Neither Israel or the US is prepared for an all out war with Iran, “hit and run” seems to be the tactic of choice. Hit Iranian targets in Syria or Iraq, and then run.
In what can only be described as one in a long series of reckless, thoughtless and short sighted acts that serve only the narrowest interests, the Trump administration assassinated Iranian General Qasem Soleimani. This assassination, which was an act of cowardice, one may safely assume was concocted by Benjamine Netanyahu, another corrupt, reckless coward who is fighting for his political life. This, like the rest of the Trump administration’s Mideast and Iran policy, had to have been prescribed by the Prime Minister of Israel.
Both Israel and the United States are terrified of an all-out war with Iran. Neither country has faced a well organized, well-armed, well trained and motivated military force in many decades. There can be no doubt that the military leaders of both countries know this and appreciate that a war with Iran will be tantamount to suicide.
While both the US and the Israeli armies are well equipped and the hardware at their disposal includes vast quantities of the most cutting edge weapons on earth, both are large and cumbersome, and while they can bomb and destroy almost any country from the air and sea, neither has fought a long ground war and neither is capable of sustaining such a war. In addition, neither the Israeli soldiers or US forces can possibly be expected to be as motivated as the Iranian military would be in the event of an attack.
In the unlikely event that Israel or the US or both did attack Iran, the motivation of Iranian soldiers and officers to fight for their country’s survival will be far stronger than anything the Americans or the Israelis have seen in a long time. In addition, the Iranians had seen the horrifying consequences of attacks by the US and its allies in Iraq, Syria, Libya and Yemen and would no doubt would do everything possible to spare Iran from the destruction and disintegration that befell those countries.
The world is a safer place
This mantra was used by those who led the coalition forces to invade and destroy Iraq in order to justify that war. It was proven wrong. Now the Americans are repeating this mantra about the killing of General Soleimani, and once again there can be no doubt that they are wrong. Iran, a country that has not attacked another nation in recent memory, will not sit silently as the US and Israel attack its assets, albeit using cowardly tactics of hit and run.
Ambassador Chas Freeman served in many important diplomatic and security roles, including Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs and U. S. Ambassador to Saudi Arabia during operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. He was tapped by the Obama Administration to head the National Intelligence Council, which oversees the production of National Intelligence Estimates on threats facing the United States. However, his reputation for speaking frankly and honestly had drawn fire from neoconservatives and pro-Israeli groups who consequently organized an effective lobbying campaign against him and were able to derail his selection.
Here is what Ambassador Freeman wrote in response to the assassination of Iranian General Soleimani and commander Abu Mahdi, known popularly as Al Muhandis, the engineer, who commanded the Iraqi Kataeb Hezbollah forces (not to be confused with the Lebanese Hezbollah):
The Iranian government seldom makes decisions in haste. It is the heir to one of the world’s longest and greatest traditions of politico-military statecraft. It will make considered judgments as it calculates the appropriate asymmetric responses.” — “It is hard to avoid the conclusion that the timing of the attack was dictated by the turmoil in American domestic politics.”
Freeman has scathing remarks regarding US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, “In foreign policy terms, this attack makes no sense at all. It is not a deterrent to Iran so much as a provocation,” and, he states that the assassinations, “prepare the way for Mike Pompeo to offset his lack of diplomatic accomplishments with a demonstration of his ruthlessness.”
Whether in Syria, Iraq or anywhere else, where US and Israeli assets exist it is likely that Iran will strike. One may expect that as it had done thus far, Iran will act with caution so as not to make things worse, but it will not sit idle as the US and Israel continue their reckless endangerment of Iranians and others around the world.
An Act of Cowardice
Israel and the United States are governed by men who are fighting for their political lives. One has just been impeached and has to face what promises to be a fierce election campaign, and the other was just indicted for corruption and after not one but two elections was not able to form a coalition government, yet he still refuses to step down.
As Ambassador Freeman remarked, “It is hard to avoid the conclusion that the timing of the attack was dictated by the turmoil in American domestic politics.” One could also safely assume that the attacks were dictated by turmoil in Israeli domestic politics. In fact, it would not be a shocking revelation that the election campaigns of Netanyahu and Trump were in on the planning of Soleimani’s assassination.
Since neither country is prepared for an all out war with Iran, “hit and run” seems to be the tactic of choice. Hit Iranian targets in Syria or Iraq, and then run. Hit anywhere but on Iranian soil, make sure these hits are significant enough to claim some credit but not too significant so as to provoke an all out war. So far both the US and Israel have been successful at walking this very tight rope.
A Lesson Worth Remembering
On January 5, 1996, Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres decided to violate an ongoing ceasefire with Hamas. He gave the go-ahead to assassinate Hamas operative Yahiya Ayyash, who, coincidentally, was also known as Al-Muhandis. The assassination, which took place at a hideout in Gaza where Ayyash was staying, was brutal. In response to the assassination, Hamas launched a series of suicide attacks that killed close to eighty Israelis.
Feature photo | President Donald Trump walks off after delivering remarks on Iran, at his Mar-a-Lago property, Friday, Jan. 3, 2020, in Palm Beach, Fla. Evan Vucci | AP
Miko Peled is an author and human rights activist born in Jerusalem. He is the author of “The General’s Son. Journey of an Israeli in Palestine,” and “Injustice, the Story of the Holy Land Foundation Five.”
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect MintPress News editorial policy.