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No Good Options on Iran, Threats Building for U.S.

Gaffney, Center for Security Policy, says “no good options on Iran, and threats building for US.” 

Right Side News sat down for an interview with the Center for Security Policy’s founder, Frank Gaffney, to discuss Iran, Israel and other security issues in his offices in downtown Washington, D.C.  

Frank J. Gaffney, Jr. is President of the Center for Security Policy , a columnist for the Washington Times and host of the nationally syndicated program, Secure Freedom Radio, heard in Washington weeknights at 9:00 p.m. on WRC 1260 AM.

The following column reflects his views and warnings on the real threat the Iranian/Israeli standoff projects on American interests.

The perceived threat of a potential nuclear attack on the United States and /or Israel, should Iran acquire nuclear weapons capability, positions the West as unwilling to undertake anti-terrorist pre-emptive action against Iran. The potential threat to the United States is as serious as the threat posed to Israel whether the Iranian nuclear program is months or years away from developing a nuclear device.

Best Solution: Regime ChangeIran_Missile_Program

Gaffney sees any attempted military action as a delaying tactic at best at this point in time. Strategically, he avers that such a strike by anyone would at best disrupt but not destroy Iran’s nuclear capability.

The more necessary tactic, Gaffney says, is to deny the Iranians essential control over their government, and effect a change of will on part of Iran concerning its nuclear agenda. The core method of denying the Iranian government support for its stated goal of achieving nuclear capbility would be a popular uprising and for a new regime to emerge, based upon the people’s desire for a non-nuclear agenda.

The Obama administration, as well as previous administrations, has been loath to act on U.S. security interests in face of an Iranian nuclear threat, as have American allies in the Middle East region. U.S. allies such as Saudi Arabia, Oman, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain and others will likely be a question mark in U.S. policy strategies, should a nuclear vessel be fired at Israel or the United States, says Gaffney. “The likely stance of our Arab allies would be to look to us for protection,” Gaffney said.

Aside from Israel, there appear to be few nations in the West or in the Middle East willing to confront the reality of Iran’s often stated desire to destroy both the State of Israel, and the American way of life.

The real threat to the United States could come from a high altitude nuclear weapon-generated electromagnetic pulse (EMP). According to the U.S. Commission to Assess the Threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Attack, a nuclear bomb detonated high in the atmosphere (40-400 kilometers above the earth’s surface) over the United States could be catastrophic to the Nation. This type of device requires much less sophistication to build than a device designed for low altitude airburst. The Commission cites American vulnerability as a potential invitation to such an attack.

Gaffney discussed such an incident citing the catastrophic cascading effect such an attack would have on our electrical grids. The damage from such an attack on the U.S. electric grid would affect all levels of telecommunications including essential military internal and weapons communications systems. It would potentially disrupt our transportation system, food and water supplies, energy and financial systems, as well as disable essential services.  The cascading effect is outlined on the Commission’s report, issued in 2004. (link to PDF  of commission’s executive summary)

Gaffney cited the Commission’s recommendation of what the U.S. should be doing to thwart such a threat. The recommendation is to “pursue intelligence, interdiction and deterrence. Both Gaffney and the Commission stressed the need for U.S. government’s efforts to establish and maintain a global environment that profoundly discourages catastrophic attacks as our first line of defense.”

The Obama administration’s response to Israel’s suggestion it might act militarily to take out Iran’s nuclear capability seems fallow in light of the potential threat an Iranian nuclear capability would pose to U.S. as well as Israeli and moderate Arabian allies in the Middle East. Diplomacy has yet to stop the Iranians from working to acquire nuclear capability. Iran tested one missile in North Korea, Gaffney cited, so the threat moves forward, without a will by the United States and the West to proactively undertake actions that signal the seriousness of will to halt Iran’s powerful lust for nuclear weapons.

The Commission to Assess the Threat to the U.S. from Electromagnetic Pulse Attack summarized the need for vigilance in its summary, “Hold potential perpetrators at risk of capture or destruction, whatever and wherever in the world they operate.” Both the Obama administration and the West have fallen short on this mandate.

Another factor that may embolden Iran in the near-term is the election of Mr. Putin to the Presidency in Russia. Gaffney avers that Putin is likely to be more assertive this time around.  The reality of an invigorated Russia and potential mischief in key strategic pressure points in the Middle East and beyond may finally press the American President to stand up to a gathering storm that has already had too long to build.

Jeni_UpchurchJeni Upchurch has served as a strategic communications management official at senior levels of the U.S Government. Her last public service post was Assistant Secretary, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for Public Affairs, when Jack Kemp was Secretary. Prior to that she had a career in journalism, and was a foreign correspondent for ABC-TV news, based in London, England 

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