Sunday Times quotes defense experts as saying that Jewish state could cripple Islamic Republic’s power grid with electromagnetic pulses
British newspaper Sunday Times has exposed one of the “surprises” the Israel Defense Forces has in store in case of a military strike in Iran.
According to the Sunday morning report, the Jewish state could cripple the Islamic Republic’s power grid with electromagnetic pulses as part of a concerted attack to halt Iran’s military nuclear program, which could “send Iran back to the Stone Age.”
The report, by Uzi Mahnaimi, claims that the possible use of such a weapon has been raised in several quarters as a debate rages among Israel’s politicians about whether a swift strike should be launched against Iran’s nuclear facilities.
Bill Gertz, a veteran American defense specialist, is quoted as saying that US intelligence agencies have reported “growing concerns that Israel will conduct a strike on Iran using a high-altitude nuclear burst aimed at disrupting all electronics in the country.”
The technology behind EMP, which is regarded as non-lethal, has been known for decades, the Sunday Times reports.
An electromagnetic pulse is an intense burst of gamma energy that reacts with the Earth’s magnetic field to produce a powerful current. This sets off a shockwave with the potential to “fry” electronic devices and circuits.
Although the potential of EMP was first noted as a side effect of high-altitude nuclear tests in the 1950s and 1960s, the report says, a pulse can also be produced by non-nuclear means such as a microwave generator.
Such a pulse could knock out the power grid and communications for transport, financial and emergency services.
The newspaper quotes Uzi Rubin, who helped develop Israel’s anti-missile defense shield, as saying that “the use of a nuclear device even for non-lethal use such as EMP is out of the question. There are methods to operate EMP from the ground.”