They’re worried that US military personnel might be killed when Iran retaliates after Israel strikes Iranian nuclear production sites.
This possibility should give no one any joy, and certainly doesn’t please the Israelis. The problem is that the fault for this lies squarely with the highest levels of the US administration. When Israel has cooperated with the US and shared vital intelligence, that intelligence has often been used against Israel.
On top of this, the US has consistently blocked Israel’s efforts to stop Iran’s nuclear weapons program. And, this is a problem that goes back to the Bush administration – and beyond.
With all that the US government has done to leave Israel out in the cold, the Pentagon shouldn’t be surprised when Israel chooses to ‘go it alone’. The fault lies squarely with the President of the United States and the members of his cabinet. They have allowed this situation to come to pass, and they will be the ones who will be responsible for ANY casualties that the US suffers.
Of course, that’s not how the media and the US government will spin this. Just as they have done in the past, Israel will be blamed for everything.
Gen. James N. Mattis, who commands American forces in the Middle East, was said to be troubled by results of the war game.
By Mark Mazzetti and Thom Shanker, March 19, 2012, NYT
WASHINGTON — A classified war simulation held this month to assess the repercussions of an Israeli attack on Iran forecasts that the strike would lead to a wider regional war, which could draw in the United States and leave hundreds of Americans dead, according to American officials.
The officials said the so-called war game was not designed as a rehearsal for American military action — and they emphasized that the exercise’s results were not the only possible outcome of a real-world conflict.
But the game has raised fears among top American planners that it may be impossible to preclude American involvement in any escalating confrontation with Iran, the officials said. In the debate among policy makers over the consequences of any Israeli attack, that reaction may give stronger voice to those in the White House, Pentagon and intelligence community who have warned that a strike could prove perilous for the United States.
The results of the war game were particularly troubling to Gen. James N. Mattis, who commands all American forces in the Middle East, Persian Gulf and Southwest Asia, according to officials who either participated in the Central Command exercise or who were briefed on the results and spoke on condition of anonymity because of its classified nature. When the exercise had concluded earlier this month, according to the officials, General Mattis told aides that an Israeli first strike would be likely to have dire consequences across the region and for United States forces there.
The two-week war game, called Internal Look, played out a narrative in which the United States found it was pulled into the conflict after Iranian missiles struck a Navy warship in the Persian Gulf, killing about 200 Americans, according to officials with knowledge of the exercise. The United States then retaliated by carrying out its own strikes on Iranian nuclear facilities.
The initial Israeli attack was assessed to have set back the Iranian nuclear program by roughly a year, and the subsequent American strikes did not slow the Iranian nuclear program by more than an additional two years. However, other Pentagon planners have said that America’s arsenal of long-range bombers, refueling aircraft and precision missiles could do far more damage to the Iranian nuclear program — if President Obama were to decide on a full-scale retaliation.
The exercise was designed specifically to test internal military communications and coordination among battle staffs in the Pentagon, Tampa, Fla., where the headquarters of the Central Command is located, and in the Persian Gulf in the aftermath of an Israeli strike. But the exercise was written to assess a pressing, potential, real-world situation.
In the end, the war game reinforced to military officials the unpredictable and uncontrollable nature of a strike by Israel, and a counterstrike by Iran, the officials said.