What war with Iran would look like

by | Sep 18, 2006 | Stress Blog | 2 comments

From a summary of a new Time story:
Full article here

The first message was routine enough: a “Prepare to Deploy Order” sent through Naval communications channels to a submarine, an Aegis-class cruiser, two minesweepers and two minehunters.

The orders didn’t actually command the ships out of port; they just said be ready to move by October 1.

A deployment of minesweepers to the east coast of Iran would seem to suggest that a much discussed, but until now largely theoretical, prospect has become real: that the U.S. may be preparing for war with Iran. …

So what would it look like? Interviews with dozens of experts and government officials in Washington, Tehran and elsewhere in the Middle East paint a sobering picture: Military action against Iran’s nuclear facilities would have a decent chance of succeeding, but at a staggering cost. …

No one is talking about a ground invasion of Iran. Too many U.S. troops are tied down elsewhere to make it possible, and besides, it isn’t necessary. If the U.S. goal is simply to stunt Iran’s nuclear program, it can be done better and more safely by air.

An attack limited to Iran’s nuclear facilities would nonetheless require a massive campaign. Experts say that Iran has between 18 and 30 nuclear-related facilities. The sites are dispersed around the country — some in the open, some cloaked in the guise of conventional factories, some buried deep underground.

A U.S. strike would have a lasting impression on Iran’s rulers. U.S. officials believe that a campaign of several days could set back Iran’s nuclear program by two to three years. Hit hard enough, some believe, Iranians might develop second thoughts about their government’s designs as a regional nuclear power.

Some U.S. foes of Iran’s regime believe that the crisis of legitimacy that the ruling clerics would face in the wake of a U.S. attack could trigger their downfall, though others are convinced it would unite the population with the government in anti-American rage.


Maybe this is just a trial balloon. Would Bush/Cheney dare without Congress? Would our troops survive the Revenge of the Shia in Iraq? Would those who say “the crisis of legitimacy that the ruling clerics would face in the wake of a U.S. attack could trigger their downfall” be hung up-side down and beaten to death like Moussoulini in the public square when that fails to occur?

Will the 77% snap out of it before it’s too late? Will a single reporter from TV ever interview Gordon Prather or Mohammed ElBaredei about the truth of the matter?

Can the forms of our old republic continue to exist when the last of the details are gone?

Via Justin and Kev.

Oh, yeah, and read this too.

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