UPDATE: President Obama is reportedly trying to talk Israel out of striking Iran’s nuclear facilities. This implies that Obama will not permit the U.S. military to strike Iran’s nuclear facilities.
If he succeeds, and neither Israel nor the U.S. strikes Iran, the Iranian regime will obtain nuclear weapons within the next few months. And President Obama will be partly to blame.
It now appears that, unless a major military strike occurs soon, Iran will complete a nuclear bomb within the time frame I have been suggesting, within the next several months.
If Israel strikes Iran, they will probably be unable to take out the Fordow facility, which is deep underground. Any attack on Fordow by the U.S. will be portrayed by Iran as an attack on the nearby holy city of Qom, and as an attack on Islam. They would use such an attack to rally Muslims in their region to their side in the war.
Iran of course has prepared for the possibility of a military strike. That is why they have an enrichment facility underground. And this implies that they have taken other steps to protect their program, such as scattering the completed bomb parts to undisclosed locations, perhaps near schools, hospitals, and mosques, and such as providing Fordow with a stock pile of 20% U-235 to purify quickly into weapons grade uranium, should an attack occur. So a limited military strike on Iran might only hasten their procurement of nuclear weapons.
Scenario 1: Sanctions only; no military strike on Iran. Iran ramps up enrichment, obtains nuclear weapons by summer of 2012.
Scenario 2: Military strike on Natanz, not Fordow. Iran uses current stockpile of 20% U-235 to make nukes at Fordow in a few months.
Scenario 3: Military strike on Natanz and Fordow. Iran portrays this as an attack on Islam. Muslims rally to Iran’s side, increasing Iran’s power and influence in the region.
Scenario 4: All-out war by the West against Iran, to prevent them from obtaining nuclear weapons. Muslim nations in the region rally to Iran’s side.
In either of the first two scenarios, Iran obtains nuclear weapons within about the same time frame: by summer of 2012. Iran then uses nuclear bombs to begin a war against the West.
In the third scenario, Iran could obtain enough power in the region to launch a conventional war against the West, by attacking U.S. forces in the region, and by attacking Europe by way of Turkey. In the fourth scenario, an extensive war is initiated by the U.S. and Israel.
All the above scenarios lead to an extensive war between the Arab/Muslim nations of the Middle East (and northern Africa) and the West. The first two scenarios include the use of nuclear weapons. The second two scenarios might avert the use of nukes, but an extensive conventional war occurs nevertheless. Unfortunately, the first two scenarios are much more likely that the last two. The U.S. is not willing to initiate another war in the region. Israel does not have the capability to take out the Fordow facility.
In all likelihood, Iran will obtain nukes and will use them against the West sometime in 2012, probably by late spring or early summer. Muslims in the region will then rally around Iran. Extremists will overtake those nations by coup or outright war. World War 3 ensues.
As I have already explained, once they obtain nuclear weapons, Iran won’t nuke Israel. Instead, they will nuke New York City.
The current Iranian regime sees itself as a world leader, as a budding superpower. The regime is striving to become the leader of all Muslims in the world. But the only way for them to obtain this level of power is by rallying the Arab/Muslim nations to their side in a war against the West. Their perceived path to power is war. And once they have nuclear weapons, war will be our only way to stop them.