Comment: Iran and Syria both have

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Iran and Syria both have

pretty high-end Russian missile tech: Yakhont and Sunburn anti-ship
cruise missiles, S300 anti-aircraft missiles in the pipeline (and already
on Russian Navy ships, of course), high speed torpedos and who knows
what all else.

Russia looks like they would like to avoid conflict - a responsible position
considering how out of control it could spiral. Still - say the Persian Gulf
oil flow gets shut down and prices skyrocket - that leaves Russia as the
biggest oil exporter standing and in a position to demand twice what they
were getting a month ago - can you say Christmas in September?

Maybe the US thinks it can manage a real war like it does its war games:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Millennium_Challenge_2002

Sunburn:

http://www.wallstreetexaminer.com/blogs/winter/?p=4519

Yakhont launch:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4AW1XHUcAsQ