Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Saudi Persian War

Ah, you know how it goes - a few texts here and there - a bit of flirtatious sexting - a chance encounter and it's time to put out or get shut out. 

Not unlike the Cold War betwixt Hatred's Kingdom and the equally tolerance and gay free combat cleric Barbie haters of Preacher Command.

As best understood, all the sectarian chiz, provocative proxilicious puissance and heated talk amidst certain mindsets in the ME devolves to all that shialicious sunnitastic jazz. Iran see's herself as the Supreme Leader (hey they call him that for nothing ya know!) protector, arms patron and Guidance Councillor for all the earth's shias.

At the same incredible instant - the original He Man Women Hater Royals of Wahabbi Arabia are the Official Custodians for all the world's sunnis.

 Like hanging out in sucking range on the event horizon of a really bad about to happen event, The Saudi Persian Cold War may very climax with a real live war!
Saudi Arabia is generally perceived by Iran as possibly the greatest obstacle to its ambitions in the Middle East, in that Iran has been trying to export its Shi'te Islamic revolution both culturally and militarily throughout the Middle East.
Saudi Arabia tried to do everything it could, both politically and militarily, to stop a recent Shi'ite uprisings in Bahrain -- an island off the coast of Saudi Arabia that is predominately Shi'ite but ruled by Sunnis -- which Iran has been claiming belongs to Iran, and which is separated from Saudi Arabia by only a small causeway a few miles long. 
 The Saudis are concerned that the Shi'ite uprising in Bahrain might embolden Saudi Arabia's own minority Shi'ite population -- located by the oil fields, far from Riyadh, Mecca and Medina -- thereby increasing Iran's influence over the Arabian Peninsula.
Iran might soon start a war in Middle East as the only way to show that Tehran still has influence in region and can threaten whoever opposes its plans. If Bashar al-Assad is removed from power in Syria, Iran could be concerned that the world might perceive Iran as isolated; it could therefore want to make the point that even if Syria might be lost for now, Iran can still take control of Iraq, and fight proxy wars by means of its proxy group, Hezbollah. To Iran, the main enemy that stands in its way is Saudi Arabia, which has already fought Iran's influence in Lebanon, Syria, Bahrain and Iraq.
As Saudi Arabia is the first new superpower in the Arab world ( don't laugh LOLZ), Iran has designer designs on replacing it.

Saudi Arabia be freaking that Great Satan is unAssing Iraq (to be fair - tons of Great Satan's combat cats and gear are sweetly loitering in Kuwait) and corrupt Royalty in Ray Bans might well assume that even though they were able to stymie Iran's influ in Bahrain -
Iran will nevertheless manage to try to take control of the oil-rich region by way of Iraq. The Saudis have desperately been trying to find strategic ways to prevent such a scenario.
 Hold up!! Ebberdobby knows that in sunny sunny climes straddling the Nile and Indus - open warfare enjoyed by the faithful versus the faithful is uncool. Warfare should be conducted by the faithful upon the heads of the infidels - right?

Please. Ancient Aegypt"s General Nasser rained blistering agent WMD on hapless Yemenis xforming them into shrieking living blisters for the rest of their mercilifully short lives. And the m"Hammedist world pretty much just stared in silence at their fingernails as if they were the most interesting thing in the world!

Not to LOL too much -  yet the horrible Iran Iraq left 2 million dead and failed to change the borders an inch.

Soooo how do thangs stack up in a match up betwixt Saudiland and Persia?
Iran's military accelerated its missile program (11K can be fired per minute!!) as a way to compensate for its inability to match the air power of potential rivals. As a result, Iran now possesses various models of various types (ballistic, cruise, et cetera) of missiles, most of which can reach well into Saudi Arabia and some of which are accurate enough to be used against military bases of various types. These missiles could also hit facilities of the Saudi oil and gas industry, as well as desalination plants, potentially dealing severe damage to the Saudi economy.

Royal Saudi Air Force would have no choice but to eliminate Iran's many missiles as quickly as possible. The Saudis would not necessarily know which of the missile sites are home to the high-priority missiles of higher accuracy, thus forcing them to attempt to neutralize them all. If the Iranians are smart, they have prepared (or will prepare) dummy missile sites, which can serve as decoys. The Serbs did this to great effect in 1999 during the attacks on their country by NATO.  In any case, the Saudi planes will have to make numerous sorties against Iranian targets (real or dummy), exposing themselves to attack from Iran's fighters and air defenses. 

All the while, the Iranians would launch as many missiles as possible, potentially eliminating much of the Saudi air force on the ground, and/or at least rendering bases unusable and forcing the Saudis to withdraw to bases further to the west. Saudi Arabia's ships, leaving port to avoid incoming missiles, would actually be in greater danger than if they remained in port, but at least they might be able to take the fight to the Iranians.

Would war unite much of the Iranian population in nationalistic enthusiasm, or the dissent of recent years erupt again? If the Saudis struck first, the former scenario is more likely. As for the Saudis, King Abdullah is in his late 80s, Crown Prince Sultan is only slightly younger and in poor health, and the line of succession becomes contentious after that. The Kingdom's restive Shi'a primarily live in oil-producing regions near Bahrain, and they (like most Saudis, only more so) do not share their government's enmity towards Iran. 

Indiscriminate Iranian strikes could change that, and this may or may not figure into Teheran's calculations. The upshot of all of this is that a war between Iran and Saudi Arabia could be a fairly even contest, one in which interested third parties might want to play a decisive role.    

Third parties! Like a menage a troi l'guerre?
It has scarcely gone unnoticed inside the kingdom that, at least in regard to Iran, Riyadh has been speaking almost in concert with Little Satan - an embarrassing situation that official announcements can neither hide nor satisfactorily justify. Intelligence reports indicate that Saudi Arabia has granted flyover rights for a Little Satan attack on Iran and will help refuel returning aircraft.
 Pic - “The Gulf states now see themselves as mutual powers in the region who can increasingly stand up for themselves. They survived the Arab Spring without too much trouble — except for Bahrain — and have come out of it more confident and more willing to go head to head with Iran.”


Michal said...

Cool article. Really enjoyed it!1

Looks like the Saudis are in for a hell of a ride, can't strike first, can't suffer first strike.

Julian said...

No this isn't going to happen. The Saudi military is a tin-tiger, and the only thing it's useful for is making sure the relative handful of folks in Saudi Arabia who aren't pleased with their Petro-wellfare-State, and can't find a place for themselves among the state-sanctioned Wahhabi religious fanatics don't start blowing all those happy middle class shoppers in Riyadh to pieces.

Iran does not want armed conflict with anyone right now; the only reason they're even threatening over Hormmuz is because they feel, rightly, that if the currently proposed sanctions regime goes through, they'll be backed into a corner minus some serious Chinese economic intervention (which I wouldn't discount given their new pipeline projects). Even a risk and conflict averse regime like Iran's will put up a fight if you push them into a lose-lose situation, even if it is the rather limited fight Iran is currently threatening.

As for the Saudis, they might feel comfortable sending their troops across borders to help stable allied regimes suppress protesters, but that's an entirely different animal from direct military conflict. And besides; why fight themselves when Israel and the US seem to be on the verge of fighting Iran for them? The Saudis may not be nice people, but they aren't so stupid as to jump the script on this.