Fun Fact: If Iran launches a missile, neighbors only have a four-minute reaction time

posted at 5:21 pm on May 21, 2015 by Matt Vespa

As negotiations over Iran’s nuclear ambitions continue, it should be noted that in the event of an Iranian missile launch, neighboring Middle Eastern countries only have four minutes of reaction time. Some Gulf States do have Patriot Missile Defense systems, but the equipment isn’t compatible with one another–making the building of a missile defense shield in the region a moot point at present. Defense One  reported that rivalries and concerns about cyber espionage have become obstacles in this matter:

If Iran launches a ballistic missile at the Middle East, nuclear or not, Arab states would have as little as four minutes to act before impact.

While the missile’s target may be in Saudi Arabia, it would travel over UAE, Qatar or Kuwait. America’s friends have sophisticated, American-made missile interceptors. But there’s one problem, the equipment in one country does not talk to the equipment in another. So, the United States is renewing its push during this week’s Gulf Cooperation Council summit outside Washington to get Arab states to link-up the missile interceptors and radars into a single Middle East missile shield.

“You can’t just buy lots of interceptors and park them in the desert,” said Thomas Karako, a missile defense expert with the Center for Strategic and International Studies, or CSIS. “You’ve got to stitch them together into the network and give them plenty of early warning and sensor information so they know where to shoot.”

GCC members are united in their fear of nuclear missile attacks from Iran, but regional politics, military rivalries and even cyber espionage concerns have blocked them from setting up an intertwined missile defense shield akin to what NATO has built in Europe. There, alliance members have been beefing up missile defenses to protect the continent from long-range Iranian missiles.

“The difference is that you don’t have NATO in the Middle East,” Karako said. “Really the prerequisite to serious cooperation, to serious interoperability and integration is and always has been the lack of political integration and … security integration like you have with NATO.”

Saudi Arabia purchased $2 billion worth of Patriots last month and Qatar signed a $2.4 billion deal for interceptors in December. As Patriot orders have come in from the Middle East and elsewhere, Raytheon has funded upgrade and improvement projects for the missile.

UAE also has purchased the THAAD interceptors, built by Lockheed Martin, and are supposed to get them by the end of the year. Saudi Arabia and Qatar are also reportedly interested in THAAD.

The U.S. has 10 Patriot batteries deployed in the region, including one in Jordan to defend against a possible missile attack from Syria.

But while the Gulf States have purchases top-end missile interceptors, they do not have the sophisticated radars and satellites that the Pentagon uses to track ballistic missiles.

The missile defense shield NATO has designed is detailed here:
 

 
 

The Patriot Missile Defense system in action during the Persian Gulf War:

 

 
 

If Obama’s nuclear deal goes through, this probably should be something to work on in the 10-15 year period Iran promises (yeah, I know … let’s not bank on it) not to build a nuclear weapon.

**Crossposted at Townhall.com** 
 


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Bottled sunshine, delivered in four minutes or less.

Or the next one is free!

Joe Mama on May 21, 2015 at 5:24 PM

How much time does the US have if the Russians/Chinese do the same?

Schadenfreude on May 21, 2015 at 5:24 PM

Keep the powder dry

rob verdi on May 21, 2015 at 5:24 PM

Schad:

If ICBMs about 30 minutes from launch to impact.

If sub launched WAY less.

Joe Mama on May 21, 2015 at 5:25 PM

If Bush would have invaded Iran in 2004 this wouldn’t be a problem now

DarkCurrent on May 21, 2015 at 5:25 PM

Great Britain wants to junk the Trident-equipped subs.

Schadenfreude on May 21, 2015 at 5:25 PM

So they flatten one of their neighbors and turn their territory into radioactive wasteland, killing a few million towelheads in the process. What are the negatives?

Rix on May 21, 2015 at 5:26 PM

OT – BREAKING: SA Mosby has announced that the grand jury returned indictments against all of the Baltimore 6.

Not unexpected, given that only the prosecution is allowed to present its case to the grand jury.

The charges returned by the grand jury were similar to the charges Mosby announced about three weeks ago.

Devil’s in the details. Will be interesting to see how similar.

And now back to your regular commenting.

de rigueur on May 21, 2015 at 5:27 PM

So what?… there is Global Climate Change… that is the cause of these missles!!

Neitherleftorright on May 21, 2015 at 5:27 PM

What are the negatives?

Rix on May 21, 2015 at 5:26 PM

Radioactive dust knows no borders.

Joe Mama on May 21, 2015 at 5:27 PM

Indeed, Joe Mama, for perspective.

Schadenfreude on May 21, 2015 at 5:27 PM

de rigueur’s link

Schadenfreude on May 21, 2015 at 5:29 PM

de rigueur’s link

Schadenfreude on May 21, 2015 at 5:29 PM

I missed the ham sandwich in that mug-shot lineup.

Joe Mama on May 21, 2015 at 5:31 PM

Radioactive dust knows no borders.

Joe Mama on May 21, 2015 at 5:27 PM

For the pleasure of getting rid of a significant chunk of that particular region, I would be willing to tolerate the inconvenience of increased Geiger count for a few weeks. Here’s to hope that were such event to occur, our local breed of camel abusers will all volunteer for the holy war, no matter what side.

Rix on May 21, 2015 at 5:31 PM

Radioactive dust knows no borders.

Joe Mama on May 21, 2015 at 5:27 PM

That kind of isotope decays very quickly. Hiroshima and Nagasaki were perfectly safe within days and radiation levels went back to normal within weeks.

Besides, radiation is part of the natural environment. A little bit extra distributed around the globe by winds is not going to make any difference.

HugoDrax on May 21, 2015 at 5:34 PM

I would be willing to tolerate the inconvenience of increased Geiger count for a few weeks. Rix on May 21, 2015 at 5:31 PM

Carbon-14 exceeds that by about 10K years.

I am not a no-nukes guy by any measure. But considering the actors in that theater, more than likely the device(s) will be poorly constructed and dirty as hell.

Joe Mama on May 21, 2015 at 5:36 PM

Iran doesn’t need a missile. A truck will do, and a truck doesn’t leave a radar track that points back to Iran. They can deny having any part of it, especially when the truck is vaporized and leaves no evidence..

Joseph OHenry on May 21, 2015 at 5:38 PM

I fail to see why everyone is so damned worried about what the Iranians will do.

Dear Iran:
At the first sign of a ballistic missile launch from your country, we will turn your nation into a glass parking lot.

Have a nice day.

The mullahs don’t mind others dying, but I’m sure they place a very high price on their own precious asses.

GarandFan on May 21, 2015 at 5:40 PM

Four minutes? It only takes a few seconds to shout Allahu Ackbar!

WhirledPeas on May 21, 2015 at 5:43 PM

Isn’t Iran downwind of Israel?

wifarmboy on May 21, 2015 at 5:45 PM

Defense is never cheap because by its nature you are formulating a leading edge countermeasure. Missile defense is leading edge pricy because of the wide spread of requirements.
But as one of my real smart systems buds said early in EKV days, ‘If it doesn’t work you don’t want to be downtown.’

Missilengr on May 21, 2015 at 5:46 PM

Carbon-14 exceeds that by about 10K years.

I am not a no-nukes guy by any measure. But considering the actors in that theater, more than likely the device(s) will be poorly constructed and dirty as hell.

Joe Mama on May 21, 2015 at 5:36 PM

Carbon-14 emits alpha particles; a layer of foil can protect you from those. In fact, a standard medical test for H. Pylori involves swallowing a Carbon-14 pill, so it cannot be that bad.

Rix on May 21, 2015 at 5:48 PM

more than likely the device(s) will be poorly constructed and dirty as hell.

A poorly constructed atom bomb does not work. Regardless of how primitive it is, it is still a fission device. It is neither dirty nor clean. A dirty bomb, on the other hand, is not an atomic bomb.

HugoDrax on May 21, 2015 at 5:49 PM

Don’t worry. Obama and Kerry insist that their deal will prevent the militarization of Iran’s nuclear program. In fact, they’ll be able to inspect military installations to verify that no hanky-panky is going on. What? The Ayatollah says no inspections will take place? Hope ya’ll can fit your prayers to Allah in 4 minutes!

Hill60 on May 21, 2015 at 5:57 PM

Maybe we could share some performance data on a W-88 warhead with the Grand Ayatolla? (Better yet they could get that from the Chinese, thanks to William Jefferson Bly Clinton.)
Reminding them that an Ohio Class BBSN carries around 100 of them.

Go Ahead, Make My Day.

Cause we have King Putt. Oh … wait.

Missilengr on May 21, 2015 at 5:58 PM

Yesterday: Marie Harf was on Wolf Blitzer’s program praising the Iraqi army: “The Iraqi security forces have held their lines on the outside of the city.”

Today: Islamic State fighters overrun Iraqi govt lines east of Ramadi

agmartin on May 21, 2015 at 6:11 PM

If Iran launched, Barry O. would do nothing.

albill on May 21, 2015 at 6:13 PM

How about asking the question in regards to a Middle Eastern nation that actually possesses nuclear warheads?

corona79 on May 21, 2015 at 6:24 PM

Which is why to guard against first strike attacks every major power has the bulk of their nuclear deterrence on submarines.

Karmashock on May 21, 2015 at 6:34 PM

Death to Iran!

Or better yet:

DEATH TO THE DEATH CULT!

(AKA: “Islam”.)

profitsbeard on May 21, 2015 at 6:41 PM

And yet the US via an undersecretary of State is pressing Israel to “lose its nukes” as part of a non-proliferation effort…
http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/195711#.VV5k1_lVikp

onlineanalyst on May 21, 2015 at 7:10 PM

That article is years out of date.

Israel has bases in Azerbaijan from which they fly the strategic Eitan UAV, which has a 4400-lb payload.

The Eitan has a known endurance of 70 hours, but it’s probably more. They’re armed with Hellfire missiles and are tasked with destroying Iranian ICBMs on the launchpad.

Nobody talks about Turkmenistan, but it’s another Muslim nation that hates Iran and wants desperately to build up its military capabilities. My guess is that Israel has bases there too.

That four-minute warning may apply to Arabs but not Israel. The Israelis have said that they can intercept Iranian ICBMs when the motors are fired up.

And nobody knows where the Dolphin II stealth submarines are.

A Chair of Some Kind on May 21, 2015 at 7:15 PM

Excellent video,…and heres The China Threat!!
===============================================

OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE
Annual Report to Congress:
Military and Security Developments Involving the
People’s Republic of China
ANNUAL REPORT
TO CONGRESS
***********

Convential Strike Capabilities MAP

PP. 95

Medium and Intercontinental Range Ballistic Missile Map

PP.96

Taiwan Straits SAM and SRBM Coverage Map

PP.97

http://www.defense.gov/pubs/2015_China_Military_Power_Report.pdf

canopfor on May 21, 2015 at 7:30 PM

Fun Fact: If Iran launches a missile, neighbors only have a four-minute reaction time

I am certain the Israelis are well aware of that.

JFK faced a similar reality back in 1962.

farsighted on May 21, 2015 at 9:26 PM

Iran doesn’t have ICBMs (yet), and FWIW, the pic accompanying the post actually shows DF-21 MRBMs of the PLA’s 2nd Artillery (China) – not Iranian systems. A nuke-armed Iran is a bad, bad thing. What we face with China is worse.

jakeller74 on May 21, 2015 at 11:05 PM

Fun Fact: If Israel is hit no fewer than two dozen Dolphin-launched nukes are dedicated to turning major portions of Persia into glass.

Younggod on May 22, 2015 at 4:51 AM