Two Really Scary News ItemsThe last two days have given us two horrible news stories: one you've probably seen; and the other, probably not.
The first item is the "leaked" story that Israel is planning to use low-yield nukes on Iran.
Revealed: Israel plans strike on Iranian nuclear plant
ISRAEL has drawn up secret plans for a combined air and ground attack on targets in Iran if diplomacy fails to halt the Iranian nuclear programme.Make no mistake about it: if this happens, it will be seen as an act of war on Iran by America, not just Israel.
The inner cabinet of Ariel Sharon, the Israeli prime minister, gave “initial authorisation” for an attack at a private meeting last month on his ranch in the Negev desert.
Israeli forces have used a mock-up of Iran’s Natanz uranium enrichment plant in the desert to practise destroying it. Their tactics include raids by Israel’s elite Shaldag (Kingfisher) commando unit and airstrikes by F-15 jets from 69 Squadron, using bunker-busting bombs to penetrate underground facilities.
The plans have been discussed with American officials who are said to have indicated provisionally that they would not stand in Israel’s way if all international efforts to halt Iranian nuclear projects failed.
Iranian radicals and a lot of Muslims will feel that Iran would have a moral right to counter-attack America for this. Beyond a right, I think some will feel like there is a moral obligation to do so.
For those who believe the Bush Doctrine (aka the pre-emptive doctrine) just the leak of this story is enough justification for a pre-emptive attack on America and Israel who are clearly imminent threats to Iran, certainly more credibly so than Saddam ever was to America.
The second article probably won't raise too many flags in the west but, if true, could be disastrous for us in the Gulf. Best I can tell, not a single western news agency has picked it up:
Iranian troops massing near Iraqi border
Jan 8, 2007If true this bad... very very bad.
A Sunni Iraqi MP accused Iran of deploying thousands of fighters near Iraq's borders with Saudi Arabia to "transmit disorder" into the kingdom. "Iran has started recently forming a 10,000 military brigade, dubbed 'Brigade of Mecca', with bases in Al-Samawah and Al-Nakhib Desert (in Iraq), near the Iraq-Saudi border, in order to transmit disorder across borders," Al-Watan quoted MP Mohammad al-Daeni as saying.
Saudi Arabia had recently announced plans to build a massive security fence along its borders with the war-torn country, mainly to prevent infiltration of al-Qaeda supporters who are feared to be training in Iraq.
Daeni also claimed that Iranian intelligence "controls all of Iraq's governmental institutions, mainly the ministries of defence, interior, transport, health, and oil".
'Killing on a daily basis'
He charged that thousands of Iran's radical revolutionary guard are "operating in Baghdad, killing on a daily basis" Sunni Arab residents.
"Iran controls (also) the oil fields of Majnoon," in Iraq, near the borders between the two countries that fought a fierce war in the 1980s.
Daeni described the "Iranian occupation" of Iraq as being "more dangerous that the American occupation because it aims to establish a Persian empire starting with control over Iraq and the Gulf".
The newspaper did not mention any proof for Daeni's allegations and the Iranian government was not immediately available for comment because of a public holiday.
Iraq's government is led by Shi'ite parties close to Iran since the toppling of Saddam Hussein's Sunni-dominated regime, but Baghdad has denied being under the control of the Islamic republic.
If it's not true, it could easily be true, some day soon.
A civil war in Iraq is horrific but it may not stop there. The conflict could easily draw in the neighbors -- Sunni countries like Saudi and Syria to help the Iraqi Sunnis to battle-it-out with Iran who is helping the Shiites.
Probably, you have not thought about the ramifications of a regional war. Trust me, it's not good for anybody, including America who will be up to their eyes in it.