Who needs scuds anyway…

In case you still weren’t convinced that Simon Peres’ Syria-supplies-Hezboollah-with-scud-rumour is just a dud, have a look at this attractive alternative option the Russians have on offer for your homegrown guerrilla movement: ‘Now it appears that Russia has entered the ready-to-use, weapon-in-a-box market. Reuters reports from Moscow that a Russian company is marketing a new cruise missile system which can be hidden inside a shipping container, potentially giving any merchant vessel the capability to wipe out an aircraft carrier. The Club-K was put on the market at the Defense Services Asia exhibition in Malaysia this week for $15 million. Debka reports that at the Malaysian exhibition, the marketing film showed the Club-K being activated from an ordinary truck. The truck pulls up and the container roof lifts up to reveal four cruise missiles ready to fire. The operator then pushes a button and the missiles, which have a range of 350 km, are launched without further preparation. Defense analysts say that potential customers for the Club-K system include Iran and Venezuela – and, in the words of the Telegraph, other “rogue bidders,” including terrorist groups. Reuters quotes Robert Hewson of Jane’s Defense Weekly to say that “at a stroke, the Club-K gives a long-range precision strike capability to ordinary vehicles that can be moved to almost any place on earth without attracting attention. The idea that you can hide a missile system in a box and drive it around without anyone knowing is pretty new,” said Hewson, who is editor of Jane’s Air-Launched Weapons. “Nobody’s ever done that before.”’

To see pics and specs of the K-12 Container Missile System, check out Friday Lunch Club here.

But of course, whether Peres’ contention was true or not was never the point. It was meant to provide a justification for war, and that it did: ‘While it remains uncertain whether Syria has provided Hizbullah with Scud missiles, as Israeli President Shimon Peres said two weeks ago, the Israeli charge unquestionably provides a major justification for the Israeli state to attack Hizbullah in the future, said Hilal Khashan, who teaches political studies at the American University of Beirut (AUB). “With or without the Scuds, there is a crisis now … of broad proportions,” he said. “We have a casus belli. There is a cause for war.” (…) In any case, the Scud crisis reaffirms that Lebanon sits firmly in the Iran and Syria-led camp opposing Israel and so would absorb the consequences should that enmity explode into war, [retired LAF general] Hanna added. “It means that Lebanon is really f****d,” he said.’

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