Jerusalem, Apr. 18 (ANI): The Israeli military is preparing to launch a massive aerial strike on Iran's nuclear facilities within days of being given the go-ahead by its new government.
"Israel wants to know that if its forces were given the green light they could strike at Iran in a matter of days, even hours. They are making preparations on every level for this eventuality. The message to Iran is that the threat is not just words," The Times quoted a senior defence official, as saying.
Among the steps taken to ready Israeli forces for what would be a risky raid requiring pinpoint aerial strikes are the acquisition of three Airborne Warning and Control (AWAC) aircraft and regional missions to simulate the attack.
Officials believe that Israel could be required to hit more than a dozen targets, including moving convoys.
The sites include Natanz, where thousands of centrifuges produce enriched uranium; Esfahan, where 250 tonnes of gas is stored in tunnels; and Arak, where a heavy water reactor produces plutonium.
In 1981, Israel had blown off Iraq's Osirak nuclear facility near Baghdad. It had destroyed the facility within 100 seconds..
Another official added that it was unlikely that Israel would carry out the attack without receiving at least tacit approval from America, which is unlikely to give its consent.
"The American defense establishment is unsure that the operation will be successful. And the results of the operation would only delay Iran's program by two to four years," said Ephraim Kam, the deputy director of the Institute for National Security Studies.
On the other side, Israel believes that Iran will have the bomb within two years.
"Once they have a bomb it will be too late, and Israel will have no choice to strike - with or without America," an Israeli Defence Ministry official said. (ANI)