Thursday, April 8, 2010

In the news...

Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu canceled his trip which was planned for the Nuclear Security Summit held in Washington, D.C.
According to the article (below) the move came amid U.S. warnings that Turkey and Egypt "plan to lead a motion demanding that Israel open its nuclear facilities for international inspection."

"Netanyahu cancels trip to DC Nuclear Security Summit"

Previously, Jerusalem has received assurances from the US administration that it would not let the issue take over the conference, which is to focus on keeping nuclear capabilities out of the hands of terrorists, government sources said.

Netanyahu characterized as a “very serious issue” the danger that “nuclear weapons, even crude nuclear weapons, could find their way into the hands of terrorists.” This, he said, would have “dire consequences” for all humanity.

In a related development, a senior government official said the government needed to convince the Obama administration that talk about the US imposing a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was counterproductive, would harden Palestinian positions, and was unrealistic because a solution could not be imposed on the sides if they didn’t agree.

This is an interesting development - as the push to have Israel disarm their military continues. It won't happen under Netanyahu's watch however.

In other news we see this interesting article:

"Israel could opt for nuke strikes on Iran"

U.S. President Barack Obama and his Russian counterpart, Dmitry Medvedev, may have signed a landmark arms-control treaty, but a U.S. think tank is suggesting Israel could resort to using tactical nuclear weapons to destroy Iran's deeply buried nuclear facilities.

And just to ram the message home, on March 28, the Times' Sunday edition ran an analysis headlined "Imagining an Israeli Strike on Iran."

The 208-page report, by veteran Middle East analysts Anthony Cordesman and Abdullah Toukan, argued that Israel's air force does not have the firepower to knock out the Iranian facilities and that low-yield tactical nuclear warheads would be the only way to destroy them.

Israel, of course, has made no comment on this at all, in line with its policy of deliberate ambiguity about its nuclear arsenal, believed to total some 600 warheads, bombs and artillery shells.

Nor does it discuss its inventory of Jericho II -- and probably some Jericho III -- ballistic missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads. These are placed in heavily fortified silos in the Judean Hills and near two or three Israeli air bases.

But if Israel elected to launch a nuclear strike, it is likely that the Jerichos would be the chosen means of delivery.

One assessment estimated Israel would need 90-100 long-range F-15I and F-16I aircraft for such strikes, of which around 20 percent would be lost.

In an assessment in March 2009, Toukan estimated that 42 Jericho IIIs, with 1,650-pound conventional warheads, would be needed to "severely damage or demolish" Iran's core nuclear facilities at Natanz, Isfahan and Arak.

That, according to most estimates, would be enough to set back Iran's nuclear arms project by two or three years.

Israel could also use its three German-built Dolphin-class submarines, reportedly adapted to launch nuclear-tipped cruise missiles, firing from the Arabian Sea to add to the mayhem.

Little is known about the Jericho III, but it is believed be a three-stage, solid-fuel missile capable of carrying a nuclear warhead for a minimum range of 2,980 miles.

"There is a certain danger in isolating the Israelis too much as it … might influence a dangerously unstable government to take action that might include exploiting its nuclear arsenal in search of Armageddon."

It is hard to know what Israel has planned in terms of dealing with Iran. Whatever they do will serve to inflame their enemies in the region more than ever before, and any subsequent events are hard to predict. However, whatever happens after such an invasion (assuming it takes place) promises to have huge consequences in the Middle-East, and most likely of great prophetic significance.

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