by Pepe Escobar
Asia Times online

The inmates are running – or think they are running – the asylum.

As Asia Times Online already reported (See Bomb Iran fever, Aug 8, 2012), Tel Aviv may be inches away from turning the already declared economic war on Iran into a hot war.

Take a look at this madness: [1] The Bibi-Barak warmongering duo (Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak) may be about to go for broke on an Iran strike – against the advice of Israel’s top defense and intelligence experts.

Barak may even have had access to secret US intel. He said, “there probably really is such an American intelligence report – I don’t know if it is an NIE [National Intelligence Estimate] one – making its way around senior offices [in Washington].”

“Probably?” “Really?” “I don’t know?” And this forest of hypotheticals is a justification for hot war?

Then Barak added; “As far as we know it brings the American assessment much closer to ours”.

Not really. Here’s the response by a White House National Security Council spokesman; the US intelligence assessment remains the same. That is; Iran is not conducting a nuclear weapons program.

And if any extra confirmation was needed, Washington seems to have a pretty clear picture of Iran’s nuclear progress. [2]

According to White House spokesman Jay Carney, “We would know if and when Iran made what’s called a breakout move towards acquiring a weapon.”

For lethal Bibi, that’s obviously not enough. It doesn’t matter that – technically and logistically – Israel simply does not have what it takes to conduct a successful strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities.

Take a look at this concise infographics. [3] For starters, Israel does not have the latest generation MOP GBU-57A bunker buster bombs to hit deep underground Iranian installations. It does not have the Northrop Grumman’s B-2 stealth bombers to deliver them. And it does not have enough Lockheed Martin KC-130 aerial tankers (only 5; the US has 80) for refueling its attacking F-15s and F-16s.

There is no evidence the Obama administration will be authorizing the Pentagon to supply all of the above to the Bibi-Barak duo anytime soon.

And let’s introduce a little bit of sanity into this madness – courtesy of good ol’ Cold Warrior Yevgeny Primakov, former KGB supremo and Russian foreign minister. Primakov tells it like it is; go ahead, attack Iran; and then, inevitably, they will go for a bomb. [4]

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