Israel Prodding U.S. To Attack Iran
Joint Chiefs Chairman Admiral Mike Mullen leaves Tuesday night on an overseas trip that will take him to Israel, reports CBS News national security correspondent David Martin. The trip has been scheduled for some time but U.S. officials say it comes just as the Israelis are mounting a full court press to get the Bush administration to strike Iran's nuclear complex.
CBS consultant Michael Oren says Israel doesn't want to wait for a new administration.
"The Israelis have been assured by the Bush administration that the Bush administration will not allow Iran to nuclearize," Oren said. "Israelis are uncertain about what would be the policies of the next administration vis-a-vis Iran."
Israel's message is simple: If you don't, we will. Israel held a dress rehearsal for a strike earlier this month, but military analysts say Israel can not do it alone. . . .
[ . . . a four-month computer simulation and gaming exercise carried out last year by the Heritage Foundation, a conservative Washington think tank, gives an idea.
It was based on an Iranian closure of the Strait of Hormuz, the passageway for 90 percent of oil exported from Gulf producers, in response to a U.S. attack on nuclear sites, air fields and air defense targets. The simulation showed the price of oil more than doubling, U.S. gross domestic product depressed for 2-1/2 years, private non-farm employment declining by more than one million jobs, and disposable personal income dropping by more than $260 billion.
In terms of oil and gasoline prices, last year were the good old days. At the time of the exercise, a barrel of oil traded at $65 and a gallon of gasoline in the U.S. averaged $2.80. It's now around $136 and $4.08 respectively and could well reach twice that after an attack.--Bernd Debusmann, "Iran and nuclear consequences," Reuters, June 25, 2008]
Kristin Roberts, "ANALYSIS-US strike may delay, not stop Iran nuclear program," Reuters, June 25, 2008
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