It's a drone! It's a missile! It's an opportunity for US warmongers!
What was that thing that hit and severely damaged the Israeli ship? The NYT explains:
The Israelis also said that one of their ships had been damaged not by a Hezbollah drone, but by a sophisticated Iranian C-802 missile, which is radar-guided and which the Israelis said they had not known that Hezbollah possessed. They said the missiles, one of which sank a civilian ship, were launched with the aid of Lebanese military radar along the shore. Israel then destroyed most of the radar installations.Maniak elaborates:
Australian and Israeli press among others are calling the missile that hit the Israeli ship INS Hanit a "C-802" (this was previously incorrectly referred to as an unmanned drone). The same kind of missile also is apparently what hit the Egyptian civilian ship that claimed to have been hit by the Israeli navy. This is a Chinese two-stage cruise missile design that China sold to Iran. After a brief first-stage solid rocket booster fires, it's driven by a turbojet engine, which could explain why it was mistaken for a "drone". It's not the same missile as used again and again against Haifa, which look awfully like Fajr-5s. But these are guided missiles that take a trained crew to operate, so I think it's pretty plain now that Iran has actual (not proxy) forces operating out of Lebanon.If Maniak’s speculation is correct, what happens if Israel finds an Iranian missile crew (alive or dead)? Does that mean the war would expand? How would Israel and Iran go at each other if it came to that? Fly over Iraq and Jordan? Over Turkey and Syria? Saudi Arabia and Egypt? (A map is helpful when contemplating the possibilities.)
Also, it’s hard to figure out what exactly Israel is trying to achieve here. Of course they want security. But if they want to give themselves a missile buffer zone, they’ve got their work cut out for them, given the hardware Hezbollah seems to have at its disposal (Maniak again):
Israel claims to have taken out some sort of truck-mounted missile capable of hitting Tel Aviv. This is probably a Zelzal-2, sources think, which is again, an Iranian import. The only information that seems to indicate this might not be the case is that reports talked about a multiple-missile launching system being hit, and the Zelzal-2 is launched individually from a trailer launch platform. It's hard to guess which part of the report is inaccurate. If it is a Zelzal-2, and there are more of them, this means that pretty much everything in the Iranian arsenal except their IRBMs are deployed by Hezbollah. If Israel wants to occupy enough of Lebanon to remove their territory from firing range, it's going to be hard with this kind of firepower against them. A Zelzal-2 fired from anywhere in the southern half of Lebanon could easily reach Tel Aviv, and even from the most extreme northern portion of Lebanon could still hit Haifa.So do they want to re-occupy Lebanon, but this time do all of it, rather than just the south? That sounds like a crazy plan.
I just feel that things are spiraling out of control. And there are so many people who want this to escalate, especially US warmongers who are looking to start a fight with Iran. I just hope they ask, “What do we do after "Mission Accomplished?" before they do another colossally stupid invasion. What are these warmongers thinking? That we’re going to occupy Iran? That’s ridiculous: we’ve lost Iraq, Afghanistan is in trouble, and Iran has more people than both of those countries put together (according to the CIA world factbook). And if we don’t occupy Iran, what is a bombing going to do strategically, other than piss off the population and drive it into the hands of the fanatical clerics that oppress Iran and fund terrorism? But invading Iraq was ridiculous too, and that didn’t stop the neocons. In a way, the invasion of Iraq set the pretext for war threshold so low that we could invade just about anyone for any reason at all (which I guess is fine with the Imperialists at PNAC who seem to be in power in our government).
Right now it seems like the best course of action is to stay out of this fight and try to prevent the conflict from expanding to other nations. If Bush hadn’t pissed our moral authority down the drain, it might be a lot easier. But I’m afraid Bush isn’t even trying all that hard.