by Bruce Webb
The blogosphere is alive with news that Joe implicitly green-lighted an Israeli attack on Iran. Well I had my say here and there. I just want to share a map from Cordesman and Toukan’s Study on a Possible Israeli Strike on Iran’s Nuclear Development Facilities in part because it tells its own story. Plus it’s pretty damn cool looking.
Israel cannot attack Iran without material assistance from the U.S. which at a minimum means refueling assistance and emergency landing fields. Full stop.
Update 2. Well the map apparently didn’t tell the whole story. So here is Cordesman and Toukman’s ‘Mission Analysis’. Note the mismatch between refueling requirements and actual refueling planes in the Israeli fleet. Note too that the analysis assumes zero effectiveness among Iranian Air and Ground Defense. Iranian pilots may be as bad as Buff assumes, but I don’t think we can say the same thing about Iran’s large supply of Soviet built surface to air missiles.
(update- JS Kit doesn’t recognize my phone. So I will respond to comments here
The Sunday Times (UK) released a very short report based on a supposed secret briefing by Mossad to Netanyahu about some clearance by Saudi Arabia. The only source actually named in the story is John Bolton and considering the J Post/Sunday Times/Murdoch/AIPAC nexus I am waiting for some more authoritative sourcing. For example Haaretz is today reporting an official government denial.
As for the Eitan it is an unmanned turbo-prop more designed for surveilance than bombing hardened targets with its negligible payload. It would be shot down the instant it went under 20000 feet. At 40000 ft it is practically untouchable. Then again so was the U-2-we thought.