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Attacking Nukes not a Good Idea

Reader comment on item: Israeli Jets vs. Iranian Nukes

Submitted by Wesley Clark (United States), Jun 15, 2007 at 04:06

An air attack focused on Iran's nukes would unify Iranians against the outside attacker, especially if that attacker were Israel, and would help stabilize the demented Iranian regime, as their citizens rallied behind their government. The nuclear sites are hardened and difficult to destroy. We would also invite counterattacks agains Persian Gulf oil facilities, oil tankers in the Gulf, and blockade of the Straits of Hormuz. Iran has large numbers of small boats, which could seriously damage even a warship if loaded with explosives. They could also undertake a ground invasion of eastern Iraq, forcing us to defend against them.. Their ayatollahs have dismissed loss of life amongst their citizens, or destruction of their country, as inconsequential.

However, Iran depends upon imports for 40% of its gasoline supplies. An attack on their refinery and oil storage facilities, and capture of their oil platforms and terminals in the Gulf could simultaneously immobilize their army on empty gas tanks, and would deprive the government of oil revenues, while safeguarding Western access to oil. With no money, the Iranian government could no longer buy power,would rapidly lose political support, and should rapidly implode. The nuclear facilities would close for lack of funds and interest. We could also manipulate gasoline imports to assure compliance with our demands..

A well-executed and focused attack on oil facilities and interdiction of the threat to oil-shipping could be accomplished with air attacks combined with speical forces actions against oil faclities (we did it once before) and would be a much sounder and more efficient approach. Unfortunately, right now our leader could not sell an icecube in the Sahara desert.

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