Iran Ups its Anti-Israeli Ante

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Iran’s latest ploy to challenge Israel, however, may contain a more sinister element than that of supplying arms to Hezbollah. Since Hosni Mubarak stepped down last Friday, protesters have reappeared on the streets of Tehran in numbers not seen since the Green Movement in 2009. The unrest continued on Wednesday, as pro- and anti-government demonstrators clashed at the funeral for one of the protesters killed two days ago.

But there were two things about this latest round of disturbances that have unsettled the Iranian leadership. According to columnist Pepe Escobar, the first is that the demonstrators were demanding the resignation of Supreme Leader Ali Khomeini and not  President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The most popular chant, Escobar writes, was: “Mubarak, Ben Ali [of Tunisia]! Now it is Seyed Ali [Khameniei’s] turn!”

The second element references the fact that some demonstrators were from Tehran’s working class neighbourhoods, the traditional areas of support for Iran’s theocratic regime. With drastic rises in food prices and living costs, some workers appear to have had enough of the Iranian Revolution, since it now can’t meet even their basic needs. These price hikes, in which the opposition to the mullahs among the workers has it roots, is largely due to the government having abolished food and fuel subsidies, amounting to $100 billion a year. Escobar states Iran’s economic situation is so bad, “Iranian banks such as Meli, Saderat and Melat Sepah are very short on cash.”

As much as Ahmadinejad tries to portray the current unrest as the work of hostile foreign elements, the mullahs know they are ruling a deeply divided country and that their time may soon run out. The demographic situation in Iran is also in a perilous state, especially for a government that has pretensions to some day rule the Islamic world. The birthrate of Iranian women has fallen below replacement levels and Iran will not have the young men to go to war with in 20 years. This demographic implosion, one columnist believes, is what will eventually cause Iran to launch a war in the near future rather than just go quietly into the night.

The unknown quantity in all this is how badly the Stuxnet computer virus attack against Iran’s nuclear weapons program, believed to have been carried out by Israel and the United States, set the program back. The Iranian regime wanted nuclear arms as leverage against, and possibly to destroy, Israel, and to establish Iran as the regional power. Now, the Stuxnet attack, combined with the country’s current political and economic troubles, may not allow time for this plan to come to fruition, causing the mullah regime to seek another avenue to prosecute its jihad.

And that avenue appears to lie in provoking an attack by Israel. The one thing that would now unite Iranians and get them behind their leaders again would be an attack by Israel or the United States. The two warships are probably just the start of a campaign to provoke the Jewish State into making such a move, since Iran’s nuclear weapons program, the previous reason for possible US-Israeli military action against Iran, may now be nothing but a shambles. With an Israeli attack, not only would the Iranian people, who have for decades drunk deep draughts of anti-Semitism and anti-Americanism, forget their difficulties and support the jihad, but so would other Muslim peoples of a rapidly changing and unstable Middle East.

Launching foreign military adventures to distract people’s attention from problems at home is nothing new. Both Hitler and the military junta in Argentina that attacked the Falkland Islands were facing similar disastrous economic situations as the mullahs before they launched their military adventures. Shortly after Munich, Hitler said Germany had only one year remaining before it faced bankruptcy, so he had to start war soon. After occupying the Falklands, the Argentinean generals were greeted by cheering crowds who only days earlier had been demonstrating against economic hardships. For the same reasons and out of the same criminal spirit, Iran is now sending its warships through the Suez Canal in the hope of incrementally reaching its goal of war with Israel, but without appearing to be the aggressor.

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  • jemc50

    Not the first time Persia (Iran) has had ships in the Mediterranean. The Greeks knew how to handle them at Salamis.

    Regardless, this does not bode well for Israel or the U.S.

  • http://apollospaeks.townhall.com ApolloSpeaks

    CAIRO MOVING CLOSER TO TEHRAN AS IT ALLOWS JIHADI WARSHIPS THROUGH SUEZ CANAL

    Don't say we didn't warn you. Very soon as I predicted many of you who are euphoric over Egypt's revolution are going to miss Hosni Mubarak; many of you will start to appreciate his heroic defiance* of the mad, America hating, anti-Semitic Egyptian people to resume the insane legacy of Abdel Nasser and turn against Israel and the West. But now the Egyptian military is wasting little time moving in that direction as is evident from allowing Iranian warships through the Suez Canal-to the cheers of the Moslem Brothers. This has never happened before.

    continued

    • chickenhawk

      Amen and Amen… ApolloSpeaks…. Amen!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • http://apollospaeks.townhall.com ApolloSpeaks

    !Also unprecedented are the Saudis allowing these jihadi ships to dock at Jeddah. For Mubarak's demise shook the confidence of America's regional allies in what is a radical powershift away from Washington toward Tehran. We are in a new and deadly era where the Axis of Terror and Evil is gaining strength and tightening its noose around the neck of nuclear armed Israel-a nation that will turn the Middle East into a wasteland where "the living will envy the dead" if faced with defeat and death. I say it again: "all catastrophes are possible in the age of Barack Obama," as he leads this nation and world into a time of conflict and war.

    • Supreme_Galooty

      You certainly express it in a nutshell, understandable by any who care to ponder the idiosyncratic difficulties all too numerous in a region populated those jolly Musselmen. The situation is even more fraught with peril when you consider our nation is led by a person who is not only a monumental accretion of glib mediocrity, but also a shameless self promoter who is as vacuous and intellectually deficient as any I have laid my eyes upon. That the (man) is thus cannot be reasonably denied by anyone with an eye to see or an ear to hear.

  • ObamaYoMoma

    The one thing that would now unite Iranians and get them behind their leaders again would be an attack by Israel or the United States.

    Actually, I believe the opposite would happen, an attack targeted at the Mullahocracy and the IRGC but not at the Iranian people, would I believe encourage anti-regime opposition to overthrow the Mullahs. However, I suffer no delusions that whatever would replace the Mullahocracy would be a Western style democracy, but whatever emerged certainly couldn’t be as bad as what we have today. Not to mention that because of an impending demographic collapse in approximately 20 years, Iran’s days in the sun would be numbered.

    In any event, we may not have any other choice in the matter as Iran must never be allowed to acquire nukes, as a nuclear armed Iran would result in permanently skyrocketing oil prices, which would devastate the West’s economies, and which is why the Russians have been so eager to help Iran. It would also result in nuclear proliferation throughout the Sunni Islamic world.

  • http://www.hotexchangerates.com/ exchangerates

    Great news,Erdogan will end up like that other American puppet ,saddam,hanging at the of his strings.inshallah!

    • Rifleman

      Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? H*ll no!

  • Gamaliel Isaac

    No danger? What if there is a nuclear bomb aboard one of those ships that is ignited in a suicide mission of Israel's coast.

  • http://apollospaeks.townhall.com ApolloSpeaks

    !Update: Cancelation Of Crisis

    Hat tip to Shlomo ben Ami for informing me on this morning's Reuters report that the Iranian warships didn't pass through the Suez last night as planned. Why this happened isn't clear. But Israel raising a justified stink over it was the probable cause. But as Shlomo points out the warships docking at Jiddah for ten days was in itself an ominous development that points to the new reality emerging in the Middle East with Iran replacing America as the regional power.

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  • http://apollospaeks.townhall.com ApolloSpeaks

    As Mubarak was Iran's enemy the mullahs have taken his fall on the 32nd anniversary of their revolution as a DIVINE SIGN that God and history are on their side and that His plan is for them to prevail in unifying Islam and restoring the caliphate. But with the docking of Iran's warships at Jiddah what began back in 2006 with the Gulf Cooperation Council's invitation to Ahmadinejad to address their group (and a Saudi invitation to Mecca to do a hajj) the appeasing of Iran continues as US power, prestige and credibility decline with its MidEast and other allies.

    Click my name to read my widely posted piece: Nasserism, the Egyptian People and the Downfall of Mubarak.

  • BLJ

    The only thing these savages understand is force. Sink the ships and take out any other military hardware and forces they decide to send in the area. Keep it up until they either back off or are eliminated from the face of the planet.

  • Stephen_Brady

    As soon as the Iranian ships clear Egyptian territorial waters, the Israelis should blow them to pieces. If we had a President with cojones, we'd do it, ourselves.

  • Alex

    “…the malodorous miasma of gall, social engineering zeal, anti-Semitism and Arabist agenda that emanates from the Obama administration.”
    George Jonas, Columnist, National Post

  • JosephWiess

    I would let the ships sail through the canal, but I'd search them if they try to enter any blockaded seaport. Barring that, I'd simply blockade any hezbollah port, and if they try to enter, let them make the first attack and send those 1970's ships to Davy Jones Locker.

  • hijinx60

    If the Iranian ships enter the Suez Canal Zone, they would be a sitting target if Israel decides to attack. It would be like shooting fish in a barrel, and would eliminate a portion of Iran's fleet with crippling effect. Egypt wouldn't like it and most likely respond with some kind of "sound and fury signifying nothing." However Syria might just enter the fray and WWIII would begin.

  • Rick_in_VA

    It wouldn't surprise me if they scuttled the ships themselves and then try to blame Israel for it.
    Since they don't value life, they would think they were going to be heroes in the afterlife.

  • Terry

    There will certainly be no danger from the fascist regime's ships if Israel summarily sinks them.

  • Dobermite

    test

  • Rifleman

    No need to waste an AGM-84 Harpoon on that boat, a couple of AGM-64 Mavericks ought to do the job.

  • joel

    Recently President Obama could not bring himself to say Israel. He said countries like Israel. No country in the middle east is like Israel, a democracy! How about countries like the US,Mr President? Also,the author of the above article state "possibly" Iran wants to develope nucs to try to wipe Israel off the map. Not possibly but positively!

  • Eddie

    If the US or India or Israel suffer a nuke attack, mecca and the kabba will be totally destroyed in retaliation. An islamofascist attack would trigger the permanent end of the hajj convention.

    Ditto median, qom. The islamofascist world is "target rich".

    • ajnn

      unfortunately, i doubt anyone believes that. there is very little 'deterrance' available.

      • Eddie

        ajnn, I strongly disagree. We know that islamofascists are willing to destroy themselves because they believe they will end up in "paradise", entertained by 72 virgins.

        The main pressure point is mecca. They can't even move mecca. They travel to mecca. The threat to destroy mecca, in retaliation, is a valid threat.

        The question is do Muslims love mecca more than they hate the US, India, Israel, Infidels?

      • Eddie

        ajnn, I strongly disagree. We know that islamofascists are willing to destroy themselves because they believe they will end up in "paradise", entertained by 72 virgins.

        The main pressure point is mecca. They can't even move mecca. They travel to mecca. The threat to destroy mecca, in retaliation, is a valid threat.

        The question is do Muslims love mecca more than they hate the US, India, Israel, Infidels?

  • deserteagle

    can israeli ships pass thru?