What are these rockets?

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Combo "OK, fake photo – showing four long- and medium-range missiles rise into the air…"  AFP

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OK.  Someone altered the photograph.  That is interesting but not the primary curiosity about these "long and medium range missiles."  To justify this description it would seem that they would have to be ballistic missiles of the Shehab series, probably Shehab 3b.

Is it not the case that ballistic missiles rise nearly vertically from the Transporter Erector Launcher (TEL) in the launch phase of flight?

Shahab3a This is a picture of the Shehab 3 on its TEL.  Does this look like the TEL in the doctored photograph above?

S32 S34

These are photographs of the Shehab 3 in the launch phase. 

I am not an expert in the field of missile technology, but the missiles in the faked photograph appear to be anti-aircraft ground to air missiles or artillery rockets.  The slanted attitude of launch speaks to that.  No?  Anti-aircraft missiles would be a threat to aircraft, not to Israeli cities.  Artillery rockets are a battlefield weapon.

If those missiles are not ballistic missiles, then several interesting questions arise:

1- Which governments are fooling around here?

2- If these are not ballistic missiles, why are the MSM propagating the implication that this photograph displays missiles that are a threat to Israel? pl

http://blogs.timesunion.com/editors/?p=913

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ballistic_missiles

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50 Responses to What are these rockets?

  1. TomB says:

    Ah, a thread that’s not too horribly removed from a question I’ve been meaning to ask and therefore one I don’t have to apologize so much for.
    After you folks are done telling us about this missle business could someone please tell me at least about these “bunker buster” bombs? I know that it’s conventionally stated that Israel could do only very limited damage to Iran’s nuke facilities even with these BBB’s we’ve given ’em but I assume that’s because they have a limited number of planes and etc.
    But what about us and our BB’s? Did we give Israel the same kind we have all the way up to our biggest? What could our biggest really do? Etc., etc.
    I.e., even if *we* attacked Iran what damage could we really do?
    Cheers,
    (And, P.S., has anyone else seen that report from some Pakistani paper that the the U.S. has already given Israel overflight rights in Iraq and has had Israeli planes landing and etc. at U.S. airbases in Iraq already, at night and etc.? Does anyone know any more of this? Is interesting, I daresay.)

  2. dan says:

    The faked photo is amusing, but UK broadcasters ( BBC, Sky, Channel 4 ) were showing Iranian TV footage of the 3 launches all day with the fourth rocket stuck on its launcher.
    The western press is “claiming” that the doctored photo came from the Sepah website – but I guess busy journalists throughout the Western world simply didn’t have the mental capacity to make the comparison with the broadcast TV footage that had been playing the day before, or use a screen-grab of the live footage. D’oh!
    Then again, the Iranians did a similar mass test firing of these types of missiles last year – so we’re not exactly in new territory with any of this. The hysteria is a tad overdone – but, hey, the Iranians just added an additional 175 million to their oil revenues for next week’s lifitings, so they ain’t exactly complaining!
    The missile shown is probably a medium range variant of the Shahab ( 1000km or so range ) – a class of missile that the Iranians have been upgrading and testing since 1998 with metronomic regularity.

  3. Spider Rider says:

    I was curious as to the timing of this “launch,” coming as it did on the heels of the Czech missile defense signing.
    Even if this was indirectly a Russian “show of power,” (asymmetrically, through Iran) it was rather weak.
    I’m not sure Russia is using Iran as a proxy, but given the problems the UK is having with Russia, also, it’s a very curious move, almost American neocon in it’s flaming idiocy, conveying NO internal recognition of Russia’s true lack of power, a Potemkin army.
    The ability to bomb Tel Aviv is not the same as achieving world strategic dominance, this is less about arms, and more about having the intellectual resources to play your opponent, and his striking weaknesses, despite his corruption, or attempts to manipulate world oil, or world markets.
    Isn’t it a bit like gaming the hardly capable Dick Cheney?

  4. Twit says:

    I don’t know, but if you tilt your computer about 35 degrees to the left, they are a threat to Israel.

  5. JustPlainDave says:

    I believe the doctored photo shows the launch failure of a Zelzal 1/2 series rocket. Comparative stills available at: http://uskowioniran.blogspot.com/2008/05/iranian-ballistic-missile-gallery-pt-1.html [second photo from the bottom].

  6. Kieran says:

    The photos show medium/long range artillery rockets (compare with Soviet FROG-7…http://www.geocities.com/havocka50/frog-7-DFST8304931.jpg), which explains the slanted angle of launch.
    They are probably of the Zelzal series, some of which the Iranians claim are guided.
    They don’t speak to any threat to Israel (though apparently a Shihab-3 was also tested that day), but to Iran’s ability to hit US bases in the Gulf and Iraq.

  7. Cieran says:

    TomB:
    A bunker buster weapon is in essence an explosive coupled with some form of penetrator, so that the explosion can be embedded in the medium containing the target. The general idea is to get closer to the target, i.e., proximity is destiny!
    In practice, it’s more complicated than that, but the principles involved are straightforward enough. The goal is the destruction of an “HDBT” (a Hardened, Deeply-Buried Target). The target is hardened because it’s constructed of massive amounts of reinforced concrete, and it’s buried at depth in earth (soil, rock, what-have-you).
    The hardening makes the target more resistant to destruction (so HDBT’s are commonly use as command centers), and it makes the HDBT a lot trickier to locate, but HDBT’s have an Achilles’ heel that can be exploited if the target contains precision equipment (as a nuclear weapons production facility certainly would, since it’s filled with lots of relatively delicate technology, e.g., centrifuges spinning at incredible rates).
    This HDBT vulnerability arises from the phenomenon of spalling, where a blast-induced compression wave reflects off the inner surface of the target structure (i.e., the roof above one’s head if you’re inside with the miscreants involved) — this reflection ejects the inner surfaces of buried structures so that giant chunks of masonry can be fired at the innards of the HDBT. Of course, this does not enhance the performance of delicate equipment inside, and it can also kill people very effectively, even if the HDBT itself is not breached directly.
    Countermeasures to bunker busters exist, and are often much cheaper to deploy than it is to overcome them via better weapons. Some countermeasures are obvious, e.g., spoofing the location of the target by directing surface features (e.g., exhausts, entrances) far away from the target itself. Some are more subtle, e.g., engineering the surrounding earth to dissipate the blast so that less energy can be transmitted to the HDBT.
    So like most weapons/target situations, it’s a cat-and-mouse game of iterative improvements on each side.
    The optimally-effective bunker-buster would involve a nuclear weapon, for reasons that are in large part about the characteristics of the blast involved and how it propagates through the HDBT. But getting a nuclear weapon deep enough into the ground so that one doesn’t end up covering neighboring nations with radioactive fallout is likely an unsolved problem.
    Much of the work on bunker busters and HDBT’s is based on idealized physical and computer simulations, so there’s a lot of uncertainty in how they will behave in actual practice. And a concern I have here is that all this bunker-buster saber-rattling we’re hearing now might be the prelude to a demonstration experiment involving targets in Iran, i.e., a proving ground for HDBT destruction methods.
    Sometimes untested new weaponry gets demonstrated by preludes to a major war, e.g., the bombing of Guernica in 1937. The whole idea is repugnant, but this worry does seem to fit the available data. HDBT’s are a growth industry, and thus there’s a strong incentive to develop and market a concomitantly-growing supply of weapons systems.

  8. JustPlainDave says:

    Video of the [non]launch can be seen here: http://uskowioniran.blogspot.com/2008/07/irgc-missile-test-video.html. Tough to tell, but I think the guy being interviewed may well be Jafari [enough personal investment to explain the Photoshop gambit?]. Rank insignia’s right, but the shades aren’t helping any…
    @ Kieran – *Those* Zelzals are no threat to Israel – whatever ones have been resupplied into Lebanon, well they’d probably be viewed as a different matter, if prior IAF response is any indication. Suspect it rather focuses the mind as to the import of the task in discussions with Syria…

  9. Andy says:

    Kieran and JustPlainDave have it right. The missiles in the doctored photo are Zelzals. Here is a video that shows the Shahab launch (and it looks to be a 3a and not the longer-range 3b that everyone is worried about) and the Zelzals from the picture.

  10. Here’s the original photo from the Iranian website http://www.presstv.com/detail.aspx?id=63345&sectionid=351020101
    Iran test-fires surface-to-sea missile
    Fri, 11 Jul 2008 13:57:52
    Iran has test-fired surface-to-sea missiles over the Persian Gulf during a military maneuver code-named the Great Prophet III.
    I see only 3 missiles in the picture. Looks like AP was the agency that falsified the photo.

  11. frank durkee says:

    TomB A friend of mine sends me The Lekarev Report daily. it is written in isreal and has political and military comments. i have no sense of it’s veracity. Today it reported that isreali planes were doing night landings in anbar province and that the suggestion was that the planes would take off from us bases for their attack on Iran.
    So this is a different placement of the same rumour.

  12. JoeC says:

    The photo shows the Zelzal-2 tactical missile launches and not the Shahab 3A launch, as can be seen in the TV footage provided – see http://www.reuters.com/news/video?videoId=86113&videoChannel=1. For those interested, a technical discussion of the Shahab-3 and Zelzel-2 launches – which disputes several of Iran’s claims about the launches including that the Shahab launched was an improved, substantially longer range version – can be found at the Armscontrol Wonk web site http://www.armscontrolwonk.com/1951/shahab-boasts#comment

  13. pbrownlee says:

    The utter failure of the MSM to pursue any kind of exactitude in this is shocking but hardly surprising.
    As Helen Thomas asked her colleagues (but not equals) when she was questioning Bush the Younger on torture “where is everybody?”.
    Even more revolting than morons acting “clever” are wimps acting “tough” — and we have seen plenty of both lately.

  14. Eliot says:

    from armscontrolwonk.com
    “it is apparent that the missile launched yesterday is, in fact, an older, shorter range version Shahab-3A. Right off the bat, the footage shows a missile that looks strikingly similar to the baseline Shahab-3A. It has no outwardly identifying characteristics – a second stage, for example – to immediately differentiate it from the 3A. This leaves open the possibility that the “extended range Shahab-3” is just a longer version of the baseline 3A – same diameter, longer length first stage to accommodate more fuel. The difference in length would be apparent in a comparison of images of the launch today to images of the baseline Shahab-3A. However, just such a comparison reveals no difference.”

  15. Patrick Lang says:

    All
    Ok people. the slanty ones are Zeltsal FROG type artilery rockets which are not a threat to Israel, especially since the Iranians are nowhere near having a nuclear warhead.
    There are also Shehab ballistic missiles (a few) in the Iranian videos. They don’t have a nuclear warhead for those either. pl

  16. Follow the Money says:

    PR war for iran, photoshopping missile launches, teh Persians are devious!!

  17. Spider Rider says:

    I just cannot help but see it as interconnected, so much Kabuki theatre, with no meaning.
    In the bigger picture, who is enabling Iran?
    And if we can work around it, perhaps we can defend Israel, ourselves, and others subject to terrorism, without continual armed warfare, and with minimal loss of life.

  18. Curious says:

    whatever it is, that got to be the most “profitable” missile test in world history.
    Oil price shot up $10, and DOW going down ~1%.
    I think pretty soon even the Iranian figures out how profitable war mongering can be. All they have to do is put their money in world market via asian trader to short US portofolio.
    Greed will take care the rest.
    ok question to all experts:
    if the Iranian already have reasonably reliable solid rockets. What prevent them to strap those into large liquid rocket and deliver heavy payload? Seems like logical step to me.
    about bunker. Iran have something that a lot of country doesn’t Massive amount of mountain range.
    so instead of drilling down, they can drill up from base of mountain toward the center.
    That will pretty much make all “gravity base” bomb useless, unless we want to destroy mountains. (that would be pretty expensive even with nuke) I am pretty sure Iran know a thing or two about mining and drilling. So building north Korea style deep mountain bunker would be pretty easy. (plus defending a mountain from bombardment is a lot easier than open flat space)
    Also: by now they know exactly F-16 radar profile. (Pakistan, Venezuela, Norway all have F-16 in the junk yard) That would render Israel F-16 pretty useless without massive cover.

  19. lina says:

    World War III – brought to you by Photoshop.

  20. ServingPatriot says:

    FWIW,
    These missile launches were part of what had been a regularly scheduled military exercise (Noble Prophet); an exercise the Iranians themselves said some months back that they would hold in July.
    Of note, Iran also said it would continue to launch their space launch vehicles (they flew one in February) – perhaps as a prelude to placing a satellite in LEO.
    All the hyperventilating over a regularly scheduled exercise is amazing. Demonstrates how high the gain is turned up in the global media front over the coming Israel/Iran War. Just as Gardiner, the good Colonel and others predicted.
    Hopefully some sanity will emerge… or at least calmer news peoples.
    SP

  21. dilbert dogbert says:

    As this is a missile thread I want to get an idea off my pea brain: If Iran really wanted to F*ck with us in Iraq they would have provided the bad guys with some effective anti aircraft missiles. Maybe I have been in my cave too long but I haven’t heard of any being used against our troops. Any of you smart people can enlighten me?

  22. different clue says:

    As a layman, I would not know or understand the difference between missiles launching slantwise or straight up without being told. But even I can tell that the Shehab missile truck and the missile truck in the doctored photo are two different missile trucks. On the face of things it would appear that people trying to fake the case for an imminently dangerous nuclear-missilized
    Iran would fake the photo.
    But the crude sloppiness of the fake makes my tinfoil
    mind wonder..could it have been a crude sloppy fake made on purpose to be detected as a fake? A “fake fake” designed to be
    outed in such a way as to make it appear that Israel has been “caught red handed”
    passing out fake intelligence photographs? In order to discredit the hype and deflect the march to war?
    I don’t really believe it
    is a “fake fake” , but could
    one understand why the crude
    sloppiness of the fake might
    arouse such suspicion? Are the Israelis really dumb enough to make such a crude fake and think it won’t be caught? Or is it more likely that some of “Israel’s little helpers”
    did it on their own initiative? I can see Feith, Perle, or Cheney being dumb enough to think the photo-shoppery is something less than laughably
    transparent. If Israeli intelligence themselves did this, they must think the mass-median audience is awfully dumb. Could they be
    right?

  23. TomB says:

    Cieran wrote:
    “TomB:
    A bunker buster weapon is in essence an explosive coupled with some form of penetrator…”
    Well thank you very much Cieran, you appear scarily knowledgeable. But a couple of further questions if you don’t mind:
    What do you mean by “penetrator”? Is this some explosive thing too? Your wording makes it sound like not. So what the hell are they? Groundhogs or badgers mounted on the tip, teeth and claws bared? Just real *real* pointy tips?
    And can you tell us—without divulging anything that might be secret or even just helpful to potential adversaries otherwise —just how deep these things can go theoretically?
    I’m thinking … can we really hurt Iran if it’s taken big precautions? And what about using these penetrator things for peaceful purposes? You ever see how deep they sink the pilings for some structures? What a helluva innovation; just drop one of these things and whammo, journey to Jules Verne, no? Pour your cement and you’re done.
    Cheers,

  24. Clifford Kiracofe says:

    Well, it is perfectly obvious these missiles are constructed from very special aluminum tubes. They are loaded with uranium yellowcake from Niger which Iran obtained from Iraq prior to the 2002 war. Furthermore, they pose an existential threat to the Zionist entity. This is because the radiation from yellowcake will only incinerate Jews (secular and religious) and not the Palestinian Christians and Muslims resident in Israel. Plus nothing will drift into Syria and Jordan owing to the precision nature of the guidance systems obtained from Hizbollah which stole them from the Israelis.
    Pretty diabolical I’d say. Obviously this is part of the “End Times” scenario.

  25. J says:

    Colonel,
    what worries me are iranian ‘projectiles’ hitting the green zone should bush/cheney/olmert all go and get stupid and decide to attack iran. if the wingnuts bush and co. do go and get stupid, the navy will have their hands full trying to protect their own assets and won’t have the luxury of protecting the green zone as well. patriot batteries (my ears are STILL ringing all these years later lol) are at best a crap shoot at intercepting inbounds. bush and co. just don’t give ‘topography’ a consideration in their war machinations.

  26. Cieran says:

    TomB:
    Good questions! Here’s some more info… hope it helps.
    What do you mean by “penetrator”? Is this some explosive thing too? Your wording makes it sound like not.
    It’s generally not, tho I’m confident somebody is busily trying to figure out how to shape a charge to help with that part of the weapon system function. But for the most common known systems (e.g., the GBU-28) the penetrator relies purely on kinetic energy from dropping the bomb to do its badger-like work.
    Think “lawn darts” (the now-illegal-in-the-US unsafe pointy kind) with explosives on the tips and you have the general idea. Or perhaps “hammering in a nail” is a good way to look at it, tho in this case, there’s no hammer beyond the store of kinetic energy these things pick up during their descent to earth.
    And can you tell us…just how deep these things can go theoretically?
    That depends upon what they are penetrating (imagine your game of pointy lawn darts being played on wet clay, or sand, or a concrete slab to get the general idea). Rock is hard to penetrate, but does a great job of passing the explosive blast through to the target. Soil is easier to penetrate, but it also attenuates the blast fairly effectively. So your mileage may vary, but lots of figures are quoted on the usual trustworthy websites, e.g., FAS likely has good technical estimates.
    I believe that most of these weapons have been designed to destroy surface or only slightly-buried reinforced concrete structures, so the target depth is often stated in terms of distances through concrete, which isn’t entirely useful for purposes of HDBT’s.
    Finally, as far as using weapons for construction purposes, check out the infamous “Project Plowshare” project for some interesting examples (I’m sure Google will turn up many references). In particular, Sedan Crater at the Nevada Test Site is someplace I highly recommend visiting if the opportunity ever arises — it demonstrated how to utilize a low-yield nuclear weapon to perform an excavation of considerable size.
    Only problem is that decades later, the place is still quite radioactive, which sorta defeats the whole purpose…

  27. Curious says:

    what worries me are iranian ‘projectiles’ hitting the green zone should bush/cheney/olmert all go and get stupid and decide to attack iran.
    Posted by: J | 12 July 2008 at 10:14 AM
    Well, that’s the reason Iran simply cannot possibly let up and have to keep moving on. Our action dictate their escalation strategy. At certain point, they will hit types of weapons that are cheap yet very hard and expensive for us to counter.
    Eg. now that they pretty much know what solid rocket is about. They can easily create thermobaric weapons. cluster bomb and bio/chemical.
    That expensive embassy in baghdad is practically a giant “shoot me” target. It’s practically designed for missile targetting. (dense regularly placed towers with narrow roads, clearly identifiable open space, …WALL! )
    several decoys, two or three conventional missile, thermobaric missiles. This should rip out the building cladding/windows destroying all air ventilation. Then rain it with chemical weapons. after that drop cluster bombs.
    Local Iraqi will take care of the rest with continued mortar attack.
    That go to be the cheapest conventional attack against $1B+ facility ever. And they want to put swimming pool and mall in that compound? This is David Koresh level of idiocy.
    seriously…who design such building? He should get moron award.

  28. john in the boro says:

    Spider Rider: “I was curious as to the timing of this “launch,” coming as it did on the heels of the Czech missile defense signing.
    “Even if this was indirectly a Russian “show of power,” (asymmetrically, through Iran) it was rather weak.”
    This 7/11 article in Az-Zaman supports SR’s observation. Makes me wonder how much of it is opportunism and how much is coordinated and how much is an opening for the next administration. (note: I translated the article using my rusty Arabic.)
    “Moscow: Tehran penetrates the strategic shield (U.S. missile defense initiative or star wars or SDI, take your pick) and the solution is an international agreement on missiles
    Iraqi defense: we have no knowledge of IAF exercises in preparation to attack Iran
    “Brussels – Moscow – Az-Zaman (Iraqi newspaper “The Times”)
    “New tension between the West and Iran, which tested a new ballistic missile with a 2000KM range, resulted in the price of oil rising to historically unprecedented levels. Moscow, which aided Iran in building the Bushayr nuclear reactor, considers that these [Iranian] tests illuminate the absence of pragmatism in Washington’s construction of a missile shield [ABM defense in Europe, etc] which Russia opposes. Meanwhile, yesterday Sergei Lavrov, the Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs, stressed the willingness of his country to discuss the drafting of a comprehensive treaty, one which legally limits missiles, and called upon the international community to refrain from taking unilateral steps against Iran.
    “The price of a barrel of oil exceeded the $147 threshold in London and approached that in New York on the heels of dollar’s drop in value. Concurrently, the Iraqi Ministry of Defense said yesterday that it had no knowledge of any IAF exercises in Iraqi airspace preparatory to the launch of a military strike against Iranian nuclear reactors. The current tensions between Western countries and Iran over its refusal to halt uranium enrichment [fuel speculation over military action against Iran]. The Israeli Jerusalem [Post] said on its website that Israeli aircraft trained in Iraqi airspace and landed at American military bases on Iraqi territory. However, an Israeli security source said that the report which was published on the newspaper’s Internet site and quoted in local news was in error.
    “BG Mohammad ‘Askari, a military spokesman for the Iraqi Ministry of Defense, explained that the ministry had not observed any IAF aircraft training in Iraqi airspace. In Washington, the Pentagon denied the report. The Jerusalem Post report said that sources at the Iraqi Ministry of Defense notified local news outlets that IAF aircraft trained in Iraqi airspace and landed at American airbases in the country to prepare for a possible strike against Iran.
    The Interfax news agency “Novosti” quoted Lavrov, commenting on the Iranian missile tests, saying, “Russia calls for advancing special agreements limiting the proliferation of missiles. We are ready to discuss drafting a comprehensive and legally binding agreement in this area.” He added at a joint press conference in Moscow yesterday with his Jordanian counterpart, Salah ad-Din Bashir, that the international charters which limit the proliferation of missiles are recommendations or are not universal.”
    Seems the strategic answer to the “missile shield” is more missiles for all my friends against all of your friends, and, subsequently, more missile shields for all of my friends to protect them against your friends. The international Iron Triangle must be happy.

  29. Tim says:

    Clifford Kiracofe has broken the code! There is nothing else to say.

  30. arthurdecco says:

    Re: Clifford Kiracofe | 12 July 2008 at 08:42 AM
    “Pretty diabolical I’d say.”
    I have to agree. I spilled an almost full glass of Valpolicella down the front of my faded, but still favorite T shirt, Mr. Kiracofe, while reading your comment.
    The political complexities of the Middle East pale in comparison to the difficulty I now face trying to salvage my shirt, thanks to your irresponsible misuse of clever wit and biting satire.
    Geez!

  31. TomB says:

    Cieran:
    Well thanks again, and that Project Plowshares is an amazing thing. Very cool.
    Frank Durkee:
    Well it’s funny isn’t it that the story doesn’t seem to have picked up any traction. My sense is that everybody just thinks it’s baloney, but I dunno that any of our media has the wits to ask a U.S. official the carefully enough phrased question to pin ’em down admitting or denying categorically.
    In the same vein I see the London Sunday Times is now reporting that Bush has essentially given the Israelis an “amber” light for attacking Iran. No we won’t help ’em, he is reported as saying (although I suspect if push came to shove he’d not shoot ’em down over Iraq), but if they’re gonna go he’s not gonna stop ’em and undoubtedly support ’em rhetorically at least.
    The Times quotes one U.S. milit. guy as saying if he was the Israelis he wouldn’t wait with Obama very possibly looming. Makes sense to me, but I still gotta feel that the clear weight of considerations is still against it even for the Israelis.
    Just my opinion though so….
    Cheers,

  32. Clifford Kiracofe says:

    arthurdecco,
    Apologies for the Valpol and tee shirt. Devil made me do it I guess.
    But seriously, there is much more. I got the data at a cocktail party in the fashionable Georgetown district of Washington, DC just down the street from Madeleine Albright’s house and around the corner from where Jack Kennedy lived as a Senator.
    My source is A1, right out of the Vice President’s Office and the guy had worked for the most secret Operation CHERRYPICK. This shop uses all-source confusion so you know they know. He had had a few too many and there was a strange white powderish remains in one of his nostrels. The right nostrel as I recall.
    He told me that a top informant, Curveball, had just met with an Iranian defector in Prague and obtained the info. Additional data is that the chemical weapons trucks the Iraqis had, the ones Colin Powell told the world about, are actually susceptible to levitation by the hidden Iman who guides Ahmadinejad. It would be no problem for Ahmadinejad to spray all of Israel with noxious and deadly chemicals. Voila, more confirmation of the existential threat.
    Got to run, Judy Miller is on the phone and the New York Times wants to interview me. Then I do Fox TV, later Clear Channel radio network.
    All this thanks to SST! Great to be an American.

  33. J says:

    Colonel,
    according to a times online article, dubya is just peachy-keen to a strike on iran.
    is it reality or more neocon tin-pan clanking propaganda trying to ‘goad’ bush into getting more stupid? i report, you decide.
    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/middle_east/article4322508.ece
    President George W Bush backs Israeli plan for strike on Iran – Times Online

  34. J says:

    hmmm…cnn’s wolf blitzer (former aipac ‘editor’ of their in-house publication The Near East Report) to go ‘indepth’ regarding the iranian ‘projectiles’ this sunday morning on late edition with wolf blitzer.
    wonder how much anti-iran/pro-israel ‘propaganda’ blizer will insert into the mix?

  35. Clifford Kiracofe says:

    All,
    1. A spiritual advisor (John Hagee) to the POTUS wannabee McCain says in his book “Jerusalem Countdown” (page 5, 2007 ed.):
    “I believe Iran already has the ability to enrich plutonium, giving them the capacity to make nuclear suitcase bombs that will be smuggled into America’s major cities to Islamic terrorist cells prepared to create an American Hiroshima….
    “Nuclear power will give Iran the ability to launch medium-range missiles with nuclear warheads. These missiles can reach London, Jerusalem, and New York City thanks to Russian scientists who have been working with Iran for years in the development of their nuclear program.
    “Imagine the global impact if those three major cities were attacked in one hour, creating a nuclear holocaust in three nations.
    “Just because you can’t imagine a nightmare of megaproportions becoming reality, do not be duped into believing it can’t happen.”
    2. AIPAC, per Iran nuclear programs:
    http://www.aipac.org/694.asp#12667
    3. WINEP (AIPAC spin-off) per Iran nuclear programs:
    http://www.washingtoninstitute.org/templateC04.php?CID=293
    4. Hagee in his book (above, p. 46) cites IAI Major Gen. (ret.) Eitan Ben-Eliahu’s lecture at the Strategic Dialogue Center at Netanya Academic College in April 2005 outlining ways and means of bombing Iran. Hagee says, “The optimal weapon, according to Ben-Eliahu, would be the American GBU 28 bomb, capable of deep gound penetration.”
    See,
    http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/smart/gbu-28.htm
    Hagee advocates an attack against Iran so it is not as if a substantial number of Americans have not been prepared for such a possibiity….in fact, they welcome it as part of Biblical “prophecy.”
    5. A friend of mine recently returned from teaching a semester at an American university’s campus in a Gulf state. I asked him what folks out there are thinking about the US. “They think Americans are crazy,” he said….

  36. J says:

    ‘americans’ like aipac, hagee, winep, are ‘crazy’? who would’ve thunk it. they’re not only ‘crazy’, they are ‘certifiably’ nuts, bonkers, not to mention they are in addition cold-blooded wannabe murderers who only care for their own skins. such ‘pillars’ of chickenhawk-r-y.

  37. Mark Logan says:

    Thank you, Dr. Kiracofe,
    for clearing that up.
    I just knew those WMD’s had to be somewhere.
    But now I guess this means we attacked the wrong country… Holy smokes,now that’s what I call faulty intelligence!

  38. Clifford Kiracofe says:

    Mark Logan,
    Thanks for your confidence in my analysis and sources.
    1. Be reassured about Iraq. Rev. Hagee, one of McCain’s (get it?: “of Cain”) spiritual advisors, tells us the war against Iraq fits into God’s plan. So it’s ok, we got the Evil One from Babylon. Next are the Medo-Persians, just like in the Bible.
    This is how it works…and you can thank Condi for really bringing it up in a big way, the “birth pains/pangs” thing I mean.
    Rev. Hagee says in the same book I cited at page 134 under the heading “Birth Pains of the New Age” (yup it’s there just like I said):
    “Jesus presented a portrait of the end of the age and the coming of the Messiah. He presents a series of signs, including international wars, famines, and earthquakes. He makes a profound statement: “All these are the beginning of birth pains (Matt. 24:8, NIV)….”
    “The world and Israel are now having contractions (wars, rumors of wars, acts of terrorism, bloodshed, and violence around the globe) that will produce a new Messianic Era.”
    So there you have it. Plain as day right there in the Bible.
    2. I can reveal that my source in the Vice President’s Office at the Georgetown cocktail party I mentioned earlier had just come from a ritualistic seance at the elite Flathead Club which is located in a penthouse suite on top of the American Enterprise Institute.
    Once in a while they have a ritual in which they reveal to certain initiates the brain of Leo Strauss which they have in a vault. It is in a large krystal container filled with pink formaldehyde, cloaked in purple velvet with some weird numbers, ranging from 1 to 22, all around from what I hear. Cheney was at the event also and led the chanting of some incantations.
    What to do?
    Chill obviously. Get some good smoke, some good blow, put on a Bob Marley CD and just get with the program…simple. No worry mon…

  39. Kathleen says:

    Just how long will the MSM allow those who are committed to striking Iran to get away with repeating unsubstantiated claims about Iran.
    How long will it take for the Chris Matthews, Joe Scarboroughs, Diane Rehm, Neil Conan and the rest to ask the warmongers why they keep ignoring the latest NIE on Iran?
    These folks have allowed the like of Micheal Ledeen, Reuel marc Gerecht, John Bolton etc to repeat one unsubstantiated claim after another for the last five years.

  40. Kathleen says:

    Pat have you read Laura Rozen’s latest over at Mother Jones on Iran?
    http://www.motherjones.com/washington_dispatch/2008/07/iran-bomb-us-israel-war-threat.html
    Washington Dispatch: Mother Jones has learned that a parade of high-level Israeli officials are on their way to the White House over the next two weeks to discuss Iran policy. Here’s where the two countries differ on what to do next.
    By Laura Rozen
    July 10, 2008

  41. David Habakkuk says:

    Clifford Kiracofe,
    You have left out Sir John Scarlett, the Henry Jackson Society, and Con Coughlin — England’s answer to Judy Miller.
    And after all, Judy was put out to pasture, while Con is still hard at it, trying to head us all over the precipice.
    (See http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/iran/2259578/Iran-has-resumed-A-bomb-project%2C-says-West.html.)
    As an Englishman, I feel that my countrymens’ earnest endeavours in the cause of chaos are being slighted.

  42. Curious says:

    Adding to Israeli concern, Clawson and Wurmser said, is uncertainty over whether the next US administration will be willing and able to get organized on Iran policy quickly enough to meet Israeli concerns about Iran’s nuclear progress as the calendar advances.
    http://www.motherjones.com/washington_dispatch/2008/07/iran-bomb-us-israel-war-threat-2.html
    So, that would be several days before Olympic than? (after Olympic, China will be unrestrained and will use its diplomatic power more rigorously to defend its interest) That will put a damper somewhat on Bush enthusiasm.
    Olympic opening is august 8.
    (anybody remember how long was it from the parade of Israel general in pentagon/white house to Iraq attack, and Lebanon war? was it a week?)

  43. different clue says:

    I just read a blogpost which offers different and non-obvious but possible and
    sensible theory about who doctored the photo. An expat American living in Spain who calls himself BAG analyses photographs for political and cultural meanings and messages in his
    BAGnews Notes blog. In his post about the doctored missile photos, he thinks some part of the Iranian government itself doctored the photo. The 3-missiles-and-a-truck picture is the original, and the 4-missiles-but-no-truck is the fake. He theorizes Iran
    made the fake to overhype its efforts and mess with CheneyBush’s head. If that is in fact so, it would explain why they deleted the
    “giveaway” truck. This theory of origin of the fake
    photo does not give me any reason to change my mind about why the MSM would run and hype this photo to the extent which the MSM has. Here is the link:
    http://bagnewsnotes.typepad.com/bagnews/2008/07/missileading-so.html#comments
    Why might Iran release such a photo (if indeed it was Iran which released it?) Perhaps to hold up their end
    of the psychological warfare
    going on between CheneyBush and the Iranian government in order to get CheneyBush to do something stupid short
    of all out attack? Perhaps to twang the trampoline-tight oil market to bounce the price higher…to push America deeper into the zone
    of no-money-left constraint on action? Tom Englehardt of TomDispatch recently wrote an article about how the oil-price is already so high as to forcibly constrain American freedom of action. Called Why Cheney Won’t Take Down Iran,
    the link is here:
    http://www.tomdispatch.com/post/174953/why_cheney_won_t_take_down_iran
    If both these theories make even more sense together than they do separately, then perhaps the
    Don’t Attack Iran movement really can prevent an attack. How? By wasting enough gas fast enough and hard enough to create price-raising shortages here in America.
    Perhaps some humor would help funny-up a very unfunny
    situation. Here is a super-photoshopped photo.
    http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3229/2658316482_848d71ed13_o.jpg
    And here is a WiredBlog collection called Attack of the Photoshopped Missiles.
    http://blog.wired.com/defense/2008/07/attack-of-the-p.html

  44. I’m not a military rocketry expert, but I do work for a company building commercial suborbital rocket vehicles (the kind where blowing up at the end of a mission is considered to be the sign of a very bad day). The reason why longer range rockets typically want to launch nearly vertically is probably the same reason why orbital launch vehicles do–to minimize the time in the atmosphere (which reduces drag losses and aerothermal heating effects). Basically, in order to go a decent distance downrange, you need both altitude and downrange velocity. Your downrange velocity needs to be well into the hypersonic range in order to get from Iran to Israel, and things get mighty toasty if you try doing that low in the atmosphere. So you fly mostly vertically at first, and then start a slow gravity turn (you intentionally tip a tiny bit, and then let gravity continue to tip you over slowly). That will typically give you the best results when you’re trying to go medium to long distances.
    Just my two cents,
    ~Jonathan Goff

  45. J says:

    a stupid israeli/bushie-cheney attack on iran will also be an attack on russia’s interests too…..
    http://www.kommersant.com/p912431/Russian-Iranian_relations_Gazprom/
    Gazprom Connects to Iran – Kommersant Moscow

  46. J says:

    Colonel,
    i don’t whether to laugh or cry reading the latest ‘stuff’ coming out of the mouths of some at the pentagon.
    U.S. says Iran has missile that could hit Europe | Reuters
    Air Force Lt. Gen. Trey Obering, director of the Missile Defense Agency, told reporters ‘HE BELIEVES’ Iran now has a missile with a range of 1,250 miles, but he declined to say whether the weapon has been test-fired………………………….
    U.S. officials and independent missile experts have said ‘last week’s tests involved no new or enhanced technology, or even the latest generations of missiles known to be in Iran’s arsenal’.
    Obering did not dispute those assertions in a briefing for Pentagon officials on Tuesday.
    But ‘HIS DESCRIPTION’ of Iran’s missile capability was stronger than what U.S. officials have said up to now.
    “The Iranians themselves are describing … a 2,000-km range missile launch,” Obering said of last week’s tests, adding that Iran also claimed to have such a missile in November.
    “I BELIEVE, based on what I have seen, that they have the ability to do that and to continue to advance in the future, based on what I have seen so far from those (Iranian state media) reports and from the intelligence reports,” he added.
    “I won’t go into detail as to what was fired when. That’s something I think the intel community should answer,” he said.
    http://www.reuters.com/article/topNews/idUSN1532412820080715?feedType=RSS&feedName=topNews&sp=true
    next i expect to hear calls for a revival tent meeting……..’i believe’, ‘he believes’…………….it appears that lgen obering understand that by his statements in such a manner he is endangering u.s. mil personnel on the ground around the entire persian gulf region, as the idiots in tel aviv and d.c. are just looking for any excuse/reason to have a war on iran. it’s sad that lgen obering doesn’t appear to understand that there is a big difference between the safe zone where he is physically located versus the location of local commanders (i.e. green zone) who have to worry about their physical ‘boots and pilots that are on the ground’, unlike a safe and tucked away zone i.e. one of obering’s missile silos where they the luxury of tea and crumpets next to the launch buttons and turn keys.

  47. different clue says:

    If the Israeli leadership and parts of the American leadership are really truly afraid of these missiles in which they believe, perhaps the Iranian leadership is well pleased at the effectiveness of its psychological warfare by wild exageration of capabilities.
    One more photoshop humor site, if permitted…
    http://www.salon.com/comics/boll/2008/07/17/boll/

  48. Indiana John says:

    It is an advertisment. Look at what a crude detonation did for North Korea. Has anyone noticed ?

  49. jakq says:

    I believe the doctored photo shows the launch failure of a Zelzal 1/2 series rocket. Comparative stills available at: http://uskowioniran.blogspot.com/2008/05/iranian-ballistic-missile-gallery-pt-1.html [second photo from the bottom].

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