September 29, 2008

Israel capable of first strike on Iran?

This is bad news. According to this Guardian report
The US has supplied Israel with a powerful long-range radar system that would provide an extra early warning in case of an Iranian missile attack, it was confirmed yesterday.
The bad news is that this means that Israel can launch a missile attack on Iran and avoid direct retaliation though of course there could be indirect means of retaliation.

Reading the article, America is claiming that it is a warning against Iran and a calming device for Israel. The curious thing about America's reasoning is that intrinsically defensive weaponry, like say, anti-ballistic missiles, have always been seen as actually offensive because they enable a first strike capability and they were the first to go in American-Soviet strategic arms limitation treaties. Also, Israel is nearly always responsibly for first strikes in its wars against its natives and neighbours whereas Iran has never attacked any of its neighbours. Further, Iran has said that it will not attack Israel whereas Israel has threatened Iran. And of course if Israel was to deny any aggressive intent towards Iran, what would that mean given Israel's appalling record of dishonesty?

America is going to be controlling the system it's giving to Israel and it's claimed that Israel isn't getting the green light to attack Iran but if Israel attacks Iran and Iran tries to retaliate, will the Americans implementing the project sit still while Iranian missiles hurtle towards them?

I can't help thinking I've got something wrong here. I hope I have.

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