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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Is Israel preparing to go to war with Iran before November US elections?

Tensions between Iran and Israel continue to escalate amid reports over the past week that Tel Aviv has drawn up plans for a strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities before the US presidential election in November.
Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak and the country’s new ambassador to China, Matan Vilnai, recently discussed precise estimates of Israeli casualties, and the timeframe of a possible war with Iran. A hypothetical war with Iran would probably last a month, and include about 500 estimated Israeli casualties from Iranian missile strikes, Vilnai told Israeli newspaper Maariv on Wednesday. 
Though Israel has repeatedly threatened preemptive strikes against Iran over the country’s controversial nuclear program, this latest round of saber-rattling is taking place under slightly different circumstances.  
A new, last-minute National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) update provided to the Obama administration mirrored Israeli intelligence that Iran had made bigger nuclear advances than previously thought, Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported on Sunday. Iran’s alleged progress towards nuclear weaponry was “far beyond the scope known” to UN inspectors, the report said.
Haaretz did not name any sources or confirm any information in its report, quoting a senior Israeli official who declined to be identified.
Tel Aviv seems to be taking action in support of its hawkish stance, testing emergency text-messaging services in some cities, and increasing the sale and distribution of gas-masks.  Recent polls also suggest that, while domestic Israeli opinion is still opposed to war against Iran without international support, that stance is gradually softening as the government seems to be preparing its citizens for war.

Their last chance to strike

The Islamic republic's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (2nd L) and Foreign Minister Ali AKbar Salehi (C) listening to an expert during a tour of Tehran's research reactor centre on February 15, 2012.(AFP Photo / Iranian Presidency)09.08, 23:5683 comments

New US report on Iran nukes 'makes issue urgent'

Time is running out to contain the Iranian threat, Israel’s defense minister has warned. Israel is raising the alarm following a new US National Intelligence Estimate which says Tehran has made significant strides towards joining the nuclear club.
Israel vs IranIran tension
Vladimir Putin (R) and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (AFP Photo / RIA Novosti Pool / Alexey Druzhinin) 13.08, 19:0125 comments

‘Unilateral sanctions against Iran could damage Russian-US ties’ - Foreign Ministry

The Foreign Ministry has warned of a possible blow to Russian-American relations if the US pursues unilateral sanctions against Iran that affect Russian economic interests there.
Iran tension
Yevgeny Primakov (RIA Novosti / Sergey Pyatakov)08.08, 17:3314 comments

Mid-East pundit warns of possible Israeli strike on Iran

Former Russian PM and intelligence chief Evgeny Primakov has described the conflict in Syria as a full-scale civil war with religious background and heavy foreign interference and again warned against the Israeli aerial strike on Iran.
Arab world protestsIran tension
Reuters / Issei Kato 06.08, 03:1686 comments

US, Israel arranging roles in Iran war theater?

Reports are surfacing of a US-Israeli plan to attack Iran’s ballistic missile batteries, giving Israel extra space to tackle Syria and Hezbollah. While no talks have been confirmed, anonymous sources claim that war plans have been put to paper.
Israel vs IranIran tension
 Israel Aerospace Industries displays the Arrow II weapon system (AFP Photo / Pierre Verdy)05.08, 12:5138 comments

Israel upgrades missile shield over Iran, Syria fears

Israel is upgrading its ‘Arrow II’ missile shield over fears of possible attacks by Iran and Syria. The ‘Block-4’ upgrade is currently being installed and deployed across the country, a senior Israeli defense official said on Sunday.

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