IAF Dry-Run Penetrated Iranian Airspace

October 23, 2015

2 min read

A report compiled from the testimony of nearly two dozen senior Israeli and US officials revealed that in 2012, Israeli Air Force (IAF) fighters penetrated Iranian airspace in what was thought to be preparation for an attack against the Fordow nuclear site.

The Israeli plan to make the daring dry run was discovered by American officials spying on Israel’s Security Council, the IAF, and on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, a report in the Wall Street Journal revealed.

The US strongly objected to Netanyahu’s inclinations towards aggressive handling of Iran, including destabilizing Iran’s economy and financial institutions, or a total regime change. US officials greatly opposed Netanyahu’s desire for a military strike against Iran, feeling it would be a “suicide mission” and unsuccessful in any case. As a result, they refused to provide Israel with the military equipment necessary for an attack.

“At the top of the list were V-22 Ospreys, aircraft that take off and land like helicopters but fly like fixed-wing planes…The Israelis also sounded out officials about obtaining the Massive Ordnance Penetrator, the U.S. military’s 30,000-pound bunker-busting bomb, which was designed to destroy Fordow,”revealed Gary Samore, US President Barack Obama’s White House coordinator for arms control and weapons of mass destruction.

Another senior US official told the Wall Street Journal that Israel had briefed the US on their plans for a commando raid to penetrate into the heavily fortified facility.

“Cargo planes would land in Iran with Israeli commandos on board who would ‘blow the doors, and go in through the porch entrance’ of Fordow,” the senior US official said. “The Israelis planned to sabotage the nuclear facility from inside. Pentagon officials thought it was a suicide mission. They pressed the Israelis to give the U.S. advance warning. The Israelis were noncommittal.”

The US apparently feared the 2012 dry run by the IAF could escalate into a shooting war and prepared for this eventuality.

“Worried that Israel might ignite a regional war, the White House sent a second aircraft carrier to the region and readied attack aircraft, a senior US official said, ‘in case all hell broke loose,’” the report said.

The report paints a picture of fractured relations between the two allies on the political, military, and intelligence level, placing a big question mark on the future, especially in the area of the Iranian nuclear program.

The Wall Street Journal points to a clause in the agreement between Iran and world powers which stipulates that the P5+1 will help the Iranians protect their facilities against attack. The US State Department said this clause does not include the US preventing Israel from attacking Iranian nuclear sites.

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