was self inflicted?

BABAK MAKKINEJAD

There was never going to be a meeting between Rouhani and Trump.

I expect to be dead of old age before there would be any substantive meetings between Iran and the United States.

The Twisted Genius

The Quds-1 cruise missile is a UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle). The remotely piloted aerial vehicles, which are more commonly referred to as drones are also UAVs. The difference is in the degree of autonomy in flight control. On board autonomous flight control negates the need for LOS radio or satellite communications with the cruise missile. Cruise missiles, with their autonomous control, were always characterized by their high degree of accuracy. I've started looking a little closer at the Arduino/RasberryPi and model aircraft hobbyist groups. With the availability of affordable microcontrollers and sensors, along with the massive library of open source software, I am convinced a hobbyist could put together a guidance system in his garage workshop capable of doing what the Quds-1 just did in SA. I also agree with Colonel Lang that an airframe like the Quds-1 could easily be built in war-torn Yemen. A cave would make an outstanding workshop.

JohnH

In asking the question, qui bono, you do have to include Netanyahu, who is up for reelection tomorrow. There's nothing like striking fear into the heart of the electorate on the eve of an election for firming up support for a proven incumbent. And if the US attacks Iran before tomorrow, so much the better for Netanyahu.

That said, I don't think that Netanyahu's buddies in Riyadh would be amused if this were proven. However, poking a friend in the eye never seemed to stop Israel before … think USS Liberty.

JP Billen

"neither the date the photos were taken nor their location can be verified."

Bingo! Interesting that bin Salman has put a press blackout on both Khurais and Buqaiq.

Amir

I tend to have a distant memory of a chart showing that the Yemeni missile range was way lobed that the Iranian, almost embryonal arsenal, in the 80’s. I think they are well capable of developing/upgrading better missile: www.janes.com/images/assets/330/72330/Yemeni_rebels_enhance_ballistic_missile_campaign.pdf
Even if Iran exported dual use components or even blue prints; it should be counted as part of the unfortunate world weapons market & wouldn't be illegal.

Erwin

We know Yemen has the Quds-1 and has surprised us before with their technical capability. Combine that with the video of Yahya Sari claiming full responsibility for the attack and I'm not sure there is any reason to speculate about conspiracies involving other actors.

The Houthis are not an Iranian "proxy" and I highly doubt they would accept responsibility for something they didn't do.

jonst

No, sorry for lack of clarity. I believe Iran was behind it.

jonst

Who said anything about a "substantive meeting? I said a meeting. Both sides want it. The so called moderates in Iran and Trump. In any event that horse, to the extent it has ever existed has left the barn. I will stay with my guess however, a meeting was a possibility. Aske Bolton.

Amir

Nassim Nicolaas Taleb, author of “Black Swan”:
“SAUDI FIELDS
It's not just Yemen. People forget there is an oppressed Shiite minority near the Aramco HQ (dispossessed of the oil fields, located in their ancestral area & treated like sub-sub-citizens); they get periodically beheaded”
The Al Saud gang, under the Clown Prince Muhammad Bone Saw, can not count on those Shiite inhabitants of the oil rich region, not necessarily because of the latter’s sympathy for Iran but because they were brutalized for almost a century.

JohnH

"The Israeli military is armed with the latest fast jets and precision weaponry, yet it has turned to its fleet of drones to hit targets in Iraq. Deniability has played a big factor – the ability of drones to elude radar and therefore keep targets guessing about who actually bombed them is playing well for Israeli leaders who are trying to prevent an increasingly lethal shadow war with Iran from developing into an open conflict."
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/sep/16/middle-east-drones-signal-end-to-era-of-fast-jet-air-supremacy

Israel has the means, plus the motive (Bib's reelection), and might have taken the opportunity to attribute the attack to Iran and force Trump's hand.

Thirdeye

Neat holes on the western sides of the tanks. Shape charges? Wonder what the required payload would be.

https://www.moonofalabama.org/2019/09/damage-at-saudi-oil-plant-points-to-well-targeted-swarm-attack.html#more

ISL

Dear Colonel,

Moon of Alabama links some photos and has discussion that suggests very high precision 5-10 m. That is not easily achievable with commercial GPS absent a lot of additional correction hardware. On the other hand, drones can easily do so. Further, it would be negligent for SA not to have GPS jamming around such facilities.

In addition, the specificity of the targets hit suggests good intel. I would suspect that Houthi's have linked with disaffected groups in SA (lots!) and improved their Humint. It seems highly unlikely that Iran would do something like this AND leave their fingerprints behind - at least based on recent events.

BABAK MAKKINEJAD

"The so called moderates in Iran" have no legs to stand on any longer.

And they cannot have a meeting without authorization from the Office of the Supreme Juris-Consul.

And no, Rouhani was never going to meet with Trump and be impeached and removed from office.

catherine

''I believe Iran was behind it.''

Why would Iran have done it? Just to show they can or to provoke a attack on Iran?

One to benefit from it that I see so far is Saudi's Aramco IPO which is critical to Saudi . According to WSJ they were considering delaying it because of low oil prices, they needed oil to reach $80 barrel to make it viable. The attack sent prices up but now market is talking about risk if there are 'on going attacks'. What could we deduce if there are no on going attacks and the IPO proceeds?

Only other beneficiary would be Israel if the attack actually does and likely has killed any Trump-Iran meeting.

Yemenis claimed credit for it, Iran and Iraq said they didn't do it. First word out of US mouth is Iran did it. The mouth I am least likely to believe is the US. I remember Iraq has WMDs propaganda....and those it came from.

turcopolier

ISL et al

Never underestimate the feckless laziness of the Saudis. In my experience they turn off all ATC and air defense systems that require manning or watch keeping when they find them inconvenient as on the weekend. IMO if Ansarallah did this they will do something similar soon to prove they are responsible.

ted richard

imo, the saudi's and washington are going to have to take one for the team. the team being the global oil based world economy and all the notional value FOR THE present ONLY oil derivatives and interest rate derivatives burdening the western banking system.... think the insolvent deutsche bank et al.

a war on iran will do every bit as much damage or MORE to the west as it does to iran which both russia and china can not.. will not allow to die.

israel gets a lot of press and speculation on this board as well as everywhere else for all their conspiracies and supposed omnipotent power and control but in this writers opinion THEY have been punching way above their actual weight for years and current reality has exposed how feckless and puny they really are in the scheme of things.

i suspect the whole 'jew' thing regarding israel is what animates people so much. if israel were all zoroastrians i doubt the world would credit them with all the machinations israel is viewed as responsible for.

catherine

''i suspect the whole 'jew' thing regarding israel is what animates people so much. if israel were all zoroastrians i doubt the world would credit them with all the machinations israel is viewed as responsible for.''

A Cult is a Cult regardless of it members makeup.
And Israel is looking more like a Jim Jones farm every day.

JP Billen

Babak, I value your input here. However, I hope you are wrong and that a meeting or meetings (substantive or not) will start as soon as the dealbreaker is out of office, and the sanctions are called off.

But I would never wisg you an early death. May you live a hundred years.

Peter AU 1

Only one tank appears to have minor sooting or scorching. As though they were emptied after an initial strike then targeted in a second strike, but no reports of a second strike.
In the sat pic showing targets in red boxes, top square, the target appears to be smaller spheres which do look darkened.

Amir

“Arms Control Wonk” describing the difference/similarities between the Iranian missiles and the Yemeni cruise missiles, used to give MBS a taste of his own medicine: www.armscontrolwonk.com/archive/1208062/meet-the-quds-1/

The Twisted Genius

Several correspondents here, including Adrestia and b, seem to lack faith in an autonomous navigation and terminal guidance system for these cruise missiles. They do not need a radio or cell phone communication link. This could have been even without a GPS signal. Given that the strikes appear to come from the west, the smartest route would be to fly north to the pipelines and then east to the targets. Once the missiles are close to the target either a visual terminal guidance system could take over or the targets are marked and the missiles' terminal guidance systems just home in on the marked targets. The marks could be laser illumination, small IR strobes or offset targeting devices. These offset targeting devices are emplaced with the exact azimuth and distance to the desired target programmed into the missiles' terminal guidance system. As I said before, we did this in the early 80s. In the 90s, I used the IR strobes. These were tiny lights snapped to the top of a 9V battery. You could carry a dozen in your pocket. I personally like the idea of emplacing small IR strobes on target or a set distance and azimuth from the target. The missiles could home on a spot say due east and 100 meters from the strobe. I'm sure there are other methods I haven't thought of yet. My educated guess is that this strike was well thought out with both intelligence and operational support on and near the target site. Anyone who thinks the Houthi and their Yemeni allies are incapable of planning and executing this is magnificently ignorant.

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