Nuclear war risk rising 1

Iran is free to go. Free, that is, to become a nuclear power.

Caroline Glick writes at Front Page:

Given the Democrats’ allegiance to Obama’s disastrous policies, the only hope for a restoration of American leadership is that a Republican wins the next election. But if Republicans nominate a candidate who fails to reconcile with the realities of the world as it is, then the chance for a reassertion of American leadership will diminish significantly.

To understand just how high the stakes are, you need to look no further than two events that occurred just before the Wednesday’s Republican presidential debate.

On Tuesday, the International Atomic Energy Agency voted to close its investigation of Iran’s nuclear program. As far as the UN’s nuclear watchdog is concerned, Iran is good to go.

The move is a scandal. Its consequences will be disastrous.

The IAEA acknowledges that Iran continued to advance its illicit military nuclear program at least until 2009. Tehran refuses to divulge its nuclear activities to IAEA investigators as it is required to do under binding UN Security Council resolutions.

Iran refuses to allow IAEA inspectors access to its illicit nuclear sites. As a consequence, the IAEA lacks a clear understanding of what Iran’s nuclear status is today and therefore has no capacity to prevent it from maintaining or expanding its nuclear capabilities.

This means that the inspection regime Iran supposedly accepted under Obama’s nuclear deal is worthless.

The IAEA also accepts that since Iran concluded its nuclear accord with the world powers, it has conducted two tests of ballistic missiles capable of carrying nuclear weapons, despite the fact that it is barred from doing so under binding Security Council resolutions.

But really, who cares? Certainly the Obama administration doesn’t. The sighs of relief emanating from the White House and the State Department after the IAEA decision were audible from Jerusalem to Tehran.

The IAEA’s decision has two direct consequences.

First, as Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Wednesday, it paves the way for the cancellation of the UN’s economic sanctions against Iran within the month.

Second, with the IAEA’s decision, the last obstacle impeding Iran’s completion of its nuclear weapons program has been removed. Inspections are a thing of the past. Iran is in the clear.

As Iran struts across the nuclear finish line, the Sunni jihadists are closing their ranks.

Hours after the IAEA vote, Turkey and Qatar announced that Turkey is setting up a permanent military base in the Persian Gulf emirate for the first time since the fall of the Ottoman Empire a century ago. Their announcement indicates that the informal partnership between Turkey and Qatar on the one side, and Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamic State on the other hand …  is now becoming a more formal alliance.

Just as the Obama administration has no problem with Iran going nuclear, so it has no problem with this new jihadist alliance. …

In other words, with the US’s blessing, the forces of both Shi’ite and Sunni jihad are on the march.

On the warpath, that is. But will the war be between Sunnis and Sunnis, and Sunnis and Shi’ites, or will it be a much wider conflagration?

Peter Apps, a Reuters defense correspondent and Executive Director of The Project for Study of the 21st Century, writes at Newsweek:

On Sunday, Nov. 28, Californians watched with bemusement and in some cases alarm as a bright light moved across the sky. It wasn’t a UFO. It was a U.S. Navy Trident ballistic missile.

It was, of course, just a test — the first of two in three days. They coincided with tough talk from U.S. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter, who earlier that month had criticized Russia for engaging in “challenging activities” at sea and air, in space and cyberspace. Days earlier, he had been in the South China Sea aboard an aircraft carrier, sending a similarly robust message to China about its actions in the disputed region. …

The Project for Study of the 21st. Century recently published its survey of major conflict risk. Over six months, we polled 50 national security experts on the risk of a variety of potential wars.

The results make interesting reading. The most striking thing, though, is not the numbers themselves — it is the fact that there now seem to be multiple potential routes to a variety of potentially devastating state-on-state wars.

Our poll showed the experts — who ranged from current and former military officials to international relations professors and insurance and risk specialists — putting a 6.8 percent chance on a major nuclear war in the next 20 years killing more people than World War Two. That conflict killed roughly 80,000,000 at upper estimates. …

A majority – 60% –  of the respondents believe that “the risk of nuclear had risen over the last decade” and 52% “expected it to rise further in the decade to come”.

The increasing confrontations with China and Russia have, of course, become increasingly obvious. Of our respondents, 80 percent said they expected a further rise in the kind of “ambiguous” or “asymmetric” conflict between major states. …

The world could see bloodshed on a previously unimaginable level.

Despite this year’s nuclear deal, our experts saw a 27 percent chance Iran would end up in a shooting war with its enemies, be that the United States, Israel, the Gulf States or all. On average, they saw a 6 percent chance of such a war including at least one nuclear detonation.

At least one? Wouldn’t there be a retaliation? Could there possibly be fewer than two? And then probably many more?

Overall, our panel estimated the risk of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization fighting Russia in at least a limited military confrontation at 22 percent. That compared to only a 17 percent chance of U.S. and Chinese forces fighting (as well as a slightly higher 19 percent chance of Japan and China doing the same). …

After a generation in which major European war was simply never thought possible, it’s worth remembering the continent is still home to more than half the world’s nuclear weapons.

And they are all likely to fall into the hands of a Muslim majority around the middle of this century.

The experts, hampered by the usual myopia of experts, do not apparently take that into account:

And yet, amid such apocalyptic talk, our survey shows that all of these conflicts remain on balance unlikely …

Unlikely? Why do they say that?

At one of our events earlier this year, Harvard geopolitics expert Professor Joseph Nye pointed out that nuclear weapons have so far acted to avert war by functioning as a brutally effective “crystal ball”. What their existence meant, he said, was that national leaders knew what the consequences of going over the edge would be — complete and utter destruction and a war which everyone would lose.

Had the leaders of Europe experienced such clarity before World War One, he suggested, they could well have stepped back from the brink. And sure enough, it’s true that we have avoided such conflicts in the era of “mutually assured destruction”.

The dark-minded mullahs who rule Iran don’t care a fig about “mutually assured destruction”. They say that the state of Israel can be destroyed with one nuke, and even if Iran lost millions in a counter-attack, Iran would still survive as a large and powerful nation.

And, they believe, the Iranian dead would all be martyrs who’d dwell in paradise forever. And there they long to go.

For all their warnings and nice academic calculations in percentage terms of the chances of our civilization being destroyed, The Project for Study of the 21st Century experts – though made nervous by something they gingerly sniff in the wind – are, in our view, far too optimistic.

And out of touch.

Caroline Glock is closer to making the prediction that needs to be spoken. But even she stops short of actually making it.

We will make it:

Unless “a Republican wins the next election” who  does not fail “to reconcile with the realities of the world as it is”, Iran will use its nukes.

“Apocalyptic” destruction will follow.

And that will be Obama’s legacy.

Posted under Arab States, China, Iran, Islam, Israel, jihad, Muslims, Russia, Turkey, United Nations, United States, War by Jillian Becker on Monday, December 21, 2015

Tagged with , , ,

This post has 1 comment.

Permalink

There will be nuclear war 0

The Guardian, which is strongly pro-Palestinian and anti-Israel, reports that the Obama administration is secretly in contact with Hamas, the terrorist organization that rules Gaza:

The United States is sending a succession of envoys to engage with Hamas but lacks the bravery to talk to the Islamist movement openly, its leader, Khaled Meshal, said in an interview with the Guardian.

Meshal praised President Dmitry Medvedev of Russia for meeting him in Damascus and the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad, for hosting the discussion 10 days ago. He told Medvedev that the US was also talking to him. “I thanked him for that meeting and told him the Americans contact us, but are not brave enough to do so openly,” said Meshal. “I am confident that in the very near future, everyone will realise that they will have to deal with Hamas.”

The claim that the US is engaging with a group it lists as a terrorist organisation will upset the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, whose security forces have locked up and allegedly tortured leading Hamas members in the West Bank.

Meshal said the tectonic plates in the Middle East were shifting, with Iran, Turkey and Syria emerging as regional powers. Egypt was in the throes of a battle for succession that would paralyse it as a regional player. As a result, Israel was losing its power to impose conditions on a weakened Palestinian leadership in Ramallah.

As it felt its power ebbing, Israel needed a new war but was crippled by self-doubt, Meshal said. He claimed the attacks on Hezbollah in Lebanon in 2006, and against Hamas in Gaza in 2009, left both organisations stronger politically and militarily.

“Israel is conducting exercises threatening Hamas, Hezbollah and Syria. It needs a war, but choosing the front to fight on will not be a picnic and this reflects the crisis in Israel. It does not want peace, but the option of war is not easy for it,” he said.

Hamas and Hezbollah, it should be remembered, exist to attack Israel. Hamas was created by the Muslim Brotherhood, and Hezbollah – “The Party of God” –  by the Ayatollah Khomeini and the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, both for the sole purpose of attacking Israel.

Hamas and its supporters are provoking war. The Turkish-led flotilla that tried to break the Gaza blockade was a trap into which the Israelis unaccountably fell.

Caroline Glick writes:

The fact that IDF forces boarding the ships would be met by trenchant, violent opposition was knowable simply by looking at Turkey’s role in the operation. First of all, the Turkish government-supported NGO behind the operation is IHH. As the US government, the Turkish government in the 1990s, the Investigative Project on Terrorism and countless other sources have proven, IHH is a terrorist organization with direct links to al-Qaida and Hamas. Its members have been involved in terrorist warfare from Chechnya and Bosnia to Iraq and Israel.

(And the Turkish Prime Minister has the chutzpah to call in the Israeli ambassador and reproach Israel for attacking “peaceful humanitarians”!)

It’s surprising that the IDF did not anticipate an armed attack, but they did not. They shot paint-balls at their assailants, who use knives, clubs, and at least one gun. Eventually the Israelis had to defend themselves with bullets. Hamas has won a world-wide propaganda victory claiming that the only aim of the ships was “to take humanitarian aid” to Gaza, and that innocent “peace protestors” were shot down in cold blood by the Israelis. Most of the world is only too willing to believe them.The world denies Israel the right to defend itself. But Israel’s only choice is between self-defense and obliteration.

Hezbollah – which John Brennan, Obama’s National Security Adviser, absurdly declares has a “moderate” faction that should be negotiated with – has recently been armed by Syria with Scud missiles. Iran has enough enriched uranium to make at least two bombs, and probably already has them. In addition it might have bought one or more from North Korea.

There will be war, and it will be nuclear war.

Israel will have to use nuclear weapons.*

There will probably be nuclear war in the Far East too. Nuclear-armed North Korea is threatening “all-out war” against South Korea, and China will support its Communist ally.

The wars will be the result of Obama’s policies of “engagement” with Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas, Syria, and North Korea.

Obama the Disarmer – the passionate nuclear disarmer – will be a cause of nuclear war.

*Go here to watch a Pajamas TV video of Sam Cohen, “Manhattan project member and father of the neutron bomb”, saying what we say about Iran, Israel, and the necessity for Israel to use its nuclear bombs. He advises the Israelis to bomb Iran’s nuclear facilities “tomorrow morning”.

Tomorrow’s wars 1

Here in part is a City Journal article (even more interesting of course when read in full), by the great historian of war, Victor Davis Hanson, on warfare as it has been in the past and might be in the near future.

“Have we not seen, then, in our lifetime the end of the Western way of war?” Two decades ago, I concluded The Western Way of War with that question. Since Western warfare had become so lethal and included the specter of nuclear escalation, I thought it doubtful that two Western states could any longer wage large head-to-head conventional battles. …

Events of the last half-century seem to have confirmed the notion that decisive battles between two large, highly trained, sophisticated Westernized armies, whether on land or on sea, have become increasingly rare… Far more common in the past half-century have been the asymmetrical wars between large Westernized militaries and poorer, less organized terrorists, insurgents, and pirates

Those who have successfully attacked the United States—in Lebanon (1983), at the Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia (1996), at America’s East African embassies (1999), on the USS Cole (2000), and in New York and Washington in 2001—did so as terrorists. If nation-states sponsored such radical Islamist groups, they nearly always denied culpability, avoiding an all-out conventional war with the United States that they would inevitably lose—as the brief rout of the Taliban in Afghanistan demonstrated in 2001.

Why does decisive battle wax and wane in frequency, and why has it become rarer again? The political landscape certainly explains much. Empire of any sort can lessen the incidence of warfare. Unified, central political control transforms the usual ethnic, tribal, racial, and religious strife into more internal and less violent rivalries for state representation and influence…

Technology … helps explain the current decline in conventional battles. The battlefield can now be seen and mapped to the smallest pebble through aerial photography, often by unmanned drones that update pictures second by second. Surprise is rare. Potential combatants know the odds in advance. They can use the Internet to download the most minute information about their adversaries. Generals can see streaming video of prebattle preparations and calculate, to some degree, the subsequent cost…

Weaponry is not static. It resides within a constant challenge-and-response cycle between offense and defense, armor and arms, surveillance and secrecy. Body armor may soon advance to the point of offering, if only for a brief period, protection against the bullet, which centuries ago rendered chain and plate mail useless. The satellite killer may render the satellite nonoperational. Sophisticated electronic jamming may force down the aerial drone. Yet for now, the arts of information-gathering about an enemy trump his ability to maintain secrecy, thus lessening the chance that thousands of soldiers will be willing to march off to massive battle.

The cost of today’s military technology, too, renders big battles more unlikely. To wage a single decisive battle between tens of thousands of combatants along the lines of a Gaugamela or a Verdun would cost hundreds of billions of dollars, a figure far beyond the resources of most belligerents. A single B-1 bomber on patrol overhead represents a $1 billion investment. Abrams tanks go for over $4 million. A single cruise missile can cost over $1 million. One GPS-guided artillery shell may cost $150,000; one artillery platform could expend over $10 million in ordnance in a few hours. Even a solder’s M-4 assault rifle runs well over $1,000. The result is that very few states can afford to outfit an army of, say, 100,000 infantry, supported by high-tech air, naval, and artillery fire—much less keep it well supplied for the duration of battle…

Globalization—accelerated by technology—is another reason that decisive battles are uncommon today. Instant cell-phoning and text-messaging, the Internet, access to DVDs, and satellite television have created a world culture that depends on uninterrupted communications. It frowns on massive disruptions in airline flights, banking, and the easy importation of consumer goods. Electronic togetherness hinges on our shared appetites—and a growing communal comfort factor

Finally, changing mores have changed military tactics. The current ascendant belief in the West that war is unnatural, preventable, and the result of rational grievances—that it can, with proper training and education, be eliminated—has probably made battle less tenable among the general public…

We shouldn’t assume, though, that these various forces will always prevent set battles. Similar predictions have proved wrong before…

Human beings remain emotional, irrational, and guided by intangible calculations, such as honor and fear, that collectively can induce them into self-destructive behavior. Armed struggles that at times result in horrific collisions are as old as civilization itself and are a collective reflection of deep-seated elements within the human psyche—tribalism, affinity for like kind, reckless exuberance—that are constant and unchanging. We are not at the “end of history.”

Can big battles, then, haunt us once more? …

Waterloos or Verduns may revisit us, especially in the half-century ahead, in which constant military innovation may reduce the cost of war, or relegate battle to the domain of massed waves of robots and drones, or see a sudden technological shift back to the defensive that would nullify the tyranny of today’s incredibly destructive munitions. New technology may make all sorts of deadly arms as cheap as iPods, and more lethal than M-16s, while creating shirts and coats impervious to small-arms fire—and therefore making battle cheap again, uncertain, and once more to be tried. Should a few reckless states feel that nuclear war in an age of antiballistic missiles might be winnable, or that the consequences of mass death might be offset by perpetuity spent in a glorious collective paradise, then even the seemingly unimaginable—nuclear showdown—becomes imaginable… And these collisions will be frightening as never before.

The world on fire 2

Obama is doing nothing effective to stop Iran becoming a nuclear armed power.

At the same time as he is allowing Iran to develop a nuclear arsenal, he is weakening America’s nuclear capability with the expressed aim of ultimately abandoning it completely.

Does he understand what can happen as a result of these policies?

If so, he is intentionally bringing about Armageddon.

James Carafano writes at the Washington Examiner:

Recent research suggests that nuclear weapons are much more destructive than previously thought because of the effect of mass fire. At the moment of detonation, the heart of an atomic fireball is four to five times hotter than the sun. It generates a firestorm of hurricane-force winds. Air temperature soars above the boiling point.

Both Washington and Tehran have much to learn from this. The people of Iran should realize the terrible price they may pay due to their president’s relentless pursuit of nuclear weapons. For Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, nukes are more than a status symbol. He views them as a useful tool. He publicly yearns to bring about the “death of Israel” and live in “a world without America.”

Nukes are the way to reach these goals. Give this delusional dreamer a nuclear weapon and a missile to deliver it, and he’ll be only too eager to threaten his enemies with nuclear holocaust.

That, of course, would only invite atomic retaliation … the type that would obliterate Iran…

The lesson for Washington is that the United States, a long-established nuclear power, must act like a responsible one. President Obama has started a mad dash down the “road to zero” — with the announced goal of eliminating our nuclear arsenal. It’s a path more likely to end in a nuclear firestorm than in peace.

Why? The danger starts with the administration’s refusal to fully modernize our nuclear weapons. Our aging inventory is increasingly less usable and reliable. The continuing erosion of a credible deterrent force will only invite aggression.

Moreover, slashing U.S. arsenals may well spur a new arms race. It may encourage emerging atomic enemies such as Iran and North Korea to “pick up the pace” to become our nuclear equals. That in turn could spark other nations wary of these rogue regimes to fast-track their own nuclear programs. Instead of easing tensions, our nuclear drawdown could ratchet up worldwide instability.

The administration has compounded its nuclear error by hobbling our missile defense program. War gaming exercises consistently show missile defenses not only deter attacks, they deter others from even building up their arsenals. Why build missiles when they’ll just be shot down?

A world on fire is an horrific vision of the future. The Iranian administration views it as glorious, while our administration steadfastly averts its gaze…

Posted under Commentary, Defense, Iran, Pacifism, United States, War by Jillian Becker on Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Tagged with , , , , , , ,

This post has 2 comments.

Permalink

Weakening security 0

 Thomas Sowell writes today about the danger of removing the security systems now in place which have kept Americans safe for seven years, as Obama and the Democratic leadership in Congress have indicated that they intend to do. Here is an extract. Read the whole thing here

How many Americans are willing to see New York, Chicago and Los Angeles all disappear in nuclear mushroom clouds, rather than surrender to whatever outrageous demands the terrorists make?

Neither Barack Obama nor those with whom he will be surrounded in Washington show any signs of being serious about forestalling such a terrible choice by taking any action with any realistic chance of preventing a nuclear Iran.

Once suicidal fanatics have nuclear bombs, that is the point of no return. We, our children and our grandchildren will live at the mercy of the merciless, who have a track record of sadism.

There are no concessions we can make that will buy off hate-filled terrorists. What they want– what they must have for their own self-respect, in a world where they suffer the humiliation of being visibly centuries behind the West in so many ways– is our being brought down in humiliation, including self-humiliation.

Even killing us will not be enough, just as killing Jews was not enough for the Nazis, who first had to subject them to soul-scarring humiliations and dehumanization in their death camps.

This kind of hatred may not be familiar to most Americans but what happened on 9/11 should give us a clue– and a warning.

The people who flew those planes into the World Trade Center buildings could not have been bought off by any concessions, not even the hundreds of billions of dollars we are spending in bailout money today.

They want our soul– and if they are willing to die and we are not, they will get it.

 

Posted under Commentary by Jillian Becker on Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Tagged with , , , ,

This post has 0 comments.

Permalink

Now nuclear war? 3

 The surviving member of the jihadi terrorists who attacked in Mumbai, Ajmal Amir Kasab, has told the police that part of their training was given them by the Pakistan Navy. Also that Pakistan’s Inter-Service Intelligence agency was involved in the planning.

If this is true, the attack was an invasion, and could mean war between India and Pakistan, both of which possess nuclear arms. 

(Kasab also revealed that scouts for the jihadis enjoyed the hospitality of the Lubavitcher Jews who ran Nariman House, so were able to guide the attackers who captured, tortured and murdered their hosts.)  

Posted under Commentary by Jillian Becker on Monday, December 1, 2008

Tagged with , , , , , , , , , , , ,

This post has 3 comments.

Permalink