With all the news about domestic shootings lately, potential conflict with Iran has been pushed out of the headlines. However, that does not mean that tensions between the US and the terrorist state do not continue to exist.. and mount.
While Iran is can puff out their chests and challenge the US in their rhetoric, they need to be aware what they would be up against should they face the world’s most powerful military and a Commander-in-Chief who is not afraid to use it.
The superior air power of the US could be particularly devastating to Iran, should war ever come between our two nations.
The B-2 Stealth Bomber could deliver a surprise punch to the Iran is that could mean their utter destruction
America’s Most Advance Weapon System
The B-2 Stealth Bomber is arguably the US’s most advanced and deadly weapon system. Originally developed in the 80s to take on an adversary much more powerful and dangerous than Iran – the then Soviet Union – it was originally conceived to infiltrate the Soviet air-defense network and attack targets with nuclear weapons.
In the decades since, its mission has grown to include conventional precision attack. The B-2 is the most advanced bomber in US service, and the only one of three types that still carries a nuclear payload.
The B-2 was developed as a black program. It was developed with such a high level of secrecy, that until it’s rollout in 1988 few were sure exactly what the B-2 looked like. And, since it was built and tested in and around the area of Groom Lake and Area 51, there are those that believed, (and still do!) that it was reverse-engineered from alien technology!
The B-2 is sixty-nine feet long and seventeen feet high. It has a wingspan of 172 feet. It has a speed of 680 miles an hour, and had a maximum altitude of 50,00 feet. It has an unrefueled range of 6,000 miles, and has midair refueling capability.
There is nothing in the Iranian Air Force that can match it.
The B-2 has two weapons bays built into the belly section that together can hold up to 60,000 pounds of ordnance. Each bay carries eight bomb racks, and in the nuclear role the bomber can carry an assortment of up to sixteen B61-7 bombs (10–360 kilotons), B61-11 bombs (400 kilotons) or B-83-1 thermonuclear bombs (1.2 megatons). The Spirit will also carry the new B-61-12 bomb with a “dial-a-yield” configuration, giving it a yield of .3, 1.5, 10 or 50 kilotons.
It can also be fit to carry nuclear cruise missiles, should the Commander-in-Chief authorize the use of such ordinance in a time of war.
Battle Proven Conventional Weaponry
While the B-2 has never yet been called upon to deliver the kind of nuclear devastation it is capable of, it has seen extensive use in the conventional role. The B-2 first dropped bombs in anger in the 1999 Kosovo War, followed by the Iran War in 2003. B-2s were among the first to drop bombs on the Taliban and Al Qaeda in Afghanistan after 9/11, and bombed Libyan forces in 2011.
The bombers are restricted to flying from a handful of locations, due to their need for special climate-controlled accommodations to protect their radar-absorbent coatings. Flight time from the home of the Spirit fleet, Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, to Iran is thirty-eight hours and would require 4–5 aerial refuelings. Small numbers of B-2s can also operate from Andersen Air Force Base on the island of Guam in the Pacific and RAF Fairford in the UK.
B-2 bombers would almost certainly take part in any attack on Iran’s renewed nuclear program, which would almost certainly be a part of, or escalate to a larger war between Iran the US and our allies. The B-2 would likely be sent after the Iranian leadership itself, dropping Massive Ordnance Penetrator bombs on hardened and underground Iraq’s command and control systems, ideally disrupting its ability to issue orders to launch missiles, and hopefully killing top military and/or government officials.