update deskIsrael at War

Gallant: Israel ready for any Iran scenario

The defense minister spoke after an assessment held with IDF generals.

Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant and two major generals discuss the Iranian threat, April 7, 2024. Photo by Ariel Hermoni/Ministry of Defense.
Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant and two major generals discuss the Iranian threat, April 7, 2024. Photo by Ariel Hermoni/Ministry of Defense.

Israel is ready for any scenario that may develop regarding a threatened Iranian response to last week’s killing of a top Quds Force commander in Syria, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said on Sunday.

He spoke following an operational assessment held in the morning with Maj. Gen. Oded Basiuk, the head of the Israel Defense Forces’s Operations Directorate, and Maj. Gen. Aharon Haliva, head of the IDF’s Intelligence Directorate.

“Upon completing the assessment, Minister Gallant emphasized that the defense establishment has completed preparations for responses in the event of any scenario that may develop vis-à-vis Iran,” the Defense Ministry said in a statement.

On Monday, seven members of Tehran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, including its leader in Syria and Lebanon, were killed in an attack in Damascus that targeted a building adjacent to the Iranian embassy.

Brig. Gen. Mohammad Zahedi was the most senior regime official to be killed since Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh in Tehran in an assassination attributed to Israel four years ago.

Israel has not officially taken responsibility for the attack, but four officials told The New York Times that Jerusalem ordered the strike.

Senior sources in the Iranian regime told Reuters on Thursday that Tehran would provide a “serious response” to the raid, though they suggested that it would seek to avoid a direct clash with Israel and the United States.

CBS News reported on Friday that U.S. intelligence indicates that an Iranian retaliatory attack could include “a swarm of Shahed loitering drones and cruise missiles.” U.S. officials said that the timing of the attack is unknown but that it could take place by the end of Ramadan, which wraps on Tuesday.

According to the officials, the target is unknown, but a proportional response would be to strike an Israeli diplomatic facility. The source of the drone and missile attack is also unknown—whether it be from Iran or from one of its proxies in Iraq or Syria or elsewhere.

A senior Iranian official, an adviser to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, said on Sunday that Israeli embassies are no longer safe, Iran’s semi-official Tasnim News Agency reported. Several Israeli embassies around the world have been temporarily closed, diplomats recalled and officials told not to come to consular buildings for fear of an Iranian attack. This was decided last Thursday in coordination with the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet).

Israel has said that it will respond to any Iranian attack.

The Israel Defense Forces has been placed on high alert, resulting in combat soldiers’ weekend leaves being canceled and the military calling up additional reserve soldiers to the IDF Aerial Defense Array.

“For years, Iran has been working against us, both directly and through its proxies, and therefore Israel has been working against Iran and its proxies, both on the defense and offense,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said last week.

“We will know how to defend ourselves and will act according to the simple principle that whoever hurts us or plans to hurt us—we will hurt him,” he said.

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