Navigating Diplomacy: Urgency for the Biden Administration to Address Iran's Role

Navigating Diplomacy: Urgency for the Biden Administration to Address Iran's Role

  • 01.11.2023 05:52

"Urgency in the Middle East: Time for Biden to Confront Iran's Escalating Threat"

The Middle East is a powder keg, and the United States can no longer afford to turn a blind eye. Reports of US military forces facing attacks from Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-trained militias in Syria, Iraq, and the Red Sea signal a dangerous escalation. Intelligence sources warn that Iran plans to exploit regional discontent over America's support for Israel, escalating proxy strikes. President Joe Biden must acknowledge that the West is at war, and passive defense is insufficient when US troops are in imminent danger.

Since the October 7th massacre by Hamas, the Pentagon has recorded at least 27 attacks on US forces in the region. Iran-backed militias targeted the US Harir air base in northern Iraq and the Ain al-Asad air base in the west using drones. Houthi rebels launched missiles from Yemen towards Israel, intercepted by the USS Carney over the Red Sea. These attacks have resulted in the injury of two dozen American soldiers, with many suffering traumatic brain injuries, and one US contractor succumbing to cardiac arrest.

The echoes of history should serve as a stark reminder. In 1983, 241 US servicemembers lost their lives in Beirut due to an Iran-backed suicide bomber. The situation demands a more proactive approach, as US servicemen and -women are stationed throughout the Middle East and Eastern Mediterranean.

While the Pentagon has deployed significant military assets to the region, including carrier strike groups, a Marine Expeditionary Unit, and advanced missile-defense systems in Israel, the question remains: What is their mission beyond providing targets for Iran's IRGC and affiliated militias?

If we take Iran at its word, the United States must adopt a stance of "active defense" to safeguard its interests and protect its personnel in the face of escalating threats in the region.

"Addressing Iran's Threat: A Call for Active Defense"

In a direct challenge delivered at the UN Security Council in New York, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian issued a stark warning, stating that America will "not be spared from this fire." This ominous declaration raises concerns that Iran is banking on President Biden's reluctance to take decisive action or, if he does, limiting it to strikes against what former US Army intelligence officer Michael Pregent describes as "empty buildings."

Iran's Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, appears to be exploiting the notion that President Biden may be held back by a fear of escalation, reminiscent of the "escalation paralysis" observed in Ukraine. It is imperative for the Biden administration to recognize that the Middle East is the contemporary Ground Zero, and they can no longer afford a passive defensive stance.

The Iranian regime, particularly the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), must be confronted directly. Past instances, such as the airstrike in January 2020 that targeted Qassem Soleimani, demonstrated that Iran understands a forceful response. Soleimani, the IRGC general responsible for planning attacks against American diplomats and military members, met a decisive end in Iraq.

US military bases facing kinetic rocket, drone, and missile attacks orchestrated by IRGC-backed militias require a shift from passive to active defense. This entails an expanded defensive perimeter, active patrolling, engagement with local nations, and the forward positioning of robust intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance assets to preemptively identify and neutralize IRGC threats.

Commanders on the ground must be equipped with the authority and means to strike IRGC targets, necessitating adjustments to theater rules of engagement to allow preemptive action. Waiting for attacks from the IRGC or Iran-backed adversaries is not a viable strategy. American forces stationed throughout the Middle East must enhance their vulnerability by deploying passive and active weapon systems and advanced sensors to ensure superior reconnaissance, surveillance, and target acquisition support. The time for an active defense approach is now.

"Enhancing Defense: Leveraging C-RAM and Switchback Drones Against Iran's Threat"

The US Army's Counter Rocket, Artillery, and Mortar (C-RAM) Centurion Weapon System stands as a formidable force protection asset, offering crucial coverage and interoperability with various protection sensors and systems. When paired with surveillance and extended-range Switchback 600 loitering drones, US forces gain a comprehensive capability to intercept drones, rockets, and mortar fires. Simultaneously, the system allows for precise identification of launch locations of weapon systems operated by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and Iran-backed militias.

Establishing a red line and backing it up with the deployment of US forces already present in the region is imperative for the Biden administration. Iran must be held accountable for the October 7th attacks resulting in the deaths of American citizens, the situation of American hostages held by Hamas in Gaza, and any proxy attacks on US military bases in the Middle East. It's crucial for both Supreme Leader Khamenei and the IRGC to understand that they are in the crosshairs.

A kinetic response is necessary to eliminate the imminent threat, and it should extend beyond limited areas such as Israel, Syria, or Iraq. The Pentagon's strategy must encompass IRGC bases within Iran itself. There can be no quarter and no sanctuary. Tehran must feel the impact of America's active defense.

Col. (Ret.) Jonathan Sweet, with 30 years of service as a military intelligence officer, and Mark Toth, a contributor on national security and foreign policy, emphasize the urgency for a decisive response to safeguard American interests and eliminate the threat posed by Iran and its proxies.

In conclusion, the imperative for a decisive response to the escalating threats posed by Iran and its proxies is clear. Leveraging advanced defense systems such as the C-RAM Centurion Weapon System and Switchback 600 loitering drones provides a strategic advantage in intercepting and neutralizing potential attacks on US forces in the Middle East.

The call for the Biden administration to establish a red line, backed by the presence of US forces in the region, underscores the need for accountability in the face of recent attacks resulting in the loss of American lives and the plight of hostages held by Hamas. The message must be unequivocal – Supreme Leader Khamenei and the IRGC are in the crosshairs, and the United States will actively defend its interests.

As articulated by Col. (Ret.) Jonathan Sweet and national security commentator Mark Toth, a kinetic response is essential, extending beyond localized conflicts to include IRGC bases within Iran itself. This proactive stance is necessary to ensure there is no quarter or sanctuary for those threatening American lives and interests. The conclusion is clear: Tehran must feel the tangible impact of America's commitment to active defense.