As of now, I am in control here, in the White House

Is Obama Pursuing Iran Sanctions Seriously?

A good piece that appeared today in the Wall Street Journal. I give you a link to the authors’ own posting in case you don’t subscribe to the WSJ.

The Obamaites may just be too busy pressing reset buttons to have time to keep Russia and China from undermining the Iran sanctions. If Obama is going to avoid bombing Iran, he needs to at least do the sanctions right.

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15 Responses to Is Obama Pursuing Iran Sanctions Seriously?

  1. Mr. Obama remains adamantly opposed to any attempt to curtail the warlike prowess of *any* Islamofascist nation, especially the Chavez-of-the-Middle-East, whether it is military, civilian or chartered and backed U.N. sanctions. He is, like everything else (except basketball), voting present.

    We actually thought Netanyahu was going to bomb Iran’s 8 nuclear sites (including corresponding government targets) … but I guess not.

    No one seems to remember 1933 …

  2. I almost have sympathy (ALMOST, calm down) for him–like dealing with a deadly teenager…you have to stay on it night and day, you can’t just turn your attention to your own concerns…oh, no…

    • Star – exactly – you have to make sure he’s taking this stuff seriously. Only, like, the fate of the world may hang in the balance. Tom – I do think Israel will bomb them. They have no choice, if we don’t.

  3. I think the State Department has kept Netanyahu’s hands tied (translation: no $ if you bomb). For some reason, Arab nations have the ability (and the right) to make unilaterial decisions for their own safety by making war. Israel however, cannot do so. She must first get permission from the United States. Sort of a reverse form of 18th century tribute.

    I’ll never forget Yitzhak Rabin’s small speech in the bowels of the Knesset on 4 July 1976 when the leaders of the State of Israel made one of the greatest decisions in her history: giving Yonni Netanyahu the “go” sign for rescuing the Israeli hostages from Entebbe Airport. Mr. Rabin turned to his Chief of Staff after giving the order to commence the operation, and taking a long drag on a cigarette: “Inform the U.S., France, Great Britain and the Soviet Union that we have begun military operations to rescue our people. Tell them now.” Several minutes later, the first C-5A landed on the darkened tarmac at Entebbe airport in Uganda and Israeli Commandos (their faces blackened), stormed the old airport terminal, killed the German and Palestinian terrorists and rescued the hostages. Operation THUNDERBOLT: A complete success.

    “I would rather die standing as a man, than live on my knees as a slave!”
    -Emiliano Zapata
    It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees!

  4. I am just sitting on my butt–but the buzz I got (or someone put out) is that the Iran sites are unknown, some of them, or deep underground–not like whacking a factory or something like that. Half a strike, botched or weird, and then what if he already has nukes? I never think we know all this stuff for sure.

  5. Star,

    Israel and the U.S. have the site locations, GPS’ed down to five meters, including depth, size, tonnage, plant orientation, makeup, security, communications and what size restroom the scientists use when they have to go potty.

    A single strike on all the targets will not work; it must be a multi-strike, multi-phased bomber operation in which hundreds of sites are to be hit, not just the nuclear ones but commo and air force in order to destroy Iran’s attempt to put airborne, its intercepting aircraft.

    Even if the operation is only 25% successful … it will (a.) push the operational effectiveness of the nuclear sites back 20 years and (b.) scare the living Qu’ran out of them.

    Arab nations fear one thing: Israeli military might. That’s it. They laugh at us, they laugh at the Europeans … but they fear the blue magen david, knowing that Israel is surrounded and will, like a cornered rat, fight to the death if she has to.

  6. re: Entebbe Airport rescue
    Tom, when we heard the details and the outcome of that rescue, we were stunned. It was an exhilerating moment in history and made Israel a force to be reckoned with. Men and women of honor, heart and courage built Israel and we must do all we can to help protect them from their enemies.

  7. @srdem65: Great post.

    I was 10 years old when the Air France jet was hijacked. I will never forget watching my mom pull her Bible out, drag my Father over and we all held hands and prayed. It was simple: “Dear G-d, please save these people. Please save them” and then she burst out in tears. For nearly half a decade, night after night we sat through news reports of Palestinian hijackings, the ’72 Munich massacre of Jewish athletes, atrocity after atrocity after atrocity … with no blowback from the free world. I’ll never forget the Maalot school massacre, planned by Arafat that murdered 22 students.

    On the day the Israeli Commandos rescued the hostages (it was either 4 or 5 July) I will never forget my father sitting behind the t.v. and shouting, “Holy sh-t, I dont beleive it. I dont beleive it.” He stood up, my mom came into the room, I ran in and we watched on NBC as they ran a live feed from New York and Tel Aviv. It was incredible. My father had tears streaming down his face, a hardened Marine veteran. The next day cameras were all over the ramp as the people streamed out the C5A … and into the arms of their loved ones.

    • Tom,

      It’s wonderful to read your posts on this. Very well written and interesting.

      As a young Jewish lad I was so thrilled by the Entebbe raid. You know, I remember getting a “Jewish Sports Heroes” book in Hebrew School, and it included maybe one modern athlete, if that, and then some boxers from the 1930s or something and of course Sandy Koufax. They were so short of material they even included Bobby Fischer! It was just great to see with Entebbe that Jews could kick ass with such brilliance. I read a book on the operation that somehow came out only like a month afterward.

      The problem is that the ones who can do the Iran job with the greatest likelihood of real success is us. The Israelis are great soldiers, but the U.S. military is without peer, and our munitions are the ones that can do the job. Depriving Iran of nuclear weapons is a bottom line issue. That is, the only question must not be whether but how. I don’t know why the president doesn’t seem to understand this. But I don’t think he does.

      Such a contrast with Reagan. When they informed him that the Israelis had destroyed the Iraq nuclear reactor, he said, “Oh well, boys will be boys!”

  8. Keith,

    Thanks for your kind words.

    RE: A/S capability. Your right about the operation; only the U.S. has the bunker-busting (deep, deep, deep tunnel-) busting capability to pepper the nuclear zone (work) area in Iran, destroy air assets (on the ground) and generally set back the workload for the Iranians. We could also launch multiple strikes from different directions which would probably yeild success instantly.

    RE: Entebbe. An Israeli general I was honored to know told me in 1992 that THUNDERBOLT helped destroy the Baader-Meinhof group and sent (Dr.) Waddi Hadad into deep hiding for many years; the Israeli’s had been the only modern country to finally strike back at Palestinian terrorism (armed, trained and paid by most ME countries “in abstensia” he told me) with such a ferocity that it set terrorism back. Israel showed that it could be done. As a kid I became a lifelong fan. And I’ve met some of her greatest officers who have fought in multiple wars to maintain her freedom.

    LOL—– I never heard about that remark from Reagan!

  9. My ex- was 82nd Airborne Spec Forces–he got very excited about military strikes, too…I don’t mean to sound patronizing–but it must be a guy thing. I think many of these things don’t go as planned. But I defer to my military historian colleague here–though we shall see.

  10. @Star: Excellent comment here: “I think many of these things don’t go as planned.” Military operations usually fall under the edict, “Whatever can go wrong, will go wrong.” Murphy’s law.

    RE: Operation EAGLE CLAW [ ] was President Carter’s gig that went horribly wrong and turned into a bloody disaster in the Iranian desert, 24 April 1980. The reason it failed miserably was the following:

    1. DELTA FORCE. We had no *serious* counter-revolutionary (anti-terrorist) task force before DELTA was formed; however, from the outset, DELTA was run directly from the Pentagon and has beauracratic fingerprints all over it … including today. DELTA should be our primary and only anti-terrorist task force (in my opinion), not SEAL or other assets.

    2. KISS. There was no easy operational plan assigned: no less than four services were involved and was not KISS-conscious. Commando operations *MUST* be easy and simple. The more largess you add in terms of force assets, the lower your percentages of success. Commando operations should have a lead commander, objective, strike force and ready-plan for INfil and EXfil from the operational area. Terrorists must be *killed* with none taken prisoner. Airborne in / Kill bad guys / Destroy terr camp / EXfil out. Thats it. The British are *experts* at old-fashioned commando-style warfare. It’s time we go back to the drawning board to SIMPLIFY plans.

    3. LEADERSHIP. There was horrible leadership (except from the soldiers on the ground) from the senior military force commanders and DELTA. In fact, according to testimony, COL Beckwith used a post-op debrief to chide then scold his soldiers in the aftermath of the Desert One disaster and had to be walked out of the meeting. Piss-poor leadership. The Pentagon, the White House and the entire system was top-heavy with no less than 25 men making decisions (most of them bad). In fact according to one author I have read – President Carter showed some guts in wanting the operation to continue after 2 of the helicopters broke down. The majority of military historians have roasted Carter for this decision; I reject it. We had a mission to accomplish. The Pentagon plan should have had default copters waiting (but didnt).

    Desert One was a *major* disaster for one reason: the planning was pathetic. U.S. military officers have always believed that *every* operation has to have a major ordance footprint to be successful — the bigger the better.

    ITEM: STREAMLINE. Like Britain’s S.A.S., France’s Legion Etrangere (2eme R.E.P.) and Germany’s GSG9 —> take SEAL, DELTA and our assets and cut them down to a specialized group of no more than 250 highly specialized killers. Remove them from military bases and make them accountable to the President and the Pentagon Ready Room – thats it. No more liasons, decorated officers or b.s. “stable groups” that hogtie the man on the ground. Have Mr. Obama speak directly with the mission commander on the ground. “Mr. President, is it a go?” Simple, effective, deadly. Get in. Kill terrorists. Get out. [ The Israeli’s have probably the *best* c/t op’s in the world ].

  11. I suspect with the drones and special units, there is a certain amt of eliminating going on that we don’t know about, maybe even infiltration of those underground Iranian sites–the Israelis are no slouches when it come to this. I don’t know, but I suspect. I once cowrote a screenplay about Fred T Jane of “Jane’s Fighting Ships” fame. I had written their catalog one year and learned things about Jane. We called it DREADNOUGHT–and themed it around the building of the first (British) dreadnought. My writing partner Peggy and I encountered Tom Clancy online and asked him some questions–and he sent us back reams copied from…Jane’s, of course. We countered his thoughts and he said, “Well, I never said ladies couldn’t write about warships.” I don’t know war first hand, but I have lived with its aftermath for years. I have my thoughts on it.