Is This The Start Of Something Big?

Unless the Iranians are insanely careless when moving ordnance around an “ammunition depot”, it’s unlikely that an explosion of this size was an accident, especially if reports are true that this was actually a highly secret missile base, a senior Guard commander was killed and/or that two consecutive explosions occurred in two IRGC bases.

Mystery surrounds deadly blast at Iran ammunition depot

Mystery surrounds yesterday’s explosion at a Revolutionary Guard ammunition depot that was so large it was felt and heard almost 30 miles away in Tehran.

. . .

The Fars News Agency, which is connected to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), reported on Sunday that the IRGC “strongly dismissed certain baseless reports” that the explosion was “related to nuclear tests or transport of missile warheads.”

“The blast happened during the transportation of [conventional] ammunition,” said the IRGC press chief General Ramazan Sharif. Some 15 soldiers had been “martyred,” he said, dialing down initial estimates of 40, though some of the wounded were in critical condition.

See also:
Blasts hit IRGC military base in W Tehran, 15 dead
‘IRGC military base blast kills 17’
Accidental explosion at Revolutionary Guard ammunition depot kills 17 west of Iran’s capital
Iran explosion at Revolutionary Guards military base
17 killed in Iran base blast
Iran exile group claims blast near Tehran hit closely guarded missile base
Iran exile group claims blast hits missile base
Iran exile group claims blast hits missile base
Iran Exile Group Claims Blast Hits Missile Base
Iran Guards: Officer killed in blast a ‘martyr’
Iran: Dead Guard commander was missile expert
Massive explosion in Iran kills 17
17 killed in massive explosions at munitions depot near Tehran
Iran: Top Revolutionary Guard commander among those killed in blast
US blog: Mossad behind Iran blast
Israelis wonder about deadly Iranian missile-site explosion

Was this Israeli orchestrated sabotage of an Iranian test, related to Iran’s nuclear weapons program or, perhaps, a U.S. B-2 strike, based on timely intelligence? Either possibility could be a plausible explanation for what occurred. One thing’s for damn sure, if it turns out that, indeed, two separate IRGC bases were hit near simultaneously, it wasn’t an accident.

/in any case, keep the Iranian “accidents” coming, they’re much easier to sell to the international community and much less disruptive to world markets than belligerent acts of war by foreign powers

Great Prophet 6

Every day Obama plays another round of golf we get weaker and every day Iran is allowed to continue to develop nuclear weapons and ballistic missile technology they get stronger.

Iran test fires 14 missiles capable of reaching Israeli, US targets

Iran fired 14 missiles and unveiled underground ballistic missile silos today, kicking off a series of war games over the next 10 days. Some of the missiles, launched today, have a range of more than 1,200 miles – enough to reach Israel and American installations in the region, Iranian PressTV reports.

Longer-range missiles are not likely to be built because all of Iran’s desired targets are already in reach with its current missiles, said Brig. Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, commander of the Revolutionary Guards’ aerospace division.

“We possess the technology to build missiles with longer ranges but we do not need missiles with a range of more than 2,000 kilometers and we do not intend to produce them,” Mr. Hajizadeh said from the sidelines of the drills, which are known as Great Prophet 6. “Iran’s missiles have a range of up to 2,000 kilometers and have been designed for US and the Zionist regime [Israel]’s bases in the region.”

See also:
Israel within range of Iran’s missiles: general
Iran to Conduct Missile Drills Today
Iran test-fires missiles, shows secret silos
Iran testfires 14 missiles “successfully” in drills
Iran unveils missile silos as military exercises open
In ‘Great Prophet VI’ Maneuvers, Iran Fires 14 Ballistic Missiles; IRGC Dep. Cmdr: Iran Won’t Initiate Attack – But Response Will Be ‘Purely Aggressive’
Iran launches missiles carrying message of “peace and friendship”
Guard chief: Iran can build longer-range missiles
Photos: Iran Test Fires 14 Missiles
IRGC Drills Display Iran’s Major Progress in Missile Technology

Ten years ago we could have crushed the Iranian threat without too much trouble. Now, I’m not so sure. We may have passed a tipping point where it’s now impossible to stop Iran’s nuclear program or the cost of stopping it is prohibitive and unacceptable. It’s bad enough that Iran has been allowed to pursue their atomic weapons program pretty much unimpeded, but now it appears that they have the missile technology to reliably deliver nuclear warheads anywhere in the region. What happens next is anyone’s guess.

/I wouldn’t be surprised if, sometime in the not so distant future, we witness an Iranian detonation test of an atomic device

Modafean Aseman Velayat 3

Iran is at it again, attempting to deter an attack on its nuclear facilities by putting its ancient and pathetic air defenses on display.

Iran begins air defense drills: report

The Iranian Army launched its biggest nationwide air defense drill to prepare against any possible attacks “on public or nuclear sites,” the local satellite Press TV reported on Tuesday.

Arial defense units from the Army and the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) are taking part in the three-stage five-day defense maneuvers dubbed “Modafean Aseman Velayat 3,” (the Guardians of Islamic Skies), the report said.

The nationwide air maneuvers, which kicked off early Tuesday, were held near Iran’s “nuclear and vital landmarks” and include tests of long-range anti-air missiles, according to the report.

The drills aim to enhance response capabilities in countering threats against the county’s populated, vital, strategic and nuclear landmarks.

The Commander of Iran’s Khatamolanbia Air Defense Base Brigadier General Ahmad Miqani said Sunday the drills are part of an annual exercise that will be held with the participation of all air defense units of the country’s armed forces. The specific purpose is to enhance the effectiveness of the country’s anti- cruise electronic detection and weapons systems, said Miqani.

Earlier in the day, Miqani announced Iran would produce an air defense radar system with a range of 3,000 km in radius. The country will also unveil a new generation of domestically developed long-range S-200 air defense missile system by next February.

See also:
Iran opens air defense war games
Iran conducts military exercises near its nuclear sites
Iran Starts Nationwide Air Defense Drills
Iran launches ‘biggest’ aerial drills
Iran to conduct five-day air war games
Iran’s Strengthened Air Defense Capable of Repelling All Enemy Attacks
Tehran to test air-defense systems
Iran launches air defence exercises
Iran starts “biggest” air defense war games
Iran kicks off 5-day air defence war games
Iran Holds ‘Biggest’ Air Defense Drill Yet Over Nuke Sites
Iran Starts Major Defense Drill To Protect Nuclear Sites
Iran launches biggest air defence drill

I’m not sure why Iran even bothers because the Obama administration has no intention whatsoever of attacking Iran’s nuclear sites.

Gates Says Sanctions Cause Iranian Rift, Opposes Military Strike

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates says international sanctions against Iran because of its nuclear program are causing division among the country’s leaders, and are the best way to convince them to abandon the program.

. . .

Secretary Gates said he believes the Iranian leaders are intent on developing nuclear weapons, a charge they have denied. Gates said the only long term solution to the problem is to use sanctions and diplomacy to convince the Iranians that developing the weapons is not in their interest.

“Everything else is a short-term solution, is a two-to-three-year solution,” said the defense secretary. “And if it’s a military solution, as far as I’m concerned, it will bring together a divided nation, it will make them absolutely committed to attaining nuclear weapons and they will just go deeper and more covert.”

See also:
Gates: Iran strike wouldn’t stop nuclear program
Gates sees Iran rift, says strike would unite country
US: Strike can’t stop Iran’s N-program
A military strike against Iran would unite the divided country and ensure Tehran’s unwavering commitment to pursuing nuclear weapons: Robert Gates
Military action won’t stop Iran nuclear program: US
Gates says military strike would unite a divided Iran

I guess militarily stopping Iran’s nuclear program is entirely up to Israel now. Unfortunately, Israel probably doesn’t have enough firepower, by itself, to pull off the successful large scale attack that would be necessary.

/so, say hello to an Iran armed with nuclear weapons, I’m sure they’ll be much more reasonable and easier to deal with at that point