Israeli Air Force Commander Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel warned Tuesday, Jan. 29, that Syria is falling apart and no one knows what the next day may bring: “War may not break out tomorrow,” he said, “but we stand ready for any eventuality.”
If war is not expected tomorrow, why have Israel’s armed forces, including the air force, been on their highest level of preparedness since Friday, Jan. 25? The Syrian crisis may not technically fit the description of a state of war. However, the violent turbulence in that country may at any time spill over the border into hostilities in some shape or form.
If this happens, said the officer, “A decision to attack Syria or Lebanon will need to be implemented immediately.” Continue reading
Israel’s deteriorating security situation erupted simultaneously on two fronts Sunday, Nov. 11. The IDF fired a Tamuz precision guided missile against a mortar position 4 kilometers inside Syria after a stray mortar hit the IDF Golan defense post at Tel Hazaka. It was the fourth incident of cross-border violence from the Syrian conflict in 10 days and the first time Israel had fired across the Golan border since the 1973 war. The Tamuz was developed by RAFAEL and is operated from specially modified M-113 Hafiz armored personnel carriers.
At the same time, on the southern front, Palestinians fired Grad missiles from Gaza at the city of Beersheba after loosing a barrage of 60 missiles in less than 24 hours against multiple Israeli civilian locations. Iron Dome intercepted one of the missiles. Continue reading
Regardless of all the concessions and overtures coming from the Obama administration, this is still the end result. They will continue to be committed to the destruction of Israel and the United States, regardless.
Cutting through the US-Israeli debate over where to put “red lines” for Iran, Hizballah leader Hassan Nasrallah said Monday night, Sept. 3 that Iran would hit US bases in the Middle East in response to any Israeli strike on its nuclear facilities, even if the Americans were not involved in the attack.
Earlier Monday, the New York Times reported on the debate in the White House over whether US President Barack Obama should declare “red lines” for Iran beyond which the US would act, in response to Israel’s complaint that he has been too vague about how far Iran will be allowed to go.
But even if Obama did set a clear red line now, the NYT admits its credibility would be questionable: “The US and its allies have allowed Iran to cross seven previous red lines in 18 years.”
Feeling the approaching heat, Netanyahu called a special cabinet meeting for Tuesday, Sept. 4 with the participation of the heads of Israel’s clandestine services, Military Intelligence, the Mossad, the Shin Bet and the Foreign Office Research Division, to hear their annual report.
It is likely to go on all day with updates on the situation in Syria, Egypt and Jordan – all weighty topics. But the agenda will certainly be topped with a detailed rundown on the current state of Iran’s nuclear program.
After that rundown, the prime minister and defense minister will enter the final decision-making stage on war against Iran.
At this critical moment, wit calculated timing, Petraeus is due to land in Israel.
Although the opponents of Netanyahu and Barak are fond of painting them as irresponsible adventurers ready to gamble with Israeli lives, it is Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei who has now raised the stakes in this game of dare and slapped down the highest cards.
Nasrallah’s pitch took the scenario straight into stage one of the war to come: “If Israel targets Iran, America bears responsibility,” he told the Beirut-based Al Mayadeen TV Monday night.
“A decision has been taken in Tehran to respond and the response will be very great,” he said, citing “Iranian officials.”
Nasrallah carried a triple message from Tehran to Washington and Jerusalem:
1. Iran believes an Israeli attack will take place before the US presidential election on Nov. 6;
2. Tehran is drawing on a powerful deterrent: Lest anyone expected a low-key Iranian response to an attack on its nuclear facilities, the Hizballah leader put them right when he said, “the response will be very great” and “America bears responsibility.”
3. By putting Nasrallah out front as a leading Iranian spokesman, Khamenei signaled that Hizballah would take an active role in the coming conflict.
Full article: If Israel attacks Iran, US Mid East bases will pay dear – Nasrallah (DEBKAfile)
To answer the question of an earlier post: Will America Forsake Israel?
The answer clearly seems to be yes.
In its bluntest message yet, the US administration under Barack Obama, declared that Israel is on its own if it decides to go for Iran’s nuclear program with a military operation. Thursday, Aug. 30, Gen. Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, offered the view for the third time in as many weeks that an Israeli attack would “clearly delay but probably not destroy Iran’s nuclear program.”
But this time, talking to journalists in London, he added impatiently: “I don’t want to be complicit if they [Israel] choose to do it.”
Dempsey then astonished his audience by saying he did not know Iran’s nuclear intentions, “as intelligence did not reveal intentions.” What was clear, he said, was that the “international coalition” applying pressure on Iran “could be undone if [Iran] was attacked prematurely.”
Israel, which is in direct line of an explicit Iranian threat of destruction, was therefore publicly slapped down by its best friend. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak and their predecessors were shown to have wasted three years in tireless efforts to solve the Iranian nuclear peril in accord with that friend. Washington has just dumped them.
debkafile suggests that unless Gen. Dempsey spoke off the cuff (unlikely), he would certainly have been obeying a White House directive – even if Washington later issues a softening remark. That directive may have been prompted by information that Israel is on the point of attacking Iran, which Obama would seek to head off.
The latest IAEA quarterly report published Thursday must have seriously embarrassed the Obama administration by making nonsense of its dependence on diplomacy and sanctions. The top US soldier may have been deployed for an authorative answer.
But Iran’s leaders must be laughing up their sleeves at America’s futile efforts to isolate them, as they race toward their nuclear goal while showcasing Tehran as the stage for the Non-Aligned Summit attended by dozens of world leaders.
Full article: Top US soldier: “I don’t want to be complicit” if Israel attacks Iran (DEBKAfile)
Have Israeli leaders gotten tired of waiting for Obama on Iran? Defense Minister Barak says Jerusalem won’t rely on Washington.
Defense Minister Ehud Barak warned Wednesday that Jerusalem is “committed to doing everything it can in order to stop Iran from going nuclear.”
I am “fully aware of the difficulties and complexities involved in preventing Iran from attaining nuclear weapons,” Barak told graduates of the IDF National Security College.
Israel is facing “difficult and fateful decisions” in weighing methods to stop Iran’s controversial uranium enrichment program, he said.
Iranian officials contend that their program has only peaceful goals, but officials in Jerusalem, the West, and Gulf Arab states say Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons.
Barak said “having to deal with the challenge” of an Iran possessing nuclear bombs “would be many times more complex, dangerous and costly, both in terms of human life and in terms of resources, than a preemptive strike.”
Barak said Israel would remain responsible for its own security, rather than depending on other states, such as the United States.
Referring to the last two years of tumultuous changes in the region, Barak said the so-called Arab Spring “has slowly become an Islamic Summer,” a development that “teaches us that in the moment of truth, we can only rely on ourselves.”
The defense minister insisted that “America understands that the government of Israel — and it alone — holds the ultimate responsibility of the decisions that affect the security and future of the State of Israel.”
Full article: Barak Warns Israel Ready to Go It Alone on Iran (Arutz Sheva 7)