An Immediate Threat?
By Mark Armstrong
Is the jig finally up? Iran’s “religious” leaders boast plans to obliterate Israel, after defeating the U.S. Check out this red-hot headline, El Baradei: Iran only months away from a bomb, printed in the Jerusalem Post and elsewhere. Muhammed El Baradei is chairman of the IAEA, the UN’s international atomic regulatory body located in Vienna. Amid Iran’s assertions that operations have commenced at two uranium enrichment facilities, the IAEA chairman predicts it will be a matter of only “a few months” before Iran is capable of producing a nuclear weapon. His statement includes the warning that any attempt to deal with the crisis by “nondiplomatic means” (meaning pre-emptive air strikes against Iranian facilities) would “open a Pandora’s box.”
Pandora’s box?! What might that entail? An uproar in world opinion? Angry diplomats? Regional conflict in the Middle East? Political instability in Iran? Oh no! How would it compare to say, an EMP attack on the United States?! In an article carried in our Word From column in May 2005, we noted reports that Iran had just tested high altitude detonations of conventional warheads launched from a ship in the Caspian Sea. This was seen as a practice run for an EMP (electromagnetic pulse) attack against the United States once Iran obtains a nuclear warhead. It was then that we learned how vulnerable the entire U.S. electronic infrastructure would be to such an attack, and the sickening scenario is spelled out in some detail. They say it would return us to conditions not seen in the U.S. since the 1800s. In fact, it would be much worse than the good old horse and buggy days by far, as you will see.
Israel’s former, (and potentially future) Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has come out in favor of Israel launching preemptive air strikes against Iran’s nuclear facilities. He has suggested that if the current Prime Minister Ariel Sharon balks at the prospect that he (Netanyahu) would seek reelection in order to deal with the threat. His obvious concern is the threat Iran poses to Israel, particularly in the light of the newly elected Iranian president’s statement about wiping Israel off the face of the map! However, reports just published (December 5, 2005) by the U.S. Army War College indicate that, due to the long distances involved and the fact that Israel has no aircraft carriers, Israel is “not capable of a sustained air campaign against a full array of targets in Iran.”
Israel could, and may yet launch surgical air strikes against Iranian facilities. But it is believed that Iran has diversified its operations to the point that Israeli jets, with the fuel constraints of such a long distance operation would simply not be able to completely curtail Iran’s nuclear program as they did Saddam’s Osirak facility near Baghdad in 1981. So who could carry out the kind of strikes needed to curtail the threat? The U.S. could, unless of course, world opinion looms as more important than seeing the American continent reduced to anarchy by a successful EMP attack. Consider the following two paragraphs carried in our May 6, ’05 commentary.
Senator Jon Kyl wrote an article some two weeks ago, carried by the Washington Post which told of a hearing held in a Senate Judiciary subcommittee he chairs “on a major threat to the American people…” It involves the threat of a high altitude nuclear detonation that would create an “electromagnetic pulse” devastating to all manner of electronic chips and circuitry within line of sight to the explosion. That means cars, telephones, computers, televisions, and the supply of electricity. “Few if any people would die right away,” Kyl writes. “But the loss of power would have a cascading effect on all aspects of U.S. society. Communication would be largely impossible. Lack of refrigeration would leave food rotting in warehouses, exacerbated by a lack of transportation as those vehicles still working simply ran out of gas (which is pumped with electricity). The inability to sanitize and distribute water would quickly threaten public health, not to mention the safety of anyone in the path of the inevitable fires, which would rage unchecked. And as we have seen in areas of natural and other disasters, such circumstances often result in a fairly rapid breakdown of social order.” He goes on to paint a picture so bleak, you don’t even want to imagine it. He also points out that “hardening” measures to protect military and key infrastructure systems are not in place!
If Iran acquires a nuclear weapon it can pull this off with relative ease! Both Jon Kyl and a follow-up article carried on World Net Daily report that Iran has conducted successful high-altitude missile detonations, launched from vessels in the Caspian Sea! “Scientists, including President Reagan’s top science adviser, William R. Graham, say there is no other explanation for such tests than preparation for the deployment of electromagnetic pulse weapons – even one of which could knock out America’s critical electrical and technological infrastructure, effectively sending the continental U.S. back to the 19th century with a recovery time of months or years.”
While the subject has been pushed to the back burner for the last six months, it looks like it’s beginning to get some major attention. It deserves major attention! The anarchy that would ensue in the wake of such an attack is beyond imagining. The threat is real, and even the UN bureaucrats and EU negotiators admit as much! Yet in spite of the fact that Iran’s “diplomats” have all but spit in their faces, they admonish that no “nondiplomatic” action dare be undertaken. Would the rest of the world care if the U.S. were rendered helpless by an EMP attack? It is incomprehensible that our President or the Pentagon will stand by, cowering before the opinions of self-important diplomats and allow our modern way of life to be obliterated. But we are living in very strange times indeed. For much more on the subject, written from the unique perspective of Michael Burkert in Germany, please read on.
War with Iran Soon?
By Michael Burkert
The threat of an attack on the United States, with weapons of mass destruction (WMD) is no doubt growing. Our Islamic enemies are desperate to find a means of destroying our abilities to find, fix and destroy them in any future conflict. Our U.S. Forces have a keen edge over all others due to our phenomenal technology. Our relatively unsophisticated enemies simply cannot measure up to the United States’ conventional war fighting abilities.
Today, nuclear weapons are no longer considered “high technology.” If you will recall, the first nuclear bombs, those dropped over Hiroshima and Nagasaki, were produced from known 1930s and 1940s technology. Scientists and technicians used relatively unsophisticated methods (by today’s standards) in the building of those bombs.
YET BOTH BOMBS WORKED, THEY COMPLETELY DESTROYED TWO CITIES!
During the Feast of Tabernacles 2005, I delivered a split-sermon that briefly illustrated some of the results that could be expected from an attack on the United States, using EMP. An enemy could launch ballistic missiles into our airspace from the decks of ships at sea. The scenario I spoke of included a pattern of nuclear detonations at an altitude of 200 miles. I didn’t speak extensively on this potential threat to our nation or other current issues, due to time restraints.
Following my sermon, a number of the brethren sought me out and asked me to expand on my comments in an article for church publication. This article is an attempt to explain in more detail, those issues I spoke of at Panama City.
During the time that nuclear weapons were first being created, one of the scientists, Dr. Enrico Fermi, theorized that an atomic detonation would produce massive electromagnetic pulse waves that he called “phenomenology.” When the first device was detonated in the New Mexico desert, EMP was duly recorded. However, in the 1940s and 1950s the phenomenon was not considered a great threat, as electronic equipment was tube operated and not so susceptible to damage by EMP.
However, today in the 21st Century the electronic devices we so depend upon in our daily lives are very sensitive to any electromagnetic disruption that would be caused by the detonation of a nuclear weapon in our atmosphere. Chip technology and integrated circuitry found in nearly every electrical device today can be literally “fried” in nanoseconds! All it takes is a nuclear explosion in the atmosphere at the right altitude.
As the nuclear weapon explodes, it creates an intensive burst of downward streaming gamma radiation. These gamma bursts then collide with air molecules, which produce high-energy electrons. These electrons in turn interact with the Earth’s magnetic field and produce intense, coherent electromagnetic pulse. This high-energy pulse only lasts for nano-seconds, but encompasses an enormously wide frequency range of 1 hertz to 1 gigahertz. Any electronic device that is within the line of sight of a nuclear atmospheric burst would be affected from one degree or the other.
As early as 1995, the Clinton Administration was advised as to the national threat posed by an enemy who might choose to destroy our electronic infrastructure. However, those were heady days of playing the “peace card,” and the threat was cast aside as inconsequential. While our Pentagon was acutely aware of the dangers of complacency, little was done to “harden” our military electronic infrastructure due to shrinking military budgets and emphasis on demobilizing thousands of troops, mothballing ships and decommissioning aircraft. Disarmament was on the Clinton Administration’s agenda, not any expensive program to harden the electronic infrastructure of our nation. Tax money was needed for pet social programs and not for defense.
In 1997, while testifying to the Military Research and Development Subcommittee in the U.S. House of Representatives regarding the potential threat of EMP, Clinton spokesman Robert Marsh said the following:
“Obviously, the nuclear threat from hostile nations cannot be dismissed today, but we consider it a remote possibility. Likewise we consider a terrorist acquiring a nuclear weapon and positioning at the high altitude necessary for the generation of an EMP burst that would debilitate our infrastructures to be a very remote possibility. Consequently, we are not considering any special measures to counter such a threat, though a high-altitude EMP attack could devastate the telecommunications and other critical infrastructures.”
No special measures were taken until the attacks on our nation occurred on September 11, 2001. The threat is now taken seriously. The possibility of a rogue nation, or a terrorist organization acquiring the means to perpetrate an EMP attack on the United States is clearly understood as reality!
From what I’ve learned, much has been done to protect the vital military electronic infrastructure in the past four years. However, very little if anything, has been done in the private sector. The costs involved in being proactive however will be much exceeded in recovery, should an enemy attack us with EMP.
Iran is known to possess the technology and manufacturing ability to build ballistic missiles. Their vaunted Shahab 3 medium range ballistic missile is quite capable of reaching suborbital space. Soon, the Iranians will have the ability to achieve orbit. However, this is not necessary in order to launch an attack on the United States.
Since I returned to Germany, I learned that to destroy our electronic infrastructure would not require more than ONE nuclear device. If the Iranians can successfully obtain nuclear weapons, either through their own means or through help from others, they may well attack us with EMP.
Already the Iranians have conducted successful experiments in high altitude detonations of conventional explosives. Using North Korean technology and missile components, Iranian missile experts have proven their ability to launch Shahab 3 missions from the decks of cargo ships! They launched from the Caspian Sea, having carried the Shahab 3 in the cargo hold.
A one-megaton nuclear device, detonated at 250 miles above northeastern Nebraska, would bathe the entire Continental United States; most of Canada and northern Mexico with enough electromagnetic energy to destroy most all unshielded electrical devices. Our nation would be completely blacked out! Automobiles, so heavily reliant on computer chips and integrated circuits would simply stop running…forever. The electric grid would literally be fried, and might take months or years to restore.
Some military communications would survive as many devices have built in shielding as do some communications facilities built during the cold war, when we knew that part of the Soviet strategy was to blind us through early use of EMP. Our bomber fleets and other aircraft have already built-in EMP protection to some extent. However, with the loss of many communications satellites due to a subspace EMP attack, command and control would be dubious at best. We might have no means of conducting retaliatory strikes if we can’t order deployment of our weapons.
Commercial airplanes in flight would have a rough time of it. While their engines would not necessarily stop, their radios, computers, global positioning systems used in navigation, as well as their in-flight radar would cease to function. Accordingly, it would be difficult to keep them in the air, or to find a place to land. Some very skilled pilots and crews would be able to land successfully. Many would not.
If the attack were to come at night, most aircraft aloft would simply run out of fuel and crash. Some might be fortunate and be able to fly far enough south, and find a lighted runway in Mexico, but it remains questionable whether or not all would be lost.
Most people would never see or hear a thing. The only thing most would experience is the loss of electricity and communications. Those in their homes would experience a disruption of electric service. Television sets, computer monitors, florescent lights would glow brightly for a few moments as their internal circuits cook away.
In many homes, within a few hundred miles of “ground zero,” one would notice smoke emitting from electric sockets as the internal wires in the home melted together. The acrid smell of burning plastic and ozone would no doubt fill the air in many if not all homes and offices.
Most would not even realize that our nation had been attacked. If anything, one might hear a sharp crack in the distance. Since there would be no news reports and no working radio or television receivers there would only be silence. The familiar sounds of the world around us would change for most…forever.
Our nation would soon come unhinged. Both the United States and Canada would be essentially thrust back in time. A time of no electricity, no telephones, limited transportation capability and no modern conveniences whatsoever. Some older diesel engines will still work, but with the availability of fuel extremely in short supply, owning one would not be of any great advantage for long.
This is not some wacky, fringe or far-out threat. The potential for Iran or other enemies to destroy our country as we know it, is very real! And it can be done literally with one nuclear warhead attached to a missile fired from a ship.
Iran doesn’t need intercontinental ballistic missiles. They already possess all the missiles they need to defeat us, their most hated and feared enemy after the Israelis! What they lack is the nuclear warhead to attach to their missile.
If Iran is allowed to develop and possess nuclear weapons, they will most likely use them. Their plan would be to first eliminate the United States as a military and industrial threat, then turn on the State of Israel and either through intimidation or outright attack, attempt to destroy the hated Jewish homeland once and for all. The Mad Mullah’s dream of exterminating the Jews, and returning all of Palestine to the Islamic fold.
The Mad Mullahs in Tehran have a fanatical obsession with Jerusalem. To return Jerusalem to Islam would be to secure a better place in Islamic paradise. They believe that by “doing this for Allah,” they will get in better with their false prophet Mohammed.
Will the United States allow Iran to become a NUCLEAR threat? Will an EMP attack against the United States and Canada be the catalyst that begins the Great Tribulation? It’s certainly one possibility.
Best estimates are that Iran will go nuclear in 3-5 years time. They might very well delay their announcement to the world that they are nuclear, until a timid, weak and perceived non-threatening government is voted into office in 2008.
Then again they may never announce to the world that they have nuclear capability until after they conduct an attack on the United States and Canada, destroy our societal foundation and begin operations against the state of Israel.
Fearful of retaliation at some future point, Iran might go to great extremes to conceal their nuclear capability thus giving the United States no clear enemy to strike back at. Launching from a ship at sea, then destroying the ship and everyone on board is one method of concealing the origins of the attack. There are others of course. Any or all would be acceptable in Islam.
When considering the opportunities to spread Islam in a world without the United States and the Europeans in a continued appeasement mode, Tehran may become emboldened enough to launch. Our electronic infrastructure is our true Achilles heel, and the Mad Mullahs know it.
Our government also knows that Iran is ruled by cruel, yet clever men who would not hesitate to strike at us if they could. An EMP attack would cripple our country and the ensuing self-destruction caused by nationwide riots, open rebellion and pillaging by the complete breakdown of law and order might well amuse the Mad Mullahs.
Can the United States or the world for that matter afford to risk the consequences of a nuclear Iran? Would Iran provide nuclear weapons to terror organizations such as Al-Qaeda? Why wouldn’t they?
It may well come to pass that the United States will launch a preemptive war with Iran. Subsequent actions, such as the bombing of Tehran’s nuclear facilities by either U.S. or Israeli forces may bring about a massive regional war in the Middle East. It may well set the stage for an EGYPTIAN to rise and reestablish the long awaited Caliphate.
Such a universal Muslim Caliph, (successor to Mohammed) would be respected throughout all of Islam. The union of the Muslim world for the final time would then be possible. An Egyptian “holy man” alive today may well be the coming Caliph and eventual “king of the south” Daniel wrote of so long ago (Daniel 11:5).
There is no doubt that the prophesied king of the south will soon rise to power. After uniting the warring bickering Muslim world he will enjoy great success for a while. He will be very powerful and feared widely. He will be a NUCLEAR power! Remember that Pakistan already has nuclear capability and possesses several nuclear bombs.
Apparently, the United States and the British Commonwealth nations will already be out of the picture, as the threat from the king of the south that Daniel wrote of is going to be imposed on the future reunited Roman Empire, the king of the north.
An EMP attack on the United States and Canada would bring about severe suffering in our nations, and may be one of the punishments we will be subjected to prior to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ.
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