Dr. Lasha Darkmoon
“An Israeli attack on Iran would create a disaster.” — Zbigniew Brzezinski
“The entire lake will become a killing field…the Gulf will run red with American blood.” — Military specialist Mark Gaffney.
Bombing Iran could be the final nail in the coffin of America—a decaying and morally bankrupt superpower where torture has been normalized and where the President is now free to kill anyone he chooses, anywhere in the world, who he happens to suspect is a terrorist.
Right now, Iran appears to be the object of universal detestation, at least among those who control the mainstream media and who are anxious to persuade the easily duped masses that Iran is a major threat to civilization.
Iran is perfectly capable of shutting down the Strait of Hormuz if it wishes, doing immense damage to the US navy in the process. It possesses a vast array of anti-ship weapons called Sunburn missiles, which it has procured from Russia and China over the last decade. These are state-of-the-art weapons developed by the Russians as a low-cost challenge to the expensive, tech-heavy weaponry of the US. Specifically, they are designed to sink ships, including America’s titanic aircraft carriers.
The imminent conflict, which now belongs in the high probability spectrum, is a conflict into which Russia and China cannot fail to be drawn. Their interests are inextricably linked with those of Iran. You could say that Iran is their semi-independent protectorate and ally.
If Iran were attacked and if Russia and China stood by and did nothing, they would lose face forever. They would be signaling to the world that they are weaklings, only too ready to cower at the feet of the American superbully. Indeed, they would then be next on America’s hit list.
Russia has a new 100-ton monster of a ballistic missile in the pipeline. It is aptly named Satan. And it will be used to devastating effect against America if America gets too big for its boots and gets overly aggressive.
Chinese Major General Zhang Zhaozhong recently stated that if America or Israel attacked Iran, “China will not hesitate to protect Iran—even with a third world war.”
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A few points need to be clarified.
The US Navy is an efficient and professional organization, at the cutting edge of modern warfare, but the Strait of Hormuz is not the kind of environment in which the American navy would be invulnerable.
The Iranians can be expected to have a field day in the narrow confines of the Persian Gulf, virtually drawing American ships into a series of ambushes.
If one samples the technical literature on various military websites, one finds there is a lively debate going on about American ship defense systems. Nobody claims that any such system offers full protection against ship missile strikes. Right now, most ships remain vulnerable to such strikes, including America’s leviathan aircraft carriers.
These impressive Nimitz-class aircraft carriers each come with a full complement of 7–8 supporting ships, 70 or more assorted aircraft, and up to 6000 marines on board. In a 2004 article, military specialist Mark Gaffney, author of Dimona: The Third Temple? (1989), opines: “The US Navy’s largest ships, the massive carriers, have now become floating death traps….In the Gulf’s shallow and confined waters evasive maneuvers will be difficult, at best, and escape impossible….The Gulf will run red with American blood.”
As for oil tankers, these are even more vulnerable than aircraft carriers. If attacked, these will sink easily, clogging up vital sea lanes and doing immense environmental damage to the entire Persian Gulf region.
It is of interest to note that the US is busy working on a new generation of laser defense to counter the sophisticated anti-ship missiles possessed by Iran. However, these are still in process of development. This gives Iran a relative advantage if it is attacked now rather than later. Ironically, the longer America and Israel delay in attacking Iran, the better their chances of successfully countering the retaliatory measures they can expect from Iran.
Both America and Israel are unfortunately just not ready to wage the type of warfare they prefer to wage and at which they so excel: shooting fish in a barrel.
Unlike Iraq, which the warmonger neoconservatives told us would be a “cakewalk”—easily conquered in six weeks—Iran is unlikely to offer its American and Israeli antagonists easy opportunities to indulge in their fish-in-a-barrel fantasies.
Our courageous remote control warriors, hunched over their keyboards far from the din of battle, may be able to rain down death and destruction on innocent civilians in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia, meanwhile salving their consciences by calling their victims “terrorists”, but there is nothing they can do with their drones to stop Iran’s deadly missiles from blowing up American aircraft carriers or sinking oil tankers in the Persian Gulf.
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The Sunburn is perhaps the most lethal anti-ship missile in the world (see also here), designed to fly as low as nine feet above groundwater level and at more than 1,500 miles per hour. The missile uses a jerky pop-up maneuver for its terminal approach. This enables it in effect to dodge, or jump out of the way, of the Phalanx and other anti-missile defense systems: in short, to hit its target bang-on without being intercepted en route.
Given their low cost, these ship missiles are perfectly suited for close quarter naval conflict in the pond like environment of the Persian Gulf.
The Sunburn is versatile and easy to use. It can be fired from practically any platform, including the back of a flatbed truck. It has a 100-mile range, which is all that is necessary in the narrow Persian Gulf, with its 40-mile width round the Strait of Hormuz.
Fired from shore, the Sunburn will punch a room-sized hole through any ship in the Strait of Hormuz in a fraction of a second.
These missiles therefore present a serious threat to the US Navy. Their power to inflict horrendous damage on hostile intruders simply cannot be exaggerated.
Developed by the Russians, and made fully available to China and Iran, the SS-N-22 Sunburn, a supersonic anti-ship missile, has been described as “the most lethal missile in the world today.” (See also here for other anti-ship missiles designed, built, or operated by Iran. See here for a discussion of anti-ship missiles and US capability to defend against them.)
Compared to the Exocet, the Sunburn is a much larger and faster missile. It possesses a far greater range. Its guidance system is spot-on. The Sunburn can deliver a 200-kiloton nuclear payload (a 750-pound conventional warhead) within a range of 100 miles, more than twice the range of the Exocet. It seems the missile was specifically designed to defeat the US Aegis radar defense system.
The Sunburn’s astonishing accuracy was demonstrated recently in a live test staged at sea by the Chinese and observed by US spy planes. Not only did the Sunburn missile destroy the dummy target ship, it scored a perfect bull’s eye. It succeeded in hitting the crosshairs of a large “X” mounted on the ship’s bridge.
Unlike America’s drones, the Sunburn is not in the business of creating “collateral damage.” It does not kill innocent civilians by the score. It kills only the enemy.