Israel may not respond directly to Iranian territory

US officials believe that Israel will target Iranian proxy forces and soldiers abroad in response to the raid instead of attacking directly.

NBC News on April 16 quoted four US officials saying they made their comments based on discussions between Washington and Tel Aviv before Iran attacked Israeli territory on the evening of April 13 with more than 300 missiles and aircraft. unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV).

The attack was carried out by Tehran in retaliation for the attack on its consulate in Syria on April 1, killing 7 officials of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). Iran repeatedly announced last week that it would launch counterattacks.

During the discussions, the Israeli side informed the US of their response scenarios in case Tehran attacked, from no military action to a direct attack on Iranian territory.

Because Iran’s raid on the night of April 13 did not kill Israeli citizens or cause major damage to infrastructure, US officials believe that Israel will likely choose a soft response rather than targeting it on targets outside Iran’s territory, including Tehran’s proxy forces or Iranian soldiers stationed abroad.

One such option is to attack targets related to Iran in Syrian territory. However, three US officials said that Israel will not target senior Iranian commanders but will attack weapons depots or storage facilities for missiles, weapons and military components that Tehran transfers to Iran. The armed group Hezbollah is active in Syria.

According to these officials, Washington has no intention of participating in Tel Aviv’s military retaliation campaign but expects Israel to inform the US of its action plan in advance, especially if it could have negative consequences for the US. US interests in the Middle East.

After Iran’s attack, Israel’s war cabinet met twice but did not make a decision on the time and method of response, although all members agreed on the need to retaliate against the enemy.

US officials emphasized that Washington has not been informed of Tel Aviv’s final decision and whether Israel will change its response scenario after Iran’s attack. They also do not know when Israel will act.

The US and Israeli governments have not commented on the information.

Israeli anti-aircraft missile bullets in the sky on April 14. Photo: Reuters

Israeli anti-aircraft missile bullets in the sky on April 14. Photo: Reuters

Israeli government spokesman David Mencer said Tel Aviv “still considers all options,” while military commander Herzi Halevi stated that the country will definitely respond to Iran but did not specify how or when.

Channel 12 reported on April 15 that Tel Aviv’s war had decided to respond to Tehran “clearly and strongly,” with a response that could send the message that “Israel does not allow there was an attack of this scale and there was no response.”

However, Israel does not want its response to spark conflict in the Middle East or break the alliance that helped it resist Iran’s attack. Tel Aviv also plans to coordinate actions with Washington, according to Channel 12.

The US and many countries previously called on Israel to refrain from retaliating against Iran, emphasizing the goal of reducing tensions in the region.