Did Israel just use new Bunker Buster to bomb Iranian Missile Base in Yemen?

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Editor’s Note…

One of the internet’s best independent analysts, Thomas Wictor, who specializes in Open Source Battle damage assessment, believes this may be the case: The Israelis and\or their Saudi allies have managed to come up with a roughly comparable substitute to the American MOAB Bunker Buster and have managed to convert a Boeing 707 tanker to a weaponized platform to carry such bombs. The beta test was carried out on the Iranian missile base in Yemen during the recent Saudi operation Decisive storm against the Iranian proxies (Houthis) and their IRGC handlers. If he is correct, the Israeli-Sunni coalition now has a feasible military option against the Iranian nuclear facilities.

(UPDATE 26-04-2015: Arab sources report Israel air strikes against Syrian-Hezbollah missile bases)

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Someone sends a message to Iran

By Thomas Wictor

There’s some amazing video of a massive explosion next to the Faj Attan neighborhood of Sana’a, the capital of Yemen. We’ve been told that the target was a SCUD missile depot or a missile base. There’s a difference between the two: A missile depot is where you store the weapons, while a missile base is where the personnel and equipment used to fire the weapons are located. The American 319th Missile Squadron, for example, is stationed at Francis E. Warren Air Force Base, near Cheyenne, Wyoming. Whatever was hit, I think it was a message to Iran.

This is the military facility south of Faj Attan.

Faj_Attan_military_facility

A closer look shows massive blast walls (red arrows), indicating that this is likely a missile base, not a storage depot.

blast_walls

You need blast walls when you’re firing up the weapons, because that’s when you’ve filled them with propellant and fitted them with warheads.

Here’s one video of the explosion at the facility on April 20, 2015.

What you need to understand: That is a primary explosion. It came from one bomb. In both videos, you hear only one initial explosion. The second video contains echoes of the primary, and then you hear what I’m sure are antiaircraft cannons firing.

Also, the bomb blew up an underground facility. It penetrated however deeply and produced an explosion comparable to that of a tactical nuclear weapon. Until now, the world thought that only the US had the capability of destroying the Iranian underground nuclear installations. We’ve built twenty GBU-57A/B Massive Ordnance Penetrator (MOP) bunker busters. They have a 5300-lb (2404-kg) warhead.

All the experts said that the Israelis couldn’t bomb the Iranian nuclear facilities because they don’t have bunker busters that can penetrate deeply enough. They also don’t have strategic bombers, like the B-2 Spirit, the aircraft which would drop the MOP.

B-52_B2

The B-2 is the “flying wing” seen below the two B-52 Stratofortresses.

Well, my brother Tim is one of the word’s greatest authorities on commercial airliners and all their variants. I asked him if the Israelis could convert one of their Boeing 707 tankers into a strategic bomber.

Israeli_707

“Easily,” Tim said. “The Israelis make their aircraft do things that nobody can explain.”

The Saudis also have no strategic bombers, but like the Israelis, they have four-engined tankers.

I can’t emphasize this enough: That is a primary explosion. You heard for yourself. BAM! One loud sound. Below is a video of the Faj Attan base bombed on March 30, 2015. There are multiple secondary explosions.

You can see and hear them. Munitions that were stockpiled at the base are exploding.

The base was also bombed on March 28, 2015.

5:19 P.M. Arab alliance hits Yemen base holding long-range missiles

A Saudi-led military operation has targeted a base where Iranian-backed Houthi fighters had set up long-range missiles and pointed them towards the southern city of Aden and neighboring countries, a Yemeni official said on Saturday.

The official told Reuters that Yemeni authorities had received information that Iranian experts had brought in parts for the missiles at the base, located south of Sanaa.

Iran denies allegations made by some Yemeni and Western officials that it provides money and training to the Shi’ite Muslim Houthis, whose rapid territorial advances triggered an Arab military campaign against them. (Reuters)

Iranian experts were working on long-range missiles pointed toward neighboring countries. That means they were modern Iranian missiles. You don’t need to call in the Iranians to work on the old Soviet SCUD. The Saudi-led coalition bombed the base twice, but that didn’t seem to make much of an impression on the Houthis and Iranians.

So then this happened.

The explosions before the big, blue blast are clearly from Houthi antiaircraft cannons. That sound is totally identifiable. The cannons were unable to shoot down the bomber, which means that the aircraft had incredibly sophisticated countermeasures. All modern antiaircraft cannons use radar. The bomber obviously had electronic jamming capabilities or a way to either hide itself in a virtual cloud or project ghost images of itself elsewhere in the sky. Thus the cannons were blinded, or they fired at mirages.

My brother Tim tells me that he hears multiple jet engines in the videos. It could be that one fighter carrying a bomb was escorted by another. Tim has over forty years’ experience going to airports and listening. He says he hears four engines.

I know we were told that the Saudis bombed the military facility, but there are at least a dozen videos of the explosion. People set up their cameras and waited for it to happen. You can see that with your own eyes.

Who traditionally warns civilians that a target is about to be bombed? The Saudis?

In response to the bombing, the first reports were like this one.

An air strike on an army Scud missile depot in the suburbs of Yemen’s capital Sanaa caused a huge explosion near living quarters, which sustained significant damage.

The destroyed facility was situated on the Faj Attan mountain overlooking the Hadda government district, near to the presidential palace and many embassies.

The blast wave reportedly blew out a large number of windows. No casualties have been reported so far.

A pillar of dense smoke is rising from the ruins of the facility.

Now this is what journalists are saying.

Dozens of people have been killed in the Yemeni capital Sanaa, after an airstrike on an army Scud missile depot. The blast caused a huge explosion, with the majority of the dead believed to be women and children, while 398 people were reportedly injured.

Which nation is traditionally accused of killing mostly women and children, even when targeting military installations?

I predicted a long time ago that the Sunni Arabs would ally themselves with Israel in order to deal with the threat of Iran. It’s possible that we’ve just witnessed the first effective shot across the bow of the Iranian ship of state. The Iranians have been spoiled. They apparently think that the rest of the world is like this.

U.S. President Obama reacts after missing putt on the first green at golf course on Martha's Vineyard

And like this.

John_Kerry_Botox

They needed to be reminded that a lot of the world is willing to do this

That was only one bomb. Either the Saudis or the Israelis—for all practical purposes, both—now have the capability to blow the hell out of the Iranian nuclear program.

Typically, the current administration is incoherent.

U.S. trying to restrain Saudi Arabia on deadly Yemen airstrikes

Top Obama administration officials have failed for several days to persuade Saudi Arabia’s government to limit the scope of its airstrikes on cities and towns in Yemen, a campaign that authorities said killed nearly 50 people Monday in Sana, the capital.

The U.S. effort to restrain the Saudi attacks came as the Pentagon moved the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt and a guided-missile destroyer into waters off Yemen. In all, nine U.S. warships are patrolling near strategic shipping lanes in the Gulf of Aden and the southern Arabian Sea.

Officials said the growing armada is meant, in part, to deter Iran from shipping weapons and other supplies to the Houthi rebels and their allies battling remnants of the central government for control of Yemen, the Arab world’s poorest nation…

U.S. officials in Riyadh and Qatar are sharing intelligence from surveillance drones and spy satellites with officers from the Saudi-led coalition but are not approving individual targets, according to Pentagon officials.

“The air component is providing the Saudis intel on potential targets that include … civilian casualty mitigation procedures,” Lt. Col. Kristi Beckman, Air Force spokeswoman for U.S. Central Command, said Monday. “We aren’t approving targets by any nations conducting strikes in Yemen.”

Despite all the yammering AND THE NEGOTIATIONS WITH IRAN, the US is preventing the Iranians from supplying the Houthis, and we’re trying to restrain the Saudis (and Israelis?) by giving them intelligence on targets.

Well, our clownishness no longer matters. The Middle East will deal with Iran itself. This is a truly momentous image.

explosion_Yemen_missile_base

Save a copy of it. Unlike almost all of the Gaza explosions, this one’s real.

 

  • Alexander Grimsmo

    If however it was a tactical fissile weapon, they could deliver it with a stock F16.

  • LJG1011

    It’s so beautiful, it makes me feel like crying!!