Is Israel Planning An EMP Attack On Iran?
By F. Michael Maloof – “WASHINGTON – Analysts say because Israel now believes diplomacy has failed to halt Iran’s nuclear program and the Jewish state’s very survival is at stake, Israelis have not ruled out a Jericho III missile launch to detonate a single electromagnetic pulse warhead at high altitude over central Iran…
Given that Iranian sites may be hardened against a conventional military attack, several Israeli and foreign sources believe that Israel has a nuclear device to create an electromagnetic pulse, or EMP, that would produce little radiation on the ground but could knock out all of Iran’s electronics.
Israel also is assessed to be able to launch nuclear-tipped ballistic missiles from its German-supplied Dolphin electric submarines that could carry a one-kiloton or more device and explode over Iran, effectively neutralizing all of Iran’s electronics.
This would include Iran’s command and control capabilities and its ability to launch ballistic missiles in retaliation to a pre-emptive Israeli attack on Iran’s nuclear sites, which Western intelligence has assessed is a cover to make nuclear weapons.
Sources say that an Israeli EMP attack also would effectively halt Iran’s ability to launch its forces to block the Strait of Hormuz, which the Islamic republic has threatened to do if it is attacked, along with targeting a number of U.S. military facilities in the region, as well as Israel.
An electromagnetic pulse occurs following a nuclear weapon exploded at a high altitude, creating a very strong electrical field that can overwhelm all electronics, knocking out or seriously damaging any electronic devices connected to power sources or antennas, including communications equipment, computers, electrical appliances, automobile and aircraft ignitions systems. Experts say it also can adversely affect a person’s implanted heart pacemaker device…
Another scenario discussed among some Israeli leaders is the detonation of an EMP over the entire Middle East, including Israel, whose military infrastructure has been hardened against such attacks. This would allow Israel to fly its jets directly to Iran without concerns about detection. Though it would also turn out the lights in Israel, sources there say the Jewish state could bring power back for civilians in a matter of days. A detonation at an altitude of up to 250 miles not only would affect all electronics in Iran but could damage electrical systems from the Middle East and much of Europe, these experts add. Such an EMP event also would dramatically affect all U.S. military facilities in the region.
An EMP attack on the United States, for example, from a 30-kiloton nuclear weapon exploded at an altitude of 62 miles, or 100 kilometers, effectively would knock out 70 percent of electrical systems up to a thousand miles in every direction. A similar explosion at a higher altitude of some 250 miles would virtually affect all electronics from Boston to Los Angeles and from Chicago to New Orleans, according to experts.
Consequently, a detonation limited to Iran would have to be at a much lower altitude to avoid such far-ranging effects on the electronics in the region and beyond.” Read more.