War between Iran and Israel is inevitable as political risk in the Middle East has increased significantly, international investment guru Marc Faber said.

Precious metals such as gold and equity investments may provide a safety net. At an investment conference, Faber, who publishes the widely read Gloom, Boom and Doom report, claimed that the conflict between Western powers and Iran was only a matter of time.

"Political risk was high six months ago and is higher now," Reuters quoted him as saying. "Sooner or later, the US or Israel will strike Iran. It's almost inevitable."

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned the US over Iran's "nuclear march" and said the Jewish state would defend itself with a pre-emptive attack if it felt the need.

If war breaks out in the Middle East, precious metals and equities might be the only safe investments, according to Faber.

"You have to be in precious metals and equities," he said. "Most wars and most social unrest haven't destroyed corporations - they usually survive."

Middle East markets have largely bottomed out although regime changes resulting from the Arab Spring revolutions are unlikely to be investor-friendly, he added.

Faber, who is also known as Dr Doom, warned investors to reconcile themselves to volatility. "If you can't live with volatility, stay in bed," he said. "I happen to think the Middle East will go up in flames."