July 15, 2010
One wonders how many Ph.D. were consulted in the preparation of this report. Yet aside from the glaringly obvious, there are some other interesting observations. “An Israeli attack on Iran would be the start of a protracted conflict that would be unlikely to prevent the eventual acquisition of nuclear weapons by Iran and might even encourage it. Long-range strike aircraft acquired from the United States, combined with an improved fleet of tanker aircraft, the deployment of long-range drones and the probable availability of support facilities in northeast Iraq and Azerbaijan, all increase Israel’s potential for action against Iran.” According to the report, it might take three to seven years for Iran to develop a small arsenal of nuclear weapons if it decided to do so. Also, the report wisely states that an Israeli strike would be focused not only on destroying nuclear and missile targets but would also hit factories and research centers and even university laboratories to damage Iranian expertise. Shockingly, this would cause many civilian casualties. Oxford believes Iran’s retaliation would include withdrawing from the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and the production of nuclear weapons to deter further attacks. Other recourse would include missile attacks on Israel, closing the Strait of Hormuz to push up oil prices and paramilitary or missile attacks on Western oil facilities in the Gulf. Fun bedside reading.
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