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Targeting Iran: Is the US Administration Planning a Nuclear Holocaust?
#1
It seems extreme on the one hand but the US is the only nation which has used these weapons of mass destruction in the past. It was also totally un-necessary in that case for them to be used as it was known that Japan was to run out of fuel in a few weeks time and they had been putting out feelers for surrendering. The present incarnation of US imperialism is in its death throes and desperate enough to resort to such drastic measures. It will sure change the game plan for all concerned, not just Iran, if they do this though. Certainly not impossible to contemplate.
Quote:Targeting Iran: Is the US Administration Planning a Nuclear Holocaust?

by Michel Chossudovsky

[Image: 20536.jpg] Global Research, August 9, 2010
- 2006-02-22



The US and its allies are preparing to launch a nuclear war directed against Iran with devastating consequences.

This military adventure in the real sense of the word threatens the future of humanity.
While one can conceptualize the loss of life and destruction resulting from present-day wars including Iraq and Afghanistan, it is impossible to fully comprehend the devastation which might result from a Third World War, using "new technologies" and advanced weapons, until it occurs and becomes a reality.
The international community has endorsed nuclear war in the name of World Peace. "Making the World safer" is the justification for launching a military operation which could potentially result in a nuclear holocaust.
But nuclear holocausts are not front page news! In the words of Mordechai Vanunu,
The Israeli government is preparing to use nuclear weapons in its next war with the Islamic world. Here where I live, people often talk of the Holocaust. But each and every nuclear bomb is a Holocaust in itself. It can kill, devastate cities, destroy entire peoples. (See interview with Mordechai Vanunu, December 2005).
Realities are turned upside d own. In a twisted logic, a "humanitarian war" using tactical nuclear weapons, which according to "expert scientific opinion" are "harmless to the surrounding civilian population" is upheld as a means to protecting Israel and the Western World from a nuclear attack.
America's mini-nukes with an explosive capacity of up to six times a Hiroshima bomb are upheld by authoritative scientific opinion as a humanitarian bomb, whereas Iran's nonexistent nuclear weapons are branded as an indisputable threat to global security.
When a US sponsored nuclear war become an "instrument of peace", condoned and accepted by the World's institutions and the highest authority, including the United Nations, there is no turning back: human society has indelibly been precipitated headlong onto the path of self-destruction.
The following article first published in February 2006 under the title Is the Bush Administration Planning a Nuclear Holocaust? Will the US launch "Mini-nukes" against Iran in Retaliation for Tehran's "Non-compliance"? documents in detail America's doctrine of preemptive nuclear war, including war plans directed against Iran. What is important to underscore is that five years ago, these war preparations were already in an advanced stage of readiness.

The operational procedures for launching a nuclear war under the umbrella of US Strategic Command are examined.

We are at a dangerous crossroads: The rules and guidelines governing the use nuclear weapons have been "liberalized" (i.e. "deregulated" in relation to those prevailing during the Cold War era). The new doctrine states that Command, Control, and Coordination (CCC) regarding the use of nuclear weapons should be "flexible", allowing geographic combat commanders to decide if and when to use of nuclear weapons: "Geographic combat commanders would be in charge of Theater Nuclear Operations (TNO), with a mandate not only to implement but also to formulate command decisions pertaining to nuclear weapons." ( Doctrine for Joint Nuclear Operations Doctrine )

We have reached a critical turning point in our history. It is absolutely essential that people accross the land, nationally and internationally, understand the gravity of the present situation and act forcefully against their governments to reverse the tide of war.

Michel Chossudovsky, August 9, 2010

"We have discovered the most terrible bomb in the history of the world. It may be the fire destruction prophesied in the Euphrates Valley Era, after Noah and his fabulous Ark.... This weapon is to be used against Japan ... [We] will use it so that military objectives and soldiers and sailors are the target and not women and children. Even if the Japs are savages, ruthless, merciless and fanatic, we as the leader of the world for the common welfare cannot drop that terrible bomb on the old capital or the new. ... The target will be a purely military one... It seems to be the most terrible thing ever discovered, but it can be made the most useful."

(President Harry S. Truman, Diary, July 25, 1945)
"The World will note that the first atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima a military base. That was because we wished in this first attack to avoid, insofar as possible, the killing of civilians.." (President Harry S. Truman in a radio speech to the Nation, August 9, 1945).

[Note: the first atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima on August 6, 1945; the Second on Nagasaki, on August 9, on the same day as Truman's radio speech to the Nation]

(Listen to Excerpt of his speech, Hiroshima audio video)
At no point since the first atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima on August 6th, 1945, has humanity been closer to the unthinkable, a nuclear holocaust which could potentially spread, in terms of radioactive fallout, over a large part of the Middle East.
All the safeguards of the Cold War era, which categorized the nuclear bomb as "a weapon of last resort" have been scrapped. "Offensive" military actions using nuclear warheads are now described as acts of "self-defense".
The distinction between tactical nuclear weapons and the conventional battlefield arsenal has been blurred. America's new nuclear doctrine is based on "a mix of strike capabilities". The latter, which specifically applies to the Pentagon's planned aerial bombing of Iran, envisages the use of nukes in combination with conventional weapons.
As in the case of the first atomic bomb, which in the words of President Harry Truman "was dropped on Hiroshima, a military base", today's "mini-nukes" are heralded as "safe for the surrounding civilian population".
Known in official Washington, as "Joint Publication 3-12", the new nuclear doctrine (Doctrine for Joint Nuclear Operations , (DJNO) (March 2005)) calls for "integrating conventional and nuclear attacks" under a unified and "integrated" Command and Control (C2).
It largely describes war planning as a management decision-making process, where military and strategic objectives are to be achieved, through a mix of instruments, with little concern for the resulting loss of human life.
Military planning focuses on "the most efficient use of force" , -i.e. an optimal arrangement of different weapons systems to achieve stated military goals. In this context, nuclear and conventional weapons are considered to be "part of the tool box", from which military commanders can pick and choose the instruments that they require in accordance with "evolving circumstances" in the war theater. (None of these weapons in the Pentagon's "tool box", including conventional bunker buster bombs, cluster bombs, mini-nukes, chemical and biological weapons are described as "weapons of mass destruction" when used by the United States of America and its coalition partners).
The stated objective is to:
"ensure the most efficient use of force and provide US leaders with a broader range of [nuclear and conventional] strike options to address immediate contingencies. Integration of conventional and nuclear forces is therefore crucial to the success of any comprehensive strategy. This integration will ensure optimal targeting, minimal collateral damage, and reduce the probability of escalation." (Doctrine for Joint Nuclear Operations p. JP 3-12-13)
The new nuclear doctrine turns concepts and realities upside down. It not only denies the devastating impacts of nuclear weapons, it states, in no uncertain terms, that nuclear weapons are "safe" and their use in the battlefield will ensure "minimal collateral damage and reduce the probability of escalation". The issue of radioactive fallout is barely acknowledged with regard to tactical nuclear weapons. These various guiding principles which describe nukes as "safe for civilians" constitute a consensus within the military, which is then fed into the military manuals, providing relevant "green light" criteria to geographical commanders in the war theater.
"Defensive" and "Offensive" Actions
While the 2001 Nuclear Posture Review sets the stage for the preemptive use of nuclear weapons in the Middle East, specifically against Iran (see also the main PNAC document Rebuilding America`s Defenses, Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century )
The Doctrine for Joint Nuclear Operations goes one step further in blurring the distinction between "defensive" and "offensive" military actions:
"The new triad offers a mix of strategic offensive and defensive capabilities that includes nuclear and non-nuclear strike capabilities, active and passive defenses, and a robust research, development, and industrial infrastructure to develop, build, and maintain offensive forces and defensive systems ..." (Ibid) (key concepts indicated in added italics)
The new nuclear doctrine, however, goes beyond preemptive acts of "self-defense", it calls for "anticipatory action" using nuclear weapons against a "rogue enemy" which allegedly plans to develop WMD at some undefined future date:
"Responsible security planning requires preparation for threats that are possible, though perhaps unlikely today. The lessons of military history remain clear: unpredictable, irrational conflicts occur. Military forces must prepare to counter weapons and capabilities that exist or will exist in the near term even if no immediate likely scenarios for war are at hand. To maximize deterrence of WMD use, it is essential US forces prepare to use nuclear weapons effectively and that US forces are determined to employ nuclear weapons if necessary to prevent or retaliate against WMD use." (Ibid, p. III-1, italics added)
Nukes would serve to prevent a non-existent WMD program (e.g. Iran) prior to its development. This twisted formulation goes far beyond the premises of the 2001 Nuclear Posture Review and NPSD 17. which state that the US can retaliate with nuclear weapons if attacked with WMD:
"The United States will make clear that it reserves the right to respond with overwhelming force – including potentially nuclear weapons – to the use of [weapons of mass destruction] against the United States, our forces abroad, and friends and allies." ... (NSPD 17)
"Integration" of Nuclear and Conventional Weapons Plans
The Doctrine for Joint Nuclear Operations outlines the procedures governing the use of nuclear weapons and the nature of the relationship between nuclear and conventional war operations.
The DJNO states that the:
"use of nuclear weapons within a [war] theater requires that nuclear and conventional plans be integrated to the greatest extent possible"
(DJNO, p 47 italics added, italics added, For further details see Michel Chossudovsky, Nuclear War against Iran, Jan 2006 )
The implications of this "integration" are far-reaching because once the decision is taken by the Commander in Chief, namely the President of the United States, to launch a joint conventional-nuclear military operation, there is a risk that tactical nuclear weapons could be used without requesting subsequent presidential approval. In this regard, execution procedures under the jurisdiction of the theater commanders pertaining to nuclear weapons are described as "flexible and allow for changes in the situation":
"Geographic combatant commanders are responsible for defining theater objectives and developing nuclear plans required to support those objectives, including selecting targets. When tasked, CDRUSSTRATCOM, as a supporting combatant commander, provides detailed planning support to meet theater planning requirements. All theater nuclear option planning follows prescribed Joint Operation Planning and Execution System procedures to formulate and implement an effective response within the timeframe permitted by the crisis..
Since options do not exist for every scenario, combatant commanders must have a capability to perform crisis action planning and execute those plans. Crisis action planning provides the capability to develop new options, or modify existing options, when current limited or major response options are inappropriate.
...Command, control, and coordination must be flexible enough to allow the geographic combatant commander to strike time-sensitive targets such as mobile missile launch platforms." Doctrine for Joint Nuclear Operations Doctrine (italics added)
Theater Nuclear Operations (TNO)
While presidential approval is formally required to launch a nuclear war, geographic combat commanders would be in charge of Theater Nuclear Operations (TNO), with a mandate not only to implement but also to formulate command decisions pertaining to nuclear weapons. ( Doctrine for Joint Nuclear Operations Doctrine )
We are no longer dealing with "the risk" associated with "an accidental or inadvertent nuclear launch" as outlined by former Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara , but with a military decision-making process which provides military commanders, from the Commander in Chief down to the geographical commanders with discretionary powers to use tactical nuclear weapons.
Moreover, because these "smaller" tactical nuclear weapons have been "reclassified" by the Pentagon as "safe for the surrounding civilian population", thereby "minimizing the risk of collateral damage", there are no overriding built-in restrictions which prevent their use. (See Michel Chossudovsky, The Dangers of a Middle East Nuclear War , Global Research, February 2006) .
Once a decision to launch a military operation is taken (e.g. aerial strikes on Iran), theater commanders have a degree of latitude. What this signifies in practice is once the presidential decision is taken, USSTRATCOM in liaison with theater commanders can decide on the targeting and type of weaponry to be used. Stockpiled tactical nuclear weapons are now considered to be an integral part of the battlefield arsenal. In other words, nukes have become "part of the tool box", used in conventional war theaters.
Planned Aerial Attacks on Iran
An operational plan to wage aerial attacks on Iran has been in "a state of readiness" since June 2005. Essential military hardware to wage this operation has been deployed. (For further details see Michel Chossudovsky, Nuclear War against Iran, Jan 2006 ).
Vice President Dick Cheney has ordered USSTRATCOM to draft a "contingency plan", which "includes a large-scale air assault on Iran employing both conventional and tactical nuclear weapons." (Philip Giraldi, Attack on Iran: Pre-emptive Nuclear War , The American Conservative, 2 August 2005).
USSTRATCOM would have the responsibility for overseeing and coordinating this military deployment as well as launching the military operation. (For details, Michel Chossudovsky, Nuclear War against Iran, Jan 2006 ).
In January 2005 a significant shift in USSTRATCOM's mandate was implemented. USSTRATCOM was identified as "the lead Combatant Command for integration and synchronization of DoD-wide efforts in combating weapons of mass destruction." To implement this mandate, a brand new command unit entitled Joint Functional Component Command Space and Global Strike , or JFCCSGS was created.
Overseen by USSTRATCOM, JFCCSGS would be responsible for the launching of military operations "using nuclear or conventional weapons" in compliance with the Bush administration's new nuclear doctrine. Both categories of weapons would be integrated into a "joint strike operation" under unified Command and Control.
According to Robert S. Norris and Hans M. Kristensen, writing in the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists,
"The Defense Department is upgrading its nuclear strike plans to reflect new presidential guidance and a transition in war planning from the top-heavy Single Integrated Operational Plan of the Cold War to a family of smaller and more flexible strike plans designed to defeat today's adversaries. The new central strategic war plan is known as OPLAN (Operations Plan) 8044.... This revised, detailed plan provides more flexible options to assure allies, and dissuade, deter, and if necessary, defeat adversaries in a wider range of contingencies....
One member of the new family is CONPLAN 8022, a concept plan for the quick use of nuclear, conventional, or information warfare capabilities to destroy--preemptively, if necessary--"time-urgent targets" anywhere in the world. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld issued an Alert Order in early 2004 that directed the military to put CONPLAN 8022 into effect. As a result, the Bush administration's preemption policy is now operational on long-range bombers, strategic submarines on deterrent patrol, and presumably intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs)."
The operational implementation of the Global Strike would be under CONCEPT PLAN (CONPLAN) 8022, which now consists of "an actual plan that the Navy and the Air Force translate into strike package for their submarines and bombers,' (Japanese Economic Newswire, 30 December 2005, For further details see Michel Chossudovsky, Nuclear War against Iran, op. cit.).
CONPLAN 8022 is 'the overall umbrella plan for sort of the pre-planned strategic scenarios involving nuclear weapons.'
'It's specifically focused on these new types of threats -- Iran, North Korea -- proliferators and potentially terrorists too,' he said. 'There's nothing that says that they can't use CONPLAN 8022 in limited scenarios against Russian and Chinese targets.' (According to Hans Kristensen, of the Nuclear Information Project, quoted in Japanese Economic News Wire, op. cit.)
Nuclear Weapons Deployment Authorization
The planning of the aerial bombings of Iran started in mid-2004, pursuant to the formulation of CONPLAN 8022 in early 2004. In May 2004, National Security Presidential Directive NSPD 35 entitled Nuclear Weapons Deployment Authorization was issued.
The contents of this highly sensitive document remains a carefully guarded State secret. There has been no mention of NSPD 35 by the media nor even in Congressional debates. While its contents remains classified, the presumption is that NSPD 35 pertains to the deployment of tactical nuclear weapons in the Middle East war theater in compliance with CONPLAN 8022.
In this regard, a recent press report published in Yeni Safak (Turkey) suggests that the United States is currently:
"deploying B61-type tactical nuclear weapons in southern Iraq as part of a plan to hit Iran from this area if and when Iran responds to an Israeli attack on its nuclear facilities". (Ibrahim Karagul, "The US is Deploying Nuclear Weapons in Iraq Against Iran", (Yeni Safak,. 20 December 2005, quoted in BBC Monitoring Europe).
This deployment in Iraq appears to be pursuant to NSPD 35 ,
What the Yenbi Safak report suggests is that conventional weapons would be used in the first instance, and if Iran were to retaliate in response to US-Israeli aerial attacks, tactical thermonuclear B61 weapons could then be launched This retaliation using tactical nuclear weapons would be consistent with the guidelines contained in the 2001 Nuclear Posture Review and NSPD 17 (see above).
Israel's Stockpiling of Conventional and Nuclear Weapons
Israel is part of the military alliance and is slated to play a major role in the planned attacks on Iran. (For details see Michel Chossudovsky, Nuclear War against Iran, Jan 2006 ).
Confirmed by several press reports, Israel has taken delivery, starting in September 2004 of some 500 US produced BLU 109 bunker buster bombs (WP, January 6, 2006). The first procurement order for BLU 109 [Bomb Live Unit] dates to September 2004. In April 2005, Washington confirmed that Israel was to take delivery of 100 of the more sophisticated bunker buster bomb GBU-28 produced by Lockheed Martin ( Reuters, April 26, 2005). The GBU-28 is described as "a 5,000-pound laser-guided conventional munitions that uses a 4,400-pound penetrating warhead." It was used in the Iraqi war theater:
The Pentagon [stated] that ... the sale to Israel of 500 BLU-109 warheads, [was] meant to "contribute significantly to U.S. strategic and tactical objectives." .
Mounted on satellite-guided bombs, BLU-109s can be fired from F-15 or F-16 jets, U.S.-made aircraft in Israel's arsenal. This year Israel received the first of a fleet of 102 long-range F-16Is from Washington, its main ally. "Israel very likely manufactures its own bunker busters, but they are not as robust as the 2,000-pound (910 kg) BLUs," Robert Hewson, editor of Jane's Air-Launched Weapons, told Reuters. (Reuters, 21 September 2004)
The report does not confirm whether Israel has stockpiled and deployed the thermonuclear version of the bunker buster bomb. Nor does it indicate whether the Israeli made bunker buster bombs are equipped with nuclear warheads. It is worth noting that this stock piling of bunker buster bombs occurred within a few months after the Release of the NPSD 35¸ Nuclear Weapons Deployment Authorization (May 2004).
Israel possesses 100-200 strategic nuclear warheads . In 2003, Washington and Tel Aviv confirmed that they were collaborating in "the deployment of US-supplied Harpoon cruise missiles armed with nuclear warheads in Israel's fleet of Dolphin-class submarines." (The Observer, 12 October 2003) . In more recent developments, which coincide with the preparations of strikes against Iran, Israel has taken delivery of two new German produced submarines "that could launch nuclear-armed cruise missiles for a "second-strike" deterrent." (Newsweek, 13 February 2006. See also CDI Data Base)
Israel's tactical nuclear weapons capabilities are not known
Israel's participation in the aerial attacks will also act as a political bombshell throughout the Middle East. It would contribute to escalation, with a war zone which could extend initially into Lebanon and Syria. The entire region from the Eastern Mediterranean to Central Asia and Afghanistan's Western frontier would be affected..
The Role of Western Europe
Several Western European countries, officially considered as "non-nuclear states", possess tactical nuclear weapons, supplied to them by Washington.
The US has supplied some 480 B61 thermonuclear bombs to five non-nuclear NATO countries including Belgium, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Turkey, and one nuclear country, the United Kingdom. Casually disregarded by the Vienna based UN Nuclear Watch, the US has actively contributed to the proliferation of nuclear weapons in Western Europe.
As part of this European stockpiling, Turkey, which is a partner of the US-led coalition against Iran along with Israel, possesses some 90 thermonuclear B61 bunker buster bombs at the Incirlik nuclear air base. (National Resources Defense Council, Nuclear Weapons in Europe , February 2005)
Consistent with US nuclear policy, the stockpiling and deployment of B61 in Western Europe are intended for targets in the Middle East. Moreover, in accordance with "NATO strike plans", these thermonuclear B61 bunker buster bombs (stockpiled by the "non-nuclear States") could be launched "against targets in Russia or countries in the Middle East such as Syria and Iran" ( quoted in National Resources Defense Council, Nuclear Weapons in Europe , February 2005)
Moreover, confirmed by (partially) declassified documents (released under the U.S. Freedom of Information Act):
"arrangements were made in the mid-1990s to allow the use of U.S. nuclear forces in Europe outside the area of responsibility of U.S. European Command (EUCOM). As a result of these arrangements, EUCOM now supports CENTCOM nuclear missions in the Middle East, including, potentially, against Iran and Syria"
(quoted in http://www.nukestrat.com/us/afn/nato.htm italics added)
With the exception of the US, no other nuclear power "has nuclear weapons earmarked for delivery by non-nuclear countries." (National Resources Defense Council, op cit)
While these "non-nuclear states" casually accuse Tehran of developing nuclear weapons, without documentary evidence, they themselves have capabilities of delivering nuclear warheads, which are targeted at Iran. To say that this is a clear case of "double standards" by the IAEA and the "international community" is a understatement.
Germany: De Facto Nuclear Power
Among the five "non-nuclear states" "Germany remains the most heavily nuclearized country with three nuclear bases (two of which are fully operational) and may store as many as 150 [B61 bunker buster ] bombs" (Ibid). In accordance with "NATO strike plans" (mentioned above) these tactical nuclear weapons are also targeted at the Middle East.
While Germany is not officially a nuclear power, it produces nuclear warheads for the French Navy. It stockpiles nuclear warheads and it has the capabilities of delivering nuclear weapons. The European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company - EADS , a Franco-German-Spanish joint venture, controlled by Deutsche Aerospace and the powerful Daimler Group is Europe's second largest military producer, supplying .France's M51 nuclear missile.
France Endorses the Preemptive Nuclear Doctrine
In January 2006, French President Jacques Chirac announced a major shift in France's nuclear policy.
Without mentioning Iran, Chirac intimated that France's nukes should be used in the form of "more focused attacks" against countries, which were "considering" the deployment of Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD).
He also hinted to the possibility that tactical nuclear weapons could be used in conventional war theaters, very much in line with both US and NATO nuclear doctrine (See Chirac shifts French doctrine for use of nuclear weapons , Nucleonics Week January 26, 2006).
The French president seems to have embraced the US sponsored "War on Terrorism". He presented nuclear weapons as a means to build a safer World and combat terrorism:
Nuclear weapons are not meant to be used against "fanatical terrorists," nevertheless "the leaders of states which used terrorist means against us, as well as those who considered using, in one way or another, weapons of mass destruction, must understand that they are exposing themselves to a firm, appropriate response on our side...".(Ibid)
Although Chirac made no reference to the preemptive use of nuclear weapons, his statement broadly replicates the premises of the Bush administration's 2001 Nuclear Posture Review , which calls for the use of tactical nuclear weapons against ''rogue states" and "terrorist non-state organizations".
Building a Pretext for a Preemptive Nuclear Attack
The pretext for waging war on Iran essentially rests on two fundamental premises, which are part of the Bush administration's National Security doctrine.
1. Iran's alleged possession of "Weapons of Mass Destruction" (WMD), more specifically its nuclear enrichment program.
2. Iran's alleged support to "Islamic terrorists".
These are two interrelated statements which are an integral part of the propaganda and media disinformation campaign.
The "Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)" statement is used to justify the "pre-emptive war" against the "State sponsors of terror", --i.e. countries such as Iran and North Korea which allegedly possess WMD. Iran is identified as a State sponsor of so-called "non-State terrorist organizations". The latter also possess WMDs and potentially constitute a nuclear threat. Terrorist non-state organizations are presented as a "nuclear power".
"The enemies in this [long] war are not traditional conventional military forces but rather dispersed, global terrorist networks that exploit Islam to advance radical political aims. These enemies have the avowed aim of acquiring and using nuclear and biological weapons to murder hundreds of thousands of Americans and others around the world." (2006 Quadrennial Defense Review ),
In contrast, Germany and Israel which produce and possess nuclear warheads are not considered "nuclear powers".
In recent months, the pretext for war, building on this WMD-Islamic terrorist nexus, has been highlighted ad nauseam, on a daily basis by the Western media.
In a testimony to the US Senate Budget Committee, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice accused Iran and Syria of destabilizing the Middle East and providing support to militant Islamic groups. She described Iran as the "a central banker for terrorism", not withstanding the fact amply documented that Al Qaeda has been supported and financed from its inception in the early 1980s by none other than the CIA. (See Michel Chossudovsky, Who is Osama bin Laden, Global Research 2001).
"It's not just Iran's nuclear program but also their support for terrorism around the world. They are, in effect, the central banker for terrorism," (Statement to the Senate Budget Committee, 16 February 2006)
"Second 9/11": Cheney's "Contingency Plan"
While the "threat" of Iran's alleged WMD is slated for debate at the UN Security Council, Vice President Dick Cheney is reported to have instructed USSTRATCOM to draw up a contingency plan "to be employed in response to another 9/11-type terrorist attack on the United States". This "contingency plan" to attack Iran uses the pretext of a "Second 9/11" which has not yet happened, to prepare for a major military operation against Iran.
The contingency plan, which is characterized by a military build up in anticipation of possible aerial strikes against Iran, is in a "state of readiness".
What is diabolical is that the justification to wage war on Iran rests on Iran's involvement in a terrorist attack on America, which has not yet occurred:
The plan includes a large-scale air assault on Iran employing both conventional and tactical nuclear weapons. Within Iran there are more than 450 major strategic targets, including numerous suspected nuclear-weapons-program development sites. Many of the targets are hardened or are deep underground and could not be taken out by conventional weapons, hence the nuclear option. As in the case of Iraq, the response is not conditional on Iran actually being involved in the act of terrorism directed against the United States. Several senior Air Force officers involved in the planning are reportedly appalled at the implications of what they are doing—that Iran is being set up for an unprovoked nuclear attack—but no one is prepared to damage his career by posing any objections. (Philip Giraldi, Attack on Iran: Pre-emptive Nuclear War , The American Conservative, 2 August 2005)
Are we to understand that US military planners are waiting in limbo for a Second 9/11, to launch a military operation directed against Iran, which is currently in a "state of readiness"?
Cheney's proposed "contingency plan" does not focus on preventing a Second 9/11. The Cheney plan is predicated on the presumption that Iran would be behind a Second 9/11 and that punitive bombings would immediately be activated, prior to the conduct of an investigation, much in the same way as the attacks on Afghanistan in October 2001, allegedly in retribution for the role of the Taliban government in support of the 9/11 terrorists. It is worth noting that the bombing and invasion of Afghanistan had been planned well in advance of 9/11. As Michael Keefer points out in an incisive review article:
"At a deeper level, it implies that “9/11-type terrorist attacks” are recognized in Cheney’s office and the Pentagon as appropriate means of legitimizing wars of aggression against any country selected for that treatment by the regime and its corporate propaganda-amplification system.... (Keefer, February 2006 )
Keefer concludes that "an attack on Iran, which would presumably involve the use of significant numbers of extremely ‘dirty’ earth-penetrating nuclear bombs, might well be made to follow a dirty-bomb attack on the United States, which would be represented in the media as having been carried out by Iranian agents" (Keefer, February 2006 )
The Battle for Oil
The Anglo-American oil companies are indelibly behind Cheney's "contingency plan" to wage war on Iran. The latter is geared towards territorial and corporate control over oil and gas reserves as well as pipeline routes.
There is continuity in US Middle East war plans, from the Democrats to the Republicans. The essential features of Neoconservative discourse were already in place under the Clinton administration. US Central Command's (USCENTCOM) theater strategy in the mid-1990s was geared towards securing, from an economic and military standpoint, control over Middle East oil.
"The broad national security interests and objectives expressed in the President's National Security Strategy (NSS) and the Chairman's National Military Strategy (NMS) form the foundation of the United States Central Command's theater strategy. The NSS directs implementation of a strategy of dual containment of the rogue states of Iraq and Iran as long as those states pose a threat to U.S. interests, to other states in the region, and to their own citizens. Dual containment is designed to maintain the balance of power in the region without depending on either Iraq or Iran. USCENTCOM's theater strategy is interest-based and threat-focused. The purpose of U.S. engagement, as espoused in the NSS, is to protect the United States' vital interest in the region - uninterrupted, secure U.S./Allied access to Gulf oil.
(USCENTCOM, http://www.milnet.com/milnet/pentagon/ce...m#USPolicy , italics added)
Iran possesses 10 percent of global oil and gas reserves, The US is the first and foremost military and nuclear power in the World, but it possesses less than 3 percent of global oil and gas reserves.
On the other hand, the countries inhabited by Muslims, including the Middle East, North Africa, Central Asia, West and Central Africa, Malaysia, Indonesia and Brunei, possess approximately 80 percent of the World's oil and gas reserves.
The "war on terrorism" and the hate campaign directed against Muslims, which has gained impetus in recent months, bears a direct relationship to the "Battle for Middle East Oil". How best to conquer these vast oil reserves located in countries inhabited by Muslims? Build a political consensus against Muslim countries, describe them as "uncivilized", denigrate their culture and religion, implement ethnic profiling against Muslims in Western countries, foster hatred and racism against the inhabitants of the oil producing countries.
The values of Islam are said to be tied into "Islamic terrorism". Western governments are now accusing Iran of "exporting terrorism to the West" In the words of Prime Minister Tony Blair:
"There is a virus of extremism which comes out of the cocktail of religious fanaticism and political repression in the Middle East which is now being exported to the rest of the world. "We will only secure our future if we are dealing with every single aspect of that problem. Our future security depends on sorting out the stability of that region.""You can never say never in any of these situations." (quoted in the Mirror, 7 February 2006)
Muslims are demonized, casually identified with "Islamic terrorists", who are also described as constituting a nuclear threat. In turn, the terrorists are supported by Iran, an Islamic Republic which threatens the "civilized World" with deadly nuclear weapons (which it does not possess). In contrast, America's humanitarian "nuclear weapons will be accurate, safe and reliable."
The World is at a Critical Cross-roads
It is not Iran which is a threat to global security but the United States of America and Israel.
In recent developments, Western European governments --including the so-called "non-nuclear states" which possess nuclear weapons-- have joined the bandwagon. In chorus, Western Europe and the member states of the Atlantic alliance (NATO) have endorsed the US-led military initiative against Iran.
The Pentagon's planned aerial attacks on Iran involve "scenarios" using both nuclear and conventional weapons. While this does not imply the use of nuclear weapons, the potential danger of a Middle East nuclear holocaust must, nonetheless, be taken seriously. It must become a focal point of the antiwar movement, particularly in the United States, Western Europe, Israel and Turkey.
It should also be understood that China and Russia are (unofficially) allies of Iran, supplying them with advanced military equipment and a sophisticated missile defense system. It is unlikely that China and Russia will take on a passive position if and when the aerial bombardments are carried out.
The new preemptive nuclear doctrine calls for the "integration" of "defensive" and "offensive" operations. Moreover, the important distinction between conventional and nuclear weapons has been blurred..
From a military standpoint, the US and its coalition partners including Israel and Turkey are in "a state of readiness."
Through media disinformation, the objective is to galvanize Western public opinion in support of a US-led war on Iran in retaliation for Iran's defiance of the international community.
War propaganda consists in "fabricating an enemy" while conveying the illusion that the Western World is under attack by Islamic terrorists, who are directly supported by the Tehran government.
"Make the World safer", "prevent the proliferation of dirty nuclear devices by terrorists", "implement punitive actions against Iran to ensure the peace". "Combat nuclear proliferation by rogue states"...
Supported by the Western media, a generalized atmosphere of racism and xenophobia directed against Muslims has unfolded, particularly in Western Europe, which provides a fake legitimacy to the US war agenda. The latter is upheld as a "Just War". The "Just war" theory serves to camouflage the nature of US war plans, while providing a human face to the invaders.
What can be done?
The antiwar movement is in many regards divided and misinformed on the nature of the US military agenda. Several non-governmental organizations have placed the blame on Iran, for not complying with the "reasonable demands" of the "international community". These same organizations, which are committed to World Peace tend to downplay the implications of the proposed US bombing of Iran.
To reverse the tide requires a massive campaign of networking and outreach to inform people across the land, nationally and internationally, in neighborhoods, workplaces, parishes, schools, universities, municipalities, on the dangers of a US sponsored war, which contemplates the use of nuclear weapons. The message should be loud and clear: Iran is not the threat. Even without the use of nukes, the proposed aerial bombardments could result in escalation, ultimately leading us into a broader war in the Middle East.
Debate and discussion must also take place within the Military and Intelligence community, particularly with regard to the use of tactical nuclear weapons, within the corridors of the US Congress, in municipalities and at all levels of government. Ultimately, the legitimacy of the political and military actors in high office must be challenged.
The corporate media also bears a heavy responsibility for the cover-up of US sponsored war crimes. It must also be forcefully challenged for its biased coverage of the Middle East war.
For the past year, Washington has been waging a "diplomatic arm twisting" exercise with a view to enlisting countries into supporting of its military agenda. It is essential that at the diplomatic level, countries in the Middle East, Asia, Africa and Latin America take a firm stance against the US military agenda.
Condoleezza Rice has trekked across the Middle East, "expressing concern over Iran's nuclear program", seeking the unequivocal endorsement of the governments of the region against Tehran. Meanwhile the Bush administration has allocated funds in support of Iranian dissident groups within Iran.
What is needed is to break the conspiracy of silence, expose the media lies and distortions, confront the criminal nature of the US Administration and of those governments which support it, its war agenda as well as its so-called "Homeland Security agenda" which has already defined the contours of a police State.
The World is at the crossroads of the most serious crisis in modern history. The US has embarked on a military adventure, "a long war", which threatens the future of humanity.
It is essential to bring the US war project to the forefront of political debate, particularly in North America and Western Europe. Political and military leaders who are opposed to the war must take a firm stance, from within their respective institutions. Citizens must take a stance individually and collectively against war.


Michel Chossudovsky is the author of the international best seller "The Globalization of Poverty " published in eleven languages. He is Professor of Economics at the University of Ottawa and Director of the Center for Research on Globalization, at www.globalresearch.ca . He is also a contributor to the Encyclopaedia Britannica. His most recent book is entitled: America’s "War on Terrorism", Global Research, 2005.
To order Chossudovsky's book America's "War on Terrorism", click here.

Note: Readers are welcome to cross-post this article with a view to spreading the word and warning people of the dangers of nuclear war.



Click to See Details and Map of Nuclear Facilities located in 5 European Non-Nuclear States


The stockpiled weapons are B61 thermonuclear bombs. All the weapons are gravity bombs of the B61-3, -4, and -10 types.2 . Those estimates were based on private and public statements by a number of government sources and assumptions about the weapon storage capacity at each base

.(
National Resources Defense Council, Nuclear Weapons in Europe , February 2005)


Part I of this text was published as a separate article entitled:


The Dangers of a Middle East Nuclear War
New Pentagon Doctrine: Mini-Nukes are "Safe for the Surrounding Civilian Population"
by Michel Chossudovsky

Related Texts by the author: The Dangers of a Middle East Nuclear War
New Pentagon Doctrine: Mini-Nukes are "Safe for the Surrounding Civilian Population", by Michel Chossudovsky, February 2006[URL="http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=viewArticle&code=%20CH20060103&articleId=1714"]

Nuclear War against Iran
[/URL], by Michel Chossudovsky, January 2006
Planned US-Israeli Attack on Iran, by Michel Chossudovsky, May 2005


Annex A
Five basic types of US Military Plans:


Campaign Plan (CAMPLAN): A plan for a series of related military operations aimed at accomplishing a strategic or operational objective within a given time and space (e.g., campaign plan for Iraq incorporating a number of subordinate specific plans).
Operations Plan (OPLAN): A completed plan required when there is compelling national interest, when a specific threat exists, and/or when the nature of the contingency requires detailed planning (e.g., North Korea). OPLANs contains all formatted annexes (see below), and Time Phased Force and Deployment Data (TPFDD), a database containing units to be deployed, routing of deploying units, movement data of forces, personnel, logistics and transportation requirements. An OPLAN can be used as a basis for development of an Operations Order (OPORD).
Operations Plan in Concept Form Only (CONPLAN): An operations plan in an abbreviated format prepared for less compelling national interest contingencies than for OPLANs and for unspecific threats. A CONPLAN requires expansion or alteration to convert into an OPLAN or OPORD. It normally includes a statement of Strategic Concept and annexes A-D and K (see below). CONPLANs that do have TPFDDs are usually developed because of international agreement or treaties.
Functional plans (FUNCPLAN): An operations plan involving the conduct of military operations in a peacetime or non-hostile environment (e.g., disaster relief, humanitarian assistance, counter-drug, or peacekeeping operations).
Theater Security Cooperation and Theater Engagement Plans (TSCPs and TEPs): Day-to-day plans to set the initial conditions for future military action in terms of multinational capabilities, U.S. military access, coalition interoperability, and intelligence

SOURCE: Supplement to Code Names: Deciphering U.S. Military Plans, Programs, and Operations in the 9/11 World , by William Arkin (Copyright William Arkin, 2005)


ANNEX B
Timeline in the Development of US Nuclear doctrine (2002-2006) [excerpts]
Source The Nuclear Information Project (copyright Nuclear Information Project, click to see complete and detailed Timeline )
2002
January 8: The Nuclear Posture Review is officially published.
June: White House issues National Security Presidential Directive (NSPD) 14, "Nuclear Weapons Planning Guidance."
September 14: White House issues National Security Presidential Directive (NSPD) 17, "National Strategy to Combat Weapons of Mass Destruction."
September 17: White House issues the National Security Strategy of the United States. The document publicly formulates a more proactive preemption doctrine
December 10: White House issues "National Strategy to Combat Weapons of Mass Destruction," the unclassified version of National Security Presidential Directive (NSPD) 17. The wording in NSPD 17 of using "potentially nuclear weapons" is replaced with "all of our options."
December 16: White House issues National Security Presidential Directive (NSPD) 23, "National Policy on Ballistic Missile Defense."
2003
January 10: President Bush signs Change 2 to the Unified Command Plan (UCP), which assigns four emerging missions to STRATCOM: missile defense, global strike, information operations, and global C4ISR. (Command and Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Sensors and Reconnaissance). The directive identifies global strike as "a capability to deliver rapid, extended range, precision kinetic (nuclear and conventional) and non-kinetic (elements of space and information operations) effects in support of theater and national objectives."
March: Defense Secretary Rumsfeld issues "Nuclear Posture Review: Implementation Plan, DOD Implementation of the December 2001 Nuclear Posture Review Report to Congress."
April: STRATCOM issues CONPLAN (Concept Plan) 8022-01, Strategic Concept.
June 4: STRATCOM issues CONPLAN 8022-02, Strategic Concept draft.
June: White House issues National Security Presidential Directive (NSPD) 28, "United States Nuclear Weapons Command and Control, Safety, and Security." The guidance "provides direction on various nuclear issues, to include security."
October 1: OPLAN (Operation Plan) 8044, the first strategic plan not using the name SIOP, is put into effect by STRATCOM.
November: The first CONPLAN 8022 (Global Strike) is completed by STRATCOM.
2004

April 19: Defense Secretary Rumsfeld issues NUWEP (Nuclear Weapons Employment Policy). The document states in part: "U.S. nuclear forces must be capable of, and be seen to be capable of, destroying those critical war-making and war-supporting assets and capabilities that a potential enemy leadership values most and that it would rely on to achieve its own objectives in a post-war world."
May 24: Air Combat Command publishes Global Strike CONOPS.
May: White House issues National Security Presidential Directive (NSPD) 35, "Nuclear Weapons Deployment Authorization," which authorizes deployment of tactical nuclear weapons in Europe.
July 8: STRATCOM commander General E. Cartwright informs Congress that Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld "just signed the Interim Global Strike Alert Order, which provides the President a prompt, global strike capability." The Alert Order directs the Air Force and Navy to put CONPLAN 8022 into effect on selected strike platforms including long-range bombers and strategic submarines.
August 17: STRATCOM publishes Global Strike Interim Capability Operations Order (OPORD).
October 1: OPLAN 8044 Revision 01 becomes effective. According to Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Richard B. Myers, "STRATCOM has revised our strategic deterrence and response plan that became effective in the fall of 2004. This revised, detailed plan provides more flexible options to assure allies, and dissuade, deter, and if necessary, defeat adversaries in a wider range of contingencies.” (emphasis added)
November: CJCS publishes "Strategic Deterrence Joint Operating Concept."
2005
January 10: CJCS issues Global Strike Joint Integrating Concept, Version 1.
March 1: President Bush signs Unified Command Plan 2004.
October 1: OPLAN 8044 Revision 02 is put into effect by STRATCOM. According to the Pentagon, this was a "major revamping" of the U.S. strategic war plan which, among other issues, included the "integration of conventional strike options into [the] OPLAN."
2006
Early 2006: CJCS is scheduled to publish updated Doctrine for Joint Nuclear Operations (Joint Pub 3-12). However, this and three other Joint Pub nuclear documents were cancelled.
February 6: Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld released the Quadrennial Defense Review.



Source: The Nuclear Information Project Copyright The Nuclear Information Project 2005
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it." Karl Marx

"He would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies. When asked in court whether she knew that Lord Astor had denied having sex with her.

“I think it would be a good idea” Ghandi, when asked about Western Civilisation.
Reply
#2
I'll post this again.Listen to what Webster Tarpley has to say about the coming war with Iran.

Guns and Butter

"The Wikileaks Limited Hang-Out and the Coming War With Iran" with Webster Tarpley. How the massive document dump plays into US geostrategy; comparisons with the Pentagon Papers; war provocation incidents; Wikileaks Board; Cass Sunstein; Google; In-Q-Tel; Operation Keyhole.

http://kpfa.org/archive/id/63211
"You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”
Buckminster Fuller
Reply
#3
To consult Part I of this essay click below
Preparing for World War III, Targeting Iran
Part I: Global Warfare
The stockpiling and deployment of advanced weapons systems directed against Iran started in the immediate wake of the 2003 bombing and invasion of Iraq. From the outset, these war plans were led by the US, in liaison with NATO and Israel.
Following the 2003 invasion of Iraq, the Bush administration identified Iran and Syria as the next stage of “the road map to war”. US military sources intimated that an aerial attack on Iran could involve a large scale deployment comparable to the US "shock and awe" bombing raids on Iraq in March 2003:
"American air strikes on Iran would vastly exceed the scope of the 1981 Israeli attack on the Osiraq nuclear center in Iraq, and would more resemble the opening days of the 2003 air campaign against Iraq.(See Globalsecurity )
"Theater Iran Near Term"
Code named by US military planners as TIRANNT, "Theater Iran Near Term", simulations of an attack on Iran were initiated in May 2003 "when modelers and intelligence specialists pulled together the data needed for theater-level (meaning large-scale) scenario analysis for Iran." ( (William Arkin, Washington Post, 16 April 2006).
The scenarios identified several thousand targets inside Iran as part of a "Shock and Awe" Blitzkrieg:
"The analysis, called TIRANNT, for "Theater Iran Near Term," was coupled with a mock scenario for a Marine Corps invasion and a simulation of the Iranian missile force. U.S. and British planners conducted a Caspian Sea war game around the same time. And Bush directed the U.S. Strategic Command to draw up a global strike war plan for an attack against Iranian weapons of mass destruction. All of this will ultimately feed into a new war plan for "major combat operations" against Iran that military sources confirm now [April 2006] exists in draft form.
... Under TIRANNT, Army and U.S. Central Command planners have been examining both near-term and out-year scenarios for war with Iran, including all aspects of a major combat operation, from mobilization and deployment of forces through postwar stability operations after regime change." (William Arkin, Washington Post, 16 April 2006)
Different "theater scenarios" for an all out attack on Iran had been contemplated: "The US army, navy, air force and marines have all prepared battle plans and spent four years building bases and training for "Operation Iranian Freedom". Admiral Fallon, the new head of US Central Command, has inherited computerized plans under the name TIRANNT (Theatre Iran Near Term)." (New Statesman, February 19, 2007)
In 2004, drawing upon the initial war scenarios under TIRANNT, Vice President Dick Cheney instructed USSTRATCOM to draw up a "contingency plan" of a large scale military operation directed against Iran "to be employed in response to another 9/11-type terrorist attack on the United States" on the presumption that the government in Tehran would be behind the terrorist plot. The plan included the pre-emptive use of nuclear weapons against a non-nuclear state:
"The plan includes a large-scale air assault on Iran employing both conventional and tactical nuclear weapons. Within Iran there are more than 450 major strategic targets, including numerous suspected nuclear-weapons-program development sites. Many of the targets are hardened or are deep underground and could not be taken out by conventional weapons, hence the nuclear option. As in the case of Iraq, the response is not conditional on Iran actually being involved in the act of terrorism directed against the United States. Several senior Air Force officers involved in the planning are reportedly appalled at the implications of what they are doing—that Iran is being set up for an unprovoked nuclear attack—but no one is prepared to damage his career by posing any objections." (Philip Giraldi, Deep Background,The American Conservative August 2005)
The Military Road Map: "First Iraq, then Iran"
The decision to target Iran under TIRANNT was part of the broader process of military planning and sequencing of military operations. Already under the Clinton administration, US Central Command (USCENTCOM) had formulated "in war theater plans" to invade first Iraq and then Iran. Access to Middle East oil was the stated strategic objective:
"The broad national security interests and objectives expressed in the President's National Security Strategy (NSS) and the Chairman's National Military Strategy (NMS) form the foundation of the United States Central Command's theater strategy. The NSS directs implementation of a strategy of dual containment of the rogue states of Iraq and Iran as long as those states pose a threat to U.S. interests, to other states in the region, and to their own citizens. Dual containment is designed to maintain the balance of power in the region without depending on either Iraq or Iran. USCENTCOM's theater strategy is interest-based and threat-focused. The purpose of U.S. engagement, as espoused in the NSS, is to protect the United States' vital interest in the region - uninterrupted, secure U.S./Allied access to Gulf oil." (USCENTCOM, http://www.milnet.com/milnet/pentagon/centcom/chap1/stratgic.htm#USPolicy, link no longer active)
The war on Iran was viewed as part of a succession of military operations. According to (former) NATO Commander General Wesley Clark, the Pentagon's military road-map consisted of a sequence of countries: "[The] Five-year campaign plan [includes]... a total of seven countries, beginning with Iraq, then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Iran, Somalia and Sudan." In "Winning Modern Wars" (page 130) General Clark states the following:
"As I went back through the Pentagon in November 2001, one of the senior military staff officers had time for a chat. Yes, we were still on track for going against Iraq, he said. But there was more. This was being discussed as part of a five-year campaign plan, he said, and there were a total of seven countries, beginning with Iraq, then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Iran, Somalia and Sudan. (See Secret 2001 Pentagon Plan to Attack Lebanon, Global Research, July 23, 2006)
The Role of Israel
There has been much debate regarding the role of Israel in initiating an attack against Iran.
Israel is part of a military alliance. Tel Aviv is not a prime mover. It does not have a separate and distinct military agenda.
Israel is integrated into the "war plan for major combat operations" against Iran formulated in 2006 by US Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM). In the context of large scale military operations, an uncoordinated unilateral military action by one coalition partner, namely Israel, is from a military and strategic point almost an impossibility. Israel is a de facto member of NATO. Any action by Israel would require a "green light" from Washington.
An attack by Israel could, however, be used as "the trigger mechanism" which would unleash an all out war against Iran, as well retaliation by Iran directed against Israel.
In this regard, there are indications that Washington might envisage the option of an initial (US backed) attack by Israel rather than an outright US-led military operation directed against Iran. The Israeli attack --although led in close liaison with the Pentagon and NATO-- would be presented to public opinion as a unilateral decision by Tel Aviv. It would then be used by Washington to justify, in the eyes of World opinion, a military intervention of the US and NATO with a view to "defending Israel", rather than attacking Iran. Under existing military cooperation agreements, both the US and NATO would be "obligated" to "defend Israel" against Iran and Syria.
It is worth noting, in this regard, that at the outset of Bush's second term, (former) Vice President Dick Cheney hinted, in no uncertain terms, that Iran was "right at the top of the list" of the "rogue enemies" of America, and that Israel would, so to speak, "be doing the bombing for us", without US military involvement and without us putting pressure on them "to do it" (See Michel Chossudovsky, Planned US-Israeli Attack on Iran, Global Research, May 1, 2005): According to Cheney:
"One of the concerns people have is that Israel might do it without being asked... Given the fact that Iran has a stated policy that their objective is the destruction of Israel, the Israelis might well decide to act first, and let the rest of the world worry about cleaning up the diplomatic mess afterwards," (Dick Cheney, quoted from an MSNBC Interview, January 2005)
Commenting the Vice President's assertion, former National Security adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski in an interview on PBS, confirmed with some apprehension, yes: Cheney wants Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to act on America's behalf and "do it" for us:
"Iran I think is more ambiguous. And there the issue is certainly not tyranny; it's nuclear weapons. And the vice president today in a kind of a strange parallel statement to this declaration of freedom hinted that the Israelis may do it and in fact used language which sounds like a justification or even an encouragement for the Israelis to do it."
What we are dealing with is a joint US-NATO-Israel military operation to bomb Iran, which has been in the active planning stage since 2004. Officials in the Defense Department, under Bush and Obama, have been working assiduously with their Israeli military and intelligence counterparts, carefully identifying targets inside Iran. In practical military terms, any action by Israel would have to be planned and coordinated at the highest levels of the US led coalition.
An attack by Israel would also require coordinated US-NATO logistical support, particularly with regard to Israel's air defense system, which since January 2009 is fully integrated into that of the US and NATO. (See Michel Chossudovsky, Unusually Large U.S. Weapons Shipment to Israel: Are the US and Israel Planning a Broader Middle East War? Global Research, January 11,2009)
Israel's X band radar system established in early 2009 with US technical support has "integrate[d] Israel’s missile defenses with the U.S. global missile [Space-based] detection network, which includes satellites, Aegis ships on the Mediterranean, Persian Gulf and Red Sea, and land-based Patriot radars and interceptors." (Defense Talk.com, January 6, 2009,)
What this means is that Washington ultimately calls the shots. The US rather than Israel controls the air defense system: ''This is and will remain a U.S. radar system,' Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell said. 'So this is not something we are giving or selling to the Israelis and it is something that will likely require U.S. personnel on-site to operate.'" (Quoted in Israel National News, January 9, 2009, emphasis added).
The US military oversees Israel's Air Defense system, which is integrated into the Pentagon's global system. In other words, Israel cannot launch a war against Iran without Washington's consent. Hence the importance of the so-called "Green Light" legislation in the Congress sponsored by the Republican party under House Resolution 1553, which explicitly supports an Israeli attakc on Iran:
"The measure, introduced by Texas Republican Louie Gohmert and 46 of his colleagues, endorses Israel’s use of “all means necessary” against Iran “including the use of military force.” ... “We’ve got to get this done. We need to show our support for Israel. We need to quit playing games with this critical ally in such a difficult area.”’ (See Webster Tarpley, Fidel Castro Warns of Imminent Nuclear War; Admiral Mullen Threatens Iran; US-Israel Vs. Iran-Hezbollah Confrontation Builds On, Global Research, August 10, 2010)
In practice, the proposed legislation is a "Green Light" to the White House and the Pentagon rather than to Israel. It constitutes a rubber stamp to a US sponsored war on Iran which uses Israel as a convenient military launch pad. It also serves as a justification to wage war with a view to defending Israel.

In this context, Israel could indeed provide the pretext to wage war, in response to alleged Hamas or Hezbollah attacks and/or the triggering of hostilities on the border of Israel with Lebanon. What is crucial is that a minor "incident" could be used to spark off a major military operation against Iran.

Known to US military planners, Israel (rather than the USA) would be the first target of military retaliation by Iran. Broadly speaking Israelis would be the victims of the machinations of both Washington and their own government. It is, in this regard, absolutely crucial that Israelis forcefully oppose any action by the Netanyahu government to attack Iran.
Global Warfare: The Role of US Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM)
Global military operations are coordinated out of US Strategic Command Headquarters (USSTRATCOM) at the Offutt Air Force base in Nebraska, in liaison with the regional commands of the unified combatant commands (e.g.. US Central Command in Florida, which is responsible for the Middle East-Central Asian region, See map below) as well as coalition command units in Israel, Turkey, the Persian Gulf and the Diego Garcia military base in the Indian Ocean. Military planning and decision making at a country level by individual allies of US-NATO as well as "partner nations" is integrated into a global military design including the weaponization of space.
Under its new mandate, USSTRATCOM has a responsibility for "overseeing a global strike plan" consisting of both conventional and nuclear weapons. In military jargon, it is slated to play the role of "a global integrator charged with the missions of Space Operations; Information Operations; Integrated Missile Defense; Global Command & Control; Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance; Global Strike; and Strategic Deterrence.... "
USSTRATCOM's responsibilities include: "leading, planning, & executing strategic deterrence operations" at a global level, "synchronizing global missile defense plans and operations", "synchronizing regional combat plans", etc. USSTRATCOM is the lead agency in the coordination of modern warfare.
In January 2005, at the outset of the military deployment and build-up directed against Iran, USSTRATCOM was identified as "the lead Combatant Command for integration and synchronization of DoD-wide efforts in combating weapons of mass destruction." (Michel Chossudovsky, Nuclear War against Iran, Global Research, January 3, 2006).
What this means is that the coordination of a large scale attack on Iran, including the various scenarios of escalation in and beyond the broader Middle East Central Asian region would be coordinated by USSTRATCOM.
[Image: centcommapMidEast.jpg]
Map: US Central Command's Area of Jurisdiction


Tactical Nuclear Weapons directed against Iran
Confirmed by military documents as well as official statements, both the US and Israel contemplate the use of nuclear weapons directed against Iran. In 2006, U.S. Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM) announced it had achieved an operational capability for rapidly striking targets around the globe using nuclear or conventional weapons. This announcement was made after the conduct of military simulations pertaining to a US led nuclear attack against a fictional country. (David Ruppe, Preemptive Nuclear War in a State of Readiness: U.S. Command Declares Global Strike Capability, Global Security Newswire, December 2, 2005)
Continuity in relation to the Bush-Cheney era: President Obama has largely endorsed the doctrine of pre-emptive use of nuclear weapons formulated by the previous administration. Under the 2010 Nuclear Posture Review, the Obama administration confirmed "that it is reserving the right to use nuclear weapons against Iran" for its non-compliance with US demands regarding its alleged (nonexistent) nuclear weapons program. (U.S. Nuclear Option on Iran Linked to Israeli Attack Threat - IPS ipsnews.net, April 23, 2010). The Obama administration has also intimated that it would use nukes in the case of an Iranian response to an Israeli attack on Iran. (Ibid). Israel has also drawn up its own "secret plans" to bomb Iran with tactical nuclear weapons:
"Israeli military commanders believe conventional strikes may no longer be enough to annihilate increasingly well-defended enrichment facilities. Several have been built beneath at least 70ft of concrete and rock. However, the nuclear-tipped bunker-busters would be used only if a conventional attack was ruled out and if the United States declined to intervene, senior sources said."(Revealed: Israel plans nuclear strike on Iran - Times Online, January 7, 2007)
Obama's statements on the use of nuclear weapons against Iran and North Korea are consistent with post 9/11 US nuclear weapons doctrine, which allows for the use of tactical nuclear weapons in the conventional war theater.
Through a propaganda campaign which has enlisted the support of "authoritative" nuclear scientists, mini-nukes are upheld as an instrument of peace, namely a means to combating "Islamic terrorism" and instating Western style "democracy" in Iran. The low-yield nukes have been cleared for "battlefield use". They are slated to be used against Iran and Syria in the next stage of America's "war on Terrorism" alongside conventional weapons.
"Administration officials argue that low-yield nuclear weapons are needed as a credible deterrent against rogue states. [Iran, Syria, North Korea] Their logic is that existing nuclear weapons are too destructive to be used except in a full-scale nuclear war. Potential enemies realize this, thus they do not consider the threat of nuclear retaliation to be credible. However, low-yield nuclear weapons are less destructive, thus might conceivably be used. That would make them more effective as a deterrent." (Opponents Surprised By Elimination of Nuke Research Funds Defense News November 29, 2004)
The preferred nuclear weapon to be used against Iran are tactical nuclear weapons (Made in America), namely bunker buster bombs with nuclear warheads (e.g. B61.11), with an explosive capacity between one third to six times a Hiroshima bomb. The B61-11 is the "nuclear version" of the "conventional" BLU 113. or Guided Bomb Unit GBU-28. It can be delivered in much same way as the conventional bunker buster bomb. (See Michel Chossudovsky, http://www.globalresearch.ca/articles/CHO112C.html, see also http://www.thebulletin.org/article_nn.php?art_ofn=jf03norris) . While the US does not contemplate the use of strategic thermonuclear weapons against Iran, Israel's nuclear arsenal is largely composed of thermonuclear bombs which are deployed and could be used in a war with Iran. Under Israel's [size=12][size=12]Jericho‐III missile system with a range between 4,800 km to 6,500 km, all Iran would be within reach. [/SIZE][/SIZE]


[Image: GBU-27_xxl.jpg]
Conventional bunker buster Guided Bomb Unit GBU-27

[Image: B-61_bomb.jpg]
B61 bunker buster bomb

Radiactive Fallout

The issue of radioactive fallout and contamination, while casually dismissed by US-NATO military analysts, would be devastating, potentially affecting a large area of the broader Middle East (including Israel) and Central Asian region.
In an utterly twisted logic, nuclear weapons are presented as a means to building peace and preventing "collateral damage". Iran's nonexistent nuclear weapons are a threat to global security, whereas those of the US and Israel are instruments of peace" harmless to the surrounding civilian population".

"The Mother of All Bombs" (MOAB) Slated to be Used against Iran

Of military significance within the US conventional weapons arsenal is the 21,500-pound "monster weapon" nicknamed the "mother of all bombs" The GBU-43/B or Massive Ordnance Air Blast bomb (MOAB) was categorized "as the most powerful non-nuclear weapon ever designed" with the the largest yield in the US conventional arsenal. The MOAB was tested in early March 2003 before being deployed to the Iraq war theater. According to US military sources, The Joint Chiefs of Staff had advised the government of Saddam Hussein prior to launching the 2003 that the "mother of all bombs" was contemplated to be used against Iraq. (There were unconfirmed reports that it had been used in Iraq).

The US Department of Defence has confirmed in October 2009 that it intends to use the "Mother of All Bombs" (MOAB) against Iran. The MOAB is said to be "ideally suited to hit deeply buried nuclear facilities such as Natanz or Qom in Iran" (Jonathan Karl, Is the U.S. Preparing to Bomb Iran? ABC News, October 9, 2009). The truth of the matter is that the MOAB, given its explosive capacity, would result in extremely large civilian casualties. It is a conventional "killing machine" with a nuclear type mushroom cloud.

The procurement of four MOABs was commissioned in October 2009 at the hefty cost of $58.4 million, ($14.6 million for each bomb). This amount includes the costs of development and testing as well as integration of the MOAB bombs onto B-2 stealth bombers.(Ibid). This procurement is directly linked to war preparations in relation to Iran. The notification was contained in a 93-page "reprogramming memo" which included the following instructions:
"The Department has an Urgent Operational Need (UON) for the capability to strike hard and deeply buried targets in high threat environments. The MOP [Mother of All Bombs] is the weapon of choice to meet the requirements of the UON [Urgent Operational Need]." It further states that the request is endorsed by Pacific Command (which has responsibility over North Korea) and Central Command (which has responsibility over Iran)." (ABC News, op cit, emphasis added). To consult the reprogramming request (pdf) click here

The Pentagon is planning on a process of extensive destruction of Iran's infrastructure and mass civilian casualties through the combined use of tactical nukes and monster conventional mushroom cloud bombs, including the MOAB and the larger GBU-57A/B or Massive Ordnance Penetrator (MOP), which surpasses the MOAB in terms of explosive capacity.

The MOP is described as "a powerful new bomb aimed squarely at the underground nuclear facilities of Iran and North Korea. The gargantuan bomb—longer than 11 persons standing shoulder-to-shoulder [see image below] or more than 20 feet base to nose" (See Edwin Black, "Super Bunker-Buster Bombs Fast-Tracked for Possible Use Against Iran and North Korea Nuclear Programs", Cutting Edge, September 21 2009)


[Image: MOAB%20AFAM.jpg]
"Mother of All Bombs" (MOAB)
[Image: MOP1.jpg]
GBU-57A/B Mass Ordnance Penetrator (MOP)

[Image: moabmother_of_all_bombs.gif]
MOAB: screen shots of test: explosion and mushroom cloud

State of the Art Weaponry: "War Made Possible Through New Technologies"
The process of US military decision making in relation to Iran is supported by Star Wars, the militarization of outer space and the revolution in communications and information systems. Given the advances in military technology and the development of new weapons systems, an attack on Iran could be significantly different in terms of the mix of weapons systems, when compared to the March 2003 Blitzkrieg launched against Iraq. The Iran operation is slated to use the most advanced weapons systems in support of its aerial attacks. In all likelihood, new weapons systems will be tested.
The 2000 Project of the New American Century (PNAC) document entitled Rebuilding American Defenses, outlined the mandate of the US military in terms of large scale theater wars, to be waged simultaneously in different regions of the World:
"Fight and decisively win multiple, simultaneous major theater wars".
This formulation is tantamount to a global war of conquest by a single imperial superpower. The PNAC document also called for the transformation of U.S. forces to exploit the “revolution in military affairs", namely the implementation of "war made possible through new technologies". (See Project for a New American Century, Rebuilding Americas Defenses Washington DC, September 2000, pdf). The latter consists in developing and perfecting a state of the art global killing machine based on an arsenal of sophisticated new weaponry, which would eventually replace the existing paradigms.
"Thus, it can be foreseen that the process of transformation will in fact be a two-stage process: first of transition, then of more thoroughgoing transformation. The breakpoint will come when a preponderance of new weapons systems begins to enter service, perhaps when, for example, unmanned aerial vehicles begin to be as numerous as manned aircraft. In this regard, the Pentagon should be very wary of making large investments in new programs – tanks, planes, aircraft carriers, for example – that would commit U.S. forces to current paradigms of warfare for many decades to come. (Ibid, emphasis added)
The war on Iran could indeed mark this crucial breakpoint, with new space-based weapons systems being applied with a view to disabling an enemy which has significant conventional military capabilities including more than half a million ground forces.
Electromagnetic Weapons
Electromagnetic weapons could be used to destabilize Iran's communications systems, disable electric power generation, undermine and destabilize command and control, government infrastructure, transportation, energy, etc. Within the same family of weapons, environmental modifications techniques (ENMOD) (weather warfare) developed under the HAARP programme could also be applied. (See Michel Chossudovsky, "Owning the Weather" for Military Use, Global Research, September 27, 2004). These weapons systems are fully operational. In this context, te US Air Force document AF 2025 explicitly acknowledgedthe military applications of weather modification technologies:
"Weather modification will become a part of domestic and international security and could be done unilaterally... It could have offensive and defensive applications and even be used for deterrence purposes. The ability to generate precipitation, fog, and storms on earth or to modify space weather, improve communications through ionospheric modification (the use of ionospheric mirrors), and the production of artificial weather all are a part of an integrated set of technologies which can provide substantial increase in US, or degraded capability in an adversary, to achieve global awareness, reach, and power." (Air Force 2025 Final Report, See also US Air Force: Weather as a Force Multiplier: Owning the Weather in 2025, AF2025 v3c15-1 | Weather as a Force Multiplier: Owning... | (Ch 1) at www.fas.org).
Electromagnetic radiation enabling "remote health impairment" might also be envisaged in the war theater. (See Mojmir Babacek, Electromagnetic and Informational Weapons:, Global Research, August 6, 2004). In turn, new uses of biological weapons by the US military might also be envisaged as suggested by the PNAC: "[A]dvanced forms of biological warfare that can “target” specific genotypes may transform biological warfare from the realm of terror to a politically useful tool." (PNAC, op cit., p. 60).
Iran's Military Capabilities: Medium and Long Range Missiles
Iran has advanced military capabilities, including medium and long range missiles capable of reaching targets in Israel and the Gulf States. Hence the emphasis by the US-NATO Israel alliance on the use of nuclear weapons, which are slated to be used either pr-emptively or in response to an Iranian retaliatory missile attack.

[Image: iranshahabrange.gif]
Range of Iran's Shahab Missiles. Copyright Washington Post

In November 2006, Iran tests of surface missiles 2 were marked by precise planning in a carefully staged operation. According to a senior American missile expert (quoted by Debka), "the Iranians demonstrated up-to-date missile-launching technology which the West had not known them to possess." (See Michel Chossudovsky, Iran's "Power of Deterrence" Global Research, November 5, 2006) Israel acknowledged that "the Shehab-3, whose 2,000-km range brings Israel, the Middle East and Europe within reach" (Debka, November 5, 2006)
[Image: iran%20missile%20tests1.jpg]
[Image: iran%20missiletests2.jpg]
According to Uzi Rubin, former head of Israel's anti-ballistic missile program, "the intensity of the military exercise was unprecedented... It was meant to make an impression -- and it made an impression." (www.cnsnews.com 3 November 2006)
The 2006 exercises, while creating a political stir in the US and Israel, did not in any way modify US-NATO-Israeli resolve to wage on Iran.
Tehran has confirmed in several statements that it will respond if it is attacked. Israel would be the immediate object of Iranian missile attacks as confirmed by the Iranian government. The issue of Israel's air defense system is therefore crucial. US and allied military facilities in the Gulf states, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan and Iraq could also be targeted by Iran.
Iran's Ground Forces

While Iran is encircled by US and allied military bases, the Islamic Republic has significant military capabilities. (See maps below) What is important to acknowledge is the sheer size of Iranian forces in terms of personnel (army, navy, air force) when compared to US and NATO forces serving in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Confronted with a well organized insurgency, coalition forces are already overstretched in both Afghanistan and Iraq. Would these forces be able to cope if Iranian forces were to enter the existing battlefield in Iraq and Afghanistan? The potential of the Resistance movement to US and allied occupation would inevitably be affected.

Iranian ground forces are of the order of 700,000 of which 130,000 are professional soldiers, 220,000 are conscripts and 350,000 are reservists. (See Islamic Republic of Iran Army - Wikipedia). There are 18,000 personnel in Iran's Navy and 52,000 in the air force. According to the International Institute for Strategic Studies, "the Revolutionary Guards has an estimated 125,000 personnel in five branches: Its own Navy, Air Force, and Ground Forces; and the Quds Force (Special Forces)." According to the CISS, Iran's Basij paramilitary volunteer force controlled by the Revolutionary Guards "has an estimated 90,000 active-duty full-time uniformed members, 300,000 reservists, and a total of 11 million men that can be mobilized if need be" (Armed Forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran - Wikipedia), In other words, Iran can mobilize up to half a million regular troops and several million militia. Its Quds special forces are already operating inside Iraq.

[Image: new_us_bases.png]

[Image: Iran-encircled2.gif]
US Military and Allied Facilties Surrounding Iran

For several years now Iran has been conducting its own war drills and exercises. Their intermediate and long-range missiles are fully operational. Iran's military is in a state of readiness. Iranian troop concentrations are currently within a few kilometers of the Iraqi and Afghan borders, and within proximity of Kuwait. The Iranian Navy is deployed in the Persian Gulf within proximity of US and allied military facilities in the United Arab Emirates.

It is worth noting that in response to Iran's military build-up, the US has been transferring large amounts of weapons to its non-NATO allies in the Persian Gulf including Kuwait and Saudi Arabia.
While Iran's advanced weapons do not measure up to those of the US and NATO, Iranian forces would be in a position to inflict substantial losses to coalition forces in a conventional war theater, on the ground in Iraq or Afghanistan. Iranian ground troops and tanks in December 2009 crossed the border into Iraq without being confronted or challenged by allied forces and occupied a disputed territory in the East Maysan oil field.
Even in the event of an effective Blitzkrieg, which targets Iran's military facilities, its communications systems, etc. through massive aerial bombing, using cruise missiles, conventional bunker buster bombs and tactical nuclear weapons, a war with Iran, once initiated, could eventually lead into a ground war. This is something which US military planners have no doubt contemplated in their simulated war scenarios.
An operation of this nature would result in significant military and civilian casualties, particularly if nuclear weapons are used.
The expanded budget for the war in Afghanistan currently debated in the US Congress is also intended to be used in the eventuality of an attack on Iran.
Within a scenario of escalation, Iranian troops could cross the border into Iraq and Afghanistan.
In turn, military escalation using nuclear weapons could lead us into a World War III scenario, extending beyond the Middle East Central Asian region.
In a very real sense, this military project, which has been on the Pentagon's drawing board for more than five years, threatens the future of humanity.
Our focus in this essay has been on war preparations. The fact that war preparations are in an advanced state of readiness does not imply that these war plans will be carried out.
The US-NATO-Israel alliance realizes that the enemy has significant capabilities to respond and retaliate. This factor in itself has been crucial over the last five years in the decision by the US and its allies to postpone an attack on Iran.
Another crucial factor is the structure of military alliances. Whereas NATO has become a formidable force, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), which constitutes an alliance between Russia and China and a number of former Soviet republics has been significantly weakened.
The ongoing US military threats directed against China and Russia are intended to weaken the SCO and discourage any form of military action on the part of Iran's allies in the case of a US NATO Israeli attack.
What are the countervailing forces which might prevent this war from occurring? There are numerous ongoing forces at work within the US State apparatus, the US Congress, the Pentagon and NATO.
The central force in preventing a war from occurring ultimately comes from the base of society, requiring forceful antiwar action by hundred of millions of people across the land, nationally and internationally.
People must mobilize not only against this diabolical military agenda, the authority of the State and its officials must be also be challenged.
This war can be prevented if people forcefully confront their governments, pressure their elected representatives, organize at the local level in towns, villages and municipalities, spread the word, inform their fellow citizens as to the implications of a nuclear war, initiate debate and discussion within the armed forces.
The holding of mass demonstrations and antiwar protests is not enough. What is required is the development of a broad and well organized grassroots antiwar network which challenges the structures of power and authority.
What is required is a mass movement of people which forcefully challenges the legitimacy of war, a global people's movement which criminalizes war.


Author's note:
Dear Global Research Readers, kindly forward this text far and wide to friends and family, on internet forums, within the workplace, in your neighborhood, nationally and internationally, with a view to reversing the tide of war. Spread the Word!

Part III

Reversing the Tide of War. Criminalizing War (forthcoming)
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it." Karl Marx

"He would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies. When asked in court whether she knew that Lord Astor had denied having sex with her.

“I think it would be a good idea” Ghandi, when asked about Western Civilisation.
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