Posted: 9/3/2008 4:42:39 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/3/2008 4:43:48 PM EDT by HoustonHusker]
Georgia airfields earmarked for war on Iran
Wed, 03 Sep 2008 16:48:47 GMT
An Israeli air force F-15I
Georgia permitted Israel to use two military airfields for 'a potential pre-emptive strike' against Iranian nuclear sites, a report says.
The revelation came after Georgia's offensive into South Ossetia in early August prompted Russia to march its Special Forces into the region, United Press International reported.
Russian Special Forces raided the airfields - in addition to other Israeli facilities in southern Georgia -, where Israeli drones were captured.
According to the report, Israel had used the airfields to 'conduct recon flights over southern Russia, as well as into nearby Iran'.
"A secret agreement between Georgia and Israel had earmarked two military airfields in the south of Georgia for use by Israeli fighter-bombers in a potential pre-emptive strike against Iran," read the report.
Tel Aviv has threatened to launch air strikes against Iranian nuclear installations under the pretext that Tehran, a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), has plans to develop nuclear weaponry.
This is while the UN nuclear watchdog has confirmed that Iran enriches uranium-235 to a level of 3.7 percent - a rate consistent with the construction of a nuclear power plant. Nuclear arms production requires an enrichment level of above 90 percent.
Iran currently suffers from electricity shortage and has been forced to adopt a rationing program by scheduling power outages - of up to two hours a day - across both urban and rural areas in the country.
In early June, Israel conducted a military maneuver over the eastern Mediterranean and Greece in preparation, according to Pentagon officials, for an aerial bombardment of Iranian nuclear facilities.
Over 100 Israeli F-16s and F-15s partook in the exercise, which spanned some 900 miles, roughly the distance between their airfields and a nuclear enrichment facility in the central Iranian city of Natanz.
"(The Georgian airfields) would sharply reduce the distance Israeli fighter-bombers would have to fly to hit targets in Iran," continued the report.
Israel, in return, has been providing Georgia's pro-Western government with considerable amounts of training and armament for its military.
Georgian Minister of Reintegration Temur Yakobashvili, an Israeli citizen, said on August 10 that Israeli efforts to strengthen the Georgian army caused Russia 'enormous damage'.
Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili declared on August 13 that 'effective' Israeli weapons would ensure his country's success in the military conflict with Russia.
Very nice touch!
I'm saving this map for future reference.
Russian units raid Georgian airfields for use in Israeli strike against Iran – report
DEBKAfile Special Report
September 5, 2008, 12:58 PM (GMT+02:00)
The raids were disclosed by UPI chief editor Arnaud de Borchgrave, who is also on the Washington Times staff, and picked up by the Iranian Fars news agency. The Russian raids of two Georgian airfields, which Tbilisi had allowed Israel to use for a potential strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities, followed the Georgian offensive against South Ossetia on Aug. 7.
Under the secret agreement with Georgia, the airfields had been earmarked for use by Israeli fighter-bombers taking off to strike Iran in return for training and arms supplies.
DEBKAfile’s intelligence sources report that flying from S. Georgia over the Caspian Sea to Iran would sharply trim the distance to be spanned by Israeli fighter-bombers, reducing flying time to 3.5 hours.
Northern Iran and the Tehran region, where most of the nuclear facilities are concentrated, would be within range, with no need to request US permission to pass through Iraq air space.
Russian Special Forces also raided other Israeli facilities in southern Georgia and captured Israeli spy drones, says the report.
Israel was said to have used the two airfields to “conduct recon flights over southern Russia as well as into nearby Iran.” The US intelligence sources quoted by UPI reported that the Russian force also carried home other Israeli military equipment captured at the air bases.
Our sources say that if the Russians got hold of an Israeli unmanned aerial vehicle complete with sophisticated electronic reconnaissance equipment, they will have secured some of the IDF’s most secret devices for spying on Iran and Syria.
When this happened before, Russian military engineers quickly dismantled the equipment, studied it and passed the technology on to Tehran and Damascus.
The problem is this:
They still can't get aircraft there without everyone knowing about it (and Az-baj may not be very keen on letting the Izzys overfly to hit Iran)
Further, they still lack the capability to do the required damage....
Are you forgetting about Armenia? They have a very good relationship with Israel. Either way, if the story have any truth to it, I'm sure the IAF took "getting from point A to point B and back again" into consideration.
From history, one should never consider anything out of the capability of the Israeli military. Israel always finds a way.