Following good, journalistic, reverse-pyramid format, the gist of the article is in the first paragraph, "The Pentagon has drawn up plans for massive airstrikes against 1,200 targets in Iran, designed to annihilate the Iranians' military capability in three days, according to a national security expert."
The national security expert is Alexis Debat, who spoke a meeting organized by The National Interest, a conservative foreign policy journal.
Debat told the UK newspaper that US military planners had decided: "Whether you go for pinprick strikes or all-out military action, the reaction from the Iranians will be the same." Debate added that it was a "very legitimate strategic calculus."
I don't know how mainstream media is handling this yet, but parts of the blogosphere are reacting predictably. Free Republic's post on the article drew comments from the silly
- "Oh, Yeah? Well, I’m formulating my TWO-day plan!"
- "Its disinformation. The plan will take one day."
- "An alternative to direct military action would be to continue with the embargoes and keep up the political pressure. I would also encourage the smuggling of electronic communication devices like internet capable laptops into Iran. By educating the youth, who do not remember the cruelty of the Shah, only the cruelty of the Ayatollah, the stage will be set for a new revolution."
- "Airstrikes like these would be too good to be true; therefore, this story is probably just psy-ops. Especially since the source is identified. If it were an anonymous source, like those that the NY Slimes relies on, I’d give it more credibility."
On the other hand, there's yesterday's post in a rather carefully anonymous blog called:
"Meanwhile in Palestine and Iraq (The Obsessive Compulsive's Guide to the Middle East)"
"While the Middle East takes a licking, we keep on ticking: Al Bintein Mudawenetein"
This blog's September 1, 2007 post title is "9/1/07 Meanwhile in the U.S. -- documenting another day of crimes by the American regime.," by "Catholic Sunni Shia." It's a collection of headlines with blurbs . The bomb-Iran headline is in bold. The headlines:
- "Marine killed five unarmed Iraqi men"
- "Marine tells of order to execute Haditha women and children"
- "U.S. Military Censors ThinkProgress"
- "Walt & Mearsheimer's Proof That 'Tail Wagged the Dog'"
- "As Her Star Wanes, Rice Tries to Reshape Legacy"
- "New McCain Push on War, His Candidacy"
- "UPI Poll: U.S. energy source less secure"
- "Civilian prisons coming soon to U.S. Army base near you"
- "Victims of National Security Injustice, The Tragic Ordeal of the Cuban Five"
- "Wives of Saudi militancy suspects want public trial"
- "Pentagon 'Three-Day Blitz' Plan For Iran"
- "USA equipping a private army in preparation for an invasion of Venezuela"
- "'They wanted them poor niggers out of there.'" (don't blame me: that's what was in the post)
(I did a little checking, and found that "Meanwhile in Palestine and Iraq etc." seems to have used a Duluth, Minnesota-based service: Do a "who is" request for inblogs.net, if you're curious. InBlog's purported purpose is to address blogosphere censorship: "Is your blog blocked in India, Pakistan, Iran or China? If Yes then you can still access your blog anytime using inblogs free Blog Gateway." - That's a whole different topic.)
As usual, I'd appreciate it if people would think before they wrote. (I'd also like a million dollars, tax-free, but that's not going to happen, either.)
More to the point, I'd be dismayed if the Pentagon planners didn't have contingency plans for obliterating the Iranian military.
I'd also be dismayed to discover that they hadn't planned for re-taking San Diego after its capture by hostile forces, and any number of other more-or-less probable scenarios.
- That's what they're supposed to do
- That's what any responsible military organization is supposed to do
- Just because a plan exists, doesn't mean its going to be executed
Personally, I'd rather have some options other than hoping that the Iranian leaders are more reasonable, open-minded, and tolerant than they were back in 1979, when they broke into the American embassy in Tehran, and held hostages for 444 days.