“A military strike”

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Rothko 2[3]

One of the amusing and contemptibly ignorant things being said in the media today is the use of the phrase above.  Once again, this kind of expressed ignorance fosters the impression that a crippling attack on what may or may not be an Iranian nuclear weapons program would consist of a one time attack by a few dozen aircraft.  IMO that would not be the case.  In fact what would be involved would be an aviation and missile campaign that would necessairly include hundreds or thousands of air and missile sorties.

B-2 and B-1 bombers, B-52 bombers, missile strikes, naval air and tactical air flying from Saudi Arabia, search and rescue operations for downed aircrew, all this would be involved.  pl

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38 Responses to “A military strike”

  1. LUIS says:

    Will Israel launch the attack with Saudi Arabia?
    Did not the U.S. going to stop?

  2. turcopolier says:

    Luis
    Without the use of nuclear weapons Israel has only a limited ability to strike Iran and the Saudis have virtually none. If Israel had a significant capability they would already have attacked. pl

  3. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Also must include infantry units to occupy parts of Southern Iranian shores – indefinitely. US would be occupying those parts for decades.

  4. Pat Lang,
    Military strike and its corollary, surgical strike, are beloved not only by the media. Politicians love these terms as a way gloss over the fact that they are committing acts of war.
    WPFIII

  5. turcopolier says:

    William Fitzgerald
    Not just acts of war, such attempts are certain to become large scale acts of war. pl

  6. Anon1 says:

    Let’s not even talk about the Iranian counter-strike options. Their mobile missiles (Shahab-3, Scuds, Fateh-110s,etc) will all be dispersed and impossible to find to target them all. They will be falling on Israel, Saudi Arabia, the GCC states, and their navy and IRGC units will be going after shipping in the Gulf and trying to close access. Afghanistan and Iraq will also be in play.

  7. Some open source evidence the US sent about 30 deep penetrator bombs to Israel the last several years.

  8. Tigershark says:

    We will know the “Real Serious People” are serious when they propose raising taxes on the “wealth creators” to pay for their overseas “adventures”. Or a draft to replace the casualties.

  9. Norbert M Salamon says:

    And, of course, China, Japan, Greece, S. Korea, India, et al will hail the destruction of the major source of imported oil without any backlash. Dream!
    So will all those dependent on Qatar’s gas exports, production facilities as it go up in flames.

  10. Alba Etie says:

    Col Lang
    And what would happen if the Iranians decided also add CW to the mix ? Did not a ‘war game ” exercise a few years back catch the US Navy by surprise when ‘opposing forces’ ‘successfully attacked” our ships with “CW tipped ” medium range missiles in the Persian Gulf . IMO it is increasingly less likely the US would necessarily follow NatenYahoo to Nantanz for a military strike . For all of its many foreign policy blunders – the record so far suggests that the BHO administration wants no more more military interventions by choice. General Dempsey & Secretary of Defense Hagel seem to be winning that argument with the neocons & R2P’s crowd – about no more wars unless it truly comes to clear and present danger.
    BHO after all climbed down from bombing Syria -albeit with the help of the US Congress & leader Putin .

  11. robt willmann says:

    The Obama administration has put out a press release on the White House web site about “first step understandings” about Iran’s nuclear “program”, which press release they label a “fact sheet”–
    http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/11/23/fact-sheet-first-step-understandings-regarding-islamic-republic-iran-s-n
    The sanctions “relief” is “limited, temporary, targeted, and reversible”, while Iran is to do quite a few things.
    Since the goal is regime change in Iran, in the eyes of the neocons and Israel, preferably through a war, the attempt will be made to set the negotiations up to fail, as was done regarding Yugoslavia/Serbia and Iraq.
    In the case of Iraq, the old techniques were used to make them an offer they had to refuse and to demand that they prove a negative.
    In this case of Iran, we can see the attempt being made in the description of a “comprehensive solution”. During the six month phase just agreed to, the parties will negotiate the “contours” of a “comprehensive solution”. Here is the trap: “With respect to the comprehensive resolution: nothing is agreed to with respect to a comprehensive solution until everything is agreed to”. So the door is being closed on agreeing to some issues that may pave the way to getting to a comprehensive solution.
    We will see in six months.

  12. Mike C says:

    AE-
    I believe you’re referring to the Millennium Challenge 2002 debacle where retired Marine Corps General Van Riper, as Red Force commander, sank a USN carrier battle group on the first day of the exercise. The Navy called a do-over, un-sank their ships, changed the rules, and “won”. I have not heard that Van Riper’s attack used CW, just massed cruise missiles and small boats.

  13. robt willmann says:

    The European Union External Action Service (whatever that is) has a web site on which it has put the agreement about nuclear power between Iran and what the documents call the E3+3, although the White House press release seems to call the other party the P5+1.
    http://eeas.europa.eu/index_en.htm
    The four-page document, called a “Joint Plan of Action” and not an “agreement”, is found here–
    http://eeas.europa.eu/statements/docs/2013/131124_03_en.pdf
    The short joint statement by the EU “High” Representative Catherine Ashton and Iran Foreign Minister Zarif is here–
    http://eeas.europa.eu/statements/docs/2013/131124_02_en.pdf

  14. LeaNder says:

    The may be needed for their next operation in Lebanon, wasn’t there talk about Hesbollah bunkers? Man of the Israeli military claim that is around the corner anyway. The one in charge that will step down in the near future already expected it under his own watch. I forget his name.
    yes:
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/special/world/Israeli-military-information-on-Hezbollah.html

  15. PS says:

    As expected, John Bolton is urging Israel to launch a unilateral strike so that Iran doesn’t become an Al Qaeda safe haven. I’m not going to argue that the Iranian government is a bunch of nice guys or that it has no links to major terrorist attacks, but Bolton would argue that Khamenei hates puppies and kittens if he thought it would launch a few missiles.

  16. LeaNder!
    Ever since the discovery of the VC tunnels in Viet Nam and the now fully developed knowledge of German underground facilities in WWII {I myself was in several including a ten story underground fighter plant never touched by Allied bombers during the war] the whole world knows yo go underground to defeat US airpower [non-nuke]!
    In a personal conversation with Dr. Edward Teller, PhD, he predicted to me and wrote elsewhere that underground cities were the future of humanity. Even many civil defense officials never understood the enormous difference in explosive power of the nuclear bomb as opposed to the Atomic bomb.
    Interesting discussion of enrichment on this blog. But Plutonium weaponary geometically different than uranium based weapons [these are largely the triggers for Plutonium weapnary]!

  17. Babak Makkinejad says:

    The Swiss, at least until the end of the Cold War, had been busy building cities – nuclear shelters – for all of Swiss population.

  18. Alba Etie says:

    Thank you Mike C . This is why I visit here at SST often – to learn and be corrected .Does Iran have the amount of Exocets or whatever that the Milennium Challenge 2002 exercise simulated ?

  19. Alba Etie says:

    When I think of the possible President Romney cabinet I am reminded that John Bolton apparently was on the short list for Secretary of State or JSC .

  20. Alba Etie says:

    Didn’t HG Welles predict underground living -troglodytes and all of that ..

  21. Peter Hug says:

    They’re still building them – every new building in Switzerland must have its own shelter. I believe the standard is 5 bar resistance for a residential building, and 15 bar for an apartment building. Generally they find use as wine cellars… 🙂
    http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304231204576405700994655570

  22. Medicine Man says:

    Off-topic: http://www.vocativ.com/11-2013/avocado/
    The avocado business being taken over by the cartels? I wonder if Col. Lang’s musings about a future use for SOCOM might not become a reality at some point?

  23. Mike C says:

    AE-
    Sorry, that I do not know.
    Tangential but of note- The USS Chancellorsville got hit by a target drone back on Nov. 16th. The drone navigates by way point to simulate threat profiles. The collision was an accident. What’s worrying is the ship’s CIWS did not engage it. Two sailors were hurt. The Chancellorsville is a Ticonderoga cruiser testing the latest build of the AEGIS system. Hard for me to believe they’d be flying drones near the ship with an unarmed CIWS.

  24. robt willmann says:

    Alba Etie and Mike C,
    Supersonic anti-ship missiles made by Russia are probably a “big issue” — the SS-N-22 Sunburn (around Mach 2.1) and SS-N-25 (26?) Onyx (around Mach 2.9). They zoom close to the surface at such high speeds that upon detecting them a ship does not have very many seconds before impact.
    One would think that the first thing done in any “military strike” against Iran would be to attack and disable those missiles, before any nuclear development facility was hit.
    Thus, the CIA, instead of killing people, including women and children, in mud houses in Pakistan without plumbing and electricity who are not capable of invading even Dime Box, Texas, and the NSA (and maybe other agencies), instead of illegally creating computer-generated dossiers and social network patterns on all U.S. persons, had better be spending their time pinpointing the exact location of every one of those supersonic missiles so that they can be dealt with.
    Otherwise, any naval ship within range will be either badly damaged or at the bottom of the ocean.

  25. turcopolier says:

    robert willman
    The CIA usually does not do that kind of work. DIA, the Navy and Air Force do it. pl

  26. steve g says:

    AE
    The Time Machine by H.G Welles was made
    in 1960. The underground people were called
    morlocks. It won the Academy award for special
    effects that year. A 2002 version was also
    made. As could be expected a damsel in dis-
    tress was the focal point.

  27. Medicine Man says:

    I should have asked Tyler for his opinion in my previous post. If the criminal elements south of the border are able to take over even legitimate agribusiness unopposed, I take this as a very bad sign for the progress of Mexico’s drug war. Is it only a matter of time before there are attempts to intimidate lawful growers in the US?

  28. Fred says:

    Funny, we were sinking those carriers in exercises on day 1 way back in the ’80’s. They’d get ‘unsunk’ in exactly the same way. How they managed to conclude it takes a dozen modern torpedoes to sink a carrier instead of the 4 WW2 types was beyond me. What was missed most was the lack of actual ‘lessons learned’ in fleet deployment, ASW tactics, etc. Which was supposed to be the whole point of the exercise. Of course it didn’t help matters any when the new (then) 688’s weren’t the one’s doing the sinking but those old Skipjack class boats. Hard to get a new budget allocation out of Congress by proving the old equipment works fine if you operate it correctly.

  29. Tyler says:

    He swarmed the carrier group with small boats. Some were armed with missile launchers, some with explosives.
    IIRC he also he also used heliographs and bicycle messengers so they couldn’t listen in on his message traffic either.

  30. turcopolier says:

    mike C
    In re the switched off CIWS, I would imagine this would have something to do with someone’s CYA rules. pl

  31. Alba Etie says:

    To paraphrase Forrest G .. ‘asymmetric is , what asymmetric does ” – Hillbillies everywhere take note.

  32. Alba Etie says:

    Glad ‘they’ want invade Dime Box – where else would we go see live Shakespeare performances in the Summertime that nearby to Austin .

  33. Fred says:

    Capone managed something similar in the ’30s with less bloodshed.

  34. Mike C says:

    Thanks Colonel,
    I hope that’s what it was.

  35. Mike C says:

    Fred-
    I think (Vice Chairman of the JCS at the time) Gen. Peter Pace’s explanation of why the war game was restarted illuminates your point.
    He said “You kill me in the first day and I sit there for the next 13 days doing nothing, or you put me back to life and you get 13 more days’ worth of experiment out of me. Which is a better way to do it?”
    Well, he didn’t have to do nothing for 13 days had he accepted the results, did he? That might have been time well spent reflecting on some bad doctrine. The Pentagon spent a quarter of a billion $ on that war game, so that would have been some awfully expensive reflection, granted. And not so beneficial for careers or budgets, either.

  36. A sinking of an American carrier will be the next 9/11 for the USA IMO!

  37. Fred says:

    Very true from the tactical viewpoint; what of the strategic implications of having your carrier force shot to bits on day one? Both issues need to be addressed.

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