Thursday, March 30, 2006

Iran's Defenses and How To Destroy Them

Harold C. Hutchison at Strategy Page says:

With the increasing irrationality of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and the potential for Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon as soon as this year, air strikes to delay the Iranian nuclear program are getting more and more consideration. How might such an air strike go? It is not an idle question, as such a strike is entirely possible.

Taking down these defenses is step one. One way is to suppress the defense using the AGM-88, or HARM anti-radiation missiles, to kill the radars that guide these missiles. Another option is to use stealth aircraft like the F-117, B-2, and F-22 to deliver JDAMs onto the missile launchers. A third option will be to use Tomahawk and ALCMs against these targets. At the same time, aircraft like the F-15, F-15E, F-16 and F-18 will be carrying out counter-air missions to take out the Iranian Air Force either on the ground or in the air.

This is not going to be an easy undertaking. Unlike Desert Fox, Enduring Freedom, and Iraqi Freedom, the United States will be facing an opponent with a relatively intact air-defense system, much like Iraq's at the start of Desert Storm in 1991, only with more modern systems. This will likely cost the United States some aircraft and highly-trained aircrews. But when the alternative is letting Ahmadinejad have weapons that can wipe out an entire city – prompting a devastating response. Rest Here


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