Ralph Peters paints a grim picture of the immediate results of any US or Israeli attack on the Iranian nuclear weapon program:
How would Iran respond to strikes on its nuke facilities? Inevitably missiles would be launched toward Israeli cities — some with chemical warheads — but these tit-for-tat attacks would be the least part of Tehran’s counterattack strategy. The Iranians would “do what’s doable,” and that means hitting Arab oil-production infrastructure on the other side of the narrow Persian Gulf. Employing it mid-range missiles, aircraft and naval forces, Tehran would launch both conventional and suicide attacks on Arab oil fields, refineries, storage areas, ports and loading facilities, on tankers in transit, and on the Straits of Hormuz, the great chokepoint for the world’s core oil supplies. The price of a barrel of crude would soar geometrically on world exchanges, paralyzing economies — exactly as Iran’s leaders intend. Ten-dollar-a-gallon gas would be a brief bargain on the way to truly prohibitive prices. And, in the way of the world, Tehran would not get the blame. We would.
And we would be in one hell of a war, with the Middle East literally aflame and our Navy able to conduct only limited operations (if any) within the Persian Gulf, given that the body of water would become a shooting gallery: Even our finest surface-warfare ships can’t fight or maneuver effectively in a bathtub. The flow of oil would not resume, and we would have no idea how to end the war (not least, since we’re unwilling to inflict serious pain on our enemies anymore).
So . . . if we are forced to attack Iran’s nuclear-weapons facilities at some point, what would it take to do it right and limit Tehran’s ability to respond with such devastating asymmetrical attacks?
H/T to Doug Mataconis for the link.