Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad delivers his budget bill to the parliament, in Tehran, Iran, Sunday, Jan. 21, 2007. Ahmadinejad on Sunday defended his economic policies from sharp recent domestic criticism and said U.N. Security Council sanctions imposed in December would never deter the country from pursuing its nuclear program.
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has vowed that Iran will never bow to UN resolutions over its nuclear programme, as the military prepared for war games that will include short-range missile tests.
“Even if they adopt 10 other resolutions it will not have any effect,” Ahamdinejad told parliament as he introduced a new budget for the Iranian year starting March 21.
The UN Security Council passed Resolution 1737 on December 23 imposing sanctions on Iran for its refusal to suspend uranium enrichment — the process which can not only make nuclear fuel, but also, in highly purified forms, produce the fissile core of an atomic bomb.
Reciting supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s emphatic rejection of the UN resolution on January 8, the president said: “No Iranian official has the right to back down on Iran’s nuclear right.”
Iranian state television revealed on its website that Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards would on Monday begin three days of military exercises, 140 kilometers (90 miles) southeast of Tehran.
Flap cannot refrain from thinking that this sabre-rattling by Ahmadinejad is in response to Secretary of Defense Gates statement that Iran has “OVERPLAYED THEIR HAND” on the world stage; President Bush’s warning about Iranian involvement in the Iraq War and the announced deployment of an additional Nimitz-class Aircraft Carrier Strike Group, USS John C. Stennis to the Persian Gulf.
Iran plans three days of military maneuvers, including short-range missile tests, beginning Sunday – its first since the U.N. Security Council imposed sanctions against it in late December, state-run television said.
“The elite Revolutionary Guards plans to begin a three-day missile maneuver on Sunday near Garmsar city,” said the broadcast. The city is located in northern Iran on the edge of Kavir desert, about 60 miles southeast of Tehran.
“Zalzal and Fajr-5 missiles will be test fired in the war game,” the television quoted an unnamed commander of the guards, as saying. Both are considered short-range missiles.
Iran conducted three large-scale military exercises last year as tensions with the West and the United States rose.
Iranâ€™s Revolutionary Guards fire test missiles during the first phase of military manoeuvres in the central desert outside the holy city of Qom. Iran has fired its longer-range Shahab-3 ballistic missile on exercise for the first time as it began 10 days of war games amid a mounting standoff with the West over its nuclear programme (November 2, 2006).
Here is a video of Iran’s Missile Capability:
So, how can Iran hurt the United States if a conflict escalated into military action?
The latest Iranian maneuvers also come just days after the U.S. announced it would deploy a second aircraft carrier to the Gulf, the USS Stennis.
That appeared to have alarmed some in Iran’s hard-line leadership. A prominent member of a powerful cleric-run body this week warned that the U.S. plans to attack Iran in the coming months, possibly by striking its nuclear facilities.
The United States has said it is focusing on diplomacy but will not rule out other options.
Washington has accused Iran of backing militants fueling Iraq’s violence and has tried to rally its Arab allies in isolating Tehran.
Last year, Iran held three large-scale military exercises. In April, Iran tested what it called an “ultra-horizon” missile, fired from helicopters and jet fighters, and the Fajr-3 missile, which can reportedly evade radar and use multiple warheads to hit several targets simultaneously.
While U.S. officials have suggested that Iran is exaggerating the capabilities of its newly developed weapons, Washington and its allies have been watching the country’s progress in missile technology with concern.
Flap believes Iran’s nuclear program with the ultimate goal of manufacturing a nucear weapon will ONLY be stopped by military action. The Bush Administration has allowed diplomacy to run its course and now it is time to PREVENT Iran to further develop its nuclear weapons program.
Mr. President it is time to take action.
And as a reminder to the Iranians as to what military might the United States may employ in any attack on United States ships or troops, there are these:
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad (R) meets Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani in Damascus January 21,2007
The Natanz uranium enrichment complex in Natanz is pictured in this January 2, 2006 satellite image.