Seven, eight, nine dollars for a gallon of gasoline in the United States might be the least of the world's concerns if Israel launches an attack on Iran. War being unpredictable, an Israeli instigated bombing of Iran's nuclear facilities might spark a horrific conflagration throughout the entire Middle East.
Let's be clear, Iran is no Iraq ... and it took the U.S. nine years to extricate itself from that Bush/Cheney occupation disaster. Iran is a big country with modern cities, a large population, important allies, and, as we all know, a highly developed petroleum industry. If Iran decided to boldly respond to an Israeli sneak attack, we could easily see the United States quickly drawn in (if it hadn't participated in the initial strike). Iranian allies like Hezbollah, Syria, Russia, China, Pakistan et al., could make this war global in nature.
Death and destruction to both Iran and Israel could be significant ... and, of course, the price of a barrel of oil could even double overnight. The world economy could collapse and the U.S. economy, already in bad shape could plunge into the abyss.
As of today there is still not any hard, verifiable evidence that Iran is developing a nuclear weapon. We've been down this road before -- Bush/Cheney lied us into an unprovoked attack, invasion and occupation of Iraq with the 'weapons of mass destruction' tale -- we cannot afford another war, period, let alone one not based on hard evidence of imminent threat and danger to our country.
Below are several links to news reports and analysis about the drums of war that are pounding louder especially in Israel.
The article by Ray McGovern is excerpted with my recommendation to read the entire essay.
More Washington insiders are coming to the conclusion that Israel’s leaders are planning to attack Iran before the U.S. election in November in the expectation that American forces will be drawn in. There is widespread recognition that, without U.S. military involvement, an Israeli attack would be highly risky and, at best, only marginally successful. ... ... Israel’s window of opportunity (what it calls the “zone of immunity” for Iran building a nuclear bomb without Israel alone being able to prevent it) is ostensibly focused on Iran’s continued burrowing under mountains to render its nuclear facilities immune to Israeli air strikes, attacks that would seek to maintain Israel’s regional nuclear-weapons monopoly.
But another Israeli “window” or “zone” has to do with the pre-election period of the next 12 weeks in the United States. Last week, former Mossad chief Efraim Halevi told Israeli TV viewers, “The next 12 weeks are very critical in trying to assess whether Israel will attack Iran, with or without American backup.”
It would be all too understandable, given Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s experience with President Obama, that Netanyahu has come away with the impression that Obama can be bullied, particularly when he finds himself in a tight political spot. ...
Virtually precluded, in Netanyahu’s view, is any possibility that Obama could keep U.S. military forces on the sidelines if Israel and Iran became embroiled in serious hostilities. What I believe the Israeli leader worries most about is the possibility that a second-term Obama would feel much freer not to commit U.S. forces on Israel’s side. A second-term Obama also might use U.S. leverage to force Israeli concessions on thorny issues relating to Palestine.
If preventing Obama from getting that second term is also part of Netanyahu’s calculation, then he also surely knows that even a minor dustup with Iran, whether it escalates or not, would drive up the price of gasoline just before the election — an unwelcome prospect for Team Obama. ...
One source reported that U.S. forces are on hair-trigger alert and that covert operations inside Iran (many of them acts of war, by any reasonable standard) have been increased. Bottom line: we were warned that the train had left the station; that any initiative to prevent miscalculation or provocation in the Gulf was bound to be far too late to prevent escalation into a shooting war. ...
Netanyahu gives every evidence of believing that — for the next 12 weeks — he is in the catbird seat and that, if he provokes hostilities with Iran, Obama will feel compelled to jump in with both feet, i. e., selecting from the vast array of forces already assembled in the area.
Sadly, I believe Netanyahu is probably correct in that calculation. Batten down the hatches.