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Iran's Missile Attacks May Have Been Mini-Sputnik Moment
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The data points keep getting better and better. We now know that 10/11 missiles hit (up from the initial estimate of 6/11). The damage they did has also been upgraded, with a Danish soldier speaking of many helicopters destroyed (as opposed to the US claim of one damaged) and 11 US soldiers reported injured.

More importantly, the very low CEP (~12m) has been more or less conclusively confirmed.

This means that Iran has developed precision ballistic missile targeting years ahead of schedule. Commenter Annatar has dug up some thinking from strategic arms expert Michael Elleman:

Assuming the Fateh-110s were aiming for the center of the airfield, the spatial distribution of the impacts indicates a CEP of 800–1,100 meters, depending on the calculation method employed. ”

“It will require very different technologies to the Fateh-110 to achieve the design objectives. Adding a Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver, or the Russian, French or Chinese equivalents, to the inertial navigation system to provide precise updates will only improve Emad’s accuracy by about 20–25%, not enough to alter its military utility. To achieve the precision needed to destroy military targets consistently and reliably, Iran must develop a post-boost control system and terminal guidance capabilities. With terminal guidance and control, missile warheads can be maneuvered to the target just before impact. Based on the time other countries took to develop precision-guided ballistic missiles with a range greater than 300 km, Iran is not expected to possess an arsenal of accurate medium-range missiles before 2025. Extensive foreign assistance from China or Russia could shorten the timeline to a few years, however.”

And here his Iran’s Missile Priorities After The Nuclear Deal from 2018:

The Fateh-110’s CEP of 800–1,000 meters is on a par with that of the Shahab-1 missile. The lethal effects of a missile warhead weighing 500–1,000 kilograms is limited to about 50 meters, making it easy to understand why the missile is not expected to land close enough to kill or destroy a specific target. As with the Shahab-1, the Fateh-110 is unlikely to succeed, unless the target is very large, like an airfield or military base. Iran will likely need many more years and scores of flight tests to reduce the CEP to below 200 meters, the minimum accuracy requirement for a missile to have a reasonable chance of destroying a specific military target.

In reality, they were developed by 2019, in precisely that year, since accuracy during Iran’s missile strikes on Islamic State as late as October 2018 were pretty low:

Mini Sputnik moment? Could the sharp US stand down after this be connected with the generals realizing that war with Iran would be far costlier than they expected, and communicating this to Trump and Co? It was at any rate quite interesting how Trump went from being very aggressive to friendly soon after the missile hits, as well as his difficulties with speaking the next day. Perhaps the real impact on that day was that the people in a position to know – military analysts, generals, the civilian leaders they briefed – realized that a war with Iran would be far, far costlier than had previously been assumed. Assuming Iran has hundreds of these Fateh missiles, with CEP = 12 meter accuracy, that would put them in a position to reduce Saudi oil infrastructure and US military bases across the entire region, whereas before they were only in a position to cause some minor damage to Saudi and Israeli cities. As Annatar points, this means Iran has its own version of a “Samson option” now.

To be sure, the US can still fight (and even win) against Iran if it was really determined to:

Fixed bases are not a sine qua non of warfare. You can conceal planes and drones. Troops can be billetted amongst civilians, as has been practiced since times immemorial. And, of course, the launchers and missiles can be themselves targeted. Though this will not be trivial, since Iran is big and has a lot of mountains and hardened underground bases, where it has been accumulating missiles for decades.

But wars of choice are politically fickle things. The Arabs no longer seem to want to go along with American adventures, and even wussified Western militaries might balk at this.

US troops sheltered in Saddam-era bunkers during Iran missile attack:

“I don’t wish anyone to have that level of fear,” he said. “No one in the world should ever have to feel something like that.”

Danish soldier after Iranian attack: I felt powerless:

Psychologists are now on their way to Kuwait to help the Danish soldiers recover from the experience.

There are also consequences to this that stretch beyond Iran. We now also know that even a country with a moderately large population and modest average IQ – if with a sizable smart fraction, albeit a brain drained one – that is committed to its sovereignty (but not at the cost of Best Korea-like levels of militarization) can develop capabilities that make US intervention a nightmare. E.g., what Iran can accomplish now, a Bolivarian Venezuela may potentially accomplish in another decade. Especially considering the fruitful relations between these countries.

Some further questions:

1. It is unlikely that CEP was so low with just inertial guidance. Were the Iranians reliant on foreign SatNav? If so, who’s? There is debate over this, with it being possible that Iran’s own milsats were sufficient.

2. Could targeting be made dynamic (to also threaten warships, esp. aircraft carriers). I imagine this would be much harder, but not impossible, the Chinese at any rate seem to be getting there with the DF-41.

That said, the more logical route would probably be to go for swarms of cruise missiles. Anyone know what the status of development is there?

I had assumed Iran would be largely powerless against USN, since AFAIK most of their anti-ship missile arsenal is composed of antiquated Chinese C-802s (a Hezbollah-fired missile did damage an Israeli corvette in 2006, but it had its countermeasures turned off at the time; the USS Mason (DDG-87) shrugged off a volley from Yemen fired by the Houthis in 2016. However, if Iran has more capable anti-ship missiles in respectable numbers – and this particular surprise should make us raise the chances of that being the case – then the calculations would change. It seems to have some numbers of Sunburns, though no Bastion systems.

 
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: Geopolitics, Iran, Military Analysis 
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  1. Please keep off topic posts to the current Open Thread.

    If you are new to my work, start here.

  2. Iranian strike clearly was carefully measured. In and of itself it speaks for their ability to target with high precision. But the most important thing about Iranian missile strike at the US bases is that it ushered in a new era. Until fairly recently it was generally believed that shooting at the US bases is detrimental for your health. Iranian strike showed that a regional non-nuclear power can strike at the US assets with impunity, making the Empire, which was issuing lots of hot air and stupid threats before, back off. The importance of this event is not so much military, as strategic and political. It was a game changer: Iran called American bluff and demonstrated to the whole world that it was nothing but a bluff. Many countries noticed.

    • Replies: @Uncle Sam
    I agree. The Iranian missile attack on the 2 American bases is a watershed event and indicates a massive power shift in the Middle East. America has been reduced to a helpless observer. Iran now holds the strategic initiative and is in a position to dictate events. America is afraid of Iran or more precisely afraid to engage in a war with her.

    Mr. Karlin's assertion that America can win a war with Iran does not take into account that the Pentagon itself does not believe that. Every time the Pentagon wargames a war with Iran America loses. Google "Millennium Challenge 2002". Mr. Karlin evidently is not aware of that wargame. Either that or he thinks it is irrelevant.

    If he thinks America can win he has to explain how. Does he think that America's air and naval assets can win a war without a 2 million man American army invading Iran? With the advanced Russian supplied air defense systems, the skies above Iran are a no fly zone for American or Israeli aircraft. The Americans can fire Tomahawk missiles en masse and some would get thru and do some damage but most of them would not. The damage would not affect the Iranian war effort. But then the launching platforms would be destroyed, be they land bases or aircraft carriers.

    Recall that in April 2018 the American, British and French air forces fired 103 cruise missiles or flying bombs at Syrian targets and 71 were shot down. Those air forces stayed well outside the range of the Syrian air defense systems, which were based on 1960 and 1970 Russian aeropace technology. Yet those Syrian air defenses shot down most of them or disrupted their guidance systems. Maybe the Russian personnel on the ground might have helped the Syrians. I don't know.

    With the far more superior air defense systems the Iranians have, the results for the Americans would be disastrous, unless you assume that the Iranian air defense personnel are incompetent or will panic and abandon their positions or fire wildly into the sky when the war begins. I don't think they are incompetent or will panic.

    The Chinese after their experience fighting the Americans in the Korean War concluded that America was "a paper tiger". Something analogous could now be going on in the thought processes of the Iranian leadership.

  3. Good, next target Israel, and hopefully one day with nuclear payloads.

  4. The ‘injuries’ were minor, and were only detected due to routine after action examinations.

    While no U.S. service members were killed in the Jan. 8 Iranian attack on Al Asad Air base, several were treated for concussion symptoms from the blast and are still being assessed,” Captain Bill Urban, a spokesman Central Command, told reporters in a statement Thursday.

    The strike showed that Khameni will back down rather than have a serious fight U.S. Forces.

    The Ayatollah used it as a PR stunt within his own country by lying to his people about the impact. As Iranians find out about this new lie by the non-Supreme Leader, expect additional protests about his repeated deceptions.

    PEACE 😇
    _______

    (1) https://www.breitbart.com/middle-east/2020/01/17/pentagon-confirms-iran-missile-strike-injuries/

    • Replies: @Mikel

    The strike showed that Khameni will back down rather than have a serious fight U.S. Forces.
     
    When was the last time a country launched a military attack against the US and the US President sat on his hands?

    Besides, the downing of the Ukrainian plane suggests that Iran was expecting a US military response.

    Not to mention that Iran used these type of missiles in real combat for the first time so they couldn't possibly be sure what the outcome would be, even if those behind-the-scenes arrangement theories are true (and even if they're true, how could the ayatollahs be sure that the US would honor any agreement with them -remember how the current US-Iran conflict originated after Trump pulled out from the JCPOA-).
    , @KA
    I would definitely have accepted the theory that US was kind and non responsive to Iran’s attack out of sheer confidence and faith in its supremacy without any fear of counter response or counter threat if Trumps were not, instead of ignoring and smiling with disdain at the theatrics of Iran, pouting and puffing like a shocked child who managed to have returned to his safe zone after a bad fisticuffs .

    There is no free lunch Friedman told Palestinian borrowing the phrase from Summer another of his ilk.

    Well,Trump there is no free lunch in the free world who is refusing to be enslaved by the neocons .
  5. Could the sharp US stand down after this be connected with the generals realizing that war with Iran would be far costlier than they expected,

    US generals have largely known that fighting Iran would be a bad idea for a while now. Unlike in war games, real life doesn’t allow you to refloat a naval task force and change the rules so you don’t lose next time.

    However, if Iran has more capable anti-ship missiles in respectable numbers – and this particular surprise should make us raise the chances of that being the case – then the calculations would change. It seems to have some numbers of Sunburns, though no Bastion systems.

    Don’t forget sea mines. US mine warfare capabilities have seriously atrophied. It is one of the least sexy areas of naval warfare, but mine countermeasures are pretty important.

    “The sea mines Iran used at that time were relatively unsophisticated — the mine that almost sank the frigate USS Samuel B. Roberts in 1988 was a World War I-era device — but mines it can deploy now are more advanced and more dangerous, with some warheads weighing nearly 2,500 pounds.”

    https://www.businessinsider.com/us-navy-faces-a-huge-liability-in-countering-irans-use-of-sea-mines-2018-8?utm_source=copy-link&utm_medium=referral&utm_content=topbar

    • Replies: @JPM
    "In the event of war with Iran, the U.S. Navy’s small, aging force of Persian Gulf-based minesweepers would struggle to locate and disarm Iran’s underwater mines."

    LCS was supposed to be able to take on the mine warfare role, but LCS has little chance of survival in a combat zone. The LCS program is probably the biggest US Navy boondoggle ever. It can't do anything. It is even too slow to keep up with supply ship cruising speed, so that rules out even convoy escort.

    https://nationalinterest.org/blog/buzz/how-bad-would-irans-naval-mines-be-during-war-90316
    , @Anatoly Karlin
    The famous Millennium Games were absurdly weighed in favor of the Iranians (things like giving motorcyclists infinite speed; having suicide speedboats take out carriers). I don't think many military types in the US took them seriously.

    OTOH, I think the revelation that Iran's missiles had a CEP of 12 meters as opposed to several hundreds of meters was new, and an internal watershed.
  6. @JPM

    Could the sharp US stand down after this be connected with the generals realizing that war with Iran would be far costlier than they expected,
     
    US generals have largely known that fighting Iran would be a bad idea for a while now. Unlike in war games, real life doesn't allow you to refloat a naval task force and change the rules so you don't lose next time.

    However, if Iran has more capable anti-ship missiles in respectable numbers – and this particular surprise should make us raise the chances of that being the case – then the calculations would change. It seems to have some numbers of Sunburns, though no Bastion systems.
     
    Don't forget sea mines. US mine warfare capabilities have seriously atrophied. It is one of the least sexy areas of naval warfare, but mine countermeasures are pretty important.

    "The sea mines Iran used at that time were relatively unsophisticated — the mine that almost sank the frigate USS Samuel B. Roberts in 1988 was a World War I-era device — but mines it can deploy now are more advanced and more dangerous, with some warheads weighing nearly 2,500 pounds."

    https://www.businessinsider.com/us-navy-faces-a-huge-liability-in-countering-irans-use-of-sea-mines-2018-8?utm_source=copy-link&utm_medium=referral&utm_content=topbar

    “In the event of war with Iran, the U.S. Navy’s small, aging force of Persian Gulf-based minesweepers would struggle to locate and disarm Iran’s underwater mines.”

    LCS was supposed to be able to take on the mine warfare role, but LCS has little chance of survival in a combat zone. The LCS program is probably the biggest US Navy boondoggle ever. It can’t do anything. It is even too slow to keep up with supply ship cruising speed, so that rules out even convoy escort.

    https://nationalinterest.org/blog/buzz/how-bad-would-irans-naval-mines-be-during-war-90316

  7. @JPM

    Could the sharp US stand down after this be connected with the generals realizing that war with Iran would be far costlier than they expected,
     
    US generals have largely known that fighting Iran would be a bad idea for a while now. Unlike in war games, real life doesn't allow you to refloat a naval task force and change the rules so you don't lose next time.

    However, if Iran has more capable anti-ship missiles in respectable numbers – and this particular surprise should make us raise the chances of that being the case – then the calculations would change. It seems to have some numbers of Sunburns, though no Bastion systems.
     
    Don't forget sea mines. US mine warfare capabilities have seriously atrophied. It is one of the least sexy areas of naval warfare, but mine countermeasures are pretty important.

    "The sea mines Iran used at that time were relatively unsophisticated — the mine that almost sank the frigate USS Samuel B. Roberts in 1988 was a World War I-era device — but mines it can deploy now are more advanced and more dangerous, with some warheads weighing nearly 2,500 pounds."

    https://www.businessinsider.com/us-navy-faces-a-huge-liability-in-countering-irans-use-of-sea-mines-2018-8?utm_source=copy-link&utm_medium=referral&utm_content=topbar

    The famous Millennium Games were absurdly weighed in favor of the Iranians (things like giving motorcyclists infinite speed; having suicide speedboats take out carriers). I don’t think many military types in the US took them seriously.

    OTOH, I think the revelation that Iran’s missiles had a CEP of 12 meters as opposed to several hundreds of meters was new, and an internal watershed.

    • Agree: reiner Tor
    • Thanks: JPM
    • Replies: @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan
    Actually, RE: Millennium 02, Van Riper claimed that cruise missiles accounted for most of the damage he did to the Blue Force. This is not that hard to believe - America's long range AWACS and intermediate range AEGIS systems were/are not as effective in short-range littoral waters of the Persian Gulf.

    I'd love to have a citation for your assertion that the games were "absurdly weighed in favor of the Iranians."

    , @Maïkl Makfaïl
    Americans seemed to affirm that some of those iranian missiles have been tracked by US radars and destroyed by US anti missile defenses . Some thoughts about it ?

    And does Russia have some missiles équiped with dynamic targeting capable of blowing up US aircraft carriers in your opinion ?
  8. 2. Could targeting be made dynamic (to also threaten warships, esp. aircraft carriers). I imagine this would be much harder, but not impossible, the Chinese at any rate seem to be getting there with the DF-41.

    These missiles could be especially effective in a port strike. Look up US Navy in Sasebo on google maps. Those ships are really close together. That’s a whole amphibious strike group bunched together from what I am seeing.

    Yokosuka might be even worse. A whole destroyer squadron tied together side-by-side. An amphibious assault ship and a carrier are pretty close by as well.

    Another problem is that the Air Force doesn’t drill for operating with a cratered airfield anymore as far as I know. If Andersen Air Base’s (Guam) air defenses get overwhelmed there could problems with crews not having practiced patching runways under fire. The auxiliary air field on Saipan has been closed for a long time, and generally assets are more concentrated on fewer bases than during cold war.

    If significant 5th Fleet assets are moored at Manama, Bahrain then that could be a problem during an Iranian first strike.

    That said, the more logical route would probably be to go for swarms of cruise missiles. Anyone know what the status of development is there?

    Iranian cruise missiles seem to be pretty good judging from the strike on the oil facilities last year. Patriot is designed to shoot down planes, and it has never got the missile defense thing quite right. Plus the Saudi crews are too stupid to use Patriot effectively anyway.

    • Replies: @Mitleser

    These missiles could be especially effective in a port strike. Look up US Navy in Sasebo on google maps. Those ships are really close together. That’s a whole amphibious strike group bunched together from what I am seeing.

    Yokosuka might be even worse. A whole destroyer squadron tied together side-by-side. An amphibious assault ship and a carrier are pretty close by as well.
     
    It is known that this is one of the weak points.

    In a 2017 report for the Center for a New American Security, Tom Shugart and Javier Gonzales conclude that the missile defense systems of every single American air and naval base in Japan would be overwhelmed by the PLA Rocket Force’s very first volley. They estimate that more than 200 aircraft, almost all fixed American command centers, every U.S. runway, and most of the American fleet at berth would be destroyed—tens of billions of dollars in military equipment gone in less than 30 minutes of fighting. Recent Rand Corp. war games found similar results. In response to the games, former Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert Work offered a caustic assessment: “In every case I know of, the F-35 rules the sky when it’s in the sky, but it gets killed on the ground in large numbers.”

    There is a very real chance that America’s front-line forces would be crippled in the first moments of a conflict with China.
     

    China has a huge advantage, thanks to the absurd overconcentration of fixed U.S. targets in Japan. U.S. Forces Japan (USFJ) stations the majority of its personnel and weaponry in seven locations: Misawa Air Base in northern Japan, Yokota and Atsugi Air Bases near Tokyo, Iwakuni Air Base in southern Japan, naval bases in both Sasebo and Yokosuka, and a patchwork of military facilitates in Okinawa. The most concentrated military presence is found on that island. Over half of USFJ’s military personnel are located on Okinawa, though it comprises less than 1 percent of Japan’s total land area.

    Concentration is the enemy. In a technology regime dominated by long-range precision munitions, concentrating American servicemen, weaponry, communications, and logistics in a few dense hubs that can be targeted by weapons launched from hundreds of miles away means defeat.
     
    https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/09/04/american-bases-in-japan-are-sitting-ducks/
  9. @Anatoly Karlin
    The famous Millennium Games were absurdly weighed in favor of the Iranians (things like giving motorcyclists infinite speed; having suicide speedboats take out carriers). I don't think many military types in the US took them seriously.

    OTOH, I think the revelation that Iran's missiles had a CEP of 12 meters as opposed to several hundreds of meters was new, and an internal watershed.

    Actually, RE: Millennium 02, Van Riper claimed that cruise missiles accounted for most of the damage he did to the Blue Force. This is not that hard to believe – America’s long range AWACS and intermediate range AEGIS systems were/are not as effective in short-range littoral waters of the Persian Gulf.

    I’d love to have a citation for your assertion that the games were “absurdly weighed in favor of the Iranians.”

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    There are lots of back-and-forth debates about those war games, and what they mean. I don't think we'll arrive at a definite result, because we're all just amateurs. As I wrote previously, carriers might be sitting ducks, or they might still be the most potent maritime weapons systems even against peer opponents, we cannot be sure, and I'd think that even if Russia and China have highly effective anti-carrier weapons themselves, they still cannot be sure anyway, because it's simply impossible to tell how those things would work out. Before 1941, no-one could tell if battleships were obsolete or not. It only gradually transpired in 1941-42, but I've read actual arguments that even WW2 wasn't fully conclusive, and that maybe it would've made sense (for a real naval war, which fortunately never took place) to keep armored super-heavy warships in production to this very day, because aircraft could only destroy battleships on a few occasions, and usually under total aerial superiority, and even so they needed some luck, so with some design changes battleships would have continued to be viable. I don't know, nor does it matter that much now.

    What matters is that probably no-one knows for sure if carriers or anti-carrier weapons are going to work, so we shouldn't pretend that we do either.
  10. @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan
    Actually, RE: Millennium 02, Van Riper claimed that cruise missiles accounted for most of the damage he did to the Blue Force. This is not that hard to believe - America's long range AWACS and intermediate range AEGIS systems were/are not as effective in short-range littoral waters of the Persian Gulf.

    I'd love to have a citation for your assertion that the games were "absurdly weighed in favor of the Iranians."

    There are lots of back-and-forth debates about those war games, and what they mean. I don’t think we’ll arrive at a definite result, because we’re all just amateurs. As I wrote previously, carriers might be sitting ducks, or they might still be the most potent maritime weapons systems even against peer opponents, we cannot be sure, and I’d think that even if Russia and China have highly effective anti-carrier weapons themselves, they still cannot be sure anyway, because it’s simply impossible to tell how those things would work out. Before 1941, no-one could tell if battleships were obsolete or not. It only gradually transpired in 1941-42, but I’ve read actual arguments that even WW2 wasn’t fully conclusive, and that maybe it would’ve made sense (for a real naval war, which fortunately never took place) to keep armored super-heavy warships in production to this very day, because aircraft could only destroy battleships on a few occasions, and usually under total aerial superiority, and even so they needed some luck, so with some design changes battleships would have continued to be viable. I don’t know, nor does it matter that much now.

    What matters is that probably no-one knows for sure if carriers or anti-carrier weapons are going to work, so we shouldn’t pretend that we do either.

    • Replies: @JPM

    Before 1941, no-one could tell if battleships were obsolete or not. It only gradually transpired in 1941-42, but I’ve read actual arguments that even WW2 wasn’t fully conclusive
     
    Take the Battle off Samar in 1944 for instance. Japanese ships also had abysmal AA defenses and usually lacked RADAR.

    USS Texas, a rather old vessel, had 100 AA guns retrofitted on to it, which made it much better suited to defend against air attack than a Japanese battleship. Iowa had even denser defenses.

    What matters is that probably no-one knows for sure if carriers or anti-carrier weapons are going to work, so we shouldn’t pretend that we do either.
     
    It will be very difficult to sink American carriers given their tremendous mass close to 100k tonnes and ability to seal compartments and blast doors. Although it won't be impossible either. There are a lot of variables at play.

    The main American vulnerability is that our global commitments exceed our resources. The recent ship collisions are a good example of overworked ships and crews. There's a naval maintenance back log especially for submarines. Logistics like those will be the biggest issues determining an American victory or defeat.

    Also, in the age of nuclear weapons a nuclear power can flip the board if they don't like how the conventional war is going. I don't fully trust that America wouldn't use them.

    Modern precision weapons turned places like Fallujah and Mosul into moonscapes. Great Power war would be bad for everyone even if it stayed non-nuclear.
  11. @JPM

    2. Could targeting be made dynamic (to also threaten warships, esp. aircraft carriers). I imagine this would be much harder, but not impossible, the Chinese at any rate seem to be getting there with the DF-41.
     
    These missiles could be especially effective in a port strike. Look up US Navy in Sasebo on google maps. Those ships are really close together. That's a whole amphibious strike group bunched together from what I am seeing.

    Yokosuka might be even worse. A whole destroyer squadron tied together side-by-side. An amphibious assault ship and a carrier are pretty close by as well.

    Another problem is that the Air Force doesn't drill for operating with a cratered airfield anymore as far as I know. If Andersen Air Base's (Guam) air defenses get overwhelmed there could problems with crews not having practiced patching runways under fire. The auxiliary air field on Saipan has been closed for a long time, and generally assets are more concentrated on fewer bases than during cold war.

    If significant 5th Fleet assets are moored at Manama, Bahrain then that could be a problem during an Iranian first strike.

    That said, the more logical route would probably be to go for swarms of cruise missiles. Anyone know what the status of development is there?
     
    Iranian cruise missiles seem to be pretty good judging from the strike on the oil facilities last year. Patriot is designed to shoot down planes, and it has never got the missile defense thing quite right. Plus the Saudi crews are too stupid to use Patriot effectively anyway.

    These missiles could be especially effective in a port strike. Look up US Navy in Sasebo on google maps. Those ships are really close together. That’s a whole amphibious strike group bunched together from what I am seeing.

    Yokosuka might be even worse. A whole destroyer squadron tied together side-by-side. An amphibious assault ship and a carrier are pretty close by as well.

    It is known that this is one of the weak points.

    In a 2017 report for the Center for a New American Security, Tom Shugart and Javier Gonzales conclude that the missile defense systems of every single American air and naval base in Japan would be overwhelmed by the PLA Rocket Force’s very first volley. They estimate that more than 200 aircraft, almost all fixed American command centers, every U.S. runway, and most of the American fleet at berth would be destroyed—tens of billions of dollars in military equipment gone in less than 30 minutes of fighting. Recent Rand Corp. war games found similar results. In response to the games, former Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert Work offered a caustic assessment: “In every case I know of, the F-35 rules the sky when it’s in the sky, but it gets killed on the ground in large numbers.”

    There is a very real chance that America’s front-line forces would be crippled in the first moments of a conflict with China.

    China has a huge advantage, thanks to the absurd overconcentration of fixed U.S. targets in Japan. U.S. Forces Japan (USFJ) stations the majority of its personnel and weaponry in seven locations: Misawa Air Base in northern Japan, Yokota and Atsugi Air Bases near Tokyo, Iwakuni Air Base in southern Japan, naval bases in both Sasebo and Yokosuka, and a patchwork of military facilitates in Okinawa. The most concentrated military presence is found on that island. Over half of USFJ’s military personnel are located on Okinawa, though it comprises less than 1 percent of Japan’s total land area.

    Concentration is the enemy. In a technology regime dominated by long-range precision munitions, concentrating American servicemen, weaponry, communications, and logistics in a few dense hubs that can be targeted by weapons launched from hundreds of miles away means defeat.

    https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/09/04/american-bases-in-japan-are-sitting-ducks/

    • Agree: JPM
  12. @reiner Tor
    There are lots of back-and-forth debates about those war games, and what they mean. I don't think we'll arrive at a definite result, because we're all just amateurs. As I wrote previously, carriers might be sitting ducks, or they might still be the most potent maritime weapons systems even against peer opponents, we cannot be sure, and I'd think that even if Russia and China have highly effective anti-carrier weapons themselves, they still cannot be sure anyway, because it's simply impossible to tell how those things would work out. Before 1941, no-one could tell if battleships were obsolete or not. It only gradually transpired in 1941-42, but I've read actual arguments that even WW2 wasn't fully conclusive, and that maybe it would've made sense (for a real naval war, which fortunately never took place) to keep armored super-heavy warships in production to this very day, because aircraft could only destroy battleships on a few occasions, and usually under total aerial superiority, and even so they needed some luck, so with some design changes battleships would have continued to be viable. I don't know, nor does it matter that much now.

    What matters is that probably no-one knows for sure if carriers or anti-carrier weapons are going to work, so we shouldn't pretend that we do either.

    Before 1941, no-one could tell if battleships were obsolete or not. It only gradually transpired in 1941-42, but I’ve read actual arguments that even WW2 wasn’t fully conclusive

    Take the Battle off Samar in 1944 for instance. Japanese ships also had abysmal AA defenses and usually lacked RADAR.

    USS Texas, a rather old vessel, had 100 AA guns retrofitted on to it, which made it much better suited to defend against air attack than a Japanese battleship. Iowa had even denser defenses.

    What matters is that probably no-one knows for sure if carriers or anti-carrier weapons are going to work, so we shouldn’t pretend that we do either.

    It will be very difficult to sink American carriers given their tremendous mass close to 100k tonnes and ability to seal compartments and blast doors. Although it won’t be impossible either. There are a lot of variables at play.

    The main American vulnerability is that our global commitments exceed our resources. The recent ship collisions are a good example of overworked ships and crews. There’s a naval maintenance back log especially for submarines. Logistics like those will be the biggest issues determining an American victory or defeat.

    Also, in the age of nuclear weapons a nuclear power can flip the board if they don’t like how the conventional war is going. I don’t fully trust that America wouldn’t use them.

    Modern precision weapons turned places like Fallujah and Mosul into moonscapes. Great Power war would be bad for everyone even if it stayed non-nuclear.

    • Agree: reiner Tor
    • Replies: @china-russia-all-the-way
    Is there any good reason to sink a carrier instead of just crippling it from launching planes?

    I think the Iranians have invented a rung in the escalation ladder. Equipment can be destroyed without harming people to send the message to stop before going into all out war. If the carrier is crippled but there is no one's life to avenge that may lead to the decision to turn back. So I wonder if attempts will be made to design a carrier crippling missile that could hit without killing any personnel.

  13. Could targeting be made dynamic (to also threaten warships, esp. aircraft carriers). I imagine this would be much harder, but not impossible, the Chinese at any rate seem to be getting there with the DF-41.

    Good question. China has medium range ballistic missiles DF-21. But there are doubts if they can do the job against the moving targets. China has battle scene observing satellites that can help in the guidance in the final descending and terminal phases but Iran lacks satellites. In 15 minutes the aircraft carrier can be 10 miles away from its initial position. There is a limit of maneuverability and trajectory adjustment for the ballistic missiles. Once the target is outside the missiles’s acquisition window which may happen within several minutes after the missile launch the ballistic missile won’t be able to chase it outside this window.

    “The emergence of the DF-21D has some analysts claiming that the “carrier killer” missiles have rendered the American use of aircraft carriers obsolete, as they are too vulnerable in the face of the new weapon and not worth the expense. Military leaders in the U.S. Navy and Air Force, however, do not see it as a “game changer” to completely count carriers out. First, the missile may not be able to single-handedly destroy its target, as the warhead is believed to be enough to only inflict a “mission kill” to make a carrier unable to conduct flight operations. Secondly, there is the problem of finding its target. The DF-21D has a range estimated between 1,035 to 1,726 mi (899 to 1,500 nmi; 1,666 to 2,778 km), so a carrier battle group would need to be located through other means before launching. Over-the-horizon radars cannot pinpoint their exact locations, and would have to be used in conjunction with Chinese recon satellites; recon aircraft and submarines could also look for them, but they are vulnerable to the carrier’s defenses. Finally, although the DF-21D has radar and optical sensors for tracking, it has not yet been tested against a ship target moving at-sea at up to 55 km/h (30 kn; 34 mph), let alone ones using clutter and countermeasures. The “kill chain” of the missile requires processing and constantly updating data of a carrier’s location, preparing the launch, programming information, and then firing, a chain the U.S. military’s AirSea Battle concept involves disrupting.[34] Some U.S. analysts believe that the DF-21D doesn’t fly any faster than Mach 5.” -Wiki

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    Once you have a rough idea where the CBG or some of its ships are, you can just launch a swarm of missiles to cover a relatively large area, each missile into different square-shaped target areas adjacent to each other, and each can use its own targeting systems to try and find any ships within its own target area. Maybe 2-3-5-10 missiles could be sent into each area to maximize the chance of a hit. If you send 200 missiles to an area where one ship could be found, then still producing the missiles might be significantly cheaper than producing the vessel (not to mention they could be produced much faster), and you wouldn't need to find the exact location to hit it. While sinking a carrier might be difficult (it would need multiple hits), a mission kill could be enough to neutralize it, and the destroyers are easier to sink anyway. Some of the missiles might find a different ship than the one targeted. How many of such missiles does China have? How much do they cost relative to a CBG? If one CBG (with all its escort ships, air wing, etc.) costs $20 or $30 billion to build, while one MRBM costs $1 million each, then you can literally build tens thousands of the latter for the price of one CBG, and so you can afford to use many missiles to destroy just one ship.
  14. I don’t know if the enemy commanders are as smart as me (and, so far as I can tell, our American Admirals dang sure ain’t) but if an American Super Carrier Battle Group is my target I’m not wasting a single missile, rocket, torpedo, bullet or epithet on the Carrier, I’m going to sink all of her escorts. Could be it’s impossible to sink a Super Carrier but Cruisers and Frigates will go down faster than Lamar Jackson vs Tennessee and w/o support that Super Carrier is laying in a course for San Diego at Warp Factor 8.

  15. I would concur with a previous commentator that politically the most important part of the missile strike is the fact it is clear now America is not as ready to retaliate as it claims, Trump famously said any attack by Iran on US bases would elicit a severe response, well Iran attacked a US Base, they destroyed infrastructure and aircraft on it and there was no response. This has profound geopolitical implications in terms of what the willingness is to escalate by the US in response to a direct attack.

    In military terms, this strike just reinforces a fact that has been becoming ever more steadily true since the V2 was first fired, namely that ballistic missiles, and missiles more broadly are the most effective weapons in conventional warfare and mass concentrations of forces, whether troops on a base, aircraft in hangars or ships at sea are extremely vulnerable to being destroyed in a sudden first strike. This is a fact as commentator has posted is already realised to some extent by US analysts. All of America’s military assets that are deployed close to countries that possess large arsenals of missiles like China, Iran and Russia are likely to be destroyed in the first minutes of a war.

    The IRGC in their press conference stated as much, saying America was vulnerable because it’s troops were concentrated in a small number of bases throughout the region whereas Iran’s forces were dispersed. In the age of precision missiles, force concentration simply increases the likelihood of your forces being rendered militarily ineffective within the opening hour of a conflict.

    • Agree: Anatoly Karlin
  16. @AnonFromTN
    Iranian strike clearly was carefully measured. In and of itself it speaks for their ability to target with high precision. But the most important thing about Iranian missile strike at the US bases is that it ushered in a new era. Until fairly recently it was generally believed that shooting at the US bases is detrimental for your health. Iranian strike showed that a regional non-nuclear power can strike at the US assets with impunity, making the Empire, which was issuing lots of hot air and stupid threats before, back off. The importance of this event is not so much military, as strategic and political. It was a game changer: Iran called American bluff and demonstrated to the whole world that it was nothing but a bluff. Many countries noticed.

    I agree. The Iranian missile attack on the 2 American bases is a watershed event and indicates a massive power shift in the Middle East. America has been reduced to a helpless observer. Iran now holds the strategic initiative and is in a position to dictate events. America is afraid of Iran or more precisely afraid to engage in a war with her.

    Mr. Karlin’s assertion that America can win a war with Iran does not take into account that the Pentagon itself does not believe that. Every time the Pentagon wargames a war with Iran America loses. Google “Millennium Challenge 2002”. Mr. Karlin evidently is not aware of that wargame. Either that or he thinks it is irrelevant.

    If he thinks America can win he has to explain how. Does he think that America’s air and naval assets can win a war without a 2 million man American army invading Iran? With the advanced Russian supplied air defense systems, the skies above Iran are a no fly zone for American or Israeli aircraft. The Americans can fire Tomahawk missiles en masse and some would get thru and do some damage but most of them would not. The damage would not affect the Iranian war effort. But then the launching platforms would be destroyed, be they land bases or aircraft carriers.

    Recall that in April 2018 the American, British and French air forces fired 103 cruise missiles or flying bombs at Syrian targets and 71 were shot down. Those air forces stayed well outside the range of the Syrian air defense systems, which were based on 1960 and 1970 Russian aeropace technology. Yet those Syrian air defenses shot down most of them or disrupted their guidance systems. Maybe the Russian personnel on the ground might have helped the Syrians. I don’t know.

    With the far more superior air defense systems the Iranians have, the results for the Americans would be disastrous, unless you assume that the Iranian air defense personnel are incompetent or will panic and abandon their positions or fire wildly into the sky when the war begins. I don’t think they are incompetent or will panic.

    The Chinese after their experience fighting the Americans in the Korean War concluded that America was “a paper tiger”. Something analogous could now be going on in the thought processes of the Iranian leadership.

    • Disagree: utu
  17. @A123
    The 'injuries' were minor, and were only detected due to routine after action examinations.

    While no U.S. service members were killed in the Jan. 8 Iranian attack on Al Asad Air base, several were treated for concussion symptoms from the blast and are still being assessed,” Captain Bill Urban, a spokesman Central Command, told reporters in a statement Thursday.
     
    The strike showed that Khameni will back down rather than have a serious fight U.S. Forces.

    The Ayatollah used it as a PR stunt within his own country by lying to his people about the impact. As Iranians find out about this new lie by the non-Supreme Leader, expect additional protests about his repeated deceptions.

    PEACE 😇
    _______


    (1) https://www.breitbart.com/middle-east/2020/01/17/pentagon-confirms-iran-missile-strike-injuries/

    The strike showed that Khameni will back down rather than have a serious fight U.S. Forces.

    When was the last time a country launched a military attack against the US and the US President sat on his hands?

    Besides, the downing of the Ukrainian plane suggests that Iran was expecting a US military response.

    Not to mention that Iran used these type of missiles in real combat for the first time so they couldn’t possibly be sure what the outcome would be, even if those behind-the-scenes arrangement theories are true (and even if they’re true, how could the ayatollahs be sure that the US would honor any agreement with them -remember how the current US-Iran conflict originated after Trump pulled out from the JCPOA-).

    • Replies: @A123

    When was the last time a country launched a military attack against the US and the US President sat on his hands?
     
    When was the last time a country arranged a PR stunt that resulted in negligible military impact? The U.S. President at that time probably had exactly the same reaction as the current President.

    Behind every military conflict is a political objective, and the opposition was conceding that objective. Trump's willingness to give Khameni an out was sound strategy, more classical than original:

    Sun Tzu, The Art of War, Chapter 7:

    Do not interfere with an army that is returning home.
    When you surround an army, leave an outlet free.
    Do not press a desperate foe too hard.

    Such is the art of warfare.
     
    Yes, there was over $100,000, probably a full $1,000,000 in property damage. On a personal budget that number sounds huge. However, a single Patriot interceptor costs over $2,000,000. So, defending against the PR stunt would have cost $30-60,000,000. In military budget terms 'only a million' is a bargain price.

    Besides, the downing of the Ukrainian plane suggests that Iran was expecting a US military response.
     
    The current religious regime prioritizes ideological conformity in its troops. As a result, many elements of the Iranian military have problems with troop capability. The issues are similar to those in the pre-breakup USSR related to party zampolit (1) political officers.

    The fact that an AA crew was devotionally pure but militarily less than competent surprises no one. This event reinforces the consensus opinion that than Iranian military has significant weakness that can be exploited by the U.S. if the need arises.

    remember how the current US-Iran conflict originated after Trump pulled out from the JCPOA-).
     
    Remember how the overall US-Iran conflict started when extremist religious authorities held Americans hostage for 444 days?

    even if those behind-the-scenes arrangement theories are true (and even if they’re true, how could the ayatollahs be sure that the US would honor any agreement with them
     
    I think you stated this backwards. The correct question is, "How could the President be sure that the Ayatollah would honor his agreement?"

    Indeed, President Trump could not know for sure. However, given the massive back down by the Iranian leadership, there was a good chance that the terrified Khameni was sincere about folding.

    If Khameni had ordered a real attack, Trump would have retaliated against additional officials in the religious and military hierarchies. That was the coded message about cultural (e.g. religious) targets. Trump was signalling his willingness to go after Mullahs and other senior religious officials (not historical monuments). The Fake Stream Media and other low-IQ groups got it wrong again.

    If the U.S. kills an Iranian Mullah or General every time Khameni kills a sergeant or private -- everyone would quickly understand that the U.S. is winning and the Ayatollah is losing.

    PEACE 😇
    _______

    (1) http://www.mvep.org/zampolit.htm
  18. @JPM

    Before 1941, no-one could tell if battleships were obsolete or not. It only gradually transpired in 1941-42, but I’ve read actual arguments that even WW2 wasn’t fully conclusive
     
    Take the Battle off Samar in 1944 for instance. Japanese ships also had abysmal AA defenses and usually lacked RADAR.

    USS Texas, a rather old vessel, had 100 AA guns retrofitted on to it, which made it much better suited to defend against air attack than a Japanese battleship. Iowa had even denser defenses.

    What matters is that probably no-one knows for sure if carriers or anti-carrier weapons are going to work, so we shouldn’t pretend that we do either.
     
    It will be very difficult to sink American carriers given their tremendous mass close to 100k tonnes and ability to seal compartments and blast doors. Although it won't be impossible either. There are a lot of variables at play.

    The main American vulnerability is that our global commitments exceed our resources. The recent ship collisions are a good example of overworked ships and crews. There's a naval maintenance back log especially for submarines. Logistics like those will be the biggest issues determining an American victory or defeat.

    Also, in the age of nuclear weapons a nuclear power can flip the board if they don't like how the conventional war is going. I don't fully trust that America wouldn't use them.

    Modern precision weapons turned places like Fallujah and Mosul into moonscapes. Great Power war would be bad for everyone even if it stayed non-nuclear.

    Is there any good reason to sink a carrier instead of just crippling it from launching planes?

    I think the Iranians have invented a rung in the escalation ladder. Equipment can be destroyed without harming people to send the message to stop before going into all out war. If the carrier is crippled but there is no one’s life to avenge that may lead to the decision to turn back. So I wonder if attempts will be made to design a carrier crippling missile that could hit without killing any personnel.

    • Replies: @JPM

    Is there any good reason to sink a carrier instead of just crippling it from launching planes?
     
    There would be symbolic value in sinking a carrier. Although that would likely elicit a massive retaliation (potentially nuclear) on the part of Americans. Sinking symbolically important ships often tends to stiffen resolve rather than weaken it. Like Bismarck sinking the Hood or the attack on Pearl Harbor.

    So I wonder if attempts will be made to design a carrier crippling missile that could hit without killing any personnel.
     
    Assuming the Iranians can damage the flight deck, then the Carrier would withdraw from the battle zone to undergo repairs. I don't think no casualties would be possible unless the carrier was in port and almost no one was on board.

    If the carrier is crippled but there is no one’s life to avenge that may lead to the decision to turn back.
     
    Not really how Americans would react to an attack on a carrier. At the point carriers are being targeted, there is probably no turning back and a war is on. Targeting the bases in Iraq is an appropriate way to demonstrate the accuracy of missiles and show that outright war isn't worth the effort. Attacking carriers on the other hand provokes rather than deters because of their symbolic importance. American leadership is obsessed with maintaining "credibility". Something equally symbolic would need to targeted on the Iranian side if a carrier was attacked. On the other hand, bases in Iraq are better targets for the Iranians because they are unimportant to the American public.
  19. As conventional wisdom goes: “never underestimate the enemy”

    I mean we haven’t even gotten to the carbon-tubed missiles Hezbollah is developing to counter Iron Dome radars….

    Fear that black pyjama my friends.

    Sometimes I wonder how technical Karlin really is… has he done any programming in his life? Worked with electrical components? Has he done anything in material science or any form of engineering?

    I feel like he is a defeatist… “oh those people are 90 IQ, there is NO WAY they can do anyth….oh….”

    To be sure, the US can still fight (and even win) against Iran if it was really determined

    You want to talk about determination now?

    • Replies: @reiner Tor

    “never underestimate the enemy”
     
    Since most people here are opposed to Globohomo, this means we have to be vigilant against ideas which underestimate Globohomo military capabilities, because that’s what many of us are inclined to believe.
  20. I am no missile expert, but I am an engineer.

    It seems to me that the Iranians have some sort of terminal guidance system on these missiles – both ballistic and cruise missiles.

    We all know that some mobile phones can now recognise faces. I believe similar software should be able to recognise building, planes, bridges and so on – once close enough.

    The chances of a random person being able to unlock your phone are one in a million

    What Is Facial Recognition on a Phone?

    When the Circular Error Probability (CEP) goes down to 1m or so, there will no longer be any need for the missiles to carry an explosive charge of hundreds of kilograms. One kilogram should be enough for many targets – tanks, planes, chemical plants, aircraft carriers and so on. Many targets have armour on their sides but little on their upper sides. An aircraft carrier cannot function if its catapults are disabled. No need to sink the thing.

  21. @Max Payne
    As conventional wisdom goes: "never underestimate the enemy"

    I mean we haven't even gotten to the carbon-tubed missiles Hezbollah is developing to counter Iron Dome radars....

    Fear that black pyjama my friends.

    Sometimes I wonder how technical Karlin really is... has he done any programming in his life? Worked with electrical components? Has he done anything in material science or any form of engineering?

    I feel like he is a defeatist... "oh those people are 90 IQ, there is NO WAY they can do anyth....oh...."

    To be sure, the US can still fight (and even win) against Iran if it was really determined
     
    You want to talk about determination now?

    “never underestimate the enemy”

    Since most people here are opposed to Globohomo, this means we have to be vigilant against ideas which underestimate Globohomo military capabilities, because that’s what many of us are inclined to believe.

    • Agree: JPM
    • Replies: @Znzn
    Well the F-35 is unstested, and the Rafale and Mirage 2000 have been able to get a radar lock or to get a WVR gun kill on a F-22 in an exercise. On your opinion, will AESA radar be able to enable a 4th generation aircraft like the Superhornet to fight on more even terms with a stealth aircraft?
  22. @Mikel

    The strike showed that Khameni will back down rather than have a serious fight U.S. Forces.
     
    When was the last time a country launched a military attack against the US and the US President sat on his hands?

    Besides, the downing of the Ukrainian plane suggests that Iran was expecting a US military response.

    Not to mention that Iran used these type of missiles in real combat for the first time so they couldn't possibly be sure what the outcome would be, even if those behind-the-scenes arrangement theories are true (and even if they're true, how could the ayatollahs be sure that the US would honor any agreement with them -remember how the current US-Iran conflict originated after Trump pulled out from the JCPOA-).

    When was the last time a country launched a military attack against the US and the US President sat on his hands?

    When was the last time a country arranged a PR stunt that resulted in negligible military impact? The U.S. President at that time probably had exactly the same reaction as the current President.

    Behind every military conflict is a political objective, and the opposition was conceding that objective. Trump’s willingness to give Khameni an out was sound strategy, more classical than original:

    Sun Tzu, The Art of War, Chapter 7:

    Do not interfere with an army that is returning home.
    When you surround an army, leave an outlet free.
    Do not press a desperate foe too hard.

    Such is the art of warfare.

    Yes, there was over $100,000, probably a full $1,000,000 in property damage. On a personal budget that number sounds huge. However, a single Patriot interceptor costs over $2,000,000. So, defending against the PR stunt would have cost $30-60,000,000. In military budget terms ‘only a million’ is a bargain price.

    Besides, the downing of the Ukrainian plane suggests that Iran was expecting a US military response.

    The current religious regime prioritizes ideological conformity in its troops. As a result, many elements of the Iranian military have problems with troop capability. The issues are similar to those in the pre-breakup USSR related to party zampolit (1) political officers.

    The fact that an AA crew was devotionally pure but militarily less than competent surprises no one. This event reinforces the consensus opinion that than Iranian military has significant weakness that can be exploited by the U.S. if the need arises.

    remember how the current US-Iran conflict originated after Trump pulled out from the JCPOA-).

    Remember how the overall US-Iran conflict started when extremist religious authorities held Americans hostage for 444 days?

    even if those behind-the-scenes arrangement theories are true (and even if they’re true, how could the ayatollahs be sure that the US would honor any agreement with them

    I think you stated this backwards. The correct question is, “How could the President be sure that the Ayatollah would honor his agreement?”

    Indeed, President Trump could not know for sure. However, given the massive back down by the Iranian leadership, there was a good chance that the terrified Khameni was sincere about folding.

    If Khameni had ordered a real attack, Trump would have retaliated against additional officials in the religious and military hierarchies. That was the coded message about cultural (e.g. religious) targets. Trump was signalling his willingness to go after Mullahs and other senior religious officials (not historical monuments). The Fake Stream Media and other low-IQ groups got it wrong again.

    If the U.S. kills an Iranian Mullah or General every time Khameni kills a sergeant or private — everyone would quickly understand that the U.S. is winning and the Ayatollah is losing.

    PEACE 😇
    _______

    (1) http://www.mvep.org/zampolit.htm

    • LOL: Alfred
    • Replies: @Fluesterwitz

    Remember how the overall US-Iran conflict started when extremist religious authorities held Americans hostage for 444 days?
     
    The conflict started when the US relieved the British of the burden to protect the proceeds of the Iranian oil from falling into the wrong hands, i.e., the elected Iranian government (elected by the Iranians, that is). That was sometimes in the 1950s. I'm sure there is a Wikipedia article bout it.
    , @Dreadilk
    You make a lot of assertions while you can't possibly know whether they are true or not. We don't know who backed down. We don't know what outcome may be outside of what happened.

    I prefer to not to operate in the classic Donnie Kruger effect fashion.
  23. @utu

    Could targeting be made dynamic (to also threaten warships, esp. aircraft carriers). I imagine this would be much harder, but not impossible, the Chinese at any rate seem to be getting there with the DF-41.
     
    Good question. China has medium range ballistic missiles DF-21. But there are doubts if they can do the job against the moving targets. China has battle scene observing satellites that can help in the guidance in the final descending and terminal phases but Iran lacks satellites. In 15 minutes the aircraft carrier can be 10 miles away from its initial position. There is a limit of maneuverability and trajectory adjustment for the ballistic missiles. Once the target is outside the missiles's acquisition window which may happen within several minutes after the missile launch the ballistic missile won't be able to chase it outside this window.

    "The emergence of the DF-21D has some analysts claiming that the "carrier killer" missiles have rendered the American use of aircraft carriers obsolete, as they are too vulnerable in the face of the new weapon and not worth the expense. Military leaders in the U.S. Navy and Air Force, however, do not see it as a "game changer" to completely count carriers out. First, the missile may not be able to single-handedly destroy its target, as the warhead is believed to be enough to only inflict a "mission kill" to make a carrier unable to conduct flight operations. Secondly, there is the problem of finding its target. The DF-21D has a range estimated between 1,035 to 1,726 mi (899 to 1,500 nmi; 1,666 to 2,778 km), so a carrier battle group would need to be located through other means before launching. Over-the-horizon radars cannot pinpoint their exact locations, and would have to be used in conjunction with Chinese recon satellites; recon aircraft and submarines could also look for them, but they are vulnerable to the carrier's defenses. Finally, although the DF-21D has radar and optical sensors for tracking, it has not yet been tested against a ship target moving at-sea at up to 55 km/h (30 kn; 34 mph), let alone ones using clutter and countermeasures. The "kill chain" of the missile requires processing and constantly updating data of a carrier's location, preparing the launch, programming information, and then firing, a chain the U.S. military's AirSea Battle concept involves disrupting.[34] Some U.S. analysts believe that the DF-21D doesn't fly any faster than Mach 5." -Wiki

    Once you have a rough idea where the CBG or some of its ships are, you can just launch a swarm of missiles to cover a relatively large area, each missile into different square-shaped target areas adjacent to each other, and each can use its own targeting systems to try and find any ships within its own target area. Maybe 2-3-5-10 missiles could be sent into each area to maximize the chance of a hit. If you send 200 missiles to an area where one ship could be found, then still producing the missiles might be significantly cheaper than producing the vessel (not to mention they could be produced much faster), and you wouldn’t need to find the exact location to hit it. While sinking a carrier might be difficult (it would need multiple hits), a mission kill could be enough to neutralize it, and the destroyers are easier to sink anyway. Some of the missiles might find a different ship than the one targeted. How many of such missiles does China have? How much do they cost relative to a CBG? If one CBG (with all its escort ships, air wing, etc.) costs $20 or $30 billion to build, while one MRBM costs $1 million each, then you can literally build tens thousands of the latter for the price of one CBG, and so you can afford to use many missiles to destroy just one ship.

    • Replies: @utu
    We do not know much about the available countermeasures. While it is hard to shoot down Mach 5 or Mach 10 incoming ballistic missile it should be possible to blind it as the missile depends on some optical and/or radar signal in targeting during its terminal phase. I think it would be easy to jam its radar but also it should be possible to blind its optical camera with laser though I haven't heard about it being done. At the same time you do not want to provide radar or laser signal beams on which the missile could ride to the target.

    Once the missile is blinded the chance of hitting the target is purely random. An aircraft carrier geometric cross section is 0.3 km x 0.1 km which is 15/100,000 of 5 mile radius area or 4/1,000 of 1 mile radius area. So in the first case with 200 missiles the chance of shooting an aircraft carrier is only 2% and in the second case 40%.
  24. @reiner Tor
    Once you have a rough idea where the CBG or some of its ships are, you can just launch a swarm of missiles to cover a relatively large area, each missile into different square-shaped target areas adjacent to each other, and each can use its own targeting systems to try and find any ships within its own target area. Maybe 2-3-5-10 missiles could be sent into each area to maximize the chance of a hit. If you send 200 missiles to an area where one ship could be found, then still producing the missiles might be significantly cheaper than producing the vessel (not to mention they could be produced much faster), and you wouldn't need to find the exact location to hit it. While sinking a carrier might be difficult (it would need multiple hits), a mission kill could be enough to neutralize it, and the destroyers are easier to sink anyway. Some of the missiles might find a different ship than the one targeted. How many of such missiles does China have? How much do they cost relative to a CBG? If one CBG (with all its escort ships, air wing, etc.) costs $20 or $30 billion to build, while one MRBM costs $1 million each, then you can literally build tens thousands of the latter for the price of one CBG, and so you can afford to use many missiles to destroy just one ship.

    We do not know much about the available countermeasures. While it is hard to shoot down Mach 5 or Mach 10 incoming ballistic missile it should be possible to blind it as the missile depends on some optical and/or radar signal in targeting during its terminal phase. I think it would be easy to jam its radar but also it should be possible to blind its optical camera with laser though I haven’t heard about it being done. At the same time you do not want to provide radar or laser signal beams on which the missile could ride to the target.

    Once the missile is blinded the chance of hitting the target is purely random. An aircraft carrier geometric cross section is 0.3 km x 0.1 km which is 15/100,000 of 5 mile radius area or 4/1,000 of 1 mile radius area. So in the first case with 200 missiles the chance of shooting an aircraft carrier is only 2% and in the second case 40%.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    I don't think you can know with any level of certainty how well these countermeasures work (assuming especially there are counter-countermeasures), for example when East German MiG-29s and their air-to-air missiles were tried against Western planes and missiles and vice versa, they found that for both anti-missile defenses were more effective against own missiles, so Soviet measures against Soviet missiles and American anti-missile defenses against American missiles.

    I don't know how easy it is to test countermeasures against an anti-ship ballistic missile if you don't have anti-ship ballistic missiles yourself, and even if you had them, they'd be different from the one you are trying to protect against.

  25. @utu
    We do not know much about the available countermeasures. While it is hard to shoot down Mach 5 or Mach 10 incoming ballistic missile it should be possible to blind it as the missile depends on some optical and/or radar signal in targeting during its terminal phase. I think it would be easy to jam its radar but also it should be possible to blind its optical camera with laser though I haven't heard about it being done. At the same time you do not want to provide radar or laser signal beams on which the missile could ride to the target.

    Once the missile is blinded the chance of hitting the target is purely random. An aircraft carrier geometric cross section is 0.3 km x 0.1 km which is 15/100,000 of 5 mile radius area or 4/1,000 of 1 mile radius area. So in the first case with 200 missiles the chance of shooting an aircraft carrier is only 2% and in the second case 40%.

    I don’t think you can know with any level of certainty how well these countermeasures work (assuming especially there are counter-countermeasures), for example when East German MiG-29s and their air-to-air missiles were tried against Western planes and missiles and vice versa, they found that for both anti-missile defenses were more effective against own missiles, so Soviet measures against Soviet missiles and American anti-missile defenses against American missiles.

    I don’t know how easy it is to test countermeasures against an anti-ship ballistic missile if you don’t have anti-ship ballistic missiles yourself, and even if you had them, they’d be different from the one you are trying to protect against.

    • Agree: Fluesterwitz
  26. This is bad news for Russia.

    Unlike Assad, the Iranians don’t need Russia’s protection.

    This opens the possibility that Iran could return to it’s 1980s-1990s policy of providing aid to all jihadists, including Sunni jihadists in the Caucasus and Balkans.

    • Replies: @melanf

    This opens the possibility that Iran could return to it’s 1980s-1990s policy of providing aid to all jihadists, including Sunni jihadists in the Caucasus and Balkans.
     
    This is incredible, given the war between Shiites and Sunnis in the middle East.
    In addition, jihadists in the Caucasus have the full support of the "Free world" (i.e. the United States and its sattelites). In these circumstances, Iran has little to offer the jihadists.
    , @AnonFromTN
    Sorry to disappoint, but Iran never supported Sunni jihadists. In contrast, the US and “our dear friends the Saudis” did. In fact, practically all Sunni jihadists are funded by KSA and/or allied satrapies and armed and trained by either the Empire directly, or by one of its sidekicks. That’s how Al Qaida, ISIS, and many other crazy Sunni jihadist groups were created. I advise you to cut down on Kool-Aid.
  27. @A123

    When was the last time a country launched a military attack against the US and the US President sat on his hands?
     
    When was the last time a country arranged a PR stunt that resulted in negligible military impact? The U.S. President at that time probably had exactly the same reaction as the current President.

    Behind every military conflict is a political objective, and the opposition was conceding that objective. Trump's willingness to give Khameni an out was sound strategy, more classical than original:

    Sun Tzu, The Art of War, Chapter 7:

    Do not interfere with an army that is returning home.
    When you surround an army, leave an outlet free.
    Do not press a desperate foe too hard.

    Such is the art of warfare.
     
    Yes, there was over $100,000, probably a full $1,000,000 in property damage. On a personal budget that number sounds huge. However, a single Patriot interceptor costs over $2,000,000. So, defending against the PR stunt would have cost $30-60,000,000. In military budget terms 'only a million' is a bargain price.

    Besides, the downing of the Ukrainian plane suggests that Iran was expecting a US military response.
     
    The current religious regime prioritizes ideological conformity in its troops. As a result, many elements of the Iranian military have problems with troop capability. The issues are similar to those in the pre-breakup USSR related to party zampolit (1) political officers.

    The fact that an AA crew was devotionally pure but militarily less than competent surprises no one. This event reinforces the consensus opinion that than Iranian military has significant weakness that can be exploited by the U.S. if the need arises.

    remember how the current US-Iran conflict originated after Trump pulled out from the JCPOA-).
     
    Remember how the overall US-Iran conflict started when extremist religious authorities held Americans hostage for 444 days?

    even if those behind-the-scenes arrangement theories are true (and even if they’re true, how could the ayatollahs be sure that the US would honor any agreement with them
     
    I think you stated this backwards. The correct question is, "How could the President be sure that the Ayatollah would honor his agreement?"

    Indeed, President Trump could not know for sure. However, given the massive back down by the Iranian leadership, there was a good chance that the terrified Khameni was sincere about folding.

    If Khameni had ordered a real attack, Trump would have retaliated against additional officials in the religious and military hierarchies. That was the coded message about cultural (e.g. religious) targets. Trump was signalling his willingness to go after Mullahs and other senior religious officials (not historical monuments). The Fake Stream Media and other low-IQ groups got it wrong again.

    If the U.S. kills an Iranian Mullah or General every time Khameni kills a sergeant or private -- everyone would quickly understand that the U.S. is winning and the Ayatollah is losing.

    PEACE 😇
    _______

    (1) http://www.mvep.org/zampolit.htm

    Remember how the overall US-Iran conflict started when extremist religious authorities held Americans hostage for 444 days?

    The conflict started when the US relieved the British of the burden to protect the proceeds of the Iranian oil from falling into the wrong hands, i.e., the elected Iranian government (elected by the Iranians, that is). That was sometimes in the 1950s. I’m sure there is a Wikipedia article bout it.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN

    I’m sure there is a Wikipedia article bout it.
     
    You grossly overestimate the honesty of Wiki. It has some true articles on proteins and such, but anything with political implications is either blatant lies, or fragments of truth twisted beyond recognition. Believing Wiki is a stupid as believing the State Department or CIA.
    , @Mikel
    I don't think this person really believes the nonsense he is spouting. It is best to ignore him.

    Everybody around the world perceived that after the Iranians' military response, Trump backed down on his extreme bellicose threats and most of us were happy that he did.

    After that there is still some hope left that in his erratic and totally inconsistent manner, he will avoid taking the US into its umpteenth war in that part of the world. If there was any doubt before the Iranian ballistic missiles attack, we now have further reasons to think that it would likely be worse than any of the previous ones. Even more Americans and civilians would have to die.
  28. @John Gruskos
    This is bad news for Russia.

    Unlike Assad, the Iranians don't need Russia's protection.

    This opens the possibility that Iran could return to it's 1980s-1990s policy of providing aid to all jihadists, including Sunni jihadists in the Caucasus and Balkans.

    This opens the possibility that Iran could return to it’s 1980s-1990s policy of providing aid to all jihadists, including Sunni jihadists in the Caucasus and Balkans.

    This is incredible, given the war between Shiites and Sunnis in the middle East.
    In addition, jihadists in the Caucasus have the full support of the “Free world” (i.e. the United States and its sattelites). In these circumstances, Iran has little to offer the jihadists.

    • Replies: @Europe Europa
    Disagree, Islamic terrorism in Russia is about the only issue that most Westerners feel they have common ground with Russia on and have some degree of sympathy about, same goes for China and the Uyghur issue. Most Westerners hate China unless it concerns the Uyghur issue, then they become pro-China.
  29. @melanf

    This opens the possibility that Iran could return to it’s 1980s-1990s policy of providing aid to all jihadists, including Sunni jihadists in the Caucasus and Balkans.
     
    This is incredible, given the war between Shiites and Sunnis in the middle East.
    In addition, jihadists in the Caucasus have the full support of the "Free world" (i.e. the United States and its sattelites). In these circumstances, Iran has little to offer the jihadists.

    Disagree, Islamic terrorism in Russia is about the only issue that most Westerners feel they have common ground with Russia on and have some degree of sympathy about, same goes for China and the Uyghur issue. Most Westerners hate China unless it concerns the Uyghur issue, then they become pro-China.

    • Replies: @melanf

    Disagree, Islamic terrorism in Russia is about the only issue that most Westerners feel they have common ground with Russia
     
    I'm not talking about "feelings," but about support. Jihadists in the Caucasus have had and still have the full support of the United States and sattelites. These countries Finance them, arm them (through controlled countries like Georgia), and provide shelter for terrorists. Also, the US and Co media supported and support the jihadists with propaganda: propaganda aimed at Russia is aimed at the decomposition of troops and capitulation to the jihadists, but propaganda aimed at the Islamic population of the Caucasus on the contrary calls for war and terror against Russia
  30. @Europe Europa
    Disagree, Islamic terrorism in Russia is about the only issue that most Westerners feel they have common ground with Russia on and have some degree of sympathy about, same goes for China and the Uyghur issue. Most Westerners hate China unless it concerns the Uyghur issue, then they become pro-China.

    Disagree, Islamic terrorism in Russia is about the only issue that most Westerners feel they have common ground with Russia

    I’m not talking about “feelings,” but about support. Jihadists in the Caucasus have had and still have the full support of the United States and sattelites. These countries Finance them, arm them (through controlled countries like Georgia), and provide shelter for terrorists. Also, the US and Co media supported and support the jihadists with propaganda: propaganda aimed at Russia is aimed at the decomposition of troops and capitulation to the jihadists, but propaganda aimed at the Islamic population of the Caucasus on the contrary calls for war and terror against Russia

  31. @John Gruskos
    This is bad news for Russia.

    Unlike Assad, the Iranians don't need Russia's protection.

    This opens the possibility that Iran could return to it's 1980s-1990s policy of providing aid to all jihadists, including Sunni jihadists in the Caucasus and Balkans.

    Sorry to disappoint, but Iran never supported Sunni jihadists. In contrast, the US and “our dear friends the Saudis” did. In fact, practically all Sunni jihadists are funded by KSA and/or allied satrapies and armed and trained by either the Empire directly, or by one of its sidekicks. That’s how Al Qaida, ISIS, and many other crazy Sunni jihadist groups were created. I advise you to cut down on Kool-Aid.

    • Replies: @John Gruskos
    Are you claiming that Iran did not support the mujaheddin in Afghanistan during the 1980s, and the Bosnians and Chechens in the early 1990s?

    I thought the rise of the Taliban, and the resulting persecution of the Shiite minority in Afghanistan, was a turning point that made the Iranians realize that they had helped to create a monster.

    I don't deny that Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf states, Pakistan, Turkey, Israel and the CIA have all done more to create this monster, and I don't deny that the Iranians have recently done some good in fighting against the likes of Al-Qaeda and ISIS, but I remember the news reports of Iranian support for the mujaheddin.
  32. I think it’s currently fake news (the Iranians have already been supposed to order alternately Russian and Chinese jet fighters for at least half a decade now), but the Iranians might in fact buy from both, thereby greatly improving their currently barely existing air force. But it’s not going to happen right now, because they are still under embargo.

    https://www.uawire.org/iran-chooses-chinese-j-10c-over-russian-mig-35-fighters

  33. @Fluesterwitz

    Remember how the overall US-Iran conflict started when extremist religious authorities held Americans hostage for 444 days?
     
    The conflict started when the US relieved the British of the burden to protect the proceeds of the Iranian oil from falling into the wrong hands, i.e., the elected Iranian government (elected by the Iranians, that is). That was sometimes in the 1950s. I'm sure there is a Wikipedia article bout it.

    I’m sure there is a Wikipedia article bout it.

    You grossly overestimate the honesty of Wiki. It has some true articles on proteins and such, but anything with political implications is either blatant lies, or fragments of truth twisted beyond recognition. Believing Wiki is a stupid as believing the State Department or CIA.

    • Replies: @Fluesterwitz
    Oops. Failure to mark sarcasm. A123 made far-reaching claims and 'supported' these claims with a link that may be factually correct, but also irrelevant.

    Also, supposedly, A123 knows about Mossadegh and all that but chose to present the matter as if the embassy siege was the starting point or even the crux of the matter.

  34. @AnonFromTN
    Sorry to disappoint, but Iran never supported Sunni jihadists. In contrast, the US and “our dear friends the Saudis” did. In fact, practically all Sunni jihadists are funded by KSA and/or allied satrapies and armed and trained by either the Empire directly, or by one of its sidekicks. That’s how Al Qaida, ISIS, and many other crazy Sunni jihadist groups were created. I advise you to cut down on Kool-Aid.

    Are you claiming that Iran did not support the mujaheddin in Afghanistan during the 1980s, and the Bosnians and Chechens in the early 1990s?

    I thought the rise of the Taliban, and the resulting persecution of the Shiite minority in Afghanistan, was a turning point that made the Iranians realize that they had helped to create a monster.

    I don’t deny that Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf states, Pakistan, Turkey, Israel and the CIA have all done more to create this monster, and I don’t deny that the Iranians have recently done some good in fighting against the likes of Al-Qaeda and ISIS, but I remember the news reports of Iranian support for the mujaheddin.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN

    I remember the news reports of Iranian support for the mujaheddin
     
    Lugenpresse was lying habitually long before Germans invented this word. Not to mention other media. E.g., practically all reports of CNN’s Amanpour from Bosnia were pure lies. Now a lot of people in the US are aware that virtually everything CNN broadcasts is a lie, but back then lots of people believed it.

    To answer your question, I don’t know whether Iran played that role. However, if Western MSM claimed that it did, most likely it did not.
    , @KA
    Interestingly Mujaheddin was supported by China ,Europe ,ME and by Iran . Iraq,India and Syria did not offer any support . But supporting Mujaheddin by Iran was one thing and America being in the know to the exclusion of other that Soviet didn’t invade before America had poured in with massive disinformation campaign and logistical support to build the mujhaddein from the ground was entirely a different proposition.
    , @Mikhail
    Iran didn't support Chechen separatists and hasn't recognized Kosovo's independence.
  35. @china-russia-all-the-way
    Is there any good reason to sink a carrier instead of just crippling it from launching planes?

    I think the Iranians have invented a rung in the escalation ladder. Equipment can be destroyed without harming people to send the message to stop before going into all out war. If the carrier is crippled but there is no one's life to avenge that may lead to the decision to turn back. So I wonder if attempts will be made to design a carrier crippling missile that could hit without killing any personnel.

    Is there any good reason to sink a carrier instead of just crippling it from launching planes?

    There would be symbolic value in sinking a carrier. Although that would likely elicit a massive retaliation (potentially nuclear) on the part of Americans. Sinking symbolically important ships often tends to stiffen resolve rather than weaken it. Like Bismarck sinking the Hood or the attack on Pearl Harbor.

    So I wonder if attempts will be made to design a carrier crippling missile that could hit without killing any personnel.

    Assuming the Iranians can damage the flight deck, then the Carrier would withdraw from the battle zone to undergo repairs. I don’t think no casualties would be possible unless the carrier was in port and almost no one was on board.

    If the carrier is crippled but there is no one’s life to avenge that may lead to the decision to turn back.

    Not really how Americans would react to an attack on a carrier. At the point carriers are being targeted, there is probably no turning back and a war is on. Targeting the bases in Iraq is an appropriate way to demonstrate the accuracy of missiles and show that outright war isn’t worth the effort. Attacking carriers on the other hand provokes rather than deters because of their symbolic importance. American leadership is obsessed with maintaining “credibility”. Something equally symbolic would need to targeted on the Iranian side if a carrier was attacked. On the other hand, bases in Iraq are better targets for the Iranians because they are unimportant to the American public.

  36. @John Gruskos
    Are you claiming that Iran did not support the mujaheddin in Afghanistan during the 1980s, and the Bosnians and Chechens in the early 1990s?

    I thought the rise of the Taliban, and the resulting persecution of the Shiite minority in Afghanistan, was a turning point that made the Iranians realize that they had helped to create a monster.

    I don't deny that Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf states, Pakistan, Turkey, Israel and the CIA have all done more to create this monster, and I don't deny that the Iranians have recently done some good in fighting against the likes of Al-Qaeda and ISIS, but I remember the news reports of Iranian support for the mujaheddin.

    I remember the news reports of Iranian support for the mujaheddin

    Lugenpresse was lying habitually long before Germans invented this word. Not to mention other media. E.g., practically all reports of CNN’s Amanpour from Bosnia were pure lies. Now a lot of people in the US are aware that virtually everything CNN broadcasts is a lie, but back then lots of people believed it.

    To answer your question, I don’t know whether Iran played that role. However, if Western MSM claimed that it did, most likely it did not.

    • Replies: @silviosilver

    E.g., practically all reports of CNN’s Amanpour from Bosnia were pure lies. Now a lot of people in the US are aware that virtually everything CNN broadcasts is a lie, but back then lots of people believed it.
     
    Amusingly, you expect to be taken seriously.
  37. @AnonFromTN

    I’m sure there is a Wikipedia article bout it.
     
    You grossly overestimate the honesty of Wiki. It has some true articles on proteins and such, but anything with political implications is either blatant lies, or fragments of truth twisted beyond recognition. Believing Wiki is a stupid as believing the State Department or CIA.

    Oops. Failure to mark sarcasm. A123 made far-reaching claims and ‘supported’ these claims with a link that may be factually correct, but also irrelevant.

    Also, supposedly, A123 knows about Mossadegh and all that but chose to present the matter as if the embassy siege was the starting point or even the crux of the matter.

    • Troll: A123
    • Replies: @A123
    FlusteredOne,

    Everyone gets it. You are losing. So, in typical fashion for a follower of the IslamoSoros, you are trying to distract from your lack of facts.

    As you have nothing of value to add, please remain silent and let the rational adults speak.

    PEACE 😇

  38. @Fluesterwitz
    Oops. Failure to mark sarcasm. A123 made far-reaching claims and 'supported' these claims with a link that may be factually correct, but also irrelevant.

    Also, supposedly, A123 knows about Mossadegh and all that but chose to present the matter as if the embassy siege was the starting point or even the crux of the matter.

    FlusteredOne,

    Everyone gets it. You are losing. So, in typical fashion for a follower of the IslamoSoros, you are trying to distract from your lack of facts.

    As you have nothing of value to add, please remain silent and let the rational adults speak.

    PEACE 😇

    • Replies: @KA
    What is Islamosoro? Soon we would hear Islamozio. Won’t be surprised to hear Islamotrump and Islamokushner .
  39. @A123
    The 'injuries' were minor, and were only detected due to routine after action examinations.

    While no U.S. service members were killed in the Jan. 8 Iranian attack on Al Asad Air base, several were treated for concussion symptoms from the blast and are still being assessed,” Captain Bill Urban, a spokesman Central Command, told reporters in a statement Thursday.
     
    The strike showed that Khameni will back down rather than have a serious fight U.S. Forces.

    The Ayatollah used it as a PR stunt within his own country by lying to his people about the impact. As Iranians find out about this new lie by the non-Supreme Leader, expect additional protests about his repeated deceptions.

    PEACE 😇
    _______


    (1) https://www.breitbart.com/middle-east/2020/01/17/pentagon-confirms-iran-missile-strike-injuries/

    I would definitely have accepted the theory that US was kind and non responsive to Iran’s attack out of sheer confidence and faith in its supremacy without any fear of counter response or counter threat if Trumps were not, instead of ignoring and smiling with disdain at the theatrics of Iran, pouting and puffing like a shocked child who managed to have returned to his safe zone after a bad fisticuffs .

    There is no free lunch Friedman told Palestinian borrowing the phrase from Summer another of his ilk.

    Well,Trump there is no free lunch in the free world who is refusing to be enslaved by the neocons .

    • Replies: @A123

    I would definitely have accepted the theory that US was kind and non responsive to Iran’s attack out of sheer confidence and faith in its supremacy without any fear of counter response or counter threat if Trumps were not, instead of ignoring and smiling with disdain at the theatrics of Iran,
     
    Again, you must consider the impact of the Fake Stream Media.

    Would Trump have preferred your suggested "non responsive" option as his personal choice? Almost certainly. Now think of how the Fake Stream Media would have misrepresented "quiet superiority" as some type of neglect or inattention.

    As long as the Fake Stream Media exists, beating them like a drum is necessarily Trump's #1 task. He had to be "responsive" in a manner that limited the options of the Fake Stream Media.

    pouting and puffing like a shocked child who managed to have returned to his safe zone after a bad fisticuffs .
     
    None of these things happened. You may want to review the original material yourself.

    There is no upside to believing hearsay from skin color obsessed fascists. Any day now the racist Stormtroopers of Antifa will begin attacking rainbows because they have orange in them.

    PEACE 😇
  40. @AnonFromTN

    I remember the news reports of Iranian support for the mujaheddin
     
    Lugenpresse was lying habitually long before Germans invented this word. Not to mention other media. E.g., practically all reports of CNN’s Amanpour from Bosnia were pure lies. Now a lot of people in the US are aware that virtually everything CNN broadcasts is a lie, but back then lots of people believed it.

    To answer your question, I don’t know whether Iran played that role. However, if Western MSM claimed that it did, most likely it did not.

    E.g., practically all reports of CNN’s Amanpour from Bosnia were pure lies. Now a lot of people in the US are aware that virtually everything CNN broadcasts is a lie, but back then lots of people believed it.

    Amusingly, you expect to be taken seriously.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN

    Amusingly, you expect to be taken seriously.
     
    Even more amusingly, so do you.
  41. @silviosilver

    E.g., practically all reports of CNN’s Amanpour from Bosnia were pure lies. Now a lot of people in the US are aware that virtually everything CNN broadcasts is a lie, but back then lots of people believed it.
     
    Amusingly, you expect to be taken seriously.

    Amusingly, you expect to be taken seriously.

    Even more amusingly, so do you.

  42. @John Gruskos
    Are you claiming that Iran did not support the mujaheddin in Afghanistan during the 1980s, and the Bosnians and Chechens in the early 1990s?

    I thought the rise of the Taliban, and the resulting persecution of the Shiite minority in Afghanistan, was a turning point that made the Iranians realize that they had helped to create a monster.

    I don't deny that Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf states, Pakistan, Turkey, Israel and the CIA have all done more to create this monster, and I don't deny that the Iranians have recently done some good in fighting against the likes of Al-Qaeda and ISIS, but I remember the news reports of Iranian support for the mujaheddin.

    Interestingly Mujaheddin was supported by China ,Europe ,ME and by Iran . Iraq,India and Syria did not offer any support . But supporting Mujaheddin by Iran was one thing and America being in the know to the exclusion of other that Soviet didn’t invade before America had poured in with massive disinformation campaign and logistical support to build the mujhaddein from the ground was entirely a different proposition.

  43. @A123
    FlusteredOne,

    Everyone gets it. You are losing. So, in typical fashion for a follower of the IslamoSoros, you are trying to distract from your lack of facts.

    As you have nothing of value to add, please remain silent and let the rational adults speak.

    PEACE 😇

    What is Islamosoro? Soon we would hear Islamozio. Won’t be surprised to hear Islamotrump and Islamokushner .

  44. @Anatoly Karlin
    The famous Millennium Games were absurdly weighed in favor of the Iranians (things like giving motorcyclists infinite speed; having suicide speedboats take out carriers). I don't think many military types in the US took them seriously.

    OTOH, I think the revelation that Iran's missiles had a CEP of 12 meters as opposed to several hundreds of meters was new, and an internal watershed.

    Americans seemed to affirm that some of those iranian missiles have been tracked by US radars and destroyed by US anti missile defenses . Some thoughts about it ?

    And does Russia have some missiles équiped with dynamic targeting capable of blowing up US aircraft carriers in your opinion ?

  45. @A123

    When was the last time a country launched a military attack against the US and the US President sat on his hands?
     
    When was the last time a country arranged a PR stunt that resulted in negligible military impact? The U.S. President at that time probably had exactly the same reaction as the current President.

    Behind every military conflict is a political objective, and the opposition was conceding that objective. Trump's willingness to give Khameni an out was sound strategy, more classical than original:

    Sun Tzu, The Art of War, Chapter 7:

    Do not interfere with an army that is returning home.
    When you surround an army, leave an outlet free.
    Do not press a desperate foe too hard.

    Such is the art of warfare.
     
    Yes, there was over $100,000, probably a full $1,000,000 in property damage. On a personal budget that number sounds huge. However, a single Patriot interceptor costs over $2,000,000. So, defending against the PR stunt would have cost $30-60,000,000. In military budget terms 'only a million' is a bargain price.

    Besides, the downing of the Ukrainian plane suggests that Iran was expecting a US military response.
     
    The current religious regime prioritizes ideological conformity in its troops. As a result, many elements of the Iranian military have problems with troop capability. The issues are similar to those in the pre-breakup USSR related to party zampolit (1) political officers.

    The fact that an AA crew was devotionally pure but militarily less than competent surprises no one. This event reinforces the consensus opinion that than Iranian military has significant weakness that can be exploited by the U.S. if the need arises.

    remember how the current US-Iran conflict originated after Trump pulled out from the JCPOA-).
     
    Remember how the overall US-Iran conflict started when extremist religious authorities held Americans hostage for 444 days?

    even if those behind-the-scenes arrangement theories are true (and even if they’re true, how could the ayatollahs be sure that the US would honor any agreement with them
     
    I think you stated this backwards. The correct question is, "How could the President be sure that the Ayatollah would honor his agreement?"

    Indeed, President Trump could not know for sure. However, given the massive back down by the Iranian leadership, there was a good chance that the terrified Khameni was sincere about folding.

    If Khameni had ordered a real attack, Trump would have retaliated against additional officials in the religious and military hierarchies. That was the coded message about cultural (e.g. religious) targets. Trump was signalling his willingness to go after Mullahs and other senior religious officials (not historical monuments). The Fake Stream Media and other low-IQ groups got it wrong again.

    If the U.S. kills an Iranian Mullah or General every time Khameni kills a sergeant or private -- everyone would quickly understand that the U.S. is winning and the Ayatollah is losing.

    PEACE 😇
    _______

    (1) http://www.mvep.org/zampolit.htm

    You make a lot of assertions while you can’t possibly know whether they are true or not. We don’t know who backed down. We don’t know what outcome may be outside of what happened.

    I prefer to not to operate in the classic Donnie Kruger effect fashion.

  46. @Fluesterwitz

    Remember how the overall US-Iran conflict started when extremist religious authorities held Americans hostage for 444 days?
     
    The conflict started when the US relieved the British of the burden to protect the proceeds of the Iranian oil from falling into the wrong hands, i.e., the elected Iranian government (elected by the Iranians, that is). That was sometimes in the 1950s. I'm sure there is a Wikipedia article bout it.

    I don’t think this person really believes the nonsense he is spouting. It is best to ignore him.

    Everybody around the world perceived that after the Iranians’ military response, Trump backed down on his extreme bellicose threats and most of us were happy that he did.

    After that there is still some hope left that in his erratic and totally inconsistent manner, he will avoid taking the US into its umpteenth war in that part of the world. If there was any doubt before the Iranian ballistic missiles attack, we now have further reasons to think that it would likely be worse than any of the previous ones. Even more Americans and civilians would have to die.

    • Replies: @A123

    Everybody around the world perceived that after the Iranians’ military response, Trump backed down on his extreme bellicose threats and most of us were happy that he did.
     
    Let me fix that for you:

    Everybody around the world perceived that after the Iranians’ PR stunt, Trump behaved responsibly by letting the terrified Khameni back down. And, most of us were happy that he did.

    If the deranged Khameni does a 180 and needs another lesson, the U.S. military can & will deliver it at the time, place, and target of their choosing. And, the Ayatollah can do nothing to resist.

    Everyone in the world understands this.

    PEACE 😇
  47. @KA
    I would definitely have accepted the theory that US was kind and non responsive to Iran’s attack out of sheer confidence and faith in its supremacy without any fear of counter response or counter threat if Trumps were not, instead of ignoring and smiling with disdain at the theatrics of Iran, pouting and puffing like a shocked child who managed to have returned to his safe zone after a bad fisticuffs .

    There is no free lunch Friedman told Palestinian borrowing the phrase from Summer another of his ilk.

    Well,Trump there is no free lunch in the free world who is refusing to be enslaved by the neocons .

    I would definitely have accepted the theory that US was kind and non responsive to Iran’s attack out of sheer confidence and faith in its supremacy without any fear of counter response or counter threat if Trumps were not, instead of ignoring and smiling with disdain at the theatrics of Iran,

    Again, you must consider the impact of the Fake Stream Media.

    Would Trump have preferred your suggested “non responsive” option as his personal choice? Almost certainly. Now think of how the Fake Stream Media would have misrepresented “quiet superiority” as some type of neglect or inattention.

    As long as the Fake Stream Media exists, beating them like a drum is necessarily Trump’s #1 task. He had to be “responsive” in a manner that limited the options of the Fake Stream Media.

    pouting and puffing like a shocked child who managed to have returned to his safe zone after a bad fisticuffs .

    None of these things happened. You may want to review the original material yourself.

    There is no upside to believing hearsay from skin color obsessed fascists. Any day now the racist Stormtroopers of Antifa will begin attacking rainbows because they have orange in them.

    PEACE 😇

    • Replies: @reiner Tor


    pouting and puffing like a shocked child who managed to have returned to his safe zone after a bad fisticuffs .
     
    None of these things happened. You may want to review the original material yourself.
     
    I was working while I first heard the Trump speech, so I didn’t notice anything unusual at the time. But now I just watched it again (okay, only the first few sentences), and Trump was clearly out of breath, as if he had been running to avoid being late, or as if he was extremely nervous.

    But anyone can watch it, the speech is available online.
  48. @Mikel
    I don't think this person really believes the nonsense he is spouting. It is best to ignore him.

    Everybody around the world perceived that after the Iranians' military response, Trump backed down on his extreme bellicose threats and most of us were happy that he did.

    After that there is still some hope left that in his erratic and totally inconsistent manner, he will avoid taking the US into its umpteenth war in that part of the world. If there was any doubt before the Iranian ballistic missiles attack, we now have further reasons to think that it would likely be worse than any of the previous ones. Even more Americans and civilians would have to die.

    Everybody around the world perceived that after the Iranians’ military response, Trump backed down on his extreme bellicose threats and most of us were happy that he did.

    Let me fix that for you:

    Everybody around the world perceived that after the Iranians’ PR stunt, Trump behaved responsibly by letting the terrified Khameni back down. And, most of us were happy that he did.

    If the deranged Khameni does a 180 and needs another lesson, the U.S. military can & will deliver it at the time, place, and target of their choosing. And, the Ayatollah can do nothing to resist.

    Everyone in the world understands this.

    PEACE 😇

  49. @A123

    I would definitely have accepted the theory that US was kind and non responsive to Iran’s attack out of sheer confidence and faith in its supremacy without any fear of counter response or counter threat if Trumps were not, instead of ignoring and smiling with disdain at the theatrics of Iran,
     
    Again, you must consider the impact of the Fake Stream Media.

    Would Trump have preferred your suggested "non responsive" option as his personal choice? Almost certainly. Now think of how the Fake Stream Media would have misrepresented "quiet superiority" as some type of neglect or inattention.

    As long as the Fake Stream Media exists, beating them like a drum is necessarily Trump's #1 task. He had to be "responsive" in a manner that limited the options of the Fake Stream Media.

    pouting and puffing like a shocked child who managed to have returned to his safe zone after a bad fisticuffs .
     
    None of these things happened. You may want to review the original material yourself.

    There is no upside to believing hearsay from skin color obsessed fascists. Any day now the racist Stormtroopers of Antifa will begin attacking rainbows because they have orange in them.

    PEACE 😇

    pouting and puffing like a shocked child who managed to have returned to his safe zone after a bad fisticuffs .

    None of these things happened. You may want to review the original material yourself.

    I was working while I first heard the Trump speech, so I didn’t notice anything unusual at the time. But now I just watched it again (okay, only the first few sentences), and Trump was clearly out of breath, as if he had been running to avoid being late, or as if he was extremely nervous.

    But anyone can watch it, the speech is available online.

  50. I was working while I first heard the Trump speech, so I didn’t notice anything unusual at the time. But now I just watched it again (okay, only the first few sentences), and Trump was clearly out of breath, as if he had been running to avoid being late, or as if he was extremely nervous.

    Trump had to be on camera to contain the imminent Fake Stream Media threat. And, the precise timing of the event was not entirely predictable.

    — Nervous, definitely not.
    — Mildly winded from rushing into position? Possibly a bit overexcited? OK. I concede that it was not his best performance piece.

    However, those suffering from Trump Derangement Syndrome [TDS] insist on magnifying any minor imperfection into some sort of histrionic diagnosis. Projecting their personal failings and insecurities onto others is a classic symptom of TDS.

    PEACE 😇

  51. @reiner Tor

    “never underestimate the enemy”
     
    Since most people here are opposed to Globohomo, this means we have to be vigilant against ideas which underestimate Globohomo military capabilities, because that’s what many of us are inclined to believe.

    Well the F-35 is unstested, and the Rafale and Mirage 2000 have been able to get a radar lock or to get a WVR gun kill on a F-22 in an exercise. On your opinion, will AESA radar be able to enable a 4th generation aircraft like the Superhornet to fight on more even terms with a stealth aircraft?

  52. @John Gruskos
    Are you claiming that Iran did not support the mujaheddin in Afghanistan during the 1980s, and the Bosnians and Chechens in the early 1990s?

    I thought the rise of the Taliban, and the resulting persecution of the Shiite minority in Afghanistan, was a turning point that made the Iranians realize that they had helped to create a monster.

    I don't deny that Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf states, Pakistan, Turkey, Israel and the CIA have all done more to create this monster, and I don't deny that the Iranians have recently done some good in fighting against the likes of Al-Qaeda and ISIS, but I remember the news reports of Iranian support for the mujaheddin.

    Iran didn’t support Chechen separatists and hasn’t recognized Kosovo’s independence.

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