Thursday, April 20, 2006

I’m Not Afraid, Why Are You?

Iran has a nuclear program – so what? We gave them their first 5-megawatt research reactor in 1967. And who else has, strangely, had a nuclear program? Let’s see – Taiwan, Libya, Egypt, Argentina, Brazil, South Africa, and even Switzerland. And there are others, of course.

So Iran will have a few nukes - big deal. So do India, Pakistan and China. Russia still has theirs including all the nukes returned to them by former Soviet states. The US has over 9,000 warheads. North Korea claims to have some, but no one listens to them. Saudi Arabia may have a clandestine nuclear agenda, but no one asks any questions about it.

Some people are scared that Iran would nuke the United States. Perhaps they would, but to what end? The purpose of gaining and securing power is to enjoy its fruits. These fruits quickly vaporize in a nuclear response.

Let me introduce you to the Trident submarine. A single submarine carries 24 ballistic Trident missiles. The Trident missle has a velocity of 29,000 km/hr and a range of 12,000 km. Each missile carries 8 warheads. Each warhead is usually the W88, which has a 475-kiloton yield. Each warhead has the destructive power 10 times greater than the blasts that destroyed Hiroshima or Nagasaki. A single Trident submarine can mark 192 targets. Accuracy is very high. Iran has only 16 known nuclear facility sites. A single submarine could saturate the entire countryside of Iran. The US currently fields 14 Ohio-class, "Trident" submarines. This information is publicly available and certainly known to any military organization undertaking a nuclear program.

Are there crazy people in Iran who would use a nuclear weapon? Sure, just as there are crazy people here in America that would nuke everyone they hated. In fact, we are the only country in history that has ever used a nuclear weapon in war. Ultimately, our nuclear "deterrent force" will do just that - deter Iran from an epic mistake.

So now that we have addressed this newest red herring, let’s get back to the real issue: the unnecessary and misbegotten war in Iraq. Let’s worry about the failure of one war before we go on to fail in another, shall we?

- Just a peasant

Photo of Trident submarine from the NATO website