Based in London, the specialist intelligence company Exclusive Analysis issued the first update to its December 2011 ‘Iran/Israel War Risks’ special report. The Middle East and North Africa Forecasting team at the company now believes there will be an increasing probability of an Israeli strike on two-three key facilities (including Isfahan and Natanz) from about April (50%, rising to 60% by September.) The report picks out key indicators that would drive change.
Indicators of increased risk of an Israeli strike (NOT YET ACTIVE):
In the one-month outlook, the likely failure of Iran to engage in substantive negotiation with the IAEA and address concerns on suspected military application of its program.
Likely trigger accelerating an Israeli military strike (NOT YET ACTIVE):
Iranian formal cessation of cooperation with the IAEA, ostensibly on the grounds that IAEA reporting has been distorted by its subservience to Iran's enemies.
Indicators of increased Israeli preparedness (NOT YET ACTIVE):
An increased focus on civil defense training, including 'field' exercises involving the civil population and emergency response agencies.
A decrease in Israeli government public references to a possible strike on Iran's nuclear program.
Non-routine call-up of selected reservists for training and intensified ground forces exercises on the Golan and in northern Israel.
Indicators of increased US preparedness (ACTIVE):
The presence of enhanced ballistic missile defence capability in the 6th Fleet in the eastern Mediterranean.
The decision to convert the USS 'Ponce' into a support vessel for mine-sweeping operations in the Gulf by 1 June 2012.
The decision to upgrade the newly-delivered MOP to make it capable of penetrating the underground defences of the Fordow uranium enrichment plant.