Why did Israel attack Syria now, and why did the Syrians admit it?
The alleged Israeli attack came one day after an Iranian announcement that Tehran will view any attack on Syrian territory as an attack against Iran itself.
IDF soldiers patroling along the border with Lebanon, Jan. 31, 2013. Photo by AFP
Approximate path of alleged Israeli strike on Syria's border with Lebanon, Jan. 30, 2013, according to foreign reports.
Two days before the night when Israeli planes attacked a weapons convoy or "Scientific Research Center" in Syria - according to reports in the foreign press - Iran sent Israel an explicit warning message. Tehran, said the Iranian announcement, will view any attack on Syrian territory as an attack against Iran itself.
The warning came immediately after a wave of reports in the Israeli media about heightened tensions on the northern border; and along with remarks by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at a cabinet meeting in which he directly addresses the fears that advanced Syrian weaponry would slip into the hands of others.
Now after the reported attack in Syria, the Iranians have repeated their warnings strongly. Iran's Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi condemned the airstrike on state television, criticizing the "Zionist regime" for a clear violation of Syria's sovereignty. The semi-official Fars news agency quoted Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian as saying the raid on Syria would have significant implications for Tel Aviv.
Israel has been agonizing for years over the question of whether or not to attack Iranian nuclear facilities. So why did Israel this time - once again based on foreign sources - decide to take a risk and act inside Syria despite the clear warning from Iran (if it did, of course )? It can be assumed that there were urgent operational reasons, such as the need to prevent specific weapons from being transferred from Syria to Hezbollah. It also seems that Israel is not particularly impressed by Iranian threats.
The combination of strategic circumstances in the region at the moment makes the chance of a direct Iranian response unlikely. A Syrian military response seems even less likely, though neither possibility can be ruled out.
The most worrying unknown since Tuesday night concerns Hezbollah's reaction. The electronic media is filled with commentators talking about the Shi'ite organization's internal distress, as its declared support for President Bashar Assad in the Syrian civil war has brought down on Hezbollah the fury of all the other groups in Lebanese society. But Hezbollah is a sophisticated enemy operating in a tough environment. Complete restraint over the long term to Israel's actions could be considered weakness by Hezbollah, so we should expect some form of response, even if not immediately and not necessarily a broad rocket and missile attack on Israel.
In the past year Hezbollah has acted at least three times against Israel: Firing Katyusha rockets at the Galilee - an act that was originally credited to a Sunni organization - blowing up a bus of Israeli tourists in Burgas, Bulgaria and launching a pilotless aircraft that entered Israeli airspace over the Negev. In the first two cases Hezbollah declined to take responsibility for its operations, but in the third case of the UAV Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah took pride - even if the Lebanese only provided the logistical and operational framework for the public relations operation, while behind the operation stood Iranian experts.
Hezbollah's actions point to the use of a wide range of methods and capabilities, all under a single strategy: Extracting a price from Israel, whether real or in terms of public relations, without crossing the line that would force the IDF to counterattack - which would extract an even more serious price from Lebanon.
But a different Hezbollah operation is even more worrying, even though it has mostly been forgotten. In August 2012 it was revealed that the police and Shin Bet security service had arrested 14 Israeli Arabs suspected of smuggling 24 explosive devices from Lebanon into Israel via the village of Ghajar. The devices used standard C-4 explosives, which is much more powerful than the improvised explosives used by Palestinians in the terror attacks of the second intifada. What these explosives were meant for and who was supposed to collect them from their hiding place in Nazareth has never been revealed.
It is possible that Hezbollah is preparing "sleeper cells" of Palestinians from the West Bank who are waiting for instructions to act - and it is possible the organization has succeeded in smuggling in other explosives that have not been uncovered.
The Syrian announcement on Wednesday evening somewhat surprised Israeli officials. After almost a full day of the Syrian regime's ignoring and denying the attack, it confirmed that a "scientific research center" north of Damascus had been attacked. Even more surprising than the announcement itself, an exceptional step compared to the previous Syrian policy concerning Israel, were the details. The wording of the Syrian announcement along with the geographic location pointed to a site well-known to Western intelligence organizations: One of Syria's centers for the manufacture of nonconventional weapons.
Damascus released information that it generally prefers to keep secret. Moreover, as opposed to previous attacks ascribed to Israel and which both sides kept quiet about, this time it seems the Assad regime was willing to publicly expose the damage to its national honor.
Why did the Syrians choose to abandon the chance to deny that Israel allowed them? This time it seems they want to exploit the attack for their own purposes. The announcement yesterday said the bombing was proof that Israel is behind the opposition groups fighting the government.
This, of course, is a big lie, but in Assad's condition he needs all the diplomatic ammunition he can get. The Syrian dictator can no longer win the favor of the Arab world after a civil war in which over 50,000 of his people have been killed. But it is possible he is hoping to rally support, even the most minimal, from his new position as the victim of a Zionist plot.
Israel will be similarly blamed by Syria many more times - as well as such condemnation from the Arab world, even if only for show - if another attack on Syria occurs.
There is a contradiction between the media reports on the attack in Syria and the Syrians' own admission. The news agencies said Israel attacked a convoy of SA-17 anti-aircraft missile batteries near the Lebanese border. Even if Israel knows the truth, it is not volunteering information to clear up the confusion. But despite the distance of dozens of kilometers between the two locations, both are at the center of interest for Western intelligence organizations: This is exactly the area the Syrians used for years to hide problematic weapons, and was also used as a base for smuggling weapons into Lebanon.
It seems we are at the beginning of the story - and not the end.
The site bombed by Israel Air Force fighter jets, according to Syrian TV.Google Earth
|The news has been filled with stories of plans by Israel or the US to bomb Iran. There was recently a series of accusations made against Iran involving the assassination of Saudi and other diplomatic officials. These accusations were quickly discarded by most press organizations as “far fetched” but, for some reason drew responses from the US, France and others, responses that were “non linear” at best. Why would President Obama threaten Iran over accusations that all the networks said were nonsense? |
Now, sources in Iran, at the highest levels, along with sources in the US and Britain, fearful of a “scam gone awry” tell of an extraordinary plot that is ready to unfold.
The Sopranos Move to the Persian Gulf. The attack, scheduled for any day now, has one primary purpose. It is meant to stabilize both the Iranian and Israeli governments, both of which have strong opposition at home and face charges of corruption and to correct major regional financial disaster each confront.
The “deal” between Israel and Iran is much closer to something out of the Sopranos than normal international relations.
This is pure “mob rule.”
THE OIL GLUTAmericans note that gasoline prices, recently at $4.50 per gallon, now approach $2.99 despite the continuation of artificial price supports due to illegal market speculation.
Gas price manipulation bankrupted the auto companies and has bled trillions of dollars out of the American economy that, not only destroyed our balance of trade but has lowered our standard of living.This manipulation has been to prevent downward pressure on oil prices from three major market forces.
General Dempsey, Chairman of America’s Joint Chiefs of Staff, the man who flew to Tel Aviv and informed Netanyahu that America wanted no part of his scheming against Iran was the subject of an assassination attempt in Afghanistan. This wasn’t an act of terrorism or Taliban militants. It was a “mob hit” against someone who failed to kiss the feet of Netanyahu. His response was to unleash killers, not a fact for the public but a fact just the same, one the American military knows very well. Netanyahu has a problem with “hubris.”
Bibi doing the ‘scare em’ thing
The culprits, “militants,”managed to escape undetected from the most sophisticatedly defended real estate on earth, the perimeter of Bagam Air Force Base.
Lucky for them they attacked at night, a time when America’s 5thgeneration night vision, ground radar and other detection systems were mysteriously disabled.
The rocket detection systems, early warning blimps with ground penetrating synthetic aperture radar and the continual coverage by UAV drones using infrared detection, $2 billion in technology on this one perimeter alone, cost the plane of America’s top military commander and wounds were sustained by two crew members.
Dempsey had just left Tel Aviv where he told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu the following:
Dempsey then told waiting reporters:
There are those close to President Obama who don’t accept the attack on Dempsey at face value, with a public admission by the Taliban of complicity. Such statements, which would certainly cost dearly in reprisals by the US, are most often found on Internet sites lacking a credible connection to any Islamic source.
To some Americans, the attack appears to be a reprisal against Dempsey who, out of coincidence, cited the motive in his own appraisal of Israel’s judgment. News agencies buried the failed attack, knowing Dempsey is hated by Netanyahu and respected by the Taliban as both “truthful and fair.”
Netanyahu longs for the days when General Myers held Dempsey’s job, under Bush (43), both flawed and narcissistic, predictable puppets, the perfect fodder for Netanyahu’s machinations.
Almost every politically-aware person on the planet is puzzled by Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s bizarre obsession with Iran. Netanyahu is risking his political career, his reputation, and Israel’s future by intervening in the US presidential elections. He is using all of Zionism’s considerable might – including organized crime assets like “Las Vegas Godfather” Sheldon Adelson – to force Obama to attack Iran; or, failing that, to make sure that Obama is defeated by the Zionist puppet Romney. There are even rumors of Israeli-sponsored assassination attempts on Obama.
Even the rabidly pro-Zionist (but relatively honest) Jewish Daily Forward editorialized:
It’s difficult to recall a time when an Israeli prime minister has inserted himself into a presidential election campaign in the way that Benjamin Netanyahu has. It’s even harder to recall a time when a trusted ally openly urged the American president to undertake a questionable, unpopular and highly risky war. We sure hope Netanyahu knows what he’s doing, because the stakes for him — and for the two nations he professes to care about the most — could not be higher.
The Jewish Daily Forward has good reasons to wonder whether Netanyahu knows what he’s doing. The editorialist cites polls showing that the American people strongly oppose attacking Iran, even if war breaks out between Iran and Israel and only US intervention could save Israel! These polls show that American voters no longer give a damn whether Israel, which has chosen to live by the sword, finally dies by the sword. As Dave Lindorff observes, Netanyahu’s mad obsession with pushing the US into yet another unwanted war for Israel “may have fundamentally undermined the long-standing ‘special relationship’ between the US and Israel.
And still Netanyahu continues on this seemingly suicidal course. He even orders the Mossad and its CIA assets including Gladio veteran Terry Jones to unleash a rabidly anti-Islam film, spammed into the faces of every Muslim on the planet via millions of dollars of computer server time and intelligence agency expertise – an obvious attempt to fan the flames of islamophobia and pave the way to a US war on Iran for Israel. Obama, who is on record saying he hates Netanyahu and that Netanyahu is a liar, and who knows that Netanyahu manufactured the “Innocence of Muslims” crisis to try to get Romney elected, responded by refusing to meet with Netanyahu in New York, and going on the David Letterman Show instead. A more blatant snub could hardly be imagined.
So what in the world is Netanyahu really up to? Does he actually believe that Iran has a nuclear weapons program, even though the CIA has certified that it does not? Does he really think that even if Iran DID have a nuclear weapons program, any Iranian government would be crazy enough to guarantee Iran’s incineration by launching a first strike against Israel?
Of course he doesn’t really believe such nonsense. Even hard-line Israeli strategists admit that Iran appears to be only developing nuclear expertise, not actual weapons, and that in their worst-case scenario, Israel could live with a nuclear-armed Iran. After all, Iran has not attacked another nation in centuries.
Since the “nuclear crisis” is a hoax (like alleged Iraqi WMD in 2003) then what is the real reason for Netanyahu’s Iran obsession? Is it the Iranian government’s support for anti-Zionist resistance groups like Hamas and Hezbollah, and its calls for an end to Zionism through free and fair elections?
Perhaps. Iran’s open commitment to principled anti-Zionism represents the nearly unanimous position of the people of the Middle East, who have never accepted the genocidal Zionist entity as a legitimate state. Israel has been able to bully every other government in the region into shameful silence. The Islamic Republic of Iran will not be silenced. Leveling Iran with bombs would send a message to future Middle Eastern governments: Do not give a voice to your people’s resistance to Zionism, or else!
But while starting a war might punish Iran for its anti-Zionism, such a war would carry terrible risks for Israel. Even if all went well for Israel on the battlefield, the suffering of the people of Iran would probably shame the world into turning against Zionism even more sharply than the world turned against apartheid in the 1980s.
And there is no guarantee that things would go well for Israel on the battlefield. Iran has the capability to riddle Israel with rocket attacks, or even to take out Israel’s Dimona nuclear facility and perhaps render Israel and much of the surrounding region permanently uninhabitable. And Israel does not have the capability to seriously damage Iran’s nuclear program without US help. If the US intervened on the side of Israel, Iran could shut the Straits of Hormuz, and possibly sink many if not all of the ships there with Sunburn missiles, driving gasoline prices over $10 a gallon and paralyzing the world economy. Additionally, Iran has the capability to massively attack the US bases that surround it, killing thousands if not tens of thousands of US soldiers. A US president, especially one who dislikes Netanyahu and puts America’s interests ahead of Israel’s, would be very unlikely to help Netanyahu attack Iran.
Given that a war on Iran is a lose-lose proposition for Israel, why is Netanyahu fanatically fanning the flames of war, to the extent that even his American Zionist cheering section is baffled and embarrassed by his behavior?
Some question Netanyahu’s intelligence, arguing that he is just a furniture salesman who has been promoted far beyond his level of incompetence. While there may be some truth to this – I certainly wouldn’t want to overestimate Netanyahu’s intelligence – I don’t think he’s quite that stupid. I think Netanyahu has a very good reason to prefer war with Iran, despite all its risks, to peace. I think he does know what he’s doing.
Russia's Naval base in Tartus, Syria
The Dolphin class submarines are built for Israel in a shipyard in Kiel (March 2012 photo).
Germany Delivering Soviet Nukes To Israel
Israel Has No Cruise Missile Capabability, Germans Violate Non-Proliferation Treaty
Germany admitted arming nuclear submarines for Israel, not just selling subs, but supplying missiles and warheads. Did they say so openly? In fact, based on research any journalist is capable of, they did exactly that.
We had long suspected, as have most Germans, that Merkel was an agent of some kind, a handmaiden of the secret societies trying to bring about global Armageddon.
Germany’s admissions today aren’t news to those who follow defense issues. They don’t even come close to full disclosure, but they do make it inexorable, that we can now safely assume that Germany has long been a rogue nation and a “behind the scenes” manipulator with leadership only slightly changed from the Hitler era.
Officially, Israel has 3 Dolphin Class submarines supplied by Germany. Der Spiegel announced today that these boats had been specially modified to launch nuclear cruise missiles. What Der Spiegel failed to note is that the missiles themselves were supplied with the boats, nuclear weapons included.
The Dolphin is not the first sub built for Israel. Years previously, Germany retrofit several Type 21 subs, one of Hitlers “super weapons” from World War II, adding air populsion systems, with both surface to air missile capability, modifified American Patriot III systems illegally obtained and sold and a cruise system, most likely the older but very effective Soviet Granite 700.
Israel has no capability of modifying submarines and has no cruise missiles that are nuclear capable, their Delilah Al missile has a range of only around 100 miles, useless for use at sea, lacking both ability to penetrate targets nor carry proper warheads. It is little more than a “standoff” version of the American “Hellfire,” designated for small fortifications or armoured vehicles.
Range 100 miles, warhead size appropriate for row boat or ox cart
The missile itself weighs around 300 pounds and, unless supplied with a micro-nuke warhead such as are rumored to have been tested by DARPA in Iraq, would only be capable of taking out a passenger vehicle at best. These were used in Lebanon in 2006 with minimal success. Truth being, the entire missile is barely a tenth the size of the warhead of a typical cruise missile and is extremely primitive and highly susceptible to ECM (Electronic Counter-Measures).
Then what is being put on the submarines?
Several weeks ago, a type 21, highly modified and refurbished was launched from Bremerhaven under the watchful eye of the NSA, Royal Navy, MI 6 and other agencies. Attached to the bottom of the submarine, according to official sources under anonymity, was a droppable canister containing a 550 kiloton thermonuclear weapon, one of four discovered inside Germany by the American VELA satellite system, a transaction both illegal and highly irregular.
Below is a photograph of a refurbished World War II Type 21 submarines capable of nearly 20 knots underwater, even with 60 year old systems. A refurbished Type 21 can actually outperform a newer Dolphin, using the best of its batteries and air drive system for silence with much better hull design and far greater range and capacity. The photo below is a Type 21 still being used by the French Navy, considered still the most advanced diesel/electric submarine in the world:
Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier
Netanyahu needs the 9/11-triggered 100-years-war on Islam to continue for the very good reason that if it does not, the State of Emergency still in place in the US will be lifted, and Americans, unencumbered by the National Security restrictions of wartime, will quickly learn what really happened on September 11th, 2001. That possibility poses a very real existential threat to Israel – and to Netanyahu.
The once-secret Natanz nuclear complex in Natanz, Iran, about 150 miles south of Tehran
70 Years Old? This Sub Capable of Nuclear Cruise Missiles, High Speed, Long Range and Sea to Air Missile Equipped
The best part of these Type 21 subs is that they don’t officially exist. Refitting is totally secret, their individual capabilities, whether Cruise missiles or ICBMs is never reported and the buyers are unknown, whether governments, intelligence agencies or private concerns with issues about transporting large quantities of undetected “goods” around the world.On June 1, 2009, it was a submarine like this one, armed with American Patriot missiles, that is said to have shot down Air France flight 447, an Airbus 330 bound for Brazil, while it was over the South Atlantic. France was said to have failed to live up to an agreement and that this “tax” was considered punishment and incentive. The source is both official and anonymous.Coincidentally, Pablo Dreyfus, an expert on international drugs and arms deals was on this flight. He alone would have been enough of a target to have downed this plane for.The Soviet Union used these as ballistic missile submarines with three silos behind the mast. They claim they were in active service when transferred to North Korea in 1990. The Soviets said they were “scrap” but 22 years later, North Korea is still using them, one having recently sunk, in 2010, a South Korean ship:With Russian warheads discovered in Germany and Cruise type missiles being installed by German shipyards, admittedly on Dolphin Submarines destined for Israel, perhaps on others as well, up to 50 submarine “upgrades” have been done by Germany without accountability, there are only two choices for Cruise missile, the American Tomohawk or, more likely, the Soviet era Granite 700. Here, Dimitri Khalezov, a former nuclear intelligence officer of the 12th Soviet Directorate, describes the Granit for Veterans Today:
What is a “Granit”?The P-700 “Granit” missile (also known by its NATO classification as “Shipwreck” or “SS-N-19”- where “N” apparently stands for “Navy”) is the most advanced Soviet-era Navy missile. It is intended to be fired from submarines in submerged position and is primarily intended to destroy the US aircraft-carrier battle-groups. This is a highly sophisticated and highly “intelligent” missile.The “Granit” missiles could be used to strike battle-groups and other ship orders while fired in swarms of 12 missiles in one salvo, but could be as well used in single shots – fired against single naval targets, as well as against stationary ground targets (as was demonstrated in the case of the Pentagon strike on 9/11). Each “Granit” missile weighs about 7 tons, has length of about10 meters, could fly up to625 kmat the supersonic speed at 2.5 Mach. Each missile is typically equipped with a standard “Navy-type” 500 kiloton thermo-nuclear warhead; conventional warheads for this missile even though exist in theory, are never used in reality – so that all without any exception “Granit” missiles in service are nuclear-tipped.This missile deems to be totally indestructible, because NATO lacks any means to shot down this missile even if they detect it in advance. In fact, it was demonstrated in the case of the Pentagon attack on 9/11 – NORAD managed to detect the upcoming “Granit” missile at least 6 minutes before it struck the Pentagon. NORAD’s operational officers managed to ring the atomic alert, scramble the so-called “Doomsday plane” in response, but were not able to prevent the actual strike – the missile managed to successfully approach Washington DC and hit the wall of the Pentagon despite being detected by NORAD 6 minutes in advance.Make you own conclusions – as to the danger of this weapon. I would also like to note, that according to the Soviet and Russian strategic plans, the submarines armed with the “Granite” missiles could be used as a “back-up” option for the retaliatory nuclear strike against the United States (while the primary role in such a strike belongs to strategic intercontinental- and submarine-launched ballistic missiles, of course).
Something for those Russian "non-Jewish" technicians relocated to the West Bank to program“Granit” missile in the factory.For the reason of possible usage in the retaliatory strike the “Granit” missiles are also designed to produce airbursts above the US cities – so they are equipped with special non-contact detonators for such reason, in addition to the usual contact detonators. I should mention also that the “Granit” missile has a very advanced inertial guidance system that also has a list of pre-loaded most important NATO targets. While flying above the ocean the “Granit” missile will scan and reconnoiter the operational theater and try to distinguish ship orders and especially aircraft-carrier battle-groups and to select the most important targets in the ship orders and to strike them in automated manner.If flying above the territory the missile will reconnoiter it too and will try to detect the most important stationary targets by comparing their coordinates with those pre-loaded in its warhead. Once encounter such targets the missile’s on-board computer will immediately select the most important target by the order of priority and the missile will strike it. So, once the missile was fired towards Washington D.C. it compared the two most important targets – the White House and the Pentagon and “preferred” to strike the latter one as being in its “opinion” the more important target.Perhaps I should mention that this is the most heavily armored missile in the world – it is made from very thick steel and in fact it could be compared with a flying tank or with a giant bullet. Due to its tremendous speed, weight and strength of its body this missile managed to penetrate six capital walls of the Pentagon building when it struck it on 9/11.
As there is no other missile available for sea launch, there is nothing but the Granit that Germany could have been installing in the newer but less capable Dolphins or the Type 21 submarines it has produced over the years for special clients. It has been reported by official but anonymous sources that it was a type 21 that delivered a device used to trigger the earthquake that destroyed the Fukashima nuclear plant in Japan and that a recently launched Type 21, prevented from organizing a nuclear terror attack on the 2012 Olympics, is now nearly on station for an attack on a secret Japanese plutonium production and storage facility, two possible locations given, one on Northern Honshu and the other on Hokkaido.In neither case has there been conclusive proof as to the organization involved with British sources indicating a highly secretive multi-national terror group with a powerful cast of characters from China, Russia, Germany, the UK and US, all supporting a doomsday agenda. Were it not for credible and highly detailed classified sources and coincidences such as the announcements made in Der Spiegel today, clear admissions of serious war crimes by the German government, feeling themselves totally immune to international law, a pretty good guess, we would have passed on reporting any of this.ISRAEL and the CRUISEMore from Der Spiegel in today’s article:Now SPIEGEL has learned that Israel is arming the submarines with nuclear-tipped cruise missiles. The German government has known about Israel’s nuclear weapons program for decades, despite its official denials.Documents from the archives of the German Foreign Ministry make it clear, however, that the German government has known about the program since 1961. The last discussion for which there is evidence took place in 1977, when then-Chancellor Helmut Schmidt spoke to then-Israeli Foreign Minister Moshe Dayan about the issue.Clear evidence exists that Israel has no program either to modify submarines for cruise missiles, to manufacture real cruise missiles or to mount nuclear weapons on these devices. This we know for sure. The missiles are of American or Russian design, were supplied illegally by the manufacturer and are installed with nuclear weapons while in Germany.Israel has no such capability though there has been a recent influx of former Russian/Soviet missile technicians, all non-Jews, into Israel over the past two years. No matter how secret an operation, the idea that non-Jews were awarded housing in areas where Palestinians had been expelled was seen as disturbing to many Israeli’s who coveted these properties and were very vocal about government actions in importing missile technicians from Russia who have no Jewish blood.Despite the “top secret” nature of this program and its potential ties to 9/11, there have actually been public demonstrations that have brought it to the surface.The questions we have to look at is what actions are likely to make use of weapons such as these to realign global issues and on whose part.An immediate assumption, one quite probably off the mark, is that Israel feels a need to use long range cruise missiles against Iranian targets. In truth, any nation to cause civilian deaths making use of nuclear weapons in a first strike capability would face, minmially, total sanctions, fully back by Russia and China with abstensions at the Security Council by the US and Britain. France is the only potential vote and any French government voting on this issue would fall that day.Israel has no plans to attack Iran with nuclear weapons. We have reliable information that Iran has had nuclear capability, deliverable high-output warheads, since 2002 with a deliverable range of about 1500 miles. We have also been informed by sources in Iran that there is no potential for deployment of such weapons, and no remote possibility of their use unless Tehran itself is under nuclear attack.All of this is more than unlikely.What is more likely is an attack on the US, Great Britain or South Korea. What makes this possible is that Israel currently has, unlisted in its inventory, more than one submarine with long range nuclear capability and an unclear naval command stucture. Israel, in actuality, has no civil government and only a minimal military government. An examination of political moves made by Israel clearly demonstrates that they don’t function as a nation at all but rather as an outpost for a post war conglomerations of secret societies, some closely aligned to Himmler’s SS and Gehlen’s DVD.
Its only military ally is Syria, not exactly a powerhouse. And Syria is now in the midst of a profound domestic crisis. For 30 years Syria and the Assad family have been Iran’s entree into the Arab world and the Levant. If Assad falls, Iran is the biggest loser in the Arab Spring, no matter what happens in Egypt or Bahrain. Hizbullah will be the second-biggest loser. The deputy secretary-general of Hizbullah and one of its founders, Sheik Naim Qassem, wrote in 2007 that Syria is “the cornerstone” of Hizbullah’s survival in the region. While there are differences between Syria and Hizbullah, the relationship is a “necessity” for Hizbullah.
So don’t let the hot air from Tehran confuse the reality on the ground. Iran is a dangerous country, but it is not an existential threat to either Israel or America.
The Cuban Missile Crisis,' – known as the October Crisis' in Cuba and the Caribbean Crisis was a thirteen-day confrontation between the Soviet Union and Cuba on one side and the United States on the other; the crisis occurred in October 1962, during the Cold War. In August 1962, after some unsuccessful operations by the US to overthrow the Cuban regime (Bay of Pigs, Operation Mongoose), the Cuban and Soviet governments secretly began to build bases in Cuba for a number of medium-range and intermediate-range ballistic nuclear missiles (MRBMs and IRBMs) with the ability to strike most of the continental United States. This action followed the 1958 deployment of Thor IRBMs in the UK (Project Emily) and Jupiter IRBMs to Italy and Turkey in 1961 – more than 100 US-built missiles having the capability to strike Moscow with nuclear warheads. On October 14, 1962, a United States Air Force U-2 plane on a photoreconnaissance mission captured photographic proof of Soviet missile bases under construction in Cuba.
The ensuing crisis ranks with the Berlin Blockade, the Suez Crisis and the Yom Kippur War as one of the major confrontations of the Cold War and is generally regarded as the moment in which the Cold War came closest to turning into a nuclear conflict. It also marks the first documented instance of the threat of mutual assured destruction (MAD) being discussed as a determining factor in a major international arms agreement.
The United States considered attacking Cuba via air and sea, but decided on a military blockade instead, calling it a "quarantine" for legal and other reasons. The US announced that it would not permit offensive weapons to be delivered to Cuba and demanded that the Soviets dismantle the missile bases already under construction or completed in Cuba and remove all offensive weapons. The Kennedy administration held only a slim hope that the Kremlin would agree to their demands, and expected a military confrontation. On the Soviet side, Premier Nikita Khrushchev wrote in a letter to Kennedy that his blockade of "navigation in international waters and air space" constituted "an act of aggression propelling humankind into the abyss of a world nuclear-missile war".
The Soviets publicly balked at the US demands, but in secret back-channel communications initiated a proposal to resolve the crisis. The confrontation ended on October 28, 1962, when President John F. Kennedy and United Nations Secretary-General U Thant reached a public and secret agreement with Khrushchev. Publicly, the Soviets would dismantle their offensive weapons in Cuba and return them to the Soviet Union, subject to United Nations verification, in exchange for a US public declaration and agreement never to invade Cuba. Secretly, the US agreed that it would dismantle all US-built Jupiter IRBMs deployed in Turkey and Italy.
Only two weeks after the agreement, the Soviets had removed the missile systems and their support equipment, loading them onto eight Soviet ships from November 5–9. A month later, on December 5 and 6, the Soviet Il-28 bombers were loaded onto three Soviet ships and shipped back to Russia. The blockade was formally ended at 6:45 pm EDT on November 20, 1962. Eleven months after the agreement, all American weapons were deactivated (by September 1963). An additional outcome of the negotiations was the creation of the Hotline Agreement and the Moscow–Washington hotline, a direct communications link between Moscow and Washington, D.C.
Aerial view of the Space Needle and surrounding area in Seattle in 1962. The Century 21 Exposition, also called the Seattle World's Fair, was held from April 21, 1962, to October 21, 1962. This year, to celebrate the 50th anniversary, the iconic Space Needle was once again painted in its original "Galaxy Gold". (AP Photo)
John F. Kennedy Cuban missile crisis of October 1962John Fitzgerald Kennedy was president of the USA between 1961-63 and one of the most popular presidents ever. No event tested Kennedy more fully than the Cuban missile crisis of October 1962 and his management of this crisis remains highly controversial.
Many contemporary observers applauded Kennedy for standing up to the Soviet Union. His insistence that Soviet missiles be dismantled and taken away from Cuba earned him widespread support. Those nuclear weapons were a direct threat to American cities.
Some historians have admired Kennedy's restraint in ruling out the options of an air strike against the missile bases or a military invasion of Cuba. Had Kennedy given in to the pressure from his generals and taken military action, a nuclear war between the USSR and the USA might have followed. Instead, in the last months of his presidency, there was a thaw in the Cold War.
On the other hand, Kennedy's handling of Cuba has also attracted criticism. His disastrous attempt to overthrow Fidel Castro during the Bay of Pigs invasion embarrassed the White House and alienated Cuba. Some historians have blamed Kennedy for the missile crisis developing in the first place, claiming that the president made an enemy of Cuba and presented a weak, inexperienced image that encouraged the Soviet Union to take advantage.
Some historians have accused Kennedy of over-reacting, bringing the world to the brink of war by over-dramatising matters. Throughout the crisis, Kennedy had one eye on the important mid-term elections due in November. He could win domestic support by taking a tough line against the Soviets. Did he risk everything to prove he was a strong leader?
President John F. Kennedy, left, is the subject of cameras as he arrives on January 19, 1962 at New York?s 46th Street Theatre to attend a performance of the Broadway play, "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying." (AP Photo) #
Dr. John W. Mauchly, inventor of some of the original room-size electronic computers, poses in Washington, DC, on November 2, 1962 with one the size of a suitcase after addressing a meeting of the American Institute of Industrial Engineers. He now is working on a pocket variety which, he says, may eliminate the housewife's weekly shopping list and the chore of filling it by hand. He predicted everyone will be walking around with his own personalized computer within a decade. (AP Photo/Byron Rollins) #
Donald Campbell's rebuilt Bluebird, the car in which he plans to make an attempt on the world land speed record on Lake Eyre, Australia, in Spring 1963 on show to the public for the first time as he drives it round the Goodwood Circuit, on July 14, 1962 at the Goodwood Festival of Motoring in Sussex, England. In 1964, Campbell set a record of 403.10 mph (648.73 km/h). (AP Photo/Str/BIL)
A model wears an ample golden tan cape, made from shantung organdy -- a creation by the Renato Balstra, shown in Rome, Italy, on January 11, 1962. (AP Photo/Mario Torrisi) #
South Vietnamese government troops from the 2nd Battalion of the 36th Infantry sleep in a U.S. Navy troop carrier on their way back to the Provincial capital of Ca Mau, Vietnam. (AP Photo/Horst Faas) #
Cattle walking the last mile to this slaughterhouse are treated to this dazzling, but incongruous display of light before the end in Gross-Umstadt near Darmstadt, West Germany, on November 29, 1962. The chandelier came from a nearby factory that didn't have room to assemble it there, so they decided to assemble it in this slaughterhouse. The name of the Arab ruler who ordered the 532 bulb chandelier made up of 200,000 separate parts is a secret. Also, a secret is the price he paid for it. (AP Photo/Lindlar)
In Kabul, Afghanistan, at the Faculty of Medecine, two Afghan medicine students (left and center) listen to their Professor as they examine a plaster showing a part of a human body, in 1962. (AFP/Getty Images) #
A wall is covered with an Algerian independence slogan as people drink coffee outside in Algiers, on June 17, 1962. (FARENC/AFP/Getty Images) #
A French soldier walks past the body of settler killed on Rue D' Isley in Algiers, on March 26, 1962. Another European lies in the background amid debris of the battle that ensued when European settlers, carrying the French tricolor flag, marched on the center of town in response to a call by the terrorist secret army organization. The French armed forces forcibly dispersed the riot. Some sources estimate the result at 31 dead and 130 wounded. (AP Photo) #
Britain's Mike Hailwood, winner of the 350 cc Junior Tourist Trophy race, roars round Creg-Ny-Baa corner on his second lap round the Isle of Man circuit in the United Kingdom, on June 6, 1962. Riding an Italian MV Augusta machine, Hailwood's average speed for the 6-lap, 226.4 mile race was 99.95 mph. (AP Photo) #
Jammed together in a coastline inlet at Aberdeen harbor in Hong Kong are these sampans which serve as homes on the water for more than 130,000 person in the British Crown Colony. A good portion of the water residents work ashore. This photo is dated August 7, 1962. (AP Photo/Harry Koundakjian) #
In this March 20, 1962 photo, President John F. Kennedy's daughter Caroline Kennedy rides her pony, Macaroni, on the south grounds of the White House in Washington. An unidentified handler runs along to keep pace. (AP Photo) #
U.S. President John F. Kennedy speaks before reporters during a televised speech to the nation about the strategic blockade of Cuba, and his warning to the Soviet Union about missile sanctions, during the Cuban missile crisis, on October 24, 1962 in Washington, DC. (Getty Images).Fifty years ago, the U.S. Navy forced to the surface a Soviet submarine, which unbeknownst to the Navy, was carrying a nuclear-tipped torpedo. This was the third surfacing of a Soviet submarine during the Cuban Missile Crisis. After a day of persistent tracking by the U.S. destroyer, the Charles P. Cecil, commanded by Captain Charles Rozier, Soviet submarine B-36, commanded by Captain Aleksei Dubivko, exhausted its batteries forcing it to come to the surface. On 27 and 30 October respectively, U.S. Navy anti-submarine warfare (ASW) forces surfaced Soviet submarines B-59 and B-130. No one on the U.S. side knew at the time that the Soviet submarines were nuclear-armed; no one knew that conditions in the Soviet submarines were so physically difficult and unstable that commanding officers, fearing they were under attack by U.S. forces, may have briefly considered arming the nuclear torpedoes. Indeed, one of the incidents--the effort to surface B-59 on 27 October 1962--occurred on one of the most dangerous days of the missile crisis, only hours after the Soviet shoot-down of a U-2 over Cuba and as President Kennedy was intensifying threats to invade Cuba.
Evidence presented by the U.S. Department of Defense, of Soviet missiles in Cuba. This low level photo, made October 23, 1962, of the medium range ballistic missile site under construction at Cuba's San Cristobal area. A line of oxidizer trailers is at center. Added since October 14, the site was earlier photographed, are fuel trailers, a missile shelter tent, and equipment. The missile erector now lies under canvas cover. Evident also is extensive vehicle trackage and the construction of cable lines to control areas. (AP Photo/DOD)
The United States had been embarrassed publicly by the failed Bay of Pigs Invasion in April 1961, which had been launched under President John F. Kennedy by CIA-trained forces of Cuban exiles. Afterward, former President Eisenhower told Kennedy that "the failure of the Bay of Pigs will embolden the Soviets to do something that they would otherwise not do.":10 The half-hearted invasion left Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev and his advisers with the impression that Kennedy was indecisive and, as one Soviet adviser wrote, "too young, intellectual, not prepared well for decision making in crisis situations ... too intelligent and too weak." US covert operations continued in 1961 with the unsuccessful Operation Mongoose.
In addition, Khrushchev’s impression of Kennedy’s weakness was confirmed by the President’s soft response during the Berlin Crisis of 1961, particularly the building of the Berlin Wall. Speaking to Soviet officials in the aftermath of the crisis, Khrushchev asserted, "I know for certain that Kennedy doesn’t have a strong background, nor, generally speaking, does he have the courage to stand up to a serious challenge." He also told his son Sergei that on Cuba, Kennedy "would make a fuss, make more of a fuss, and then agree".
In January 1962, General Edward Lansdale described plans to overthrow the Cuban Government in a top-secret report (partially declassified 1989), addressed to President Kennedy and officials involved with Operation Mongoose. CIA agents or "pathfinders" from the Special Activities Division were to be infiltrated into Cuba to carry out sabotage and organization, including radio broadcasts. In February 1962, the United States launched an embargo against Cuba, and Lansdale presented a 26-page, top-secret timetable for implementation of the overthrow of the Cuban Government, mandating that guerrilla operations begin in August and September, and in the first two weeks of October: "Open revolt and overthrow of the Communist regime".
Balance of power
When Kennedy ran for president in 1960, one of his key election issues was an alleged "missile gap", with the Soviets leading. In fact, the United States led the Soviets. In 1961, the Soviets had only four intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs). By October 1962, they may have had a few dozen, although some intelligence estimates were as high as 75.
The United States, on the other hand, had 170 ICBMs and was quickly building more. It also had eight George Washington and Ethan Allen class ballistic missile submarines with the capability to launch 16 Polaris missiles each with a range of 2,200 kilometres (1,400 mi).
Khrushchev increased the perception of a missile gap when he loudly boasted to the world that the USSR was building missiles "like sausages" whose numbers and capabilities actually were nowhere close to his assertion. However, the Soviets did have medium-range ballistic missiles in quantity, about 700 of them.
In his memoirs published in 1970, Khrushchev wrote, “In addition to protecting Cuba, our missiles would have equalized what the West likes to call ‘the balance of massive nuclear missiles around the globe.’”
Soviet deployment of missiles in Cuba
Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev was persuaded, in May 1962, of the idea of countering the United States' growing lead in developing and deploying strategic missiles by placing Soviet intermediate-range nuclear missiles in Cuba. Khrushchev was also reacting in part to the Jupiter intermediate-range ballistic missiles which the United States had installed in Turkey during April 1962.
From the very beginning, the Soviet's operation entailed elaborate denial and deception, known in the USSR as Maskirovka. All of the planning and preparation for transporting and deploying the missiles were carried out in the utmost secrecy, with only a very few told the exact nature of the mission. Even the troops detailed for the mission were given misdirection, told they were headed for a cold region and outfitted with ski boots, fleece-lined parkas, and other winter equipment. The Soviet code name, Operation Anadyr, was also the name of a river flowing into the Bering Sea, the name of the capital of Chukotsky District, and a bomber base in the far eastern region. All these were meant to conceal the program from both internal and external audiences.
In early 1962, a group of Soviet military and missile construction specialists accompanied an agricultural delegation to Havana. They obtained a meeting with Cuban leader Fidel Castro. The Cuban leadership had a strong expectation that the US would invade Cuba again and they enthusiastically approved the idea of installing nuclear missiles in Cuba. Specialists in missile construction under the guise of "machine operators", "irrigation specialists" and "agricultural specialists" arrived in July. Marshal Sergei Biryuzov, chief of the Soviet Rocket Forces, led a survey team that visited Cuba. He told Khrushchev that the missiles would be concealed and camouflaged by the palm trees.
The Cuban leadership was further upset when in September the United States Congress approved US Joint Resolution 230, which expressed Congress's resolve to prevent the creation of an externally-supported military establishment. On the same day, the US announced a major military exercise in the Caribbean, PHIBRIGLEX-62, which Cuba denounced as a deliberate provocation and proof that the US planned to invade Cuba.
Khrushchev and Castro agreed to place strategic nuclear missiles secretly in Cuba. Like Castro, Khrushchev felt that a US invasion of Cuba was imminent, and that to lose Cuba would do great harm to the communist cause, especially in Latin America. He said he wanted to confront the Americans "with more than words... the logical answer was missiles".:29 The Soviets maintained their tight secrecy, writing their plans longhand, which were approved by Rodion Malinovsky on July 4 and Khrushchev on July 7.
The Soviet leadership believed, based on their perception of Kennedy's lack of confidence during the Bay of Pigs Invasion, that he would avoid confrontation and accept the missiles as a fait accompli.:1 On September 11, the Soviet Union publicly warned that a US attack on Cuba or on Soviet ships carrying supplies to the island would mean war. The Soviets continued their Maskirovka program to conceal their actions in Cuba. They repeatedly denied that the weapons being brought into Cuba were offensive in nature. On September 7, Soviet Ambassador Anatoly Dobrynin assured US Ambassador to the United Nations Adlai Stevenson that the USSR was supplying only defensive weapons to Cuba. On September 11, the Soviet News Agency TASS announced that the Soviet Union has no need or intention to introduce offensive nuclear missiles into Cuba. On October 13, Dobrynin was questioned by former Undersecretary of State Chester Bowles about whether the Soviets plan to put offensive weapons in Cuba. He denied any such plans. And again on October 17, Soviet embassy official Georgy Bolshakov brought President Kennedy a "personal message" from Khrushchev reassuring him that "under no circumstances would surface-to-surface missiles be sent to Cuba."[
As early as August 1962, the United States suspected the Soviets of building missile facilities in Cuba. During that month, its intelligence services gathered information about sightings by ground observers of Russian-built MiG-21 fighters and Il-28 light bombers. U-2 spyplanes found S-75 Dvina (NATO designation SA-2) surface-to-air missile sites at eight different locations. CIA director John A. McCone was suspicious. On August 10, he wrote a memo to President Kennedy in which he guessed that the Soviets were preparing to introduce ballistic missiles into Cuba. On August 31, Senator Kenneth Keating (R-New York), who probably received his information from Cuban exiles in Florida, warned on the Senate floor that the Soviet Union may be constructing a missile base in Cuba.
Air Force General Curtis LeMay presented a pre-invasion bombing plan to Kennedy in September, while spy flights and minor military harassment from US forces at Guantanamo Bay Naval Base were the subject of continual Cuban diplomatic complaints to the US government.
The first consignment of R-12 missiles arrived on the night of September 8, followed by a second on September 16. The R-12 was the first operational intermediate-range ballistic missile, the first missile ever mass-produced, and the first Soviet missile deployed with a thermonuclear warhead. It was a single-stage, road-transportable, surface-launched, storable liquid propellant fueled missile that could deliver a megaton-class nuclear weapon. The Soviets were building nine sites—six for R-12 medium-range missiles (NATO designation SS-4 Sandal) with an effective range of 2,000 kilometres (1,200 mi) and three for R-14 intermediate-range ballistic missiles (NATO designation SS-5 Skean) with a maximum range of 4,500 kilometres (2,800 mi).[
|A workman removes a restroom sign at Montgomery Municipal Airport, on January 5, 1962, in compliance with a federal court order banning segregation. However, city officials delayed plans to remove waiting room furniture and close toilets and water fountains. But they said these and the airport restaurant will be closed if there is a concerted integration attempt. (AP Photo)|
|President John F. Kennedy with daughter, Caroline, sailing off Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, in a 1962 photo. (AP Photo) #.We owe a lot to this president. If not for him North America would have been incinerated. The world that we lived in now would have been different if he listened to his military advisers, who advised him to invade and bomb Cuba. The Americans feared the Soviet expansion of Communism, but for a Latin American country to ally openly with the USSR was regarded as unacceptable, given the Soviet-American enmity since the end of World War II in 1945. Such an involvement would also directly defy the Monroe Doctrine; a United States policy which, while limiting the United States' involvement with European colonies and European affairs, held that European powers ought not have involvement with states in the Western Hemisphere.|
|Five thousand people stood shivering in Trafalgar Square in London, England, on February 25, 1962 at a rally organized by the British anti-war group Committee of 100. (AP Photo/Laurence Harris)|