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Dec 31, 2008. USAF nukes several iranian nuclear facilities - what then?

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  • Dec 31, 2008. USAF nukes several iranian nuclear facilities - what then?

    Posting this as a "what-if". We can move it later if there's a surprise later

    I think most people understand that conventional air attacks to destroy the Iranian nuclear facilities aren't really feasible. A bored Iranian military has nothing better to do than defend installation that are deep underground and probably deceptively placed. Even if they get completely blinded electronically, with all the AAA guns from the Iran-Iraq war they can defend single sides by just firing walls of shrapnel. It'll be expensive in losses for the U.S. and it is questionable whether the Iranian' capabilities to make nuclear weapons would be permanently disabled with conventional bombs.

    Let's assume (as in, don't abuse this thread to discuss details of air defenses) that the U.S. decides:
    • they don't want an Iran with nukes
    • a nuclear attack on the Iranian facilities is the only way to ensure that
    • they destroy three sites with one cruise missile each


    %%

    What happens next? Short term.

    Of course there's an oil price explosion as Muslim state boycott the U.S. and the Persian Gulf will be closed.

    European allies of the U.S. will have to pretend to be pissed and punish the U.S. by stopping cooperation is random unrelated

    But the primary reason why nuclear weapons were used in 1945 and never later is the nuclear balance. There's no nuclear balance with Iran (hopefully not yet). I don't think anybody is going to nuke us right back.

    %%

    Long term.

    Will a use of nukes make it more likely that other conflicts will use nukes?

    If the U.S. make use of nukes "acceptable", will Pakistan and/or India use that as an excuse to use them, too?

    If there's some kind of standoff between the U.S. and -say- China in 2023, will the parties involved negotiate with an increased possibility of using nuclear weapons in mind?

    %%

    Will this attack increase or decrease efforts to acquire nuclear weapons? Countries that don't have them yet can still go and try to buy materials and equipment. Would they try harder, to be able to scare off the U.S.? Would they stop trying because they know their nuclear capabilities will draw fire?

    If they stop, what happens with countries that are now considered friendly, politically, although they are really on the other side of the fence. Let's say Saudi-Arabia reacts by building a nuclear program after the attack? Do you let them?

    I'll post more later but enough for one post.

  • #2
    Why 12/31/08?

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    • #3
      Dec 31, 2008. USAF nukes several iranian nuclear facilities
      Very bad day for global warming

      Best Regards,
      Raum_Schiff.

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      • #4
        Randomly picked date.

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        • #5
          Well that is Bush still and unless he wants to go out with a bang he won't dare use nukes, Obama sure won't. I am not really sure what kind of AAA defenses Iran has but if the US wants to take out Irans facilities then we need a coalition with more than one nation bombing Iran. I think that an assassination on A-Jad may stop the nuclear program.
          "All Glory is Fleeting"

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          • #6
            I didn't want to make this a "Bush" thing.

            I'm wondering what the world would look like if the U.S. would lift the de-fact ban on actually using nuclear weapons, this year.

            I thought this would spark some actual debate but it seems my mind is just more twisted than everybody elses

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Redwolf View Post
              I didn't want to make this a "Bush" thing.

              I'm wondering what the world would look like if the U.S. would lift the de-fact ban on actually using nuclear weapons, this year.

              I thought this would spark some actual debate but it seems my mind is just more twisted than everybody elses
              I think that right after the shock of seeing this done many nations leaders would announce to thier own public that it was a rogue general that had launched the attack. And then hope that that is what we would announce. Because the thought of any goverment launching a nuke is a scary thought. But if we were to say, yeah we did it and we'll do it again if we need to would make the world a cold place for Americans. The next possible nuke to fly then would probably be one at us.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Psyhcoward View Post
                The next possible nuke to fly then would probably be one at us.
                What if using our nuke prevents those who might nuke us from getting their own nukes? What if it's the only way to prevent Iran from getting them?

                A possible answer is that if the U.S. **** off too many on-the-fence countries then e.g. the Russians might now openly sell nukes to states we really don't like, for "self-defense". Right now there doesn't seem to be any market for ready-to-use nukes.

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                • #9
                  Well think about this.

                  What if missile defense shields render MAD obsolete.

                  Then a full scale war is possible.

                  That would be scary

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                  • #10
                    What if missile defense shields render MAD obsolete.

                    Then a full scale war is possible.

                    That would be scary


                    No, it would not!
                    Nukes and the threaqt they presnet are like the lid on a pressure-cooker. Release is imposible, temperatures continue to rise, and stagnation becomes the rule as far as national development is concerned.

                    Nukes are an artificial barrier against politics by other means, and the longer that barrier is in place, the worse the flood when the damn finally breaks.
                    "Why is the Rum gone?"

                    -Captain Jack

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                    • #11
                      Events like this usually trigger hasty and illconsidered decisions by leaders at all levels. Politicians, bankers, business managers, leaders of terroist organizations, ect... are likely to panic and start yelling a lot. The resulting bad orders and changes in policys would be very bad economicaly. The global economy is sliding and could easily be tipped in to a much more rapid decline. The world wide hysterial following a atttack on Iran would rival the panics that created the Great Depression of the late 1920 & 1930s.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Redwolf View Post
                        What if using our nuke prevents those who might nuke us from getting their own nukes? What if it's the only way to prevent Iran from getting them?

                        A possible answer is that if the U.S. **** off too many on-the-fence countries then e.g. the Russians might now openly sell nukes to states we really don't like, for "self-defense". Right now there doesn't seem to be any market for ready-to-use nukes.
                        I would be more worried about the countries who already have nukes using them on us. Like China.

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                        • #13
                          I really do consider this an entirely plausible scenario. The actual timeline might differ from what you have posted but I think this is something that will most likely HAVE to happen in the near future. I say this because anyone that thinks the minute Iran develops nuclear weapons that they won't employ them against Israel is deluding themselves.

                          This act would further alienate the U.S. from the Arab world (if that's possible). I think it would start the mother of all Jihads with several coutries in the region banding together to fight this "attack on Islam". Israel would be attacked with everything the Arab world could throw at her. Any country in the world not allied with the U.S. would once again feel the chafe of U.S. hegemony and actively pursue a nuclear program. With the genie out of the bottle again countries like India and Pakistan would be much more likely to use their nuclear capabilities to settle their feud once and for all. North Korea would complete a weapon and use it or at least threaten to use it. South Korea would lobby the U.S. to do the same thing in North Korea that it did in Iran and if the North Koreans do indeed have nuclear capabilities at that point, the U. S. would likely oblige.

                          I think the fuse for this scenario has already been lit and detonation is not far away. This global conflict will make the others pale in comparison and the very existence of the planet is quite literally at stake.
                          "Looks like you guys are going to be surrounded."

                          "We're paratroopers, Lieutenant. We're supposed to be surrounded."

                          Rangers Lead The Way

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                          • #14
                            Another problem with this scenario is that both Korea & Pakistan have a supply of nuclear weapons. While for the moment they both have them somewhat secure there is no guarantee they will not fall to the control of someone willing to use them. An attack on Iran would end any incentive of North Korea to keep its weapons stored away. They would imeadiately disperse them to safer locations. They would also be much closer to deciding to use them, before they lose them. A premeptive strike against US bases in Japan or South Korea would be tempting.

                            In the case of Pakistan the odds are the current government that cooperates to s,oe degree with the US would evaporate in a hour or two. A new and hostile government would also be panicked into the use it or lose it thinking. In that case attacks on US facilities in range would be possible, attacks on any remaining ME governemnts still friendly to the US are possible. Or, one or more of the weapons might be sent concealed in a cargo ship towards a target.

                            In other words, by attempting to eleiminate a potiential nuclear threat in Iran this strike would trigger one or more active threats elsewhere.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Psyhcoward View Post
                              I would be more worried about the countries who already have nukes using them on us. Like China.
                              Why would the Chinese mind if the U.S. knocks out Iran's nuclear potential?

                              Of course they will be or at least play royally pissed. It's not China's declared style to mess with other countries (exceptions apply but they don't count for them).

                              But isn't it in their interest?

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