Fartashphoto's Blog

The Samson Option

Posted in Uncategorized by fartashphoto on November 4, 2010

The Samson Option is a term used to describe Israel’s alleged deterrence strategy of massive retaliation with nuclear weapons as a “last resort” against nations whose military attacks threaten its existence, and possibly against other targets as well. Israel refuses to admit it has nuclear weapons or to describe how it would use them, an official policy of nuclear ambiguity, also known as “nuclear opacity.” This has made it difficult for anyone outside the Israeli government to definitively describe its true nuclear policy, while still allowing Israel to influence the perceptions, strategies and actions of other governments.

They named it after the Biblical figure Samson, who pushed apart the pillars of a Philistine temple, bringing down the roof and killing himself and thousands of Philistines who had gathered to see him humiliated. They contrasted it with ancient siege of Masada where 936 Jewish Sicarii greatly outnumbered by Roman legions committed mass suicide rather than be defeated and enslaved by the Romans.

Given suspected U.S. nuclear primacy plans, Russia could feel compelled to attack the United States for acts like a U.S. nuclear attack on Iran, which is just a few hundred miles from its border.

Once there is any use of nuclear weapons, it will be like giving permission for anyone to use them.  Compare it to a room full of people embarrassed to cough, but once one does, everyone else feels free to do so.

 Any use of nuclear weapons probably will lead to a rapid escalation, “out of control spiral,” to nuclear war among most or all nuclear nations–“world nuclear war.”

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