If this story is true, and it may not be, it would not be surprising. It would be in line with everything else Obama has said and done to demonstrate his opposition to Israel doing much of anything to defend itself against the global jihad. “‘Azerbaijan allows Israel to use its air bases near Iran border,'” from Israel Hayom, March 29 (thanks to Pamela Geller):
Foreign Policy quotes U.S. diplomats as saying “We”re now watching what Israel is doing in Azerbaijan. And we”re not happy about it” “¢ A series of quiet political and military understandings have won Israel access to these air bases, senior U.S. sources explain.
Senior American diplomats and military intelligence officers have told Foreign Policy magazine that the United States now believes that Israel has been granted access to air bases in Azerbaijan, which shares a border with Iran. “The Israelis have bought an airfield,” a senior official told Foreign Policy in early February, “and the airfield is called Azerbaijan.”…
Israel’s ties with Azerbaijan, a Muslim country that became independent with the disintegration of the Soviet Union, have grown as its once-strong strategic relationship with another Iranian neighbor, Turkey, has deteriorated. For Israeli intelligence, there is also a possible added benefit from Azerbaijan: its significant cross-border contacts and trade with Iran’s large ethnic Azeri community.
Speaking to Foreign Policy, one of the U.S. sources said, “We”re watching what Iran does closely. But we”re now watching what Israel is doing in Azerbaijan. And we”re not happy about it.”
The Azeri military – based on a report by the International Institute for Strategic Studies” Military Balance 2011 and brought forth by Foreign Policy – has four abandoned, Soviet-era airfields that could be made available to the Israelis, as well as four air bases for its own planes….
Former CENTCOM Commander Gen. Joe Hoar explained Israel’s calculations regarding a strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities to Foreign Policy by saying, “They save themselves 800 miles of fuel. That doesn’t guarantee that Israel will attack Iran, but it certainly makes it more doable.”
Israel’s motivation for using Azeri air bases could be about more than simply saving fuel in a possible attack on Iran, it could be because, according to the report, one senior U.S. military intelligence officer described Israel’s mid-air refueling capabilities as “pretty minimal,” adding, “They”re just not very good at it.”…
One former CIA analyst told Foreign Policy that the U.S. had its doubts that Israel would launch an attack from Azerbaijan, describing it as “just too chancy, politically.” The source didn’t rule out the option that Israel could use Azeri airfields for “follow-on or recovery operations,” but added, “Of course, if they do that, it widens the conflict, and complicates it. It’s extremely dangerous.”
Two weeks ago security services in Azerbaijan arrested 22 people they say were hired by Iran to carry out terrorist attacks against the U.S. and Israeli embassies as well as Western-linked groups and companies….