According to American journalist Richard Silverstein, who spoke with the BBC, he received a classified document leaked by a senior IDF officer to a former senior minister, a document that is a synopsis of a high-level briefing between Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak addressing the planned assault against Iran. Silverstein adds there are those who will dispute the legitimacy of the document he has in hand, but he remains convinced as to the authenticity of the document.
Silverstein broke the story on his blog on August 15, 2012, describing an Israeli assault against Iran’s nuclear program involving “coordinated strike” which includes an unprecedented cyber attack which will bring the entire Iranian regime to its knees, paralyzing the nation regarding what it taking place within its borders. This will include all forms of communications, telephones, television, internet and much more, including the nation’s electric grid, which will not just be disabled but damaged. This cyber attack will neutralize fiber optic lines connecting to the Khorramabad and Isfahan underground missile bases.
Israel Navy submarines stationed in the Persian Gulf will release a barrage of 300km ballistic missiles armed with conventional warheads and hardened tips capable of penetrating hardened targets.
“The missiles will strike their targets—some exploding above ground like those striking the nuclear reactor at Arak–which is intended to produce plutonium and tritium—and the nearby heavy water production facility; the nuclear fuel production facilities at Isfahan and facilities for enriching uranium-hexaflouride. Others would explode under-ground, as at the Fordo facility.”
He describes a “barrage” involving hundreds of missiles aimed at command centers that will be followed by a radar sweep from overhead to assess the effectiveness of the initial assault. The radar and surveillance planes will be armed with technology not event known to the United States, and the planes will be invisible to Iranian radar.
According to Silverstein, the attack against Iran would go “smoothly” and wipe out key infrastructure with a minimum of Israeli casualties. The BBC explains that Silverstein reports senior officers in the IDF oppose an attack as the prime minister is working to persuade the critical members of his government to bring them on board.
This would explain the appointment of Avi Dichter as the new minister of homefront affairs as he is in favor of an Israeli military attack against Iran’s nuclear program.
Silverstein explains that his source is a “former senior minister in a former government” and that source explains “normally I would not leak this” but the source fears that PM Netanyahu does plan to move ahead with the plan, which he adds will take place before the US presidential election. Silverstein theorizes that by launching the attack ahead of the US elections, President Barak Obama will quickly realize that he must join in at Israel’s side of certainly lose the election to Romney.
It is pointed out that the document does not address an Iranian counter-strike against Israel. Silverstein points out what is known to the experts, that Iran is well armed and has “most likely taken most scenarios into consideration”.
Aren’t you afraid that you are being exploited by opponents of an Israeli strike by publicizing this document?
I feel that I am not but I hope it will compel a debate regarding the thinking behind the document; to have it criticized, analyzed and probed regarding its weaknesses for if Barak and Netanyahu will not, we have to do what we can to make the debate happen.
Israel’s Maariv daily reports that in actuality Silverstein did not “break” the news as it appeared on an Israeli forum days earlier, adding his ‘scoop’ is not a scoop and the information revealed is not a breaking story. This compelled Silverstein to update his blog, reporting the “source” apparently also gave a copy of the document to the Israeli “Fresh Forum”, where it appeared first. He defends his integrity however by saying that if one compares the post on Fresh and his posting, “there is very little overlap”.
Maariv adds that Silverstein told the daily that the former minister who leaked the document is serving currently as a Member of Knesset.
YWN-ISRAEL adds that in actuality, there is great similarity between the Hebrew document that appeared on Fresh and Silverstein’s blog, and there is significant “overlap”.
Link to five minute BBC audio interview.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)