Of Iran and Israel and this weekend

From the financial news, we have a rumor of a possible maybe that Israel will bomb Iran this weekend. Such rumors are common (after all, if you could make a $Million by going long gold futures and floating a rumor about war… )


Chatter that Israel is gearing up
By Adam Button
March 23, 2012 at 14:04 GMT

I don’t make up the rumors but oil traders will believe anything. The rumor is that “Israel is mobilizing”.

If you believe an attack is coming on the weekend, you would want to be long yen, long oil and probably long gold. Long USD would be a safe bet as well.

So, in that spirit, here is a FICTIONALIZATION of a point of view on how I’d do it, were I the folks running things. Yes, this a a ‘warming up’ practice bit of FICTION, to see how well I do at it, and what parts “need work”. So, enjoy the story, and (gently please, it’s my first time ;-) provide feedback…

Cascade Electricus

Captain Rodriquez was proud of his Hispanic heritage. He felt it had given him ‘what it took’ to rise to his present post, Captain of the U.S. Navy Guided Missile Frigate USS Halyburton.

What he lacked in height, he made up for with energy and ambition. Little escaped his attention on His Ship. Right now what he noticed was a bit of a stir rushing toward him.

The junior officer was clearly excited: “Sir, the Iranians are going crazy, sir!” Rodriquez tried to calm him down a bit, new crew always took a while to settle in. “Perhaps you can be more specific?”

“Something has happened at several places over Iran. Small conventional explosions were detected, they are believed to have been air burst bombs of modest size. Israel is suspected, but no notice was given and no claim made; and sir, we did not detect any aircraft… Iran has deployed their navy and gone on alert. We are awaiting further information from satellite observations. Sir, it just doesn’t make any sense, sir. No damage was reported and no causalities reported. Who bombs empty air, Sir?”

Rodriquez thought for a moment. They were just entering the Strait of Hormuz, headed inbound. What was supposed to be a routine tour might now have much more risk involved. He didn’t care who did it, or why their bombs were ineffective (if that were even true). They would know soon enough the who and why. Right now what mattered was that he was heading inbound to a mess.

“Launch the helicopters. See what they can find. We need to be alert and aware of any subs in the area.” It was at that moment that they hit the mine. The Iranians had been busy.

The mystery of who and why would have to wait. When the USS Samuel B. Roberts had struck an Iranian mine in 1988, it had taken two days of fighting fires and 10 sailors evacuated for medical treatment to save that sister ship. Rodriquez expected to better that, and he had a ship to save.


Joshua was tired, and still tense. He had done well on his mission. The bombs had been released as planned. The EMP detectors had reported a proper Electromagnetic Pulse formed. They ought to have knocked out most electronic and many electrical devices for several kilometers around, including the underground nuclear weapons facilities. The Mossad had reported poor shielding of the Iranian facilities. The EMP ought to have followed the wires deep underground. EMP bombs were fussy, and it was always a bit questionable what would be damaged, but they would find out in time.

Now he had a couple of hours more of flight time to get home, and it would not be as easy as the outbound flight, then there had been little reason to look for him. Now it would be different. The explosions were air burst at altitude, so little ground damage done. Hopefully the Iranians could not admit what was done, electrically frying their officially non-existent nuclear bomb facilities. But they would go on alert, and the explosions would be observed. In the Middle East, if your neighbor was on alert, you worried. Now Joshua worried that Saudi Arabia would be worried; but he hoped they would remember “My enemies enemy is my friend”, and the Sunni saw the Shiia as their enemy.

His was a very special plane. They had a few more years before they would take delivery of the order for US made stealth fighters, but they had not waited.

Only a few were in existence, but only a few were needed. Designed as a prototype for testing, it was a standard airframe, but customized. Not as stealthy as the Americans, but certainly enough. That had just been proven. Some customized surface reshaping, and very special paint.

It had been planned as a backup path if the sales from America fell through. Now it was on the front lines of a new type of war. And it had worked (at least when everyone had been half asleep…) He had a rendezvous with a fuel tanker to make, and then the flight home over the more empty parts of Saudi Arabia and Jordan. The radio reported those countries were preparing to launch air craft and their air defenses were going on alert. The real test was yet to come.


Ibrahim was not expecting a call, but there it was. His was a clandestine transport mission, nothing more. To be contacted in the middle of it, that was only for emergencies. Yet there it was. It took time to decode the message. What it said made his heart beat faster, fear and joy, mixed as only Allah could grant. He was not to be just an errand boy, delivering boxes, passing as a Greek Freighter. He was to become a martyr. Bypass the entrance to the Strait, continue through the Red Sea. Head toward Crete, then turn. It would take a few days. He could prepare his body and his spirit. Tomorrow a specialist with the arming key would be delivered. Tonight? Tonight he was ordering the cook to prepare the best lamb on board. Tonight was to be a feast. But first, he needed some time for prayers. Those he did only in his cabin. He was, after all, to keep up appearances as a Greek Freighter Captain.


What happens a few days from now will change the course of history, cause mighty nations to tremble and lesser nations to fall. Then the real trials and tribulations begin for all mankind… Don’t miss it! Tune in next week for “When Ibrahim Meets Joshua” or “No Good Deed Goes Unpunished”…

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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27 Responses to Of Iran and Israel and this weekend

  1. bwanamakubwa says:

    Next chapter PLEASE!!
    Excellent stuff, you’ve got another career waiting for you!

  2. R. de Haan says:

    Here’s another source that could provide more inspiration inspiration:

    Israel has a policy to collect Jews spread over the world in the “diaspora” and under threat today from all corners of the world. They smuggled them out of Moscow, they flew them out of Eritrea and Sudan in spectacular rescue missions that broke records on the number of people you can stash aboard a Boeing 747.

    Now the Iranian Jews are under pressure and set up for abuse by the Iranian regime.

    We should not underestimate the role these Jews play in the policies of the Israeli Government.

    From Debka today:
    Tehran forces Iranian Jews to join anti-Israel Global March
    DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 23, 2012, 1:20 PM (GMT+02:00) Tags: Iran Jewish community Palestinians Jerusalem

    Hossein Sheikh-ol-Eslam, Global March organizer
    The Islamic regime in Tehran was not satisfied with the public support the Iranian Jewish community’s was forced to confer on the Global March to Jerusalem for which Iran is recruiting Islamists worldwide. Now, the event’s organizers, Majlis Speaker Hossein Sheikh-ol-Eslam and Salim Ghafouri, have ordered the community to send a Jewish delegation to march with the Islamist groups in Lebanon, DEBKAfile’s Iranian sources disclose.
    The delegations are scheduled to mass on the Lebanese and Jordanian borders with Israel and at West Bank and Gaza checkpoints on March 30, when Israeli Arabs mark Earth Day every year.
    Iran’s ancient Jewish community of around 15,000 souls (9,000 in Tehran, 4,000 in Shiraz and 1,300 in Isfahan) has been living in fear of reprisals should Israel or the United States carry out a military operation against the country’s nuclear facilities. Now, they face a fresh danger of murder and abduction by Hizballah and Palestinian gunmen and terrorists in Lebanon.
    Jewish communal leaders were instructed by the Iranian authorities this week to have at least 10 young men aged 18 to 22 ready for the march. They were to be given “the honor” of acting as vanguard for breaking through the Lebanese-Israeli border fence and leading a mass incursion across the border.
    They suspect that this ploy is meant to prevent Israeli soldiers from firing on the trespassers for fear of killing the Jewish contingent, while at the same time, exposing them to violence when the event is over at the hands of al-Qaeda linked Palestinian groups under Hizballah protection.
    The Salafi doctrine held by the al Qaeda killer Muhammad Merah who murdered four Jews, including three children, in Toulouse Monday, is rife in the south Lebanese Palestinian Ain Hilwa refugee camp. The most active are two Palestinian jihadist groups, the Abdullah Azzam Brigades, which now and then shoots rockets into northern Israel, and Jund al-Sham, which is closely tied to al Qaeda branches in Lebanon, Syria and Iraq, where they call themselves Osbat al-Ansar.
    The two terrorist groups are the bosses of the Safouri Quarter of the camp.
    Our sources report an Iranian scheme to send the Jewish marchers on a visit to Ain Hilwa to show their solidarity with the most radical Palestinian cause.
    Last week, Jewish leaders were obliged to sign a declaration of solidarity with the Global March and condemnation of Israel. The text put before them for signing was as follows: We the Jews of Iran strongly condemn the barbaric crimes of the occupation regime in Palestinian and declare the Zionist state in violation of the principles of Our Teacher Moses and the Will of God. We are totally at one with the aspirations of the heroic Palestinian people.”
    Signed: Dr. Syamak Mare Dedeq, Jewish Member of Parliament, and Rabbi Mashallah Golestani-Nejad, described as the Chief Rabbi of Iran.
    DEBKAfile’s Iranian sources add: Tehran is the main bankroller and live wire of the Global March against Israel’s borders and claims to have rounded up Islamist delegations from five continents to support the Palestinians. Seventy sympathizers are on their way to Lebanon, Syria and Jordan from India, Malaysia, Pakistan and other Asian countries.
    To mark the event, Tehran staged a cartoon contest. The winner drew around the Al Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem a wall modeled on the fences of Auschwitz.
    Both the organizers are members of the Ministry of Intelligence MOIS with long experience of managing Iranian activities on behalf of Arab and Palestinian terrorist groups. Sheikh-ol-Islam, while holding the post of Deputy Speaker of Parliament, also coordinates Tehran’s relations with the Lebanese Hizballah.
    On Feb. 26, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei proclaimed the launching of the Global March to Jerusalem an expression of Iran’s policy for strengthening “resistance operations” against Israel and guarding Palestinian interests.

    Next chapter please, you’re doing great.

  3. E.M.Smith says:

    @R. de Haan:

    Well, were I one of the “selected Jews” I had have mom and dad send a message to Israel. Then on “march day” a group in the ‘vanguard’ would run screaming and waving signs condemning Israel (in very specific words…) and just outrun the rest of the pack – to be embraced by welcoming cousins…

    Perhaps with a bit of a tassel on the corner of the shawl / jacket…

    I’m pretty sure Israel could put together a border squad of advised and excellent marksmen who could pick out the right signs in a telescopic sight and do ‘selective protective fire’…

    (BTW, next installment is already drafted, just needs some polish time…)

  4. Pascvaks says:

    I think this is going to be better than “Zorro’s Black Whip”. (Don’t ask, it would take too long to explain. You had be grow up in the 50’s and go to Saturday Afternoon Movie’s with a bunch of kids on a Navy Base;-)

  5. R. de Haan says:

    parallel plots are the secret of success for many well known and especially well sold authors, no matter the subject.
    In fact they allow for several short stories to grow into one thick novel and keep the reader interested and fascinated. The true brilliance comes by writing the plots according to a time line while maintaining suspense and an unpredictable outcome.

    This is what’s called the “genius” of the author.

    Don’t talk about style, E.M, you’ve got style dripping out of your ears.

  6. Tregonsee says:

    It was interesting to have the trailer for “Battleship” combined with a totally paranoid narration, with a few highly debatable bits of history thrown in for verisimilitude.

  7. omanuel says:

    I hope this is fiction, but many of today’s facts are even more strange!

    Hang in there,
    Oliver K. Manuel

  8. Pascvaks says:

    @ Tregonsee –
    I don’t think you should read too much between the lines and add your own interpretation to the things your imagination is inserting on its own. Life is a happening, to be sure, but sometimes, really, it’s just too too if there are no checks and balances and you don’t have the slightest idea what is is. Remember, when things get tough the literate tend to get going, with or without a little help from their friends in high places, and it’s nearly impossible to tell who the good guys are if you’re predisposed to calling everyone an idiot. There’s the ‘mine’, there’s the ‘puffs’, there’s the ‘radio’, and there’s the mean bad terrible Iranian robots out to cut everyones head off. Open your mind. Let in a breath of fresh air. And whatever you do, please, don’t smell any roses before you read the next episode.

  9. R. de Haan says:

    Scarlet Pumpernickel says:
    24 March 2012 at 11:25 am

    Scarlet Pulernickel, stop posting this kind of utter anti semite crap.
    It doesn’t serve this blog and it certainly doesn’t serve the discussion.

    You really have to check and think over in advance what your are posting and start using the grey mass between your ears.

    This is not a posting contest.

  10. omanuel says:

    @R. de Haan (24 March 2012 at 3:46 pm)

    We can hardly blame others for trying to grasp who is responsible for the horrible mess society is in: Jews, Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Capitalist, Communists, etc., ad infinitum ! The sad truth is this: Society is collapsing; We do not know why !

    As explained below, FEAR-based self-centeredness seems to be the root of our problem.

    Most of my life I was an atheist. Before being belatedly awakening to Reality by Climategate emails and documents in November 2009, I was a left-wing Democrat, environmentalist, and a member of Greenpeace and the ACLU.

    Then I saw that FEAR-driven self-centeredness, arrogance and false pride kept an unholy alliance of leaders of nations, sciences and the news media from accepting Reality:

    1. Life is part of a natural process in the evolution of the cosmos, expanding and filling interstellar space with H and He – waste products from the cores of ordinary stars like the Sun – as it expands because “free” energy (E = mc^2) is stored as rest mass in the centers of

    a.) Heavy atoms (A > 150 amu)
    b.) Fluid planets like Jupiter
    c.) Ordinary stars (Sun)
    d.) Galaxies

    2. Atoms of elements are produced naturally in the spontaneous release this “free energy”

    3. “Rebirth” is part of the natural process in the next cycle: The universe will collapse – when compressed neutrons have “evaporated” away. Then gravitational forces of attraction will “recharge” the giant cosmic battery by pushing the neutrons back together again.

    4. The current demise of society is traceable to the destruction of Hiroshima on 6 Aug 1945 and Henry Kissinger’s secret, FEAR-driven visit to China in 1971.

    Click to access Climategate_Roots.pdf

    FEAR of the “nuclear fire” that consumed Hiroshima on 6 August 1945 – flamed by the Cuban Missile Crisis in late October 1962 – convinced world leaders to Unite Nations against an imaginary common enemy in 1971 – Global Climate Change !

    Today world leaders will not admit powerless over the Great Reality to which religious leaders long submitted and encouraged their followers to worship, by thousands of different names !


    That is another way of stating the problem. A brief summary of the history of these events is available in documents and references posted here: http://www.omatumr.com/ and here:

  11. Gary P. Smith says:

    @E.M.: Hooked already.
    @omanuel: Huh?

  12. R. de Haan says:

    omanuel says:
    24 March 2012 at 5:14 pm

    With all due respect but I fail to understand what your posting has to do with my remark addressed to Scarlet Pumpernickel.

    I simply detest anti semite and anti Israeli propaganda.

  13. Pascvaks says:

    @Tregonsee –
    Ref my last. I have the feeling I may have missed something from Scarlet & having YouTube blocked. If appologies are in order please consider them submitted.

  14. E.M.Smith says:


    I don’t know what “Battleship” is, other than an old game I used to play about 50 year ago with a peg board or some such ( a friend had it, I didn’t like it much).

    I presume there was some movie by that name. Did it have something to do with The Gulf or Israel?

    As per “paranoid narration”, um, I have no idea what you are talking about… Was it one of the S.P. video clips? I’ve not watched them (as I don’t have time to watch even 1/2 the clips S.P. puts up in a day, and, don’t want it to color where I see the plot line going.)


    Many a happy afternoon was spent with Zorro ;-) and a variety of other ‘serial thrillers’ ;-)


    IMHO, the best stories are the fiction ones anchored in plausible and possible knowings… where you never really know where the reality ends and fiction begins. Like the notion that Israel has done nothing with stealth for a couple of decades being the common story, but… what is real? That they have made a special paint implies more has been done that is still secret. So “play it forward”… At some point the speculation is accurate and a better fit to the truth than what is “public knowledge”, a bit further it goes off track. Hanging in the gray area is delicious. IMHO, of course ;-)


    I guess I’ll have to look at the video clips and see what the hub-bub is about.

    I’ll not countenance direct antisemitism. (The line being drawn here is between individual opinion of not liking someone or some group vs a propaganda like spew of hate. IMHO folks ought to be free to make an idiot of themselves by saying things like “I don’t like Rednecks” or any other group, so long as they are just showing their own biases and bigotries. We all have them, and bottling them up with PC crap prohibitions is NOT a benefit. For example, I don’t like cigar smokers. They stink. Can’t change it, don’t see the benefit in hiding it. But I’d not countenance someone posting propaganda demanding that cigars be banned or cigar smokers be blamed for killing babies. They have a right to their liberties.) So if I find them “over the line”, the links will go (and S.P. will go back to moderation queue).

    Personal opinion is generally OK, slander against a broad group is not.

  15. E.M.Smith says:


    You didn’t miss anything. I just watched the videos. Largely paranoid delusional antisemitic tripe. The idea that Israel would nuke the USA using Indian MIRV missiles is so crazy as to be beyond explanation. We TRACK all missiles. We KNOW where they launch from. Even if somehow disguised, there’s that one small problem that the USA is the only reason Israel is not squashed by the antisemites of the world. So would YOU shoot your best supporter?

    Then there is the notion that we’ve sent Enterprise off to the Persian Gulf to do a false flag and have it sunk so we don’t have to pay decommissioning costs. Yeah, that’s the ticket, make the gulf a nuclear No-Go Zone, that will undoubtedly help our economy as the USA, Europe, Japan, and China are plunged into an oil crisis… /sarcoff> While it is quite reasonable to send a ‘due to be decommissioned’ ship into what might become a hot spot ( you don’t need to repair any battle damage then), the idea that a few $Billion of planes, several thousand navy personnel, and a literal boatload of top secret stuff would be sunk in a shallow gulf for others to paw over is just “crazy talk”.

    I’ve moved the video clip postings to the trash heap, where they belong.

    The overly dramatic narration with paranoid script set against ominous organ music ought to be enough to tip anyone off to their being “cooked”. If that didn’t do it, the constant “cast Israel as evil global manipulator” makes it clear. Sorry S.P., but if you can’t figure out that a couple of million Jews are unable to run the world, you need to take a time out to think about it.

    My Biases:

    I dated a Jewish Girl once. She didn’t like me all that much, but kissed OK.

    I have a “Jewish Uncle” by marriage. (He married my Mom’s sister during W.W.II) Met him for about 4 hours, all told (he’s dead now). Interesting guy, and I’ve got some “stories by proxy” from him, like HIS dad swimming ashore in Florida from a passing Russian Freighter. 3 miles. Sharks. Better than USSR… Fought in the Battle of the Bulge and helped to relieve my Spouse’s Dad who was 101st Airborne at Bastone. Took shrapnel through the back that almost killed him as it took out most of his liver. Yeah, so self centered as to damn near get killed helping a predominantly non-Jewish surrounded force survive. (yes, sarcasm again…)

    I’ve met his kid a couple of times. We’re ‘similar but different’. I’m with an Irish overlay, he’s “almost the same” with a Jewish overlay (but claims to not be Jewish – which is possible as it’s supposedly matrilineal but in his case is likely just that he’s agnostic… rather like me…) He was U.S. Army with keys to some of the nukes in Europe. Yeah, another Jew so selfish as to be constantly under threat and surveillance; and disciplined enough to not get anyone killed so folks in Germany could sleep well at night, having killed many of his relatives…

    I’ve had a Jewish office mate for a couple of years and we liked each other. Neat guy. He married a non-Jewish lady but insists nobody will tell him his kids are not Jewish just because his wife wasn’t. Smart and effective at his job. Haven’t talked to him since Loma Prieta quake…

    Oh, and I attended the wedding of another Jewish friend who I’ve not seen in a couple of decades. We worked together on a couple of contracts over a decade or two. Nice guy, but hen pecked.

    Finally, at one company I reported to the Company Lawyer V.P. who I’m fairly sure was Jewish, but it’s hard to know as we didn’t talk about it. I’d never want to cross the guy as I watched him verbally dissect someone once ( a peer of mine who had done a Very Stupid Thing). He has consulted with me on a couple of computer issues since then, and bought me lunch for my opinion.

    Finally, early in my career I worked at a computer software company that was run by two Jews. When business went soft, they fired me. My fault, really. I was junior on the team and didn’t put as much effort into productivity as I could have. Bad combination… My boss liked to occasionally eat a ham sandwich, but said “It’s only a minor sin, it’s forgiven at sundown”… so I’m not sure how “hard core” he was as a Jew… We had a good corporate party, though, with everyone singing and doing that circle dance around the table. (Folks from downstairs asked us to not stomp quite so much ;-)

    In summary:

    I’ve had a fair amount of interaction with Jews in my life. My major complaint is that they are rather hard working and make it difficult to just ‘coast’ and not look bad in comparison. Occasionally a bit “hard nosed” when in positions of authority (then again, the folks I’ve fired and laid off think me a Bastard in comparison..)

    Oh, and I worked with an ex-Mossad agent once on some computer security contracts. (About all I can say about it). Really nice guy who was also a retired cop from a local agency. Walked with a limp from when his leg had been messed up by his Egyptian Guards after he was captured. (He was the guy who spotted the fake planes on the tarmac in Egypt. The Israeli air force neatly took out the real airplanes and skipped the dummies…) Had some very interesting stories, even if some parts were redacted… I was especially surprised when he defended the Egyptians.

    They had a ‘deal’ with the border guards. His side had melons, IIRC, the other side had some other vegetable. They would trade through the fence… “They were just doing their jobs.” I don’t think I could be that charitable toward someone who broke my legs and damaged my joints in torture.

    So, my point:

    Anyone who wants to try painting Jews as some kind of evil maniacal globe controlling group is not going to cut it here. Near as I can tell, they are just about like everyone else (modulo a small degree of extra ‘aware edge of paranoia’ – but you get that way after a few episodes of genocide from your ‘friends and neighbors’…) though a bit sharper and more hard working than most. They have decent parties (even if not as comfortable ‘go ahead and get sloppy nobody cares’ as my redneck friends parties) and I’d gladly go into battle with a Jew at my back. Dad did, as did my wifes Dad.

    With that said, there’s bad folks in all groups and there are bad Jews just as there are bad Muslims and bad Christians. So I take each individual as an individual.

    S.P.: Learn to do that to. For now, you are going back to moderation while you work on not being paranoid and not indulging in racial / religious slander.

  16. Jerry says:


    Re: The S.P. videos: “a propaganda like spew of hate. ” pretty well nails ’em. Just my never humble Texas opinion. :) Glad to see them gone, I can find my way to the sewer in the unlikely event I feel the urge.

  17. E.M.Smith says:


    Say Howdy to Texas for me! I have a “Texan Uncle” too… (Married into the Texan line as the spouse’s Mom is from Oklahoma and some of ’em are on the Texas side…) First met him in the ‘meet and greet’ at the announcement of our engagement. IIRC his words were “Nice to meet you son. Welcome to the family, you’re gett’n one fine girl there. Now son, just you remember one thing: If you ever do anything to hurt that little girl, I’m gonna hunt you down and kill you. Nice to meet you, son.”

    He was working as a prison guard in Lompoc at the time… I had no doubt whatsoever that he meant every word, including the “welcome” parts.

    (As I grew up in a country ‘red neck’ town in California, I was acculturated to those norms to some extent already. The spouse-to-be spent some time later trying to sooth / explain – I got to point out to her that I already knew he was just fulfilling his duty to protect the womenfolk… I’ve spent many times at his home in Texas as we went to and fro from one side of the country to the other. Just a bit south east from Dallas, where they have that giant yard sale ;-) not quite to Tyler…

    Speaking of folks I’d not mind having at my back going into battle… I’d take one Texan over a half dozen Californians… and I am a Californian ;-)

    Though it does take a while to learn to unerstant wasitis theysayn. ;-)

  18. George says:

    If Debka printed it, it means it is absolutely false. I have *never* in my entire life *ever* (as in not once) seen a “Debka exclusive” ever turn out to be true. They have even worse luck with making up stories than a blind squirrel.

    They never find a nut. I would never believe a word they print about anything, even things copied from other sources as they are likely to embellish it.

    Not a reliable news source. If they said the sky was blue I would question it.

  19. p.g.sharrow says:

    @EM ; Sir, beggin your pardon, but your dialogue has too many “sirs” for efficient Navy shipboard communication, even from a “shavetail” junior officer. Starting a statement of information is fine, or when asking a question for information. Experienced officers prefer respect and a minimum of salutes and “sirs” as they are a waste of every ones time. Will that be all, sir. pg, an old navy Petty Officer :-|

  20. E.M.Smith says:


    The intent was to create that impact of ‘novice’ at the expense of some accuracy… but perhaps it’s a “Sir too far” ;-)


    I don’t know who “DEBKA” is, but from what I’ve seen they are long on Puff and short on reality. Not seen anything from them that was offensive enough to deserve a ‘ban’, though. Kind of fringe but being wrong isn’t quite enough for more than a “trial by counter proof”. OTOH, if it gets tiresome…

  21. E.M.Smith says:

    Looks like the Wiki has a different name for a conventional explosive driven EMP bomb:


    Explosively Pumped Flux Compression Generator doesn’t quite roll off the tongue…. but at least it has a wiki ;-)

  22. R. de Haan says:

    No bombs on Iran this weekend but Obama visiting the border with North Korea wining about the NK anounced missile test that doesn’t fit the framework of agreements that obviously was agreed upon three weeks ago. If it was it would have been the first time that North Korea keeps an agreement since the fragile UN agreement that put an end to the war 27 July 1953.
    I think we’re slowly but surely heading to an armed conflict that ultimately will go into the history books as WW III.

    But this time we won’t see a clear line between friend and foo as we saw in the previous wars.

  23. bwanamakubwa says:

    EMS, don’t apologise for anything. Your story is totally credible.
    And I still want to read the next chapter!

  24. DocMartyn says:

    Chiefo, ships do not sail into harbors and docks any more.
    They have to moor at large buoys, wait for the pilot, and then are piloted in.
    Pu240 releases gamma-rays and can be rather easily detected.

  25. E.M.Smith says:


    Um, not sure what harbor you are talking about. I have the US ship heading into the strait (as they do to patrol the Persian Gulf, with some regularity) and haven’t mentioned Pu at all. The “Greek Ship” is out to sea outside the Gulf and headed into the Mediterranean. Are you ‘channeling the future’ or?….

    BTW, pilot varies by place and ship size. There’s lots of traffic into S.F. Bay that is not piloted. Especially the smaller stuff. (Though it is likely to be met by the DEA well out to sea.) Heck, I was almost run over by a large ship once (it’s a long story involving single handing a 27 footer in bad weather and trying to take a reef in the sail a bit late and, well, really appreciating my auxiliary Diesel ;-)

    At any rate, where I see the plot line going does not involve entering a harbor. Also note that gamma rays are fairly easily shielded as well ( not that much lead needed).

    I’m most familiar with S.F. (where I sailed a bit on my liveaboard) so see:


    And you will note that under 40 meters is exempt and if you have an automatic ID system unit on board, you don’t even have to radio in. It’s more about notice of position, identity, and intent than it is about having a tug or pilot. For very large cargo ships, like container ships or oil tankers, I’d expect a pilot (but even then I think they can be a person aboard who is qualified for the port – though I’m not sure as I’ve not operated in that size…) and there are not many that size in S.F. anyway… it’s pretty shallow out of the main channels and even they are fairly small. Heck, a lot of the traffic heads up the canals to Sacramento or Stockton and is size / depth limited by that.

    I know, they don’t generalize to the rest of the world. Yes, I’ve got some homework to do on specifics (that “polish” part mentioned above) but I’m only looking to put the (modest sized) ship 3 miles off shore in “International Waters” before needing to look up the fiddly bits ;-)

  26. larrygeiger says:


    I’m not very widely read. Sort of Tom Clancyish to me. Which generally means good.

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