Something to note

Tigerhawk has eyes like a hawk. He spotted an item about an explosion cutting the pipeline that takes Iranian gas to Turkey.

An explosion on a natural gas pipeline outside an Iranian border city has halted the flow of gas to Turkey, Iranian authorities said Friday. 

The governor of Maku, a town in western Iran near the Turkish border, Safar Aseri, said the fire broke out at 11:30 p.m. Thursday (2000GMT) and was extinquished an hour later, state—run radio reported Friday. 

Aseri was quoted as saying the cause of the explosion was under investigation. But officials at the Iranian Embassy in Ankara said they believed the explosion was an act of sabotage by separatist Kurdish rebels who are active on both sides of the Iran—Turkey border.

Turkey will lose half of its natural gas supply for three to four days, we are told.

Tigerhawk thinks

Perhaps [Kurdish separatists in Iran] are trying to provoke the Islamic Republic. May I suggest that [they] may be trying to trigger an Iranian intervention so overt and violent that the world, meaning particularly the United States, has a reason to intervene on your behalf. Do the Kurds of northern Iran want their own Operation Northern Watch? Is Iranian Kurdistan the back door?

Something of the sort may be in order, though a US—led air operation may not be the intended result. The biggest stakes here are in toppling the mullahs, and US military action could provoke a nationalistic wave of support for the regime just because it is Iranian.

It might be much better to just let the Kurds do their thing along the Turkish border, providing whatever support is possible. If the mullahs are forced to send Revolutionary Guards, their most loyal forces, up north to put down civil insurrection (i.e., to fight Iranians who want to be free), the RGs are not as available to put down civil unrest, should other Iranians wanting to be free take note of the regime's weakness.

The reason past demonstrations have failed to bring down the unpopular regime is the brutality of the suppression by the RGs. Without them, Iran would no longer be a theocratic state. They are the stormtroopers. Our policy should focus on nullifying their the ability to prop up the state. There are many paths that could be followed to weaken an organization of this sort.

Hat tip: Larwyn

Thomas Lifson   9 30 06

Tigerhawk has eyes like a hawk. He spotted an item about an explosion cutting the pipeline that takes Iranian gas to Turkey.

An explosion on a natural gas pipeline outside an Iranian border city has halted the flow of gas to Turkey, Iranian authorities said Friday. 

The governor of Maku, a town in western Iran near the Turkish border, Safar Aseri, said the fire broke out at 11:30 p.m. Thursday (2000GMT) and was extinquished an hour later, state—run radio reported Friday. 

Aseri was quoted as saying the cause of the explosion was under investigation. But officials at the Iranian Embassy in Ankara said they believed the explosion was an act of sabotage by separatist Kurdish rebels who are active on both sides of the Iran—Turkey border.

Turkey will lose half of its natural gas supply for three to four days, we are told.

Tigerhawk thinks

Perhaps [Kurdish separatists in Iran] are trying to provoke the Islamic Republic. May I suggest that [they] may be trying to trigger an Iranian intervention so overt and violent that the world, meaning particularly the United States, has a reason to intervene on your behalf. Do the Kurds of northern Iran want their own Operation Northern Watch? Is Iranian Kurdistan the back door?

Something of the sort may be in order, though a US—led air operation may not be the intended result. The biggest stakes here are in toppling the mullahs, and US military action could provoke a nationalistic wave of support for the regime just because it is Iranian.

It might be much better to just let the Kurds do their thing along the Turkish border, providing whatever support is possible. If the mullahs are forced to send Revolutionary Guards, their most loyal forces, up north to put down civil insurrection (i.e., to fight Iranians who want to be free), the RGs are not as available to put down civil unrest, should other Iranians wanting to be free take note of the regime's weakness.

The reason past demonstrations have failed to bring down the unpopular regime is the brutality of the suppression by the RGs. Without them, Iran would no longer be a theocratic state. They are the stormtroopers. Our policy should focus on nullifying their the ability to prop up the state. There are many paths that could be followed to weaken an organization of this sort.

Hat tip: Larwyn

Thomas Lifson   9 30 06