Thursday, October 28, 2010

Musings: Iran Gaining Control of Iraq Without Firing A Shot?

In early July we wrote an article entitled “Middle East: Oil Industry’s And World’s Next Black Swan?” At that time all eyes in the oil industry and among American citizens were focused on the developments with BP’s Gulf of Mexico Macondo well, which was then spewing oil and creating one of the world’s worst environmental disasters. We suggested that maybe people should be scanning the horizon for the next industry Black Swan.

We went on to offer our best guess on what that Black Swan might be, the Middle East. We said that many people wouldn’t consider the Middle East to be a Black Swan, an unknowable and thus unanticipated event, but rather just an ignored developing trend. In that article we said: “A number of recent data points have emerged that suggest the Middle East may become a focal point of political and possibly military action before the end of the year, or maybe even earlier.”

We suggested that maybe people should be scanning the horizon for the next industry Black Swan
In July, the focus of Middle East developments was on when Iran might be able to complete building a nuclear weapon. That timetable is dependent upon the country’s ability to produce enriched uranium, which is being done in one or maybe more nuclear facilities. The buzz at that time among military and intelligence sources was that Israel was preparing an air strike to destroy Iran’s nuclear facilities as it had done a number of years earlier.

Supporting that view was Congressional testimony from Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and Central Intelligence Agency head Leon Panetta that Iran would be completing development of a nuclear weapon in one to two years time at the outside. Also revealed in Defense Secretary Gates’ testimony was that the U.S. had overhauled its NATO missile defense plans based on intelligence that Iran could fire “scores or hundreds” of missiles against Europe in salvoes rather than one or two at a time. Sec. Gates did not mention Israel in his testimony but clearly that nation is considerably closer to Iran than most of Europe......Read the entire article > Iran Gaining Control of Iraq Without Firing A Shot?



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