The BBC has an article considering Israel’s military options against Iran designed to stop Iran’s nuclear programme. The article concentrates on bombing and missile attacks but misses one important option that Israel has, nuclear weapons. Israel is believed to have nuclear weapons and the logical weapon to use against an adversary believed intent on going nuclear would be a nuclear weapon. A nuclear weapon would do a lot more damage than any “bunker-busting” high explosive bomb and would deal with the problem of the limited carrying capacity of Israel’s planes. A further option would be to use such a weapon against the government of Iran.
We could be about to see the first use of nuclear weapons since 1945, and Mutual Assured Destruction (MAD) advancing past deterrence. It all depends on how serious Israel and Iran are in this game of “chicken”. I think either or both governments are crazy enough to do such things. Both have domestic and global problems and both have leaders not shy to use violence to achieve their ends. When these two eventually attack militarily nuclear is an option.
What Russia and China, both nuclear powers, would do in response to a nuclear attack against their Iranian ally, is anyone’s guess. I would expect equipping Iran with the latest weaponry at least. That would give Iran more options for their response. I expect Iran would consider an assault across Iraq and Jordan sooner or later bringing an end to any prospects for peace in the Middle-east.