What Conflict with Iran Might Look Like

[Reuters ] Edmund Blair - The U.S. military could unleash superior military force against Iran, but analysts say Washington may struggle to prevent Tehran from hitting back in Iraq and elsewhere. Here are some tactics Iran could employ, including unconventional or "asymmetric" methods, that have either already been used by Iranian forces or blamed on Iran in the past: Hit-and-Run Raids in the Gulf: During the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s, Iran mounted hit-and-run raids on oil tankers and other shipping in the Gulf, often involving small speedboats mounted with a missile. Striking U.S. Interests: Iran's military has said it has missiles that can sink "big warships" and others with a range to hit targets across the Gulf, which could include U.S. bases in Qatar and Bahrain. Iran's longest range missile, the Shahab 3, can reach Israel. Violence in Iraq: Western diplomats say Iran could allow weapons to flow across the border to Iraq and add to problems for U.S. troops. Using Regional Allies: Mohammad Ali Jafari, the Revolutionary Guards' commander-in-chief, said in a newspaper interview in June that Iran's regional Islamic friends, which include Lebanon's Shi'ite militia Hizbullah, could strike Israel if Iran came under attack. The U.S. blamed Hizbullah for the 1983 bombing of its marines barracks in Beirut that killed 241 soldiers. Hostage-Taking: Iran was blamed by the West for helping mastermind some of the kidnappings of U.S. and other foreigners during the 1975-1990 civil war in Lebanon.

2008-07-09 01:00:00

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