The U.S. defence budget should have tipped you off. $650 Billion dollars for next year. What?? $650 Billion!! At a time of massive cuts in government spending, huge pressure to reduce the budget deficit, reduce government borrowing ...To give you an idea, before the Iraq war in 2000, (Clinton's era), the US defence budget was $200 Billion. Even after inflation, $650 Billion is a lot. In fact its more than the whole rest of the world combined!!! Having said that, the U.S. defence budget did swell to almost $1 trillion dollars during the height of the war - but $650 Billion is a lot.
Well, yes, there is a NATO operation in Afghanistan, and the "surge" is supposed to end this year...and there is the odd newspaper article that details rumours of a peace deal with the Taliban in progress. But this is a NATO operation led by the U.S. And there really isn't the same scale of war and insurgency that U.S. witnessed in Iraq.
So what's up? I find all this stuff fascinating. Let me share what I have found out with you.
Well, the U.S. is 'strangling' Iran. Just like Iran had done everything but build a bomb (I call this abb = all but bomb); the U.S. is doing everything except fighting a conventional war with Iran (I call this abw = all but war). If you want to understand what ABW means note the following (from different press articles):
1) Turkey: Washington and other NATO partners have a "secret training camp" at America's Incirlik, Turkey air base. In April, it began "organiz(ing) and expand(ing)" Syrian disidents. NATO forces are also training Turkish troops for a possible Syria strike.
2) Jordan: In addition, US forces from Iraq's Ain al-Assad base were transferred to Jordan on December 8 instead of returning home.
3) Persian Gulf: There are much larger force contingents now in Kuwait, and expanded ties with Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, the UAE and Oman. i.e. greater overall regional footprint to establish an enhanced "security architecture" to integrate air, ground, and naval units for future combat missions. And a report, confirmed by the Pentagon, that 11 warships had sailed through the Suez Canal, heading for the Persian Gulf, raising alarm bells.
4) Azerbaijan: Azerbaijan has been granted a NATO Individual Partnership Action Plan as have other former Soviet states like Georgia, Ukraine and lately Moldova. In January Azerbaijan hosted a planning conference for the NATO Regional Response 2010 military exercise. Also recently, "A Regional Response military training was held within the NATO's Partnership for Peace (PfP) programme in Baku. "Commander of US Land Forces in Europe Carter Ham participated in the training."
5) Turkmenistan: The U.S.army last year advanced military cooperation with Turkmenistan. An independent Caspian news agency has confirmed unusually heavy activity of American troops along the border with Iran. The Iranian Revolutionary Guards' Brigadier General Mehdi Moini said last week that his forces increased patrols, including tanks and anti-aircraft units, along the border with Azerbaijan because they noticed increased American activity. Iranians also charged that Israeli forces were also present, sparking a virtual war alert among the Iranian Guards. 6) Afghanistan: To Iran's east, the U.S. and NATO will soon have over 150,000 troops, and according to a recent study 400 bases, in Afghanistan and both Western belligerents are coordinating military actions with Pakistan, the Alliance through the Trilateral Afghanistan-Pakistan-NATO Military Commission.
7) Iraq: Even though U.S. forces have officially withdrawn from Iraq, they leave behind NOT one but trained armies inside Iraq. One army, the regular army, answers to the Shiite government in power now. But there is another army the KDF (Peshmerga) i.e. Kurdish Defense Forces.It is estimated that as of January, 2005 there were 180,000 Peshmerga fighters in Iraqi Kurdistan. Newer articles estimates their number to be 270,000 A recent CBS News reports places their number at 375,000. With such a huge force at the beckon call of the U.S., why is there a need for American soldiers to put their own lives at risk inside Iraq? No wonder Iraq's Kurdistan is very safe and stable! But why do they need such a huge defense force there?
In essence, the chain is being tightened around Iran from every direction. Iran is literally surrounded by American troops or American Troop equivalents. In addition, the Times of London reported earlier this month that Saudi Arabia has agreed to open its air space for Israel Air Force jets, a claim that the Saudi monarchy denied. It similar denied Iranian news agency claims that Israeli helicopters unloaded military equipment at a northwestern Saudi Arabian air base, from where Israeli planes theoretically could reach Iran in the shorts possible time.
Several defense websites have reported that Israel is deploying one to three German-made nuclear submarines in the Persian Gulf as a defensive measure against the possibility of a missile attacks from Lebanon and Syria, as well as Iran. “The submarines of Flotilla 7 — Dolphin, Tekuma and Leviathan — have visited the Gulf before,” DeHaemer wrote, “but the decision has now been taken to ensure a permanent presence of at least one of the vessels.”
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