Loose Lips Sink Ships

Two months ago, I was shocked to read in the Jerusalem Post that Israeli Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkott publicly offered Saudi Arabia intelligence on Iran.  I know that I only made it to the lowly rank of Captain in the US Army intelligence, but as a military historian (when I grow up, I’d like to be a full time professor), I know that “loose lips sink ships.”  This slogan was made popular in World War I and has been used over and over again to great effect.  Perhaps Gen. Eizenkott and his boss Mr. Netanyahu should learn that as well.

Certainly, the Middle East makes for strange bedfellows.  However, you generally don’t announce which bed and which fellows publicly.  Guess the Chief of Staff must have gotten some security points from Netanyahu’s son, lol.

Why do I make this point?  It is simple.

First of all general, after 9/11, the American people know the Saudis can’t be trusted.  Tell that to Donald Trump (Tweedle Dumb Dumb) that just sold 100 billion dollars of weapons to the biggest head choppers and terrorists in the Middle East.  They regularly entrust their dirty work to the “bearded ones,” like Osama bin Laden and his clones.  Certainly, with all of the Saudi money, Prince Salman could buy a whole turn key, launch ready nuke system.  This is exactly what Saddam did back in the late 70s and early 80s.  The French were helping to build him to assemble a ready made nuclear weapons program.  This is why Israel bombed the Osirak reactor in Iraq in 1981.  They did not want to get it the hard way, as we have seen in case of Pakistan and North Korea.  While not as easy as Legos or Tinker Toys, the turnkey method provides bang for the buck in a more timely fashion.

Secondly, the alliance with Iran that died in the Iranian revolution of the late 1970s was hidden in plain site, but it was plausibly deniable and off the books.  Under the Shah, there were never official relations, although everyone knew about it.  He could always officially deny this to keep peace with his Muslim neighbors.  The Israeli embassy was occupied by the PLO upon Khomeini’s assent, but that was the first mention of it publicly.  Additionally, when Israel supplied TOW antitank missiles and I-Hawk antiaircraft missiles under both Begin and Shamir, this was done in secret until Oliver North and Reagan administration’s amateurism in Iran-Contra in 1986.

Previous to now, Israel had been following its traditional doctrine of the periphery, that is, finding allies on the perimeter of the Arab hard line states.  Now we can’t and why?  I guess Israel needs to do the dirty work for the US it used to do only covertly, such as supply weapons to pariah states such as Apartheid South Africa.  We are still getting the stench of that pig off like stench from a water cannon’s skunk spray and now we want to openly embrace the Saudis?  If we must, please God in private.  I understand.  Unlike the US, Israel has real enemies that want to destroy us.  Exceptions have to be made to survive.  However, let’s not be a colony of America, or follow their stupidity.

For those American expats that bristle at this language, I will shock you even more.  The “special relationship” is not really with Israel, but with Saudi Arabia.  This stems from the 1945 when FDR traveled to the kingdom and promised to protect the kingdom, even after the duplicitous bastards supplied oil to the Nazis through Franco’s Spain during the Second World War.  Yes, the FDR that did nothing to help Jews until the very end of the war.  Why bomb the death camps that used up so much of the Nazi resources?  Even under Harry Truman who recognized the state of Israel, the US honored the British blockade.  Most US weapons that got here were from surplus European stocks.  Any sold from the US landed the suppliers in jail.  Israel’s first weapons were from the Soviet Union through Czechoslovakia.  The basic weapon of Israeli infantryman was the Mauser and the air force the ME-109, all manufactured at former German plants in Czechoslovakia.  Stalin needed plausible deniability.  He wanted to offset the British position in the Middle East and saw then socialist Israel as an ally and counterweight.  This died in 1953 and the Czech weapons now went to Egypt.  Israel then went to the French because Eisenhower would not sell Israel even defensive weaponry.  Things thawed under JFK, but still had to be under the radar because of the US position in the Middle East.  The first M-48 tanks were sold second hand and surreptitiously through Germany.  This changed in 1967 with the Israeli victory in the Six Day War.  France quit supplying weapons.  The US, bogged down in Vietnam, began to look for allies where it could find them.  They now openly sided with Israel until the 1973 Oil Embargo when they had to have more “balance.”

So what about Iran now?  Let me clue you in on a dirty secret that is being hidden in plain sight:  Iran already has a turnkey system.  What, they are just getting to the point of building a bomb now, aren’t they?  Trust me a bit here.  I’ll take off the intelligence hat and put on a nuke.  As a lowly intelligence analyst in the S-2 of the 1/81st  Field Artillery Brigade Pershing in Neu Ulm Germany, I learned a lot about nukes during my tenure from 1983-85.  For all of you old farts out there, you might remember this was when Ronald Reagan upgraded US tactical nuclear missiles in West Germany.  I was in the middle of that.

As an intelligence nerd, I loved to get into details, as I do now.  I checked my suppositions out with a former neighbor of mine who is a fellow at the BESA (Begin-Sadat) Center at Bar Ilan.  While an Arab specialist, he ran my questions by an Iran specialist.  My question was, if the Iranians are just getting to point of refining U235 uranium, does this mean they are at a Manhattan Project level of technology (World War II level)?  If so, the bomb would weigh 10,000 lbs.  This is tactically useless in the modern environment and is only a terror weapon.

So, how do I figure that the Iranians already have the bombs weaponized and ready for missiles?

Since 2010, Israel has deployed at least one Dolphin class submarine to stay on patrol in the Persian Gulf at all times.  The sub’s cruise missiles can hit any target within 1500 km, well into Iranian territory.  Bottom line my friends, the Iranians already have the nukes ready to go.  They are too spread out for Israel to wipe them out by air or commando raids.  Where Iran got them, who knows, but have them they do.  The Israeli Navy is using a well known military principle called economy of force.  You confront an enemy with the smallest force possible.  One out of five submarines is a lot of force to use.  Basically, Israel’s only option is to nuke Iran into the Stone Age.  This is not a good place to be militarily.  Anyone who commutes to work in Jerusalem and commutes to work will pass by the “Uma,” the station for the new express train between Tel Aviv and the capitol.  It goes 25 stories underground and doubles as a nuclear fallout shelter.

What is the public program for?  Iran needs window dressing to explain why the idiots running Iran shut down the Shah’s nuclear turnkey program.  Had the Shah survived, he would have had 20 nuclear power plants on line.  They would already have had a warhead to put on a missile in the 1980’s!

I am not telling you all to kiss it goodbye.  However, MAD (Mutual Assured Destruction) does not work.  The US tried this in the 1950s.  The Soviets were able to maneuver and do things via terrorism and proxy wars.  Trust me, Iran can do this, even though they and Hezbollah have been bled white in the killing fields of Syria.  Von Clausewitz stated the famous maxim that war was diplomacy by other means.  Let me add that diplomacy is war by other means.  This is how Reagan and Bush the elder got the Soviets to disarm.  Reagan started to see nukes a “wild card” that could bring the whole house down.  Not bad for a guy with Alzheimers.

What now?  Quietly (General Eizenkot), keep send out feelers to Iran through the Russians slowly.  We had things in common with them during the regime of the Shah, and even under the Ayatollahs.  As this rotten regime in Tehran ages and the younger generation comes to the fore, we may have a chance to turn them.  The younger generation wants Western style freedom.  Isn’t this why the PM spoke to them in Farsi?  Next time, Bibi, please don’t do it standing by the dumbest man child on the planet.  To quote Moe Howard, buy a toupee with some brains in it.  The CIA has admitted to working with the British to overthrow the elected government of Mohammed Mossadegh and reinstall the Shah in 1953.  Iranians have long memories and some legitimate grievances against the US.  Give some time to let things heal.  Keep the US out of the process and peace may

About the Author
Akiva ben Avraham is a former community college adjunct, US Army intelligence analyst and officer, and a caregiver.