Iran Placing Medium-Range Missiles in Venezuela; Can Reach the U.S.
Iran is planning to place medium-range missiles on Venezuelan soil, based on western information sources, according to an article in the German daily, Die Welt, of November 25, 2010.
At a moment when NATO members found an agreement, in the recent Lisbon summit (19-20 November 2010), to develop a Missile Defence capability to protect NATO's populations and territories in Europe against ballistic missile attacks from the East (namely, Iran), Iran's counter-move consists in establishing a strategic base in the South American continent - in the United States's soft underbelly.
According to Die Welt, Venezuela has agreed to allow Iran to establish a military base manned by Iranian missile officers, soldiers of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and Venezuelan missile officers. In addition, Iran has given permission for the missiles to be used in case of an "emergency". In return, the agreement states that Venezuela can use these facilities for "national needs" – radically increasing the threat to neighbors like Colombia.
The German daily claims that according to the agreement, Iranian Shahab 3 (range 1300-1500 km), Scud-B (285-330 km) and Scud-C (300, 500 and 700 km) will be deployed in the proposed base. It says that Iran also pledged to help Venezuela in rocket technology expertise, including intensive training of officers.
And for folks who may not believe that Iran poses a threat to the U.S. should read the following quotes from this article:
If Iran, therefore, cannot get the S-300 missiles directly from Russia, it can still have them through its proxy, Venezuela, and deploy them against its staunchest enemy, the U.S..
But that is not all. According to Reuters, Iran has developed a version of the Russian S-300 missile and will test-fire it soon, as declared by the official news agency IRNA, two months after Moscow cancelled the delivery to comply with United Nations sanctions.
Iran, in fact, has its own capabilities for constructing missiles that could carry atomic warheads.
According to a study recently released by the International Institute of Strategic Studies in London, Iran is presently aiming to perfect the already existing solid-fuel, medium-range missile that can carry a nuke to hit regional targets, such as Israel. If a missile base can be opened in Venezuela, many US cities will be able to be reached from there even with short-medium range missiles.
The situation that is unfolding in Venezuela has some resemblance to the Cuba crisis of 1962. At that time, Cuba was acting on behalf of the USSR; now Venezuela is acting on behalf of Iran.
Coincidentally, Caroline Glick's latest commentary hits in the same themes, and this one is worth reading:
Column One: Why Latin America turned
Given the US policy trajectory, it is again obvious that the only one Israel can rely on to defend its interests is Israel.
...the media have consistently ignored the importance for Israel of three trends that made Latin America’s embrace of the Palestinians against Israel eminently predictable.
Those trends are the rise of Hugo Chavez, the regional influence of the Venezuela-Iran alliance, and the cravenness of US foreign policy towards Latin America and the Middle East. When viewed as a whole they explain why Latin American states are lining up to support the Palestinians.
OVER THE past decade Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez has inherited Fidel Castro’s mantel as the head of the Latin American anti-American club. He has used Venezuela’s oil wealth, drug money and other illicit fortunes to draw neighboring states into his orbit and away from the US.
Chavez’s circle of influence now includes Cuba and Nicaragua, Bolivia, Uruguay and Ecuador as well as Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina and Peru. Democracies like Colombia and Chile are also taking steps in Chavez’s anti-American direction.
Iran’s presence on the continent allowed it to take advantage of Chavez’s consolidation of power. Since taking office in 2005, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has developed strategic alliances with Venezuela and Nicaragua.
With Chavez’s assistance, Teheran is expanding its web of alliances throughout Latin America at the expense of the US and Israel.
With that as the backdrop, she elaborates on the current situation, including the incredibly weak U.S. policies in the region, and then concludes:
THERE IS no doubt that the Venezuelan-Iranian alliance and its growing force in Latin America go a long way towards explaining South America’s sudden urge to recognize “Palestine.” But there is more to the story.
It is not simply the US’s refusal to defend itself against the likes of Chavez that provokes the likes of Brazil’s President Luiz Ignacio Lula da Silva and Argentina’s President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner to embrace Chavez and Iran.
Obama’s policy of engaging and sanctioning Iran has no chance of preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. And just like the Arabs and the Europeans, the South Americans know it. There is no doubt that at least part of Lula’s reason for signing onto a nuclear deal with Ahmadinejad and Turkey’s Reccip Erdogan last spring was his certainty that the US has no intention of preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear arms.
From Lula’s perspective, there is no reason to participate in the US charade of preventing Iran from becoming a nuclear power. He might as well be on the winning side. And since Obama doesn’t mind Iran winning, Iran will win.
This policy signals to the likes of Brazil and Argentina and Uruguay that they might as well go with Chavez and Iran and turn their backs on Israel. No one will thank them if they lag behind the US in their pro-Iran, anti-Israel policies. And by moving ahead of the US, they get the credit due to those who stick their fingers in Washington’s eye.
When we understand the trends that led to Latin America’s hostile act against Israel, we realize two things. First, while Israel might have come up with a way to delay the action, it probably couldn’t have prevented it. And second, given the US policy trajectory, it is again obvious that the only one Israel can rely on to defend its interests – against Iran and the Palestinians alike – is Israel.
Her last quote is particularly prophetic: "...it is again obvious that the only one Israel can rely on to defend its interests...is Israel".
"On that day, when all the nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem an immovable rock for all the nations..." (Zechariah 12:3)
That time has arrived. Indeed all nations are currently against Israel. Fortunately, Israel has God on her side. And that is far far far more potent than "all the nations of the earth".