Some thoughts I've had as a follow up to my post yesterday on the difficulties facing Israel in attacking Iran's nuclear facilities.
primary problem seems to be the lack of mid-air refueling capabilities.
When Israel conducted the raid on Entebbe, the same issue arose. The
initial solution was to purchase fuel at an airfield in a neighboring
country where they could land and refuel. Although that remained a
backup, the Israelis final plan involved refueling while on the ground
I would suggest something similar here
might work, by using one or more airfields closer to Iran where they
could fly in refueling bladders to either refuel before an attack, or
while returning from an attack. The ideal location would be in Saudi
Arabia--it is close, and there are probably several abandoned airfields
built for the wars against Iraq that would accommodate their aircraft.
According to the Wikileaks documents, Saudi Arabia was prepared to turn a
blind eye to an Israeli attack. The problem here is three-fold: (1) it
is one thing for Saudi Arabia to turn a blind eye to an overflight, but
quiet another to allow Israel to land and refuel; (2) the United States
will presumably not want to allow the Israelis to attack and risk a more
general conflict and closure of the Straits (plus, Obama is just as
likely to warn the Iranians as not--he is a very evil man who has shown
that he is more than willing to abandon allies when it serves him), but
there is little chance that Israel could get past the U.S. fleet without
our Navy knowing about it; (3) Iran's air-defense will be concentrated
in that area if, for no other reason, because of the presence of the
naval forces in the Gulf.
A secondary possibility would
be to attack from the north from Russia or one of the former Soviet
states. This would probably require the cooperation of the Russians, but
Putin had recently visited Israel....
possibility would be to use the chaos in Syria to their advantage and
try to secure and use an airfield in Syria to stage the attack. Very
risky, though, and perhaps it doesn't get them close enough to be worth
If they are desperate enough, Israel could
forgo using an air attack, and slip in small teams to detonate tactical
nukes that might do the job. Unlikely, but it would remedy the issue of
trying to get a large number of attack aircraft into Iran.
Israel does, it will require thinking outside the box, taking full
consideration that Obama will probably betray them if he is given the