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#161 bm_cali

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Posted 03 July 2010 - 05:14 PM

I have been reading all the reports on the buildup of US forces and Israels forces in the Middle East. Initially, I was
relieved to know that we were working with Israel on the Iran problem. But, considering who is in charge of our
military at the moment, I get a bit suspicious. Everyone knows how our president has been treating Israel, and the
friction that exists between our countries at the moment..... so, is it me?...does something about a military cooperation
between our two countries at this moment in time seem a little odd? I had this very frightening thought.....would it
be possible for our president to turn and use our forces to actually join an attack against Israel?? It is prophesied that
ALL nations of the earth would be gathered against her.


No it's not odd.

The issues between the Obama administration (and for that matter, the Western Europeans) and Israel are less worse than the threat of Iran.

Heck, the Suez was lined by a thicket of Egyptian forces when the flotilla went through, making sure it got through safely. In addition to US and Israeli ships, the flotilla includes at least one German ship. The civilized countries of the West and the Near East are all in the same boat - we're all targets of the barbarian Oriental fiends.

This is realpolitik. And we'll see a lot more of it.

#162 Dan07112

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 10:57 PM

Iran says it has 100 vessels for each US warship- GREAT !!! 100 to one kill ratio. Bring it on

http://apnews.excite.../D9H5GG481.html

Jul 24, 11:34 AM (ET)

By ALI AKBAR DAREINI

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) - The former naval chief for Iran's Revolutionary Guard said the country has set aside 100 military vessels to confront each warship from the U.S. or any other foreign power that might pose a threat, an Iranian newspaper reported Saturday.

Such a military confrontation in the vital oil lanes of the Persian Gulf would be of major global concern. The warning builds on earlier threats by Iran to seal off the Gulf's strategic Strait of Hormuz - through which 40 percent of the world's oil passes - in response to any military attack.

#163 JNKish

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Posted 04 August 2010 - 05:30 AM

Ahmadinejad survives assassination attempt
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 4, 2010, 11:57 AM (GMT+02:00)
http://www.debka.com/article/8949/

DEBKAfile's Iranian sources report a large bomb exploded against the Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's heavily secured armored convoy as it drove through the northern Iranian city of Hamadan Wednesday, Aug. 4. He was reported unhurt. Some of his bodyguards and bystanders were killed or injured.
Iranian media reported the explosion hit a minivan carrying correspondents and one attacker was arrested. Later, the president's office said the bang was caused by a "firecracker."
After the attack, Ahmadinejad switched vehicles and was soon standing on a platform in the town center and making a speech televised live.
Hamadan's population is purely Iranian Shiite with none of the ethnic or religious minorities persecuted by the regime. It is located on the site of the Biblical Shushan, several hundreds kilometers west of Tehran.

#164 Dan07112

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Posted 18 August 2010 - 06:48 PM

Noted military historian Gwynne Dyer claims there's no way for the U.S. to win a non nuclear with Iran. The last paragraph reads "The end would be an embarrassing retreat by the United States, and the definitive establishment of Iran as the dominant power of the Gulf region. That was the outcome of every war game the Pentagon played, and Mike Mullen knows it. So there is a plan for an attack on Iran, but he would probably rather resign than put it into action. It is all bluff. It always was" http://www.straight....uclear-war-iran

#165 SJL

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Posted 22 August 2010 - 03:53 PM

No it's not odd.

The issues between the Obama administration (and for that matter, the Western Europeans) and Israel are less worse than the threat of Iran.

Heck, the Suez was lined by a thicket of Egyptian forces when the flotilla went through, making sure it got through safely. In addition to US and Israeli ships, the flotilla includes at least one German ship. The civilized countries of the West and the Near East are all in the same boat - we're all targets of the barbarian Oriental fiends.

This is realpolitik. And we'll see a lot more of it.

IRan is indeed dangerous in light that it's behavior is to further the goals of the Soviets. The materialist communists have a weakness that gypsies without an address have, and it is that communists have an address and want to make an "addresable" commune of slaves.

Perestroika deception is still getting a friction because of the Soviet nuke arsenal, and the only reason the Soviets are spreading nukes around is in order to avoid gaining attention about that. The proliferation by Russia is going to continue, and the nuke attacks will occure by proxies. If we think in terms of Soviet proliferation and strategies and ways of enforcing without looking like they have a hand in it, Iran then becomes key in this.

The suicide bomber mentality then takes shape when he becomes naked and addressable for its issues. The problem with Obama is that he feels for this kind of mentality, in a "human" sense of it. He is controled and his beliefs are not unlike that of the common weird beliefs that average people embrace as a result of Soviet bedroom shenanigans.

#166 Jeffboyrd

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Posted 31 August 2010 - 07:45 PM

After watching two speeches; one at Ft. Bliss and one tonight. I can't help but feel that they were both disingenuous and were calculated to score political points. This is a tinderbox that is gonna blow up once Iran rallies the Middle East behind it's Nuclear program. I know that I am preaching to the choir here but we need a coalition of a handful of countries to take them out. I am truly disgusted at Iran crying in the UN that their program is peaceful. Really, those spineless diplomats blowing in the ear of their respective leaders as they sun themselves on the Baltic and Mediterranean beaches infuriates me.
If "power flows from the barrel of a gun." Then deterrence drops from the belly of a plane.

#167 NBT Truth

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Posted 07 December 2010 - 05:51 AM

The recent Wikileaks revelations concerning the relationship between North Korea, China and Iran yields concrete evidence that China is a key player when it comes to providing Iran with the ability to mount a nuclear attack against it's foes. " It also reveals that the Chinese have consistently ignored our requests to deal with illegal weapons transfers from North Korea to Iran through their territory.

http://www.guardian....ocuments/128567

I'm thinking that the North Korean "missile parts" the Chinese are allowing to be shipped through their country (from Russian designed missiles by the way) may also include the components for nuclear warheads. Or perhaps the warheads for these missiles have already made their way to Iran back in 2002 when 200 Russian nuclear warheads 'went missing' in the Ukraine. http://english.pravd...9-2002/17853-0/

#168 NBT Truth

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Posted 09 December 2010 - 11:29 PM

This needs to be nipped in the bud. We should tell Chavez that giving the Iranians a nuclear missile platform from which to launch an attack on the "great Satan" (whom whom they have vowed to destroy) constitutes and act of aggression and a very serious threat to our national security, and that we will strike militarily to prevent it....

Iran Placing Medium-Range Missiles in Venezuela; Can Reach the U.S.
by Anna Mahjar-Barducci
December 8, 2010 at 5:00 am

http://www.hudson-ny...es-in-venezuela


And here's more testimony concerning North Korean involvement with the Iranian nuclear program....

Top Level Iranian Defector: I Regularly Saw ‘North Korean Technicians’ in Tehran

Posted by Jim Hoft on Thursday, December 9, 2010, 9:32 AM

http://gatewaypundit...ians-in-tehran/

#169 NBT Truth

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Posted 14 December 2010 - 06:09 PM

So what ever happened to the, "We're only developing nuclear power for peaceful uses" argument the Iranians were insisting upon? Now they seem to be saying, "Please attack us now before we, in the very near future develop nuclear weapons."

http://www.debka.com/article/20453/

So just why is it that North Korea and Iran seem to be 'begging us' to attack them as of late? As I've suggested previously, it's because that's what their Russian and Chinese handlers want.

The weakness of the Bush doctrine of pre-emptive military action is that once it's been announced and put into practice our enemies can anticipate our next moves and prepare 'a little surprise' for us. The surprise is, in my opinion, nukes emanating from both Iran and North Korea if we launch a military strike against either of them....

#170 Guest_That One Guy_*

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Posted 06 September 2011 - 04:08 PM

THIS... Is a bit of a serious article. What Putin or Annan have said about Iran's leader is besides the point, although delusional and asinine. What we should pay attention to and take caution of is when the ayatollah starts saying stuff as was mentioned in this piece. It's as if they believe their glorious 'end days' have come. When you put this together with all the tid-bits of news regarding America's enemies arming as it is disarming, it tends to make your hair raise a bit. I'll let the article itself do the talking:

Putin: I Saw Jesus in Iran’s Leader

Iran’s supreme leader is being elevated to sainthood and leader of the worldwide Islamic movement by the Iranian media.

In commentaries that reflect the dictates of the Iranian regime, the media for the first time are publishing statements by world officials and others that deify Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

The most significant of such statements comes from Vladimir Putin, the former president and current prime minister of Russia. The media outlet Mahramaneh reports that in October 2007, when Putin traveled to Iran, he specifically requested a meeting with Khamenei and came away dazzled.

During that meeting, according to the report, Khamenei talked about the history of Russia and what lies ahead, which surprised Putin. Afterward, Iranian diplomats said that Putin’s behavior had changed drastically. When Putin returned to Moscow, a reporter asked what he thought of the Iranian supreme leader. Putin is quoted as saying: “I don’t know much about the Messiah, the Christ, just what I have heard or read in the Bible, but I saw Christ, the Messiah, in the leader of Iran.”

Kofi Annan, who served as the seventh secretary general of the United Nations, is also quoted as saying: “I have met … many world leaders whom I came to respect such as Jacques Chirac, the French president, Mikhail Gorbachev, the head of state of the U.S.S.R., and Helmut Kohl, chancellor of Germany, but none of these men touched me the way Ayatollah Khamenei did. In my meeting with him, I forgot about everything else as I was overwhelmed by his spirituality.”

Recently, the Iranian state-controlled TV for the first time publicly announced that Khamenei is really the mythical figure Seyed Khorasani, who, a centuries-old hadith (saying) states, will create the circumstances for the end of the world and the reappearance of the last Islamic messiah, the Shiites’ 12th Imam Mahdi, who will conquer the world under the banner of Islam.

Several high-ranking clerics in Iran have publicly announced that Khamenei is the deputy of the Shiite’s 12th Imam on Earth and that refusal to obey his orders would be to refuse Allah. Some have also stated that Khamenei once a year travels to the sky and meets with the 12th Imam and confers on needed actions. During one such meeting, according to the clerics, he was told to continue on with the Iranian nuclear program despite widespread world objection.

The media in Iran have credited the supreme leader with predicting the economic turmoil in Europe and the global awakening of Islam in the “Arab Spring.” They have also been adamant about an important prediction of the leader: the destruction of Israel, which they believe is imminent.

Seyed Hassan Nasrallah, secretary-general of the terrorist group Hezbollah, is quoted as saying, “Certain qualities of Iran’s supreme leader and aspects of his wisdom, prudence and spirituality are secret and sealed and unfortunately cannot be talked about in public.” He adds: “Though I cannot reveal much of what I know about Ayatollah Khamenei, I can tell with utmost certainty that the leader truly believes the destruction of Israel is … imminent.”

One media outlet reports that what is about to take place is much more than the destruction of Israel. It claims humanity will witness the greatest event of its history and that Muslims should prepare themselves because the final glorification of Islam is at hand.

Khamenei, in a speech last week on the occasion of Eid ul-Fitr, the Muslim holiday that marks the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, hinted that the end is near: “An important period in the history of the world is in formation.”

“Who would have thought that the agents of America and the Zionists in the region would fall one after another,” he declared.

The Iranian leader has also predicted the demise of America and has called the current sanctions in place by the Obama administration a failure in stopping Iran’s nuclear ambitions. Iran has announced that there will be no negotiations on its nuclear drive. The United Nations nuclear agency in its most recent report indicated that there is credible evidence that Iran is working on nuclear weapons and that it already has enough enriched uranium for six nuclear warheads.

Reza Kahlili is a pseudonym for an ex-CIA spy who is a senior fellow with EMPact America. A Time to Betray, his book about his double life as a CIA agent in Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, was published by Simon & Schuster on April 6.



#171 Guest_That One Guy_*

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 04:48 AM

Ladies and gents, take it for what it's worth... But what was said in this video seems to be somewhat of what is happening now. That is of course just my opinion while trying to connect the dots in the middle east region.

Wesley Clark ( US 4 Star General ) US will attack 7 countries in 5 years.

As I remember watching that months ago, the idea kind of struck me as I saw the most recent headlines on Drudge. Is Iran soon to be next? All we have left to be concerned about in the region as threats are Iran and Syria and this seems like a huge first step in psychological preps for the American public. I'm not saying we're going to war over this matter, but it could be considered a serious first step.

Alleged Iran plot "dangerous escalation": Clinton

Wed, Oct 12 2011

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Wednesday that Iran's alleged ties to a plot to kill the Saudi ambassador in Washington marked a "dangerous escalation" of Tehran's sponsorship of terrorism.

"This plot, very fortunately disrupted by the excellent work of our law enforcement and intelligence professionals, was a flagrant violation of international and U.S. law and a dangerous escalation of the Iranian government's longstanding use of political violence and sponsorship of terrorism," Clinton told a think tank audience in Washington.

Clinton said Iran's alleged part in the conspiracy, which was revealed by U.S. law enforcement officials on Tuesday, showed Tehran was willing to flout established international conventions on protecting diplomats that it itself had signed.

"This kind of reckless act undermines international norms and the international system. Iran must be held accountable for its actions," Clinton said, noting that the United States had already imposed targeted sanctions on "individuals within the Iranian government who are associated with this plot and Iran's support for terrorism."

"We will work closely with our international partners to increase Iran's isolation and the pressure on its government and we call upon other nations to join us in condemning this threat to international peace and security," she said.

Saudi Arabia said on Wednesday Iran would "pay the price" for the alleged plot, while Tehran called the accusation a fabrication designed to sow discord in the region already on edge over Iran's nuclear ambitions.


Saudis say Iran must 'pay the price' for alleged plot as US resists retaliation


Tehran denies it was behind plot to kill Saudi ambassador and says US is using it to divert attention from problems at home

Saudi Arabia has issued a menacing ­warning to Iran that it will have to pay a price for the alleged plot to hire a Mexican drug cartel to assassinate its ambassador in Washington.

The threat from the Saudis came as the Obama administration described the alleged plot as a "dangerous escalation" in the region.

White House spokesman Jay Carney said "clearly the plotting happened at senior levels of the Quds force [Iranian special forces]" but the administration resisted calls from within the US, mainly from the conservative right, to retaliate against Iran with military action.

On Wednesday night Carney said Barack Obama spoke to King Abdullah, the Saudi king, about the alleged plot and both agreed it was "a flagrant violation of international law".

Iran denied it was behind the alleged plot, with officials accusing Washington of fabricating the story to divide Sunni Muslims, the dominant group in Saudi, and Shia Muslims, the dominant group in Iran.

They claimed Barack Obama was using the story to divert attention from the Occupy Wall Street protests.

The US justice department said on Tuesday two men had been charged with a plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador in Washington, Adel al-Jubeir, with a bomb explosion at one of his favourite restaurants.

One of the men, Manssor Arbabsiar, an American-Iranian, is alleged to have sought the help of a Mexican drug cartel, Zetas, to provide explosives and carry out the attack. The other man is, according to the US, in Iran.

Prince Turki al-Faisal, Saudi Arabia's former ambassador to Washington and former head of the Saudi intelligence service, told a London conference: "The burden of proof and the amount of evidence in the case is overwhelming and clearly shows official Iranian responsibility for this.

"This is unacceptable. Somebody in Iran will have to pay the price."

Relations between Saudi Arabia and Iran have long been strained, exacerbated this year by Saudi sending forces into neighbouring Bahrain to help put down protesters, many of them Shia Muslims.

In spite of increased tension between Saudi and Iran as a result of the episode, the alleged plot is being met with scepticism within the diplomatic community, as well as from foreign affairs analysts specialising in Iran. Many said the plot was amateurish and questioned what Iran would gain from such an outrage.

A former western diplomat with an intimate knowledge of Iranian affairs said: "I don't believe Iran's regime was behind the plot. If we assume it was Iran's plot, then it would seem like a group of professional gangsters hiring a careless agent for their most important project. It's impossible."

Fresh details emerged yesterday about the man at the centre of the affair. Arbabsiar, 56, appeared in court in New York on Tuesday. He is allegedly linked to the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, the paramilitary group closely entwined with the Iranian leadership. He does not fit the usual profile of an Iranian agent, who tend to be professional. Arbabsiar is a car salesman in Corpus Christi, Texas.

Susan Rice, US ambassador to the UN, said she and a team of experts were briefing individual members of the security council on the plot. One of the main pieces of evidence is $100,000 (£63,000) transferred to the US, allegedly from Iran, as a downpayment for the assassination attempt.

The vice-president, Joe Biden, in an ABC television interview, said Iran would be held accountable and all options, including military, remained on the table. But the administration is focused on a diplomatic effort to persuade its allies to impose tougher economic sanctions on Iran.

The US secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, described the alleged plot as a "reckless act". The state department issued a three-month worldwide travel alert for American citizens.

Iran's foreign ministry spokesman, Ramin Mehmanparast, said the US accusations were baseless. "Such worn-out approaches are … part of the special scenarios staged and pursued by the enemies of Islam and the region to sow discord among Muslims," the semi-official Fars news agency quoted him as saying.

Fars also quoted Alaoddin Boroujerdi, the head of the parliamentary committee on national security and foreign policy, saying: "Today the United States is witnessing a popular uprising called Wall Street protests, which have targeted the hostile policies of that country's statesmen. Thus, Americans are seeking to derail the public opinion from the Wall Street uprising."



#172 SJL

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 07:30 AM

Another ambiguous Hitler alibi and proxy for Russia and China. Timing timing... Any of these activities can yield a surprize attack and is progressive at the same time. Fruits are ripening.

Iran obviously feels it is targeted now in surprizing ways. Ah, so be it. I mean, it's like in Saddam's time, where recruiters of low IQ were responsible for the acceptance of bright students to accademia. Some went through, others not, as needed or as their faces were disliked. So, there we are, why all of a sudden our union low IQ liberals decide to love the army and sabers to rattle? Whatever. Something is up, from the economic crisis, CHina and RUssia and the FAst and Furious scandals, and we are distracted to old news or overdue stuff.

When in plain view and with an alibi, it is easy to lie and keep doing deceptive things without being questioned or feeling nervous. The patriot should remove all alibis that the enemy builds for itself, with a nationalist Russia camping back to communism for an alibi. So that new targets can be sought since the law enforcement must seek a culprit but cannot find one. Hm... and everybody is in this?

Why do liberals insist on removing all alibis for the US? Why do the Perries and weak Romneys knee jerk, attack patriots instead of the obvious perversions of the democrates? What is this move to leftist alibi? These are not smart moves. These people are obviously seeking the wrong alibi and building guilt upon guilt upon themselves, no matter how their "friends"/friendship pills suddenly persuade them away from their initial convictions - convictions that were initialy the same but now deviating by the wrong manipulative demoralizing leadership of a person - who is not a friend but an emotional manipulator and steamless parasite playing the game of "acting strong with the strong friend when weak". Smiles and smiles... interesting...

#173 Guest_That One Guy_*

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 12:37 PM

I guess I have a keen sense of what's going on with the political speak and overall tone of the combined headlines from time to time... This just showed up minutes ago on Drudge:

A top Senate Democrat: Iran plot may be act of war


Updated 12:54 a.m., Thursday, October 13, 2011

WASHINGTON (AP) — The alleged Iranian plot to assassinate the Saudi Arabian ambassador to the United States may be an act of war against the U.S., the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee said Wednesday.

"It may be," Sen. Carl Levin, a Democrat, told reporters when asked whether he considers the alleged scheme to be an act of war. "But I'd want to see what the implications of that characterization are before I use it."

At the least, Levin said, the alleged plan was "a damn serious threat to the United States." He said that either way, there should be a serious response by the U.S., but he declined to say what that response might be.

"It's in the United States, an alleged effort to assassinate somebody on our territory who, by the way, is an ambassador to the United States. So whether or not that constitutes an act of war against the United States" is a valid question, he said.

Rep. Michael McCaul, a Republican who heads a Homeland Security subcommittee, said the alleged plan would be an act of war if it was sponsored by the Iranian government.

Federal prosecutors have accused Iran of planning to pay a Mexican drug cartel figure to kill the Saudi ambassador with a bomb in Washington. President Barack Obama says the purported scheme is "a flagrant violation of U.S. and international law."

Iran has denied the accusations.



#174 kulthur

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Posted 16 October 2011 - 08:10 AM

I love that Wesley Clark reminiscence @3:08 - 4:48. That's exactly what I've been saying on other blogs for over a year now: we are taking down the Soviet client and terror infrastructure in the Middle East. Anyone who knows the history, who has eyes, and who presumes a modicum of competency in our general staff and lead intelligence circles, can see it. And it is the correct policy. What I dream about is that our government's front office, if you will, could figure out a way or could muster the cajones to finally describe what exactly is going on, which the stupefied American electorate cannot infer for itself, but which defines all the geopolitical events that - in the absence of such general wisdom - can turned against us on the home front, politically, even if they succeed materially (more or less) in the execution. How depressing that the Sovs and our own cowardice has imposed this stupid secrecy on something that depends largely on secrecy to attack us. There must be a damn good reason for this policy of silence, but as yet I have no idea of what it could be, in the ultimate analysis.

#175 NBT Truth

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Posted 10 November 2011 - 08:55 AM

I still believe that the Russians, and their Iranian client state, have prepared some big surprises for the Western world once we attack Iran. ...But to not do so is to invite even worse consequences. Anyway, it looks like this "life-as-we-know-it changing war" is about to commence in the near future....

http://www.israelnat...44#.TrlxZoR0r8B

Iran Threatens 'Street War' in Tel Aviv


By Gavriel Queenann
First Publish: 11/8/2011, 7:26 PM

Posted Image
Seyed Hossein Naqavi

The head of the Iranian Parliament's National Security and Foreign Policy Commission said on Tuesday that Iran would start a 'street war' in Tel Aviv if its nuclear program was attacked. "Israel is not big enough to launch a military strike on Iran, but if it takes such a foolish decision, the Iranian military will fight with the Zionist soldiers in Tel Aviv streets... and will force them out of the Palestinian soil," Seyed Hossein Naqavi said. Naqavi also warned, should Tehran's nuclear program be attacked, the battlefield won't be in Iran, but "the entirety of Europe and the US...."


Note: Click on the link for the rest of the article.

#176 Apollo5600

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Posted 11 November 2011 - 06:04 PM

Radiation detected in Europe, not from Fukushima Reactor.

http://news.yahoo.co...-134506410.html

#177 IRISH

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Posted 15 November 2011 - 02:49 AM

IAEA Report here: http://graphics8.nyt...Report-Iran.pdf

#178 IRISH

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Posted 15 November 2011 - 12:15 PM

http://english.yonha...2002600315.HTML

SEOUL, Nov. 13 (Yonhap) -- Hundreds of North Korean nuclear and missile experts have been collaborating with their Iranian counterparts in more than 10 locations across the Islamic state, a diplomatic source said Sunday.

The revelation lends credence to long-held suspicions that North Korea was helping Iran with a secret nuclear and missile program.



#179 Guest_That One Guy_*

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Posted 28 November 2011 - 04:32 PM

Things are getting a bit more scary in the middle east region:


Iran Signals Its Readiness for a Final Confrontation

Lt.-Col. (ret.) Michael Segall

  • Since the publication of the November 2011 IAEA report, which explicitly spotlights Iran's plans to build nuclear weapons, senior figures of the Iranian regime and the state-run media have begun to use threatening, defiant, and sometimes contemptuous language toward Israel and the United States.
  • From Iran's standpoint, an ongoing, head-on confrontation with the U.S. and Israel would serve its purposes in the region and build its image as a key actor that stands firm against the West and provides an alternative agenda to reshape the Middle East. Hence, compromise has almost ceased to be an option for Iran.
  • The current round of the conflict between Iran and the United States and Israel over Iran's (military) nuclear program should be seen in a much wider context, one that centers on shaping a new landscape in the Middle East. Iran views itself as "the next big thing" in the region and behaves accordingly-at the moment with no significant challenge or response from the United States and the West.
  • If in the past Iran held clandestine contacts with Islamic movements, mainly from North African Arab states, on Sudanese soil (such as Ennadha, which has now won the Tunisian elections), it can now openly boost its influence in countries where the "U.S.-supported dictators" have fallen.
  • Iran no longer fears openly acknowledging that it has built capabilities for reacting to an attack-including the Palestinian organizations in Gaza and Hizbullah in Lebanon-and depicts them as part of its defensive strategy and response in case of a confrontation with Israel and the United States.
  • At home, the growing strength of the Revolutionary Guards enables them to increasingly influence foreign policy and mainly to export the revolution in ways not seen in the past. The top commanders of its elite Quds Force are emerging from the shadows and will have a key role in the future struggle against the U.S. and its remaining allies in the region, particularly Israel. Iran, as its president said, is preparing for the "final confrontation."


The animated talk in Israel and the West about a possible attack on Iran's nuclear facilities is naturally arousing great interest in Iran. Initially, the Iranian leadership chose not to react and made only minor statements about this discourse. But since the publication of the November 2011 report of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA),1 which spotlights the military dimension of Iran's nuclear program and its plans to build nuclear weapons, senior figures of the regime and the state-run media have begun to use threatening, defiant, and sometimes contemptuous language toward Israel, the United States, and IAEA Chairman Yukiya Amano, who was described by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as "America's lackey" and as having "no authority of his own."2 Iran's ambassador to the IAEA Ali Asghar Soltanieh declared: "This report is unbalanced, unprofessional, and prepared with political motivation and under political pressure mostly by the United States...this is in fact a prime historical mistake."3 Concurrently, Iranian spokesmen and commentators emphasize Iran's power, its capability to react "decisively" (including along Israel's borders), and its ability to withstand both sanctions and a military offensive.


"The Final Confrontation"

Of all the Iranian statements, one made by Ahmadinejad stands out. During a meeting with supporters, he said, "the West is mobilizing all its forces to finish the job because it is clear as day that NATO is yearning to act against Iran." He added in an apocalyptic-messianic spirit that the conditions taking shape in the region are not normal (a hint at the Imam Mahdi),4 and that "we are nearing the point of final confrontation." Such a confrontation, he explained, will not necessarily be military and could take a political or other form. Ahmadinejad stressed that Iran is now almost at the apex of its power, but could, if it does not demonstrate resolve, absorb a blow from which it will not recover for at least five hundred years. He also warned that an attack on Syria by NATO would cause a regional explosion.5

Iran is not only observing the crisis brought on by the IAEA report but also the changing Middle East and its own role in it. On November 4, Iran honored the anniversary of the 1979 takeover of the U.S. embassy in Tehran (right in the midst of the debate on the possibility of a Western attack). Indeed, Iran views the upheaval in the Middle East and the growing Islamic trends (with Tunisia as an example) as further proof of the (divine) justice of its path. These are added to a series of "glorious" achievements, as Iran sees it, over the course of more than a decade-the Israeli withdrawal from Lebanon, the Second Intifada, the wars in Afghanistan (the harsh blow to the Taliban) and Iraq (the fall of Saddam), the Second Lebanon War, and Israel's 2009 Gaza operation.


Hubris?

From Iran's standpoint, a head-on confrontation with the United States and Israel would serve its purposes in the region and build its image as an actor that stands firm against the Western powers and does not submit to pressure. If there still was any chance of Tehran agreeing to concessions in its sporadic talks with the West about its nuclear program, the Middle Eastern turmoil has now made a compromise all but impossible. Indeed, given the harsh IAEA report, more critical than in the past and providing more detail on the military aspects of the nuclear program, compromise has almost ceased to be an option for Iran, which is deliberately ramping up its defiance in light of Middle Eastern and world developments.

Tehran is also encouraged by the positions of Russia and China, which are granting it (along with its client Syria) immunity against any stringent Security Council sanctions. Specifically, Iran is encouraged about its ability to withstand sanctions by Russia's statements since the IAEA report's publication6 (which have made much mention of Iran's reaction to the report). So Iran has been exuding confidence-sometimes verging on hubris-and is prepared to take risks, even to the point of trying to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the United States and thereby moving the Middle Eastern playing field to Washington itself.

An interview that Ahmadinejad gave in early November to the Egyptian paper Al-Akhbar accurately reflects Iran's interpretation of recent Middle Eastern developments and the threats it faces. The United States, Ahmadinejad asserts, is indeed looking to attack Iran, as was President Bush, but what a huge difference there is between Bush's fate and the status Iran enjoys today.... Iran is becoming a more and more advanced country and therefore can counterbalance and contend with the global powers....The Zionist entity and the West, and especially the United States, fear Iran's power and (growing) role and so are trying to enlist the world for a battle to contain and reduce its power and role....They must know that Iran will not allow such a development.

The Iranian president claims further that the United States aims to safeguard the "Zionist entity," but will fail in that endeavor because this entity has no place in the Middle East and is destined for extinction. If, Ahmadinejad suggests, the peoples of the region were to hold a referendum on the Zionist entity's existence among them, it is clear what the results would be. "This entity can be compared to a kidney transplanted into a body that has rejected it...it has no place in the region and the countries will soon get rid of it and expel it from the region...it will collapse and its end will be near."7

Iran continues to project military, political, and economic power in the region, and sees the Israeli and American focus on possibly attacking it as aimed at undermining its rising status in the changing Middle East-and also as manifesting the West's loss of its traditional mainstays of power in the region. Iranian propaganda claims that the talk about attacking it is not serious "because no such option really exists," and that the real aim of such talk is only to encourage tougher sanctions-with poor chances of success given Russia and China's position.


Political and Military Bluff

In an editorial that analyzes the discourse surrounding an attack on Iran (quoting Ha'aretz, The Guardian, and President Shimon Peres), Iran's conservative Mehr news agency assessed that "the Israelis are trying to set the stage for the imposition of stricter sanctions on Iran." Mehr observed: "Over the past few days, Western media outlets have created brouhaha about the possibility that the Zionist regime may make a unilateral military strike against Iran." The article noted, "Israel recently test-fired a ballistic missile, purportedly capable of reaching Iran," and that "the Israeli military, which is usually secretive about its activities, allowed media people to report on the event."

The editorial concludes by saying, "it is clear that a military attack on Iran cannot be a viable option for Israel" and offers several reasons for this:

(1) They know that a strike could not stop Iran's nuclear program.
(2) Even Israeli and U.S. strategists, who believe that the strike could delay Iran's nuclear program, say that the strike would only set back Iran's program for two years, and thus it would not be worth the trouble to start a war with Iran.
(3) Any attack against Iran would strengthen Iran's national cohesion.
(4) Iran has shown that it is totally prepared to counter any military threat and is capable of involving regional and extra-regional countries in any possible war.
(5) U.S. and Israeli intelligence and military officials do not believe that Iran's nuclear program is their number one threat. They know that the Arab Spring is a much greater threat to their interests.

So, what is the reason behind the new political game directed at Iran?

It seems that the Israelis are trying to set the stage for the imposition of stricter sanctions on Iran, but the biggest obstacle is the fact that Russia, China, and some members of the European Union are strongly opposed to new sanctions.

All this rhetoric about war is being used to compel these countries to stop opposing the moves to impose new United Nations Security Council sanctions on Iran, which they prefer to the outbreak of a dangerous war, which could have serious repercussions for the world.8

In a similar spirit, Esmaeil Kowsari, deputy chairman of the National Security and Foreign Policy Committee of the Majlis, asserts that

recent threats made by officials of the U.S. and the Zionist regime are a political and military bluff. The Zionist regime and the U.S. are in no position to attack Iran....The U.S. and the Zionist regime are gripped by an intense fear and great concern in dealing with developments in the region and the world. And after losing their strongholds and illegitimate interests in regional countries, they are trying to extricate themselves from this situation.9


Active Diplomacy

Amid the Israeli media campaign about a possible attack on Iran's nuclear facilities, commentators in Iran's leading conservative outlets have called on the country's leaders to adopt an active diplomacy to counter it. Behind this "murky" campaign, they claim, stands Israel's fear that Middle Eastern developments have removed the nuclear issue from the Western agenda and that the tide is not in Israel's favor. Thus, these commentators contend, Israel is using a tactic of trying to scare the world and draw attention to the nuclear issue, hoping thereby to increase the pressure on Russia and China to support further Security Council sanctions. This, in these pundits' view, is primarily psychological warfare by Israel and the West and does not stem from a real intention to attack Iran.

They argue, then, that Iran needs to take two clear stances toward the world. First, it should emphasize that no military attack on its nuclear facilities will benefit the attackers because these sites are dispersed and underground. Second, it should declare that if there is an attack, even if it fails to damage these facilities, it will be considered an act of aggression and a violation of international conventions, and therefore Iran will quit the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and no longer be obligated to the IAEA or allow the presence of nuclear inspectors. According to the commentators, such a threat would have a great impact. And to further neutralize the psychological warfare, Iran should espouse an active diplomacy and convey its positions to the other states such as Russia and China.10 Other commentators have suggested putting the Russian step-by-step initiative on the agenda.11


A Crushing Response

Senior Iranian military officials, clerics, and commentators have adopted threatening language, warning that Iran will react with great severity to any attack on it.
  • Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei: IRGC and Basij (volunteer) forces will respond to any aggression with a strong slap and an iron fist that "the enemies, the U.S., its allies, and the Zionist regime, in particular, should take into consideration, that the Iranian nation is not to attack any country or nation but rather is to strongly react to any aggression or threat so that the aggressors and attackers would collapse from inside....The Iranian nation will not remain only an observer of the threats of the absurd materialistic powers....Only a nation with a stable power of self-defense can survive in a world where, unfortunately, relations between nations and countries are based on the power of weapons."12
  • Defense Minister Ahmad Vahidi said any sort of hostile act against Iran's territorial integrity would be met by a rapid, firm, and crushing response by its armed forces.13
  • Yadallah Javani, politburo chief of the IRGC (Revolutionary Guards), said that "if the Zionist regime commits such a mistake [as attacking Iran], it would mean that it has entered the final days of its existence since the Islamic Republic of Iran is a powerful and strong country which can defend its territorial integrity and interests across the globe, especially in the Middle-East.... The Islamic Republic of Iranhas some means and possibilities in areas very close to the Zionist regime and can easily give a response to Israel to make its leaders repent their action" (emphasis added).
  • Javani also pointed to the Israeli military's successive failures and defeats in the thirty-three-day war in Lebanon in summer 2006 and the twenty-two-day offensive in Gaza in winter 2008-2009, and underlined that Israel is not strong enough to threaten Iran.14
  • Deputy Chief of Staff for Cultural Affairs and Defense Publicity Brig.-Gen. Massoud Jazayeri said that Iran will not be handcuffed if comes under enemy aggression. Israel's Dimona nuclear plant and all other parts of Israel are within the reach of Iranian missiles. "The easiest target for Iranian military capabilities is the (Dimona nuclear) reactor....Our capabilities and our defensive tactics will definitely make the enemies, including the U.S. and the Zionists, repent....Tel Aviv knows well that any small step against Iran will be linked with the existence of this fake entity...such a military step from the Zionist entity against Iran will lead to the total disappearance of this entity from existence...if smoke columns rise from our nuclear facilities, then this smoke could rise from other installations and places....Our military information on our enemies is good and sufficient."15
  • Ayatollah Seyed Ahmad Khatami, a member of the Experts Assembly, said, "Today Iran is mighty, strong and powerful and will retaliate against any plot so powerfully that it would become a lesson for others."16 Another member of the same assembly, Hossein Ebrahimi,warned that "before [being able to take] any action against Iran, the Israelis will feel our wrath in Tel Aviv." Ebrahimi "assessed Israel's military capabilities during the Second Lebanon War, ‘and found it weak.'" He stated: "The Israelis entered the war with the capabilities they had but earned nothing but humiliation....I do not think that Israelis along with the Americans and Britons will commit such a folly....If the threat is carried out, they will see the political might of the (Islamic) establishment, the solidarity of the Iranian nation, and the strength of the country."17 Still another Experts Assembly member, Mahmud Alavi, said, "Washington and Tel Aviv are aware of the fact that putting their anti-Iran threats into practice would cost them dearly, and thus they would not become involved in such folly." He added "that the United States and Israel know that such empty threats cannot intimidate Iran and also know that they would receive a crushing response if they ever attacked the Islamic Republic."18
Particularly notable are the tough statements of Sadollah Zarei of Kayhan newspaper, which reflects the outlook of the leader of Iran. Zarei claims it is very unlikely that Israel has any plan to attack Iran or even to take part in a larger attack; the regional conditions and Israel's capabilities do not allow it. "Iran is too great for the Zionist regime to threaten it." Four regular Iranian missiles, Zarei asserts, will cause a million Zionists to become refugees, while even if Israel fires a hundred missiles at Iran not even a few houses will be demolished. He stresses that Iran's power and ballistic-missile capability can cause a total Israeli defeat and adds: "Iranian missile fire on Israel will not involve any expenditures from the national budget, because Iran sells missiles in thirty-five countries of the world and builds its operational missiles from the profits of these sales. Hence, with very little money it will be possible to destroy Tel Aviv and the occupied lands." 19


"The Next Big Thing"

To sum up, the current round of the conflict between Iran and the United States and Israel over Iran's nuclear program should be seen as another battle in a much wider campaign, one that centers on shaping a new landscape in a Middle East that is still in upheaval. Iran views itself as "the next big thing" in the region and behaves accordingly-at the moment with no significant response from the United States and the West. The November 2011 IAEA report will probably temporarily increase the pressure on Tehran and lead to limited measures against it. It appears that ultimately, however, the unhurried approach of the international system, though it certainly wants to leverage the IAEA report for "crippling" sanctions (mainly on Iran's banking and energy sectors) and for another round of talks with Iran (the Russian proposal?), will again be stymied by Russia and China, which will act to soften any measures.

Given its assessment of the international and regional balance of power, Iran's audacity is growing even in areas distant from the Middle East (as revealed in its recruitment of a Mexican drug cartel for the assassination plot against the Saudi ambassador). In the Middle East itself, Iran's perception is that the dams have burst. If in the past it held clandestine contacts with Islamic movements on Sudanese soil (such as Ennadha, which has now won the Tunisian elections), it can now openly boost its influence in countries where the "U.S.-supported dictators" have fallen. Iran no longer fears openly acknowledging that it has built capabilities for reacting to an attack-including the Palestinian organizations in Gaza and Hizbullah in Lebanon-and depicts them as part of its defensive strategy and response in case of a confrontation with Israel and the United States.

Standing up to the United States and Israel on the nuclear issue well serves Iranian interests in the Arab street, which was and remains hostile toward those two countries. As Islam regains its hold over the Middle East, after years in which it was repressed by the Arab regimes, Iran's confidence grows that it can determine the new power equations in the region and drive the United States out of it-as well as Israel.

At home, the growing strength of the Revolutionary Guards-who play a central role with respect to both domestic politics and the Iranian nuclear program, its protection, survivability, and the missiles that are eventually supposed to carry nuclear warheads-enables them to increasingly influence foreign policy and to export the revolution more boldly and in ways not seen in the past. Indeed, recently Kayhan made an extraordinary admission that testifies to Iran's self-confidence perhaps more than anything else. It stated that the Quds Force of the Revolutionary Guards has already been clashing for some time with U.S. forces in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere:

The Quds Force is more than an active operational force; it is an ideology that does not recognize borders, a worldview whose tenets and beliefs directly conflict with Western culture....Since conquering Iraq and Afghanistan and entering the region, the United States has experienced more than ever the taste of conflict with the Quds Force as profoundly and tangibly as possible. America's appreciation of Iran's regional power is based mainly, and perhaps exclusively, on the experience of clashing with the Quds Force (emphasis added).20

Asr-e Iran also writes openly about the Quds Force's active presence in Iraq, and its contribution to bolstering Iran's status, to the detriment of Saudi Arabia.21

In light of the Quds Force's involvement in planning the putative hit on the Saudi ambassador in Washington, there have been American suggestions to assassinate senior Quds Force figures including its commander, Kassem Suleimani. This has sparked a wave of adulation for the force and its leaders in the Iranian media; they are seen as playing, and as destined to play, a key role in the struggle against the United States and Israel. Suleimani's name was also recently mentioned as a candidate for the next president of Iran (in 2013). The previous commander of the Quds Force, Ahmad Vahidi, is now defense minister. Iran indeed views itself as prepared for a final confrontation.



#180 NBT Truth

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 11:27 AM

Russia is now on record as having warned us that a military strike on Iran will be considered as a military strike on Russia. OK, how about we saying that any Iranian nuclear strike against Israel will be considered as an attack on the U.S. by Iran and Russia? I really don't think the Russians would appreciate that logic. Therefore they should apologize for such 'verbal brinkmanship,' and retract the statement.

If they are serious about this threat, then perhaps they believe they are now militarily prepared to attack and defeat the U.S. It's possible that the current discontent and threat of revolution in Russia has triggered the need for Putin and his associates to find excuses to go ahead and fully execute their Final Phase plan. This 'bombastic threat' may very well be such an excuse...

http://www.israelnat...ews.aspx/151739

This suggests that, at the very least, the Russians are making their threat a credible one:

http://en.rian.ru/ml.../170790557.html

Edited by NBT Truth, 18 January 2012 - 07:17 AM.