From AFP via Qatar’s Gulf Times, Nov. 12 (commentary to follow):
Iran vows to hit back if Israel launches attack
TEHRAN — Iran’s armed forces yesterday vowed to hit back against any military strike after a top Israeli official refused to rule out attacking the Islamic Republic over its disputed nuclear programme.
“The armed forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran will firmly respond to any military and threatening move,” Brigader General Ali Fazli, spokesman for Iran’s latest round of 10-day war games, told state television.
“The Iranian armed forces, which realise the different threats, have the capacity and capability to confront them,” he added.
Israeli Deputy Defence Minister Ephraim Sneh had told the Jerusalem Post on Friday he considered military action against Iran as a “last resort. But even the last resort is sometimes the only resort.”
His comments were seen as the clearest statement yet by an Israeli official that military strikes against Iran over its refusal to halt sensitive nuclear activities were not excluded.
“The enemies of the Islamic Republic are too weak and too abject to be a threat for a powerful Iran,” added Fazli, who did not specify what the nature of Iran’s response would be.
Iran has been showing off its military prowess in recent days in the 10-day ‘Great Prophet II’ war games, which have seen it fire its Shahab-3 longer range missile for the first time in manoeuvres and test-fire new weaponry.
In a speech in the town of Shahrud, northeast of Tehran, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei boasted of Iran’s strength and its success in seeing off enemies since the 1979 Islamic revolution.
“Over the past 27 years we did not have a day without an (enemy) conspiracy. Enemies have constantly been unsuccessful towards the Islamic Republic of Iran. Enemies have never succeeded and have never won.”
Meanwhile, Mohamed Javad Zarif, Iran’s ambassador to the UN, complained to Secretary General Kofi Annan and the Security Council over Israel’s “threats” on Friday following the comments by Sneh.
“The letter, underlining threats from Sneh and other Israeli officials, regards these statements as illegal, ridiculous and a sign of the Zionist regime’s criminal policies and terrorist intentions,” the Irna state agency said.
“Unfortunately the Security Council’s inaction over the Israeli regime’s terrorist acts have emboldened this regime to continue its crimes and not heed the most obvious international principles and the UN convention,” it quoted the letter as saying.
“The Security Council should act in the face of such statements and the Israeli regime’s terrorist acts. As a first step it should at least promptly condemn the Israeli regime’s threats against Tehran,” it said.
Israel is widely believed to be the only country in the Middle East to have a nuclear arsenal, estimated at 200 warheads, although it has never formally confirmed or denied it holds such weapons.
The popular perception is increasingly that the US fights Israel’s wars, but this indicates that the actual relationship is exactly the opposite. Israel is serving as US imperialism’s regional pit bull. If Israel takes the bait and throws the first punch at Iran, the results will be disastrous not only for (of course) tha Iranians, but for Jews all over the world. As our contributor William X writes in The Israel Lobby and Global Hegemony, a feature story in the November issue of WW4 REPORT:
Tehran’s growing sway over the Baghdad regime poses a threat to US control of Iraq and its critical oil resources. Southern Iraq, which straddles the most critical oil reserves on the planet, is already a de facto Shi’ite mini-state in Tehran’s orbit. Saddam Hussein’s 1981 invasion of Iran was undertaken, at the behest of the Gulf states and with a “green light” from Washington, precisely to keep Tehran away from these reserves. Bush’s hubristic blunder in Iraq, aimed at bringing the Persian Gulf under direct US control, has, paradoxically, only brought about precisely the reality that US policy had sought to avoid for a generation.
As if this weren’t bad enough, recent news reports indicate European Union support for an Iranian pipeline route to deliver the Caspian Basin oil resources to global markets, long proposed by Russia as an alternative to the US-favored Baku-Ceyhan route through NATO ally Turkey. The Baku-Ceyhan pipeline does not yet extend to the eastern side of the Caspian Sea, where the burgeoning Kazakh oil and gas fields are being developed. Development of the Iranian route before the Baku-Ceyhan extension to Kazakhstan is built would leave Tehran strategically positioned to control the Caspian reserves. If Bush’s Afghanistan and Iraq adventures were aimed, in large part, at securing the Caspian and Persian Gulf oil reserves for US interests, both victories may now prove Pyrrhic—with the laurels going, ironically, to Axis of Evil member Iran. Worse still, once and potentially future imperial rival Russia would also be better positioned in the new Great Game for control of Eurasia.
Therefore, effecting “regime change” in Iran is a pressing strategic imperative for Washington, and the reasons have little to do with Israel. But this does not mean that Israel will not have a strategic role to play in Washington’s plans for Iran…
So the scenario could well work like this: The White House goads Israel to initiate hostilities with Iran, to serve as Washington’s “attack dog,” as Israel commentator Uri Avnery put it. Then the US will be obliged to “support our ally” by jumping into the fray with overwhelming air-power. Meanwhile, as DC and Tel Aviv alike wait for the propitious moment to strike, a few AIPAC biggies and spooks are thrown to the Justice Department for show, to appease America-first nationalists and confuse the anti-war crowd about who is really playing who in this sinister game.
Will Jews ever wake up? Or are they going to play sucker for The Man forever?