My Crystal Ball is on the fritz and I cannot see how the British hostage situation in Iran will eventually turn out. But, I have slowly come to realize that the British Sailors and Marines are not likely to be rescued any time soon, if ever. My first tip-off was Tony Blair asking the UN to condemn Iran for taking the Brits hostage. I mean, the UN is about as relevant as brakes on a snail.
But… SOMETHING is going on now. It’s difficult to tell if it has to do directly with freeing the British sailors and marines, or if these are the preliminary steps for the coming attack on Iran.
Iran is bracketed by US troops. (Afghanistan on the east and Iraq on the west.) We have been moving troops to Iran’s borders and we have been moving more naval assets into the Gulf and into the vicinity of the Gulf. We now have two carrier groups (roughly 80 ships per group, already in the Gulf and a third is steaming to the Gulf, even now. I can’t learn how many subs we have in the area (Nobody Knows) but there is, most likely, at least one in the Gulf and others in the area within easy reach of Iran. That is too much hardware for a simple “show of force”. Plus, the Russians and the Chinese have pulled their personnel out of Iran in the past few days. Something is in the works.
I can’t get any clear info on what is going on at Diego Garcia (the joint UK and US military base in the Indian Ocean. It belongs to the UK but the US seems to run the place. There are something like 50 permanent British military personnel there and roughly 700 permanent US military personnel there.) There are two, or more, Marine pre-positioning ships there with equipment and material. If there are more than two… that would be another tip off. Plus, the B-2’s and B-1’s and the tanker aircraft population there. Normally the B-2’s are kept here in the states, and they are capable of a round trip bombing mission to Iran. But if we intend to make multiple bombing runs, at least some of them would be flown, in advance, to Diego Garcia, and fly their missions from there. It will take several days of strategic bombing to do enough damage to Iran’s facilities to actually set them back for a few months. That’s all we can hope for now, without an extended land war. Their bomb-making program is too far advanced to stop it outright without an invasion.
We can work the Iran problem without an invasion, and I fully expect that is what we will do. However, without ground troops, the air war will be a protracted exercise. We will take losses in the air. Iran is equipped with the latest Russian anti-aircraft missiles, especially around their atomic facilities. So, we can expect to see downed American airmen paraded thru the streets of Teheran.
I had thought we would allow Israel to have the Public Face on the Iran attack, but it is looking more and more as if the US, and now the UK, are going to take the lead. I understood that it would be all of us… us being: the UK, Australia, the
US, and Israel, actually participating in the raids, when they come, but I figured we’d step back, out of the limelight, on this one. Looks as if I am wrong.
Now here's the thing: The current Israeli government is likely to fall, within a few weeks, and a new government placed in power to ... well... go to war.
Israel knows she needs to attack Hezbollah in Southrn Lebanon... again... and fairly soon. When she strikes this time, with a new government, it is likely she will strike Hezbollah in all directions. It seems unlikey, to me, that Israel will allow Hezbollah to continue to exist near any of her borders.
Israel is preparing to use her atomic arsenal against Iran... if it comes to that. First she needs to rid herself of the Hezbollah threat. It makes sense, when viewed from this angle, that she clean out Southern Lebanon as quickly as she can to be able to concentrate on Iran.
Israel is not relying on the West to take out Iran. Plus, Israel knows she is incapable of the job with only conventional weapons. That leaves her nuclear arsenal which, I have no doubt, she will use against Iran's nuclear facilities.Many readers thought I was full of it when this thing started and I said we were in for a 50-year war. I stick by that. This thing has just begun. It’s only going to get bigger, and spread to a regional conflict and, eventually, into a third world war. What we have is as close to a perpetual motion machine as is possible. It is feeding on itself and will grow until it implodes.
Iran is the key. Iran is providing the money and the material for the “insurgents” and the terrorists world-wide. We have to take Iran out. As long as Iran remains viable, the war in Iraq will not slow nor cease. Even if we leave Iraq, it will spill over and grow into that “regional conflict” we all dread. I don’t see how it can be avoided. Unfortunately, I’m afraid we have waited too long to strike Iran, now. Our tardiness is only going to cost us more casualties now. Some one, some nation, must nutralize Iran. It's going to happen, it only remains to see whether it's the US, or Israel, stepping up to the plate.
Now, if I know this, the President knows this. But he is committed. I think he has decided that he is condemned... no matter what… so he might as well go ahead and do the job his way and be done with it. Even if Congress cuts off the funds, this President is not going to back down. He’ll get the money, most likely from allies. The Saudi’s don’t want Iran taking over the Middle East anymore than we do. They will see that we have the funding for our troops to keep Iran and Iraq out of their backyard.
This is going to get a lot nastier before it gets any better. I’m still looking for the mushroom cloud over New York and Washington. We’re in this thing up to our necks and there is no getting out no matter what Pelosi says.