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by Jaxhawk

Time to Take Iran's Nuclear Threat Seriously

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- Iran Focus has learnt that the photograph of Iran’s President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, holding the arm of a blindfolded American hostage on the premises of the United States embassy in Tehran was taken by an Associated Press photographer in November 1979. Prior to the first round of the presidential elections on June 17, Iran Focus was the first news service to reveal Ahmadinejad’s role in the seizure of the U.S. embassy in Tehran. This man has been, and still is a terrorist who is in the process of developing a nuclear bomb. A bomb that he denies on one occasion to be building, and on another threatens to use against Israel and U.S. military bases if attacked by Israel. It is time to take this mad man, megalomaniac seriously! Yet, we are in the middle of a Presidential campaign, and not one candidate on the Democrat side and too few on the Republican side have even mentioned how they would deal with this real threat if elected. Anthony Cordesman may be the most influential man in Washington that most people have never heard of. A former director of intelligence assessment for the secretary of defense and director of policy and planning in the Department of Energy, he is now the top strategic "guru" at the Center for Strategic & International Studies. He believes it is a real possibility that Iran is developing a nuclear weapon. In the real world outside of politics, this matters mainly because an Iranian nuclear capability would transform the power balance in the Middle East, and leave the region and the rest of us living under the constant prospect of a nuclear exchange between Iran and Israel. Cordesman theorizes that the biggest bomb that Iran is expected to have is 100 kilotons, which can inflict third-degree burns on exposed flesh at 8 miles; Israel's 1-megaton bombs can inflict third-degree burns at 24 miles. Moreover, the radiation fallout from an airburst of such a 1-megaton bomb can kill unsheltered people at up to 80 miles within 18 hours as the radiation plume drifts. Cordesman assumes that Iran, with less than 30 nuclear warheads in the period after 2010, would aim for the main population centers of Tel Aviv and Haifa, while Israel would have more than 200 warheads and far better delivery systems, including cruise missiles launched from its 3 Dolphin-class submarines. Cordesman also notes that Israel, if attacked or threatened with an attack, would have various options, in addition to a strike on Iran. A limited nuclear strike on the region mainly inhabited by the Alawite minority in Syria, from which come the ruling Assad dynasty. A full-scale Israeli attack on Syria would kill up to 18 million people within 21 days; Syrian recovery would not be possible. A Syrian attack with all its reputed chemical and biological warfare assets could kill up to 800,000 Israelis, but Israeli society would be able to recover. So in a clear, and chillingly style, Cordesman spells out that he believes the real stakes in the crisis that is building over Iran's nuclear ambitions would certainly include the end of Persian civilization, quite probably the end of Egyptian civilization, and the end of the Oil Age. This would also mean the end of globalization and the extraordinary accomplishments in world trade, growth and prosperity that are hauling hundreds of millions of out of poverty. Cordesman also lists the oil wells, refineries and ports along the Gulf that could also be targets in the event of a mass nuclear response by an Israel convinced that it was being dealt a potentially mortal blow. If it was contained within the region, such a nuclear exchange might not be Armageddon for the human race; it would certainly be Armageddon for the global economy. Source: Middle East Times





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