US Blogger Richard Silverstein has published details of a potentially leaked Israeli document that allegedly gives a clue on how the Israeli Defence Force (IDF) would launch an attack on Iranian targets.
According to Silverstein, who was also interviewed by the BBC on this “scoop”, it’s an Israeli briefing document outlining Israel’s war plans against Iran that he received by a high-level Israeli source who received it from an IDF officer.
Here’s the translation of the document Silverstein has published:
“The Israeli attack will open with a coordinated strike, including an unprecedented cyber-attack which will totally paralyze the Iranian regime and its ability to know what is happening within its borders. The internet, telephones, radio and television, communications satellites, and fiber optic cables leading to and from critical installations—including underground missile bases at Khorramabad and Isfahan—will be taken out of action. The electrical grid throughout Iran will be paralyzed and transformer stations will absorb severe damage from carbon fiber munitions which are finer than a human hair, causing electrical short circuits whose repair requires their complete removal. This would be a Sisyphean task in light of cluster munitions which would be dropped, some time-delayed and some remote-activated through the use of a satellite signal.
A barrage of tens of ballistic missiles would be launched from Israel toward Iran. 300km ballistic missiles would be launched from Israeli submarines in the vicinity of the Persian Gulf. The missiles would not be armed with unconventional warheads [WMD], but rather with high-explosive ordnance equipped with reinforced tips designed specially to penetrate 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.
A barrage of hundreds of cruise missiles will pound command and control systems, research and development facilities, and the residences of senior personnel in the nuclear and missile development apparatus. Intelligence gathered over years will be utilized to completely decapitate Iran’s professional and command ranks in these fields.
After the first wave of attacks, which will be timed to the second, the “Blue and White” radar satellite, whose systems enable us to perform an evaluation of the level of damage done to the various targets, will pass over Iran. Only after rapidly decrypting the satellite’s data, will the information be transferred directly to war planes making their way covertly toward Iran. These IAF planes will be armed with electronic warfare gear previously unknown to the wider public, not even revealed to our U.S. ally. This equipment will render Israeli aircraft invisible. Those Israeli war planes which participate in the attack will damage a short-list of targets which require further assault.
Among the targets approved for attack—Shihab 3 and Sejil ballistic missile silos, storage tanks for chemical components of rocket fuel, industrial facilities for producing missile control systems, centrifuge production plants and more.”
The document certainly doesn’t read as a military document, indeed Silverstein argues that the document is to be used to persuade ministers who oppose an attack on Iran into agreeing to an attack.
On a military level the document raises some questions.
The carbon Fibre munitions mentioned in the document would suggest the use of BLU-114/B ‘Soft Bomb’ a sub munition similar to a cluster bomb where the ‘bomblets’ dispence clouds of ‘hair like’ carbon fibres which short circuit power stations. The delivery of such a weapon could prove risky, it would require an aircraft to fly over the target area which would mostly be heavily defended.
Unless Israel has developed a stand off weapon similar to the AGM-154A Joint Stand Off Weapon (JSOW) capable to deliver the munition and provide the ability to keep aircraft out of harms way.
Another comment that stands out from the document is the comments regarding the 300km missiles launched from subs in the Persian Gulf being not armed with unconventional warheads. Is this an admission that Israel possesses weapon of mass destruction whether they are Nuclear, Chemical or Biological? Something that has never been confirmed, at least officially.
The final paragraph of the document mentions an unknown electronic warfare capability that renders IAF (Israeli Air Force) aircraft invisible. Unless Israel developed a radar jammer or ‘cloaking’ device for its aircraft it certainly looks like the document is talking about the SPJ-20 self protection system.
Eventually it appears that the alleged source of the document is actually a speculation post that originally appeared on an Israeli forum.
According to several sources (see also this blog’s comment thread) well over 90 percent of the document was previously published on Fresh forum.
Silverstein claims that the leaker also leaked the document to the forum even though no one seems to have ever claimed the document was a secret Israeli memo rather than pure speculation.
Based on the information contained in the memo and the lack of military consistency of the theory, it seems like the document is really nothing more than a nice speculation worth a message board.
Richard Clements for The Aviationist. Updated by David Cenciotti
Image credit Israeli Air Force