cue the lightning bolts

the only question that matters: is it true?

Iran has signed the NPT. As a signatory to the NPT, Iran may rightfully, legally, use nuclear technology for peaceful energy purposes. Iran has submitted to and passed repeated IAEA inspections. The US intelligence community (NIE) does not consider Iran a nuclear threat. Israel refuses to sign the NPT. Israel has an estimated several hundred undeclared nuclear weapons. Russia and China have warned that an attack on Iran will have global consequences. That's the situation in a nutshell. Where to next, people? Where to?

Have I now become your enemy by telling you the truth? - Galatians 4:16


Juniper Cobra starts today

Israel and the United States will kick off a large-scale joint military exercise on Wednesday in a bid to enhance interoperability of their air defense systems, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) announced on Tuesday.

"In accordance with long-standing bilateral agreements, the U.S. European Command (EUCOM) will be participating with the IDF in an air defense exercise, known as Juniper Cobra 10, between October 21 and November 5, 2009," said the IDF.

Approximately 1,000 EUCOM personnel and a similar number of IDF troops will participate in the fifth biennial Juniper Cobra maneuvers, which are "part of a routine training cycle designed to improve the interoperability of both air defense systems," added the Israeli army.

During the drill, which was originally scheduled to start last week, Israel's Arrow missile defense system will be tested together with three U.S. systems, namely THAAD, Aegis and PAC-3, which will be deployed in Israel temporarily for the exercise, reported local daily The Jerusalem Post.

While the IDF said that "this exercise is not in response to any world events," the joint drill is widely seen as a response of the two allies to Iran's alleged pursuit of nuclear weapons, and as a precaution against a possible showdown with the Islamic republic.

Iran insists that its nuclear programs are purely for civilian purposes, yet Israel has so far refused to rule out the option of taking military action against Iran's nuclear sites.



TEL AVIV — A major missile defense exercise between Israel and the United States has been delayed. Officials said the exercise has been postponed from Oct. 12 to Oct. 20.

They cited logistics issues with the U.S. contingent, which has been transporting a range of missile defense systems for the exercise, titled Juniper Cobra. "This is quite routine," an official said.

Officials said the U.S. European Command has been sending 17 ships and more than 2,000 personnel for Juniper Cobra. They said Eucom and the U.S. Navy´s Sixth Fleet would transport PAC-3, Aegis and the Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense systems to Israel.

Israel would contribute the Arrow-2 and PAC-2 missile defense systems. Officials said the biannual exercise would simulate an Iranian ballistic missile salvo toward Israel.

"This will be the most advanced and largest Juniper Cobra edition yet," the official said.

Officials said U.S. Navy Sixth Fleet commander Adm. Mark Fitzgerald would oversee Juniper Cobra. The Israeli side would be led by the Air Defense Command. (Copyright © 2009 East West Services, Inc. 10/14/09)


Tel Aviv - Israel and the United States are to hold a joint, 16-day air defence exercise, described as the largest drill ever by the two countries in Israel, Tel Aviv announced Tuesday. The Juniper Cobra 10 drill, starting Wednesday, aims to test how well the Israeli and US defence systems work together in the event of a missile attack against the Middle Eastern country.

"Small numbers" of US forces normally stationed in Europe will will be temporarily deployed at a number of locations in Israel during the drill, the Israeli military said in an announcement.

Israelis may observe troop movements and a number of roads will be closed for short periods of time, it warned. In total, some 1,000 US Army personnel and a similar number of IDF soldiers are to take part.

Officials in Syria, Iran and Lebanon's radical Shiite Hezbollah movement have been monitoring preparations for the air defence drill with concern, but Israel has made a point of issuing calming messages, saying it had no intention of exploiting the exercise to carry out offensive action.

The drill is the fifth in a series of biennial Juniper Cobra exercises, took 18 months to plan and is "part of a routine training cycle designed to improve the interoperability of both air defence systems," said the Israeli military statement.

"This exercise is not in response to any world events," it stressed in a clear reference to world speculation as to whether Israel is planning a military strike against Iran.

Iran and Syria are said to also be keenly awaiting the results of the exercise. According to Israeli media, they have been making a concerted intelligence effort to uncover Israel's weak spots in its defence against missiles.

The drill is to simulate long-range missile fire at Israel from Iran, Syria and Lebanon. Towards the end, American systems are expected to carry out a "live interception" of missiles.


US NAVY Bio of Admiral Mark Fitgerald

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