ISSN 2330-717X

Iran: Preemptive Strike? – OpEd

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By Ilya Kharlamov

A military campaign against Iran will become a heavy burden on the global economy, experts warn. Meanwhile, Iran is creating cyber protection forces, strengthening the defense of nuclear facilities and contemplating a preemptive strike against the enemy.

The US, China and Russia have spoken out against using force which has been proposed by Israel to settle the crisis surrounding Iran.

The oil price may grow to $300 per barrel in case of military strikes against Iranian nuclear facilities. State Department spokesman Joseph Cirincione believes that a military operation against Iran will lead to a large-scale war and will only encourage Iran to develop nuclear weapons.

The United States has been trying to convince Israel that a military action against Iran is futile and that the issue should be settled at the negotiating table. To this end, US National Security Adviser Thomas Donilon met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak. President Obama has invited Mr.Netanyahu to the United States on March 5th .

China is sure that Israeli strikes against Iran will send shock waves across the region, the country’s foreign ministry spokesperson said. Russia’s Ambassador to the UN Vitaly Churkin has made it clear that Moscow is doing its utmost to avert a military scenario. However, the Israeli leadership doesn’t rule out war.

In the meantime, global markets have been fluctuating on reports involving Iran, Alexander Pasechnik of the National Energy Security Foundation, says.

“Israel is adding more fuel to the fire as it tries to persuade the US and Britain to start a war against Iran in order to prevent it from producing nuclear weapons. World exchanges have long been on the alert over the news. All this will invariably lead to a rise in prices. Unlike Libya, Iran will be difficult to subdue. Given the increasing US military presence in the Gulf, preparations for war are well under way. This is a dead-end scenario. Should oil prices go up several times, the most vulnerable economies will just “crash”.”

Rather than trying to scare the international community out of the campaign, the Iranian authorities are getting ready for it. Iran is planning to create a cyber protection force and has launched war games with the participation of aircraft and missiles to be able to defend nuclear facilities against a possible attack from Israel. IRGC Commander General Mohammad Hejazi has said that Iran might choose to carry out a preventive strike if its national interests are in jeopardy. Oriental Studies expert Vladimir Sazhin comments.

“General Hejazi’s statement is meant for nothing more but an intimidating effect. It threatens to stop its oil supplies to France and Britain or carry out preventive strikes. But Iran’s military potential is incomparable to Israel’s and its allies’, so a preventive strike looks hardly possible.”

Countries of the Collective Security Treaty Organization, of which Russia is a member, hope that a military strike against Iran will be avoided. Nevertheless, the Organization’s Secretary-General Nikolay Bordyuzha has said that the CSTO is taking steps to be able to face the situation in case of war.

A delegation of IAEA inspectors arrived in Iran a few days ago. This could offer a good opportunity for ending the crisis. However, judging by the previous experience, the Iranian authorities are not keen on cooperation with the IAEA and chances of resolving the issue through IAEA inspectors are small, to say the least.

VOR

VOR, or the Voice of Russia, was the Russian government's international radio broadcasting service from 1993 until 2014, when it was reorganised as Radio Sputnik.

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