Is Venezuela Harboring Hezbollah?

That deadly serious question is increasingly troubling foreign policy and security experts as the South American country and Iran – which funds Hezbollah – move ever closer.

Despite deep cultural differences, a shared antagonism toward the US has drawn Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and his Iranian counterpart, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, into an unlikely political friendship in recent years. Continue reading

Report: China, Russia missile tech threatens U.S. interests in Mideast

This is a prime example of what makes regional war so dangerous this time around. You may sink their ships. You might bomb their tanks. You might even take out quite a number of their military installations and facilities… But what about those that are buried deep in the ground and unreachable to the current weapons the US and Israel may have and use? Or better yet, what about the sites we don’t know about? Both Syria and Iran have tens of thousands of missiles, and they’re advanced. We could lose quite a few bases and ships, resulting in tens of thousands of lives lost on the Allied side.

WASHINGTON — Middle East adversaries could threaten U.S. military bases with advanced ballistic missiles, a think tank said.

The Lexington Institute asserted that Middle East allies of China and Russia were receiving missile technology that threaten U.S. bases in the
region.

The institute, regarded as being close to the Defense Department, said Iran and Syria were developing ballistic missiles that could target U.S. and Western facilities. Continue reading

Xi Jinping takes helm of China amid reform calls

BEIJING (AP) — Xi Jinping succeeded Hu Jintao as China’s leader Thursday, assuming the top posts in the Communist Party and the powerful military in a once-a-decade political transition unbowed by scandals, a slower economy and public demands for reforms.

Xi was formally appointed as general secretary after a morning meeting of senior communists that capped a weeklong congress, events that underlined the party’s determination to remain firmly in power. Xi also was appointed chairman of the military commission after Hu stepped down, breaking with the recent tradition in which departing party leaders hung on to the military post to exert influence over their successors. Continue reading

The Cairo-Tehran Express

Egyptian-Iranian intelligence meeting prompts fears of a new Middle East terror axis

U.S. intelligence agencies recently monitored a secret meeting between Egypt’s intelligence chief and a senior Iranian spy that is raising new fears the Muslim Brotherhood government in Cairo could begin covertly supporting global terrorism.

According to U.S. officials, the head of the Egyptian General Intelligence Service, Maj. Gen. Murad Muwafi, met in early August with a senior official of Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS).

Disclosure of the Egyptian-Iranian intelligence meeting comes as the Obama administration is planning to provide $1 billion in aid to bail out Egypt’s new Islamist government. The administration is said to be seeking closer ties to the new regime in Cairo, following the ouster in February 2011 of long-time ally Hosni Mubarak.

Many members of the pro-democratic, anti-Muslim Brotherhood opposition in Egypt believe the Obama administration has made a covert pact to support the Morsi regime.

Full article: The Cairo-Tehran Express (Washington Free Beacon)

Spy Games: Chinese suspected of spying on U.S. strategic missile base in Wyoming

A group of Asian men set off alarm bells in U.S. counterintelligence circles last week by showing up outside the entrance to a U.S. strategic missile base in Wyoming.

Between eight and 10 people suspected of being Chinese nationals drove up to the entrance outside F.E. Warren Air Force Base, one of three strategic nuclear missile bases in the United States.

According to defense officials and a base spokeswoman, the group asked to use the rest room at the base’s visitor control center. They then began asking questions about photos of Air Force command leaders posted on a “command board” at the entrance facility.

The suspicious visitors then asked to photograph display missiles near the entrance to the base, and were denied.

One security official said the suspicious incident on Sept. 3 appeared to be part of a Chinese intelligence collection operation or perhaps a training exercise for intelligence personnel. Another theory is that the group was part of the population of Asian guest workers residing in other parts of Wyoming or the west.

U.S. intelligence officials have said Chinese intelligence agencies conduct aggressive spying activities against U.S. military facilities and have been known to case the Pentagon’s strategic missile defense base at Fort Greeley, Alaska.

A former senior U.S. counterintelligence official said the problem of Chinese intelligence collection has been largely overlooked by the FBI, which is in charge of counterintelligence against foreign states.

“The Bureau is hopelessly outgunned [by Chinese intelligence] in terms of numbers,” the former official said. “They just don’t do much to counter them.”

The Soviet KGB during the Cold War was also caught setting up electronic eavesdropping posts in the Southwest United States near military bases, including the Army intelligence post at Fort Huachuca, Ariz. after crossing the U.S.-Mexican border.

“There is a long history of communist intelligence service doing wartime intelligence collection that has simply gone unrecognized and, for diplomatic or political reasons, denied by the FBI,” the official said.

“I have every reason to believe, based on that history, that the Chinese are doing the same thing and monitoring strategic facilities.”

Regarding Chinese signals intelligence collection against the U.S. military, one team of agents from the 3rd Department of the People’s Liberation Army, which conducts electronic spying, was detected spying on U.S. military operations in Iraq during the 1991 Persian Gulf War, the former official said.

Full article: Spy Games: Chinese suspected of spying on U.S. strategic missile base in Wyoming (Washington Free Beacon)

‘India determined to continue cooperation with Iran’

TEHRAN – The National Security Advisor to the Prime Minister of India has said that New Delhi is determined to continue cooperation with Tehran.

Shivshankar Menon, who has traveled Iran to attend the summit of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), made the remarks during a meeting with the secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC), Saeed Jalili, on Wednesday.

Menon highlighted the role of the Islamic Republic in the Non-Aligned Movement and said that India is determined to maintain cooperation with Iran.

Jalili also pointed to the potential of NAM to influence international relations and create a new order in the world based on justice and described as important the role of increased cooperation between influential countries, such as Iran and India, in creating new economic and security structures that meet the needs of the current situation in the world.

Certain countries that are not member to the Non-Aligned Movement should not be allowed to undermine unity and strategic cooperation between NAM member states, he added.

How Did Syria Acquire Massive Stockpiles of WMD?

Everyone knows, it seems, that Syria has a deadly arsenal of chemical weapons, but almost no one is curious about how Syria managed to obtain these weapons. Back in 2003, you might recall that after American troops failed to locate Saddam’s weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, the mainstream media had a field day.

Prior to that time, experts, security officials, United Nations inspectors and media elites were in unanimous agreement: Saddam had wmd, he had used them several times, and he had the means to continue building more. But the left-wing media didn’t seem to care about Saddam’s brutal track record. All that mattered was that a Republican president got it all wrong, supposedly.

Yet not long after that, we read about a massive chemical weapons attack was narrowly averted in, of all places, Jordan! Despite the large-scale nature of this would-be attack, media coverage was scant.

At the time Jordanian authorities said the weapons came from Syria. This was in 2004. At that same time, theTrumpet.com took it a step further. My father asked in an article back in 2004, “Have some of Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction been found in Jordan?”

There had been, after all, several reports in 2003 of significant truck movement between Iraq and Syria just prior to the U.S. invasion. Additional evidence from seized Iraqi documents during the war indicated that Iraq received assistance from Russia in transporting weapons and missile components across the border to Syria. Even one of Saddam’s former generals said he was “absolutely certain” wmd were transferred to Syria just before the war started in 2003.

Today, with Syria engulfed in civil war and Bashar Assad’s regime teetering in the balance, there is an understandable degree of panic about what might happen to Syria’s chemical weapons in the event of a regime change.

Hardly anyone, though, has bothered to ask about how Syria managed to acquire such a massive stockpile of chemical weapons in the first place. Syria’s short-lived nuclear weapons program was obliterated by an Israeli airstrike in 2007. It hasn’t used wmd on its own people like Saddam did. And it certainly hasn’t had the reputation for being a large-scale manufacturer of wmd. Not like Iraq did before 2003.

And yet last month, when Assad’s government acknowledged that it possessed a deadly arsenal of weapons of mass destruction, no one doubted the claim. There were no intelligence reports theorizing that Syria suspended its wmd program years ago—or saying that the stockpiles simply did not exist.

Everyone knows they exist. But no one asks how they got there—because raising that question would expose the media’s shameful record of bias and deception.

Full article: How Did Syria Acquire Massive Stockpiles of WMD? (The Trumpet)

State Dept. Advisers: Let’s Cut Nukes Some More

To best illustrate on how a country commits national suicide, consider the following exerpt from Viktor Suvorov’s “Spetsnaz. The Story Behind the Soviet SAS“; Chapter 10, “Battle Training”:

One one occasion following my flight to the West I was present at some large-scale military manoeuvres in which the armies of many Western countries took part. The standard of battle training made a very favourable impression on me. I was particularly impressed by the skilful, I would even say masterly, way the units camouflaged themselves. The battle equipment, the tanks and other vehicles, and the armoured personnel carriers are painted with something that does not reflect the sunlight; the colour is very cleverly chosen; and the camouflaging is painted in such a way that it is difficult to make out the vehicle even at a short distance and its outline mixes in with the background. But every army made one enormous mistake with the camouflaging of some of the vehicles, which had huge white circles and red crosses painted on their sides. I explained to the Western officers that the red and white colours were very easily seen at a distance, ,and that it would be better to use green paint. I was told that the vehicles with the red cross were intended for transporting the wounded, which I knew perfectly well. That was a good reason, I said, why the crosses should be painted out or made very much smaller. Please be human, I said. You are transporting a wounded man and you must protect him by every means. Then protect him. Hide him. Make sure the Communists can’t see him.

In the last war the Communists did not respect international conventions and treaties, but some of their enemies, with many centuries of culture and excellent traditions, failed equally to respect international laws. Since then the Red Army has used the red cross symbol, painted very small, as a sign to tell its own soldiers where the hospital is. The red cross needs only to be visible to their own men. The Red Army has no faith in the goodwill of the enemy.

International treaties and conventions have never saved anybody from being attacked. The Ribbentrop-Molotov pact is a striking example. It did not protect the Soviet Union. But if Hitler had managed to invade the British Isles the pact would not have protected Germany either. Stalin said quite openly on this point: ‘War can turn all agreements of any kind upside down.’ (Pravda, 15 September 1927.)

The Soviet leadership and the Soviet diplomatic service adopt a philosophical attitude to all agreements. If one trusts a friend there is no need for a treaty; friends do not need to rely on treaties to call for assistance. If one is weaker than one’s enemy a treaty will not be any use anyway. And if one is stronger than one’s enemy, what is the point of observing a treaty? International treaties are just an instrument of politics and propaganda. The Soviet leadership and the Soviet Army put no trust in any treaties, believing only in the force that is behind the treaties.

Thus the enormous red cross on the side of a military vehicle is just a symbol of Western naivete and faith in the force of protocols, paragraphs, signatures and seals. Since Western diplomats have signed these treaties they ought to insist that the Soviet Union, having also signed them, should explain to its soldiers, officers and generals what they contain, and should include in its official regulations special paragraphs forbidding certain acts in war. Only then would there be any sense in painting on the huge red crosses.

The red cross is only one example. One needs constantly to keep in mind what Lenin always emphasised: that a dictatorship relies on force and not on the law. ‘The scientific concept of dictatorship means power, limited in no way, by no laws and restrained by absolutely no rules, and relying directly on force.’ (Lenin, Vol. 25, p. 441.)

Why put up the red cross or sign treaties when history has shown us that the Soviet Union has never cared about either? The last world war was not the first time that they have disregarded these.

Adding a signature to a treaty means nothing to them but a means to an end. They know America will always (and also foolishly as a demonstration of moral strength) take the “high road” in painting a red cross and abide by it.

In their eyes, it’s a sign of weakness and we’re outright extending our Achilles Heel to them. This is nothing short of rolling out the red carpet and an invitation for the Soviets.

We are literally handing them a weakness to exploit.

The article:

New State Dept. report suggests working toward elimination of nuclear weapons

A State Department advisory board report made public Tuesday shows that the Obama administration is studying cuts in U.S. strategic arsenals to “very low” levels and ultimately eliminating nuclear arms.

The advisory board, headed by former Defense Secretary William Perry, reflects themes promoted by liberal arms control and disarmament officials in the administration and calls for a new U.S. nuclear doctrine dubbed “mutual assured stability” based on better relations with Russia.

The current nuclear doctrine is “mutual assured destruction,” in which both the United States and Russia maintain balanced nuclear forces that threaten the destruction of cities and nuclear forces to deter a nuclear war.

Another concept examined by the board was working to create a future that is “a cooperative world of ‘increased transparency and trust’ without ‘adversarial challenges’ in which [nuclear deterrence] is no longer necessary.

The report said that the cooperative world scenario “may be unrealistic to achieve in an acceptable timeframe” and focused instead on how to cut nuclear arsenals.

The report calls for conciliatory policies toward Russia and dialogue involving “cooperative security” efforts designed to reduce the risk of a nuclear conflict.

The report also mentions one potentially destabilizing result of deploying a very small nuclear force as “nuclear forces, albeit progressively smaller in size, but not adequately sized and maintained, and with a force structure and posture not appropriately tailored for circumstances and uncertainty.” It also warns that there are risks that reducing nuclear arms will undermine U.S. nuclear deterrence provided to allies in Asia and Europe.

Russia’s government in recent months has issued threats to conduct preemptive attacks on U.S. missile defenses in Europe as a result of plans for building European defenses.

Moscow for several years has demanded legally binding restrictions on U.S. missile defenses, a position rejected so far by the Obama administration.

The president’s open-microphone promise to Russia’s leader of “more flexibility” after his presumed reelection has raised concerns among national security Republicans about future talks with Russia.

Russian strategic nuclear bombers also recently conducted air defense identification zone incursions near Alaska and California and a Russian nuclear-powered attack submarine was said by U.S. officials to have sailed undetected in the Gulf of Mexico.

The State Department report joins a separate Pentagon study called the Nuclear Posture Review implementation that is also examining deep cuts in nuclear warhead levels. Officials familiar with the study say it is looking at cutting U.S. deployed warheads to as few as 300 warheads—smaller than China’s current arsenal. Other levels in that study include a force of some 800 warheads or around 1,000 warheads.

Under the 2010 U.S.-Russia New START treaty, deployed warhead levels will be cut to 1,550, a level U.S. Strategic Command officials have said is what is needed to maintain nuclear deterrence against Russia and other nuclear states.

The board report also recommended downgrading the nuclear threat from Russia by changing doctrine and posture “away from defining our nuclear posture based on perception of Russia as the primary threat, toward a doctrine of general deterrence, a posture in which attacks from any direction are discouraged, without singling out a particular adversary or enemy.”

The report also called for greater “clarity and assurance” with Russia to build trust through sharing launch data, providing advance notice of new weapons, declaring fissile material stocks, and working to develop a response to the use of a nuclear weapons some place in the world.

Full article: State Dept. Advisers: Let’s Cut Nukes Some More (Washington Free Beacon)

Nuclear ruse: Posing as toymaker, Chinese merchant allegedly sought U.S. technology for Iran

A brief lesson on the dangers of dual use technology:

The Chinese toymaker said he was seeking parts for a “magic horse,” a metal-framed playground pony. But the exotic, wildly expensive raw material he wanted seemed better suited for space travel than backyard play.

His shopping list, sent by e-mail to a Seattle factory, started with 20 tons of maraging steel, an ultra-strong alloy often used in rockets. The buyer didn’t flinch at the price tag — $2 million — but he repeatedly insisted on secrecy. “This material,” an associate confided in an e-mail, “are danger [sic] goods.”

Only in recent months did the full scope of the ruse become apparent. The destination for the specialty steel was not China but Iran, and the order had nothing to do with toy horses, U.S. investigators say.

“We are certain,” said a law enforcement official familiar with the case, “that the metal was meant for advanced centrifuges in Iran’s nuclear program.”

Maraging steel is a critical material in a new, highly efficient centrifuge that Iran has struggled for years to build. Barred by sanctions from buying the alloy legally, Iranian nuclear officials have sought to secretly acquire it from Western companies. In recent years, U.S. officials say, an increasing number of Chinese merchants have volunteered to help, serving as middlemen in elaborate schemes to obtain the steel and other forbidden material for Iran’s uranium enrichment plants as well as its missiles factories.

They are not just stumbling on opportunities,” said Steve Pelak, the Justice Department’s counterespionage chief. “They are professional, studied procurement agents and shippers. They know precisely what business they’re in and how to go after it.

The Seattle case is at least the fourth in the past two years in which companies based in China have been accused of helping Iran try to purchase sensitive technology. Although Iran has used Chinese go-betweens in the past, U.S. officials said sanctions have forced the isolated and besieged Iranian government to rely increasingly on China for economic help and access to restricted goods.

Khaki’s alleged plan to ship maraging steel to Iran through China was stopped, but federal officials concluded that the network delivered other nuclear-related components and tools to Tehran. Among them were corrosion-resistant nickel alloy and special lathes to manufacture centrifuge parts.

U.S. officials say the items are among several million dollars’ worth of material and parts — from missile components to electronics for roadside bombs — that have passed through China to Iran in the past five years. The flow of Western technology to Tehran is so persistent that it has emerged as an irritant in relations between Beijing and Washington, prompting the Obama administration to dispatch two delegations to Beijing since 2010 to complain.

Full article: Nuclear ruse: Posing as toymaker, Chinese merchant allegedly sought U.S. technology for Iran (Washington Post)

Russian, Iranian advisors spotted in Syria by opposition

The Syrian opposition has identified senior Iranian and Russian officers
assigned to help the Assad regime. The Free Syrian Army said Iran and Russia
were helping the Syrian Army and security forces with tactics, technology
and operational planning.

“We warn all the snakes to go back to their dens whether it is Russia,
Iran and Iraq or Lebanon,” FSA said in a statement on Aug. 9.

The United States has asserted that Moscow was sending senior officers and other personnel to advise the Assad regime. U.S. officials said Russian advisers were maintaining Syria’s air defense network, which in June shot down a Turkish Air Force F-4 fighter-jet.

FSA has also abducted scores of Iranians later identified as members of
the elite Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. On Aug. 8, Iranian Foreign
Minister Ali Akbar Salehi acknowledged that former IRGC officers had been
captured by Sunni rebels.

Full article: Russian, Iranian advisors spotted in Syria by opposition (World Tribune)

Is the Syrian Civil War Hindering a Strike on Iran?

More and more authors are just now writing in their columns what has been pointed out here for a little over a month already: If you want Iran, dislocate and isolate.

It already goes without saying the Assad regime might go “all out” before it loses its last grip on power. They’re not exactly the type of regime to sign a contract into surrenduring power, then retiring at a luxury villa on the Mediterranean coastline happily ever after.

Well then, what’s next? The question now is: What will Iran do?

Will they go “all in” and save their partner Syria, or will they play more of a limited role (like now with IRGC units in Damascus) until too much is too much to handle, retreat and surrender a regional ally? Surrendering the ally means they would have to toughen up more on the homeland, perhaps as the article suggests, by upping the nuclear ante. Surrendering an ally would also mean a new hostile neighbor.

If Syria goes, Iran will almost certainly go nuclear quicker. If Syria, in the last throes of power, decides to use its WMD stockpile, expect Iran to get involved and the entire Middle East to ignite. The USA and NATO allies will likely get drawn into the picture and that’s when you can expect the terrorist attacks, via hundreds (if not thousands) of proxy sleeper cells waiting for well over a decade, to happen on the United States homeland and Europe as a retaliatory strike. Although there is no crystal ball telling us how the future events will be played out, it’s a plausible scenario, out of many.

Another factor to consider is Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has declared there will be war within weeks. Whether it’s within weeks or 2013, one thing is certain: War is an eventuality.

In the even larger scheme of things, Syria is only one of seven to be changed in five years, as hostile powers seek to de-throne the United States’ global leadership position.

Waiting until Assad is overthrown would eliminate the most dangerous potential war front that could open up after a strike on Iran.

In the estimate of many Syria experts, once the Assad regime falls, Syria will fracture into warring ethnic-sectarian provinces for a considerable period of time, meaning that Syria would have no ability to initiate conflict with its neighbors.

Even if a new government managed to come to power in Syria, it would in all likelihood be a Sunni-dominated entity, hostile to Shi’ite Iran and its southern Lebanese ally, Hezbollah, both of which have been accessories to the war crimes being perpetuated against Syrian Sunnis. A Sunni-led Syria would go from being an Iranian ally to a hostile foe of the Shi’ite theocracy.

The loss of its major regional ally, Syria, could be a blow to Iran that might even induce it to speed up its nuclear program.

Full article: Is the Syrian Civil War Hindering a Strike on Iran? (Gatestone Institute)

Iran threatens US, Turkey after Israel with spreading Syrian conflict

The only thing likely holding back Turkey is the diplomacy of the USA and NATO.

Tehran is not done with threats after shaking its fist at Israel: Tuesday, Aug. 7, Iranian Armed Forces Chief Gen. Hassan Firuzabadi pointed at Ankara and other Middle East capitals when he declared: “Turkey will be next in line for violence after Syria if it continues to work on behalf of Western interests.

The Iranian army chief warned: “If those nations carry on this way, they should realize that Turkey is the next in line.”  He was in fact holding them all responsible for a potential outbreak of war with Turkey.

Spreading around responsibility for violence with accompanying threats appears to be Iran’s latest diplomatic ploy.

Gen. Firuzabadi addressed his threat to Turkey shortly before the arrival in Ankara of Iran’s foreign minister, Ali-Akbar Salehi, in the hope of galvanizing the Turks into forcing the Syrian rebels to let go of their Iranian hostages.

Tehran now holds at least three nations, the US, Turkey and Israel, in peril of military action in the context of the Syrian conflict.  Israel was the object of the first threat of engulfment by the “Syrian fire.”

Full article: Iran threatens US, Turkey after Israel with spreading Syrian conflict (DEBKAfile)

The Day After

As was discussed in a previous post, the plan was to whittle away at Iran, one country after another until it is isolated.

BERLIN/WASHINGTON/DAMASCUS (Own report) – German-US-American plans for Syria’s transformation along the lines of the Western model are already meeting resistance, even before the possible overthrow of the Assad regime. For months, German government advisors from the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP) have been working on measures to be immediately implemented following an overthrow of the government in Damascus. These plans are being forged in the German capital in collaboration with the state financed United States Institute for Peace (USIP) and about 45 Syrian opponents, with the objective of installing a pro-western regime in Damascus as soon as possible. Inside Syria, however, it is becoming more and more apparent that influential insurgent militias will not submit to the West and will insist on their independence, according to a study, focused on the example of one military rebel unit near Aleppo. The Islamist oriented forces among the militias would have to be given more influence in Syria’s transformation. An enhanced role of Islamist forces in Syria is also among the plans developed by SWP and USIP in Berlin, which, if successful, could end Syria’s alliance with Iran for the foreseeable future, further isolating Teheran.

Against Iran

Serious consequences loom on the horizon, given the fact that Islamist forces are playing a prominent role, both locally and in German-US-American concepts, in spite of the obvious unwillingness of influential militias to accept having a western agenda imposed on their post-Assad Syria. Syria’s Islamists will shift the equilibrium in the Arab world – further away from secular milieus, toward a religious conservative order that can get along well with the current leading political role played by the Gulf dictatorships in the Arab League. In addition, under Sunnite Islamist influence, Syria will abandon its alliance with Shiite-Islamist Iran, thereby, leaving Iran without any governmental allies in the Arab world. This exposes the background of the West’s policy toward Syria, which is dependent upon the support of Islamist forces, to achieve its primary objective of a total isolation of Teheran, to block its geopolitical development at the Persian Gulf for a long time to come.

Full article: The Day After (German Foreign Policy)

U.S. intel: Iran developing anti-ship missiles with China’s help

The U.S. intelligence community has determined that the Iran Navy has
enhanced its missile arsenal over the last few years. In a report, the
community said Iran’s missiles, particularly its anti-ship weapons, were
increasing in range and accuracy.

The report, submitted by the Defense Department to Congress, was said to reflect a change in the assessment of the U.S. intelligence community. Until 2012, most of the 16 U.S. intelligence agencies had dismissed Iran’s missile arsenal as inaccurate and ineffective against enemy military targets.

Signed by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on June 29, the report said the Iran Navy was developing its anti-ship cruise missile capability. The capability was meant to allow the firing of missiles that could identify and loiter over targets before a strike.

“It is also developing and claims to have deployed short-range ballistic
missiles with seekers that enable the missile to identify and maneuver
toward ships during flight,” the report said. “This technology also may be
capable of striking land-based targets.”

China was said to have played a major role in enhancing Iran’s anti-ship
missile arsenal. The report cited similarities in Iranian and Chinese
anti-ship programs.

“Iran may be technically capable of flight testing an intercontinental
ballistic missile by 2015,” the report said.

Full article: U.S. intel: Iran developing anti-ship missiles with China’s help (World Tribune)

Barak Warns Israel Ready to Go It Alone on Iran

Have Israeli leaders gotten tired of waiting for Obama on Iran? Defense Minister Barak says Jerusalem won’t rely on Washington.

Defense Minister Ehud Barak warned Wednesday that Jerusalem is “committed to doing everything it can in order to stop Iran from going nuclear.”

I am “fully aware of the difficulties and complexities involved in preventing Iran from attaining nuclear weapons,” Barak told graduates of the IDF National Security College.

Israel is facing “difficult and fateful decisions” in weighing methods to stop Iran’s controversial uranium enrichment program, he said.

Iranian officials contend that their program has only peaceful goals, but officials in Jerusalem, the West, and Gulf Arab states say Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons.

Barak said “having to deal with the challenge” of an Iran possessing nuclear bombs “would be many times more complex, dangerous and costly, both in terms of human life and in terms of resources, than a preemptive strike.”

Barak said Israel would remain responsible for its own security, rather than depending on other states, such as the United States.

Referring to the last two years of tumultuous changes in the region, Barak said the so-called Arab Spring “has slowly become an Islamic Summer,” a development that “teaches us that in the moment of truth, we can only rely on ourselves.”

The defense minister insisted that “America understands that the government of Israel — and it alone — holds the ultimate responsibility of the decisions that affect the security and future of the State of Israel.”

Full article: Barak Warns Israel Ready to Go It Alone on Iran (Arutz Sheva 7)