Soob

Politics, Foreign Policy, Current Events and Occasional Outbursts Lacking Couth

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Take Down Iran? Ah, No.



I don't believe Dan is necessarily advocating a conflict with Iran. He's made it quite plain that his take is a last resort idea of action regarding the myopic policies of both the Bush admin. and the Iranian leadership (not sure I agree with the latter, but) and so he engages a vision of "you exist with the administration you have" and reverts to military action.

He's also drawn up a strategic hypothesis (which I quite agree with in terms of objective, the world around us doesn't exist, effectiveness) that falls in line with my own age old considerations a few months past. The difference of course is that I envisioned Israel constructing and enacting this effects based operation and concluded that the American concern regarding Iranian nukes had a lot more to do with containing the Israeli pre-emptive strike (and the political/geo-economic fallout) than any threat to American security.

"No doubt the Iranians have taken measures to protect their nuclear
program against conventional strikes from both Israel and the US, cheerfully encasing their nuclear assets underground and with concrete fortification. Suddenly an Osiris like mitigation is a difficult and uncertain deterrence. The objective maintains a certain element of possible failure whether partial or whole. There must be a better approach...How much of Iran's oil infrastructure is buried within concrete bunkers? I'll hazard a guess: None.Yes.
An Israeli strike would make a hell of a lot more sense targeted not in
an Osiris fashion, but at in economic crippling hammering of Irans oil infrastructure. Collapse the regime (and the country) midswing of it's proliferation and produce (from an Israeli standpoint) a neat and happy ending to yet another aggressor.Basically the American political maneuvering and military showmanship was an effort to stave off what I've come to realize as the inevitable; An Israeli pre-emptive strike that will target not the hardened targets of Iran's nuke program, rather the softer targets of Iran's global lifeblood, oil."


At any rate, check out Dan's post and the extensive commentary (in which I manage to actually "attack" someone.) It's good stuff. I don't often disagree with Dan politically or even philosophically or realistically but this is one aspect that the young Jedi has got it wrong.


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8 comments:

Ymarsakar said...

I would like to see a redeployment of US troops from Iraq to Afghanistan by way of Iran. In addition to Naval support and blockade assets, a combined land, air, and sea assault can eliminate Iran's ability to close off the Straits. It would also impact their economy and military control over the region, both realistically as well as perception based.

A fast raid will net captives, destroy camps, acquire intel, and do all of that without requiring any kind of occupation logistics to hold down US soldiers. This also produces good propaganda victories if what has been learned in Iraq is applied to Iranian villages and what not. The US is not staying of course, but free medical service and free food may be offered as a sort of good will bribe and gift. It will help to negate the Mullah propaganda of foreigners invading the country.

Ymarsakar said...

This is not a "take regime down", but rather a weakening of the Iranian regime by showing that they cannot control their borders, they cannot defeat the US, and they can't even stop us taking a stroll across their country to Afghansitan.

Adrian said...

Yeah! Let's kill people, just to show we can!

Richard Betts wrote an article (The Osirak Fallacy) on how the Osirak attack by Israel on Iraq's nuke program actually sped up Iraq's nuke program, by convincing Saddam that they really really needed nukes so Israel couldn't do that again.

Pat said...

how could this possibly produce good propaganda? right now you've got the radicals in the country saying the US is evil and wants to hurt Iran, while the moderates, which are as i understand quite a significant portion if not even a majority, dont realy believe them. many are even pro-US! by tromping through their country, just to prove we can, the radicals will be able to say "see look, the US is evil, they hurt us even though we helped them with Iraq and Afghanistan!". what will the moderates think at that point?

all this would do is create more people who hate the US, which is a much bigger longterm problem than.... oh wait, you havent even mentioned any problem with iran that your little stroll would be solving...

Ymarsakar said...

Yeah! Let's kill people, just to show we can!

Obviously Iran in the 80s thought that they could kidnap, hold hostage, and threaten to kill Americans to impunity. Now they have graduated to actually killing Americans and kidnapping American soldiers from outside Iran. Eventually, you will have to kill them, Adrian, regardless of what diplomatic policies you favor. Or they will kill you, even though it might take awhile to go through the military shield protecting Americans.

by convincing Saddam that they really really needed nukes so Israel couldn't do that again.

The cycle of violence is it. The cycle of violence is broken by American Total War philosophy, or rather the application of it. The methods from WWII are available, it is just that people don't think Iraqis or Afghanistanis are as worthy as Parisians and Germans. Although the Japanese occupies a sort of gray zone for all sides of the issue.

Ymarsakar said...

right now you've got the radicals in the country saying the US is evil and wants to hurt Iran, while the moderates, which are as i understand quite a significant portion if not even a majority, dont realy believe them.

Propaganda is not based upon whether you believe it or not. At least not their version of it. Their version is based upon indoctrination which is a slightly modified version of the art of pure propaganda. In those instances, it is designed to influence behavior rather than to convince. Given those goals, all Iran has to do is to repeat their claims and lies and eventually people will act like it is true, even if they don't believe in it. In such cases, the US has to provide an alternative belief to battle for the battlespace in men's minds. You just cannot cede the territory and expect people to owe you loyalty afterwards. Loyalty is a two way street. Iranians need a demonstration that American power has meaning to them and to their enemies, or they will act as if Iranian power is all that there is to be had.

"see look, the US is evil, they hurt us even though we helped them with Iraq and Afghanistan!

But they didn't help with Afghanistan or Iraq. They're the sort of the cause of the problem in the Shia south of Iraq as well as with the numerous attacks on Army and military PAO teams. If people can believe that Iran is helping iraq or act as if that is true, then what else would people act as if was true if only they were allowed to do so?

oh wait, you havent even mentioned any problem with iran that your little stroll would be solving...

You know of the Straits of Hormuz, yes? You also know of Iran's hostage taking of Brits and getting what they want, yes? So imagine what would the West do if Iran held the Straits of HOrmuz hostage and gave preferable treatment to Russia and China, or any other enemies of the US and Britain. Do you think Britain would... fight to release the hostage taking actions of Iran?

It would be wiser to simply avoid the situation by destroying Iran's docks, drydocks, and anything else on their coast. The US Navy is rusty and is not the undefeatable behemoth that people are lead to believe. If Iran strikes first in a naval sense, US vulnerabilities will come to light.

This was all discussed in the military blogger conference hosted by (someone) over at Blackfive. All the information you might wish for as a starting point, is there presented in friendly youtube.

subadei said...

ymarsakar,

What is your overall vision of US policy concerning the Middle East? The expansionistic grab of ideological client states, independant and stable benefactors or a general systemic collapse of the middle east?

Ymarsakar said...

Subadei, are you asking for what I think future US policy will be? If that, then there's no definite answer, because there are many different factions inside the United States. It depends on who wins out in the short or long term. If a faction gains leadership positions, then that faction's policies get implemented. Or we could have a sort of Grand Alliance parliamentary majority government where A and B are run by State Department policies and X and Y are run by Department of Defense policies.