Tag Archives: Bunker Busters

The Cavalry: Bush comes through – Advanced JDAM sale approved

DOD leaving me stunned, if only I could be wrong like this every day

The only thing as good as a strike on Iran to jolt them into changing their ways, is the threat of an even worse strike.

I’ve been following the Israeli procurement requests with avid interest. It has been clear that the United States has been intent on limiting sales to defensive systems, the denial of advanced JDAMS, possibly the F-22, mixed in with limiting refuelling tanker purchases has all but made it clear what the US position on the use of Israeli force is.. A big Ixnay.

The advanced penetrating satellite guided munitions were the biggest blow in the denial column, despite the plethora of assistance for missile defense that has been offered in support, these bombs provide a decisive advantage for any long range strike should it one day become necessary.

Bush is a champ

DOD has been adamant, but it appears the US is not prepared to leave its ally hanging and Haaretz is reporting that the Advanced JDAMS sale has been suddenly approved despite serious reservations, DOD gives the good word on approval by the ‘administration’, anyone care to guess who gave that order?

Despite reservations in Washington regarding a possible Israeli strike on Iran, the American administration will supply Israel with sophisticated weapons for heavily fortified targets, the U.S. administration announced.

The U.S. Department of Defense announced it would sell the Israel Air Force 1,000 new smart bombs, rumored to significantly enhance the IAF’s military capabilities. The deal was approved amid public and secret messages from Washington, with the Americans expressing their reservations about a possible Israeli strike against the Islamic Republic’s suspected nuclear sites.

The Pentagon’s announcement, which came on Friday, said the U.S. will provide Israel with 1,000 units of Guided Bomb Unit-39 (GBU-39) – a special weapon developed for penetrating fortified facilities located deep underground.

The $77 million shipment, which includes launchers and appurtenances, will allow the IAF to hit many more bunkers than currently possible. Although each bomb weighs 113 kilograms, its penetration capabilities equal those of a one ton bomb, according to professional literature.

Most U.S. Air Force aircraft are able to carry a pack of four of these bombs in place of a single one-ton bomb. The bomb’s small size allows a single-strike aircraft to carry more of the munitions than is possible utilizing currently available bomb units, thus increasing firepower, or, alternatively, allowing the aircraft to fly longer distances to deliver a single bomb. [...]

I say Condi was a swing vote and she knows how to play hardball soviet style

President Bush is a true friend, this request was made to him personally on his recent visit in May for Israel’s 60th birthday celebrations, the apparent denial was a harsh blow. Indeed this approval is likely over objections by Chief of the Joint Chiefs Admiral Mullen, and Sec. Def. Gates as well I imagine. The timing is ripe for speculation, Russia is making bold moves to setup shop in the Syrian port of Tartus, stalling the diplomatic track on Iran and building reactors, combined with news this week that Russian s300 air defense missiles may be in Iranian hands.. Maybe President Bush has got himself a two for one deal here, his last best parting gift to a close friend & a no nonsense message to Russia all rolled into one.

There is only one use for the most advanced deep penetrating buster around, and it is not crop dusting. I look forward to writing a profile post of the GBU-39 (update: done) this week here at the hashmonean.

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Side Note:

Palin was very clear what her views (the McCain campaign’s views) were on the topic of preventing Israel from acting should Israel feel it absolutely must do so, during her 1st interview at ABC. Senator McCain has been equally clear for a long while now. If that ticket wins, it would be a decent bet these GBUs would have been re-requested and possibly approved then. If Obama were to win I imagine there is a small chance Gates might remain for at least a time as Sec Def, or he would be replaced with someone much less friendly to Israel. Would Obama theoretically overrule his own Defense Department for Israel too? That is one theory I am not eager to test.

Link Update:
Soccerdad looks at disinformation - Another great weapon of war.

Confirmation: US holding Israel back on Iranian Strikes

Haaretz confirms a number of previous posts here at the Hashmonean

Weapons requests denied, Aluf Benn has an article up about denial of air corridors (IFF Codes) and certain weapons platforms to hold Israel back from striking. Much speculation has been floating about on what those weapons were. I looked at the topics in these posts below;

Haaretz confirms advanced JDAM munitions (Bunker Busters) were rejected, and doesn’t specify which ‘advanced technology’ was denied but I covered both above sadly in this post: No F-22 For You: Gates squashed Israel’s big hopes

Benn also looks at the reported request for 767 mid air refueling tankers, noting that such a request would take several years to fill which is the reason I was skeptical about that piece of the puzzle here: Totally Tankered? : Let me add some fuel to the 767 fire

Brothers in Arms? Not so much when it comes to Arms requests lately

All in all, Secretary Gates can huff and he can puff, but in the end if we decide to blow the house down that is exactly what we will do. It is one thing to talk about pre-emption and preventing cataclysmic WMD events in the USA, another thing entirely to expect us in Israel to look at the matter any differently. Bush may have made pre-emption famous, but we kinda invented it. On this sad anniversary of the horrific mass murder attacks of 9/11 that message is even more poignant. We won’t be waiting around for the surprise Nuke to go off that’s for sure, I think Gates has overplayed his hand needlessly, instead of preventing Israel he has only made the chances of Israel’s failure should it strike higher.. Rummy, he is not.

It should be noted, some of those bombs denied are previously approved weapons purchases; Special delivery please: Israel requests ‘Iran Busters’