"U.S. Prepping Mideast Facilities For Israeli Attack On Iran"
The United States has begun taking measures to plan for an Israeli strike on Iran in order to protect US facilities in the region, the Wall Street Journal reported Saturday.
The contingency planning came as a result of concern within the US defense establishment that Israel is planning to attack Iran over the Islamic Republic's reported nuclear armament program, according to the newspaper.
US President Barack Obama, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, and other senior US officials have reportedly delivered messages through private channels to the Israeli government warning them about the dangerous repercussions of a military strike on Iran.
Washington is concerned that Iraqi Shi'ite militias may attack the US embassy in Baghdad at Iran's behest. Some 15,000 US diplomats, federal employees and contractors will likely remain in Iraq, the newspaper reported.
Tensions between the Jewish state and the Islamic republic spiked above normal this past week when an Iranian nuclear scientist was blown up in his car in Tehran in an attack that Iranian officials blamed on Israel.
U.S. Warns Israel On Strike
U.S. defense leaders are increasingly concerned that Israel is preparing to take military action against Iran, over U.S. objections, and have stepped up contingency planning to safeguard U.S. facilities in the region in case of a conflict.
President Barack Obama, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and other top officials have delivered a string of private messages to Israeli leaders warning about the dire consequences of a strike. The U.S. wants Israel to give more time for the effects of sanctions and other measures intended to force Iran to abandon its perceived efforts to build nuclear weapons.
The high-stakes planning and diplomacy comes as U.S. officials warn Tehran, including through what administration officials described Friday as direct messages to Iran's leaders, against provocative actions.
But Israel has declined to rule out a strike, as has the U.S.
The U.S. military is preparing for a number of possible responses to an Israeli strike, including assaults by pro-Iranian Shiite militias in Iraq against the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, according to U.S. officials.
In large measure to deter Iran, the U.S. has 15,000 troops in Kuwait, and has moved a second aircraft carrier strike group to the Persian Gulf area.
It has also been pre-positioning aircraft and other military equipment, officials say. Arms transfers to key allies in the Gulf, including the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, have been fast-tracked as a further deterrent, officials say.
"CIA, M16 Operations Helped Kill Iranian Nuclear Scientist"
Iran protested the United States and United Kingdom for their roles in the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientist Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan Wednesday, implicating the two nations in the attack, the official Iranian Republic News Agency (IRNA) reported Saturday.
Iran sent a letter to the Swiss embassy in Tehran - the only official diplomatic channel between Iran and the United States in Tehran - saying that CIA-led operations in the Islamic Republic are known, and blaming the US for supporting "terrorist groups against Iran."
The Islamic Republic has blamed the violent death of Roshan on the CIA, Israel and now MI6. US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton summarily denied the charges
Roshan is the fourth Iranian scientist to be killed since 2007.
IDF Chief of General Staff Benny Gantz said Tuesday that 2012 would be a critical year regarding Iran and that there may be more "unnatural" events that happen to them.
"2012 will be a critical year in the connection between Iran gaining nuclear power, changes in leadership, continuing pressure from the international community and events that happen unnaturally," he said.
U.S. Acts To Hold Israel Back From Striking Iran. Their Intel Agencies At Odds
...the differences between the US and Israel surfaced before the tough Obama-Netanyahu conversation last Thursday. Political, military and intelligence officials privately voiced resentment over the strong and unusual condemnation the White House and Secretary Clinton issued over the death of the Iranian nuclear scientist.
By denying "absolutely" any US involvement in the killing, the administration implicitly pointed the finger at Israel – an unusual act in relations between two friendly governments, especially when both face a common issue as sensitive as a nuclear-armed Iran.
Obama seemed to suspect that Israel staged the killing to torpedo yet another US secret effort to avoid a military confrontation with Iran through back channel contacts with Tehran, while the administration's extreme condemnation is seen as tying in with its all-out campaign to hold Israel back from a unilateral strike.
Foreign Policy in its tendentious and selective report presents Mossad as the sole recruiter of Jundallah for sabotage and hit operations for defeating Iran's drive for a nuclear bomb. It omits the slightest mention of the fact that US intelligence started using Jundallah for such operations from early 2005 with ample US-dollar funding approved personally by President Bush.
Washington and intelligence sources note that the report appeared two days after the Iranian nuclear scientist was killed and the day after Obama took Netanyahu to task. It had two objective: to show that US is not responsible for all the covert operations of recent months against Iran's nuclear targets and, secondly, to demonstrate that Washington means to continue harassing and pressuring Israel by every means to hold it back from a military operation against Iran.
Also in the news:
Canadian Official Rips Soros Over Oil
Their goal is to stop any major project no matter what the cost to Canadian families in lost jobs and economic growth. No forestry. No mining. No oil. No gas. No more hydro-electric dams.
These groups threaten to hijack our regulatory system to achieve their radical ideological agenda. They seek to exploit any loophole they can find, stacking public hearings with bodies to ensure that delays kill good projects. They use funding from foreign special interest groups to undermine Canada’s national economic interest. They attract jet-setting celebrities with some of the largest personal carbon footprints in the world to lecture Canadians not to develop our
Oliver appeared on CBC’s The National on January 9, listing American philanthropist George Soros as one of the “billionaire socialists” funding the environmental groups’ “radical ideological agenda”.
“They have an agenda, and it seems to be ideologically driven. And it’s financed, without exaggeration, by billionaire socialists from the United States – people like George Soros,” said Oliver in one CBC interview.