Indirect attacks are often a form of direct attack, as the ultimate goal is the same. Looking at the recent situation in Iran , Turkey , and Pakistan through a larger perspective it becomes clear that America is focusing on Turkey and Pakistan to see how a potential conflict with Iran would play out.
All three countries have militaries which rank among the 10 most powerful in the World. Unlike Iraq, Afghanistan, Haiti, Georgia, Liberia those three have strong military/industrial bases which makes them strong enough to protect themselves. The differences are slight. Turkey, like Iran , is capable of manufacturing the necessary weapons to protect itself, i.e. Fighters, Warships, Tanks, though on a larger scale than Iran . Pakistan’s military/industrial complex is not as strong as the former two, yet their nuclear arsenal makes up for the current deficiencies for the time being. All three also have controversial segments that can be exploited by any country as a pretext to start a conflict.
In Turkey’s case the Kurds fill this role. The Kurds of Turkey have long been oppressed by Turkey’s government and conflict has been going on for years. When Turkey sent it’s forces into Northern Iraq in pursuit of Kurdish rebels America began threatening action against Turkey. In doing so America showed it’s hypocrisy. If it were threatening action in support of the Kurds this action is too late to help those Kurds who have lost much to the Turkish military, if it is in retaliation for moving it’s military into Iraq America must prove to the intentions of the Turkish military are hostile, and for America to invade another country for such reason after America sent it’s troops into Kashmir and Pakistan in pursuit of the Taliban is further hypocrisy.
Pakistan’s case is another matter. Here we have a country with many factions which can cause problems, such as at present. Over the past few years there has been growing discontent over how Pakistan’s government has sided in an unpopular conflict in Afghanistan with american forces who have used that conflict as an excuse to raid Kashmir and Pashtun lands in Pakistan. Recently this discontent has come to a head with the former Pakistani Prmie Minister Bhutto returning to Pakistan, partly at america ’s insistence. Though america claims to support Musharraf it is clear that the demands america makes only help those who dissent against Musharraf and create further instability.
Right now an unstable Pakistan is what america wants if it is to invade Iran. Not only does Pakistan occupy a strategic position but it has the military strength to resist an america invasion, much like Iran or Turkey. By creating a Pakistan that is embroiled in infighting between government factions that support America and a population that is fed up with the deprivations America has caused in the region America is removing one obstruction, for a strong Pakistan could be capable of standing alongside Iran, Russia, and the other nations involved in the SCO. Already China and India have been conducting joint naval operations in the Persian Gulf, even using piers at Mina Salman usually reserved for American warships, and in doing so showing that these countries can operate jointly. Pakistan has considered involvement in the SCO and the current situation would not only neutralize Pakistan as a military power but make other powers reconsider relations with Pakistan.
To those who doubt that America would consider attacking Turkey or Pakistan in preparation for an attack consider not only what I have just mentioned above, but also how what I’ve said shows how the American military has developed a confidence problem. Since the first Gulf war America has gone up against countries where they either knew the enemy in minute detail or countries that had militaries that were either ineptly led or of negligible force. In facing countries like Iran, Turkey, and Pakistan America is looking for fights with countries militarily it’s own size. Among professional Mixed Martial Artists, Wrestlers, and Boxers there is the tradition of the tune-up fight, where a fighter will have a match with a person of similar capability to the opponent they are facing before a fight to plan their strategy. With Iran recently developing militarily to the point where it can repulse any invader America is rapidly realizing it’s opportunity to conduct a successful invasion of Iran is slipping away fast. The recent behaviors towards Turkey and Pakistan are clear signs of this, and if America can’t succeed against them it knows it can’t succeed against Iran.
Peter Khan Zendran