Irã retaliatório ataca Israel

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5 Min

Israel’s Response to Iran’s Retaliatory Strike

Iran issued threats of retaliation after an assassination at its embassy, and on Saturday night, it carried out a retaliatory strike on Israel, sparking concerns of a broader conflict.

The retaliatory strike took place on Saturday night in response to Israel’s deadly attack on Iranian officers at the Islamic Republic’s embassy in Damascus. The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) initiated the response by seizing a vessel in the Red Sea connected to Israeli billionaire Eyal Ofer’s company, Zodiac Maritime. Subsequent waves of attack drones and missiles targeted Israeli assets by around 11 pm local time.

The attack involved drones, including the Shahed-136 models, which were suspected to be used to confuse Israeli radar systems and aid missile penetration. The Israeli military disclosed that the missile barrage included both ballistic and cruise missiles.

The recent escalation, particularly Iran’s attack on Saturday, has raised worries about the potential outbreak of a full-scale regional war. Despite uncertainty about future developments, Iran seems to be indicating its reluctance to further escalate the conflict.

As per Iran’s permanent mission to the UN on X, formerly Twitter, the situation might be considered resolved following the retaliatory strike.

Current Status of the Conflict

The retaliatory strike on Saturday marked a significant escalation in the long-standing tensions between Iran and Israel. Iran claimed to have launched dozens of drones, while Israeli military sources stated that over 100 drones were deployed in the attack.

Due to the drones’ extended flight time to reach Israeli airspace, US, Israeli, and Jordanian forces were on high alert to intercept the aircraft. Several neighboring countries, including Jordan, closed their airspace on Saturday night.

As of the latest reports, the US has intercepted an undisclosed number of drones, and Ha’aretz reported that the ballistic missile phase of Iran’s attack had concluded.

The US has promised steadfast support in the event of an Iranian attack on Israeli territory, deploying additional forces and assets to the region to prepare for any potential escalation. The UK has also endorsed US efforts in the region.

The drones were reportedly targeting the Golan Heights and the Negev desert, where various Israeli military installations and a US base are situated. Israeli missile defense systems successfully intercepted many of the incoming weapons.

Thus far, one person has been reported injured, and minor damage was inflicted on an Israeli military base during the attack.

Implications for a Regional War

Concerns have been mounting regarding the Gaza conflict expanding into a wider regional war. While Iran has strongly criticized Israel’s actions in Gaza, it had previously allowed affiliated groups like Hezbollah in Lebanon and militias in Iraq and Syria to engage in conflicts with the Israeli military.

The US had dispatched warships to the region early in the conflict to deter further escalation. Additionally, the Houthi rebel group in Yemen targeted ships in the Red Sea Strait in response to Israeli actions in Gaza.

Israel’s attack on Iran’s embassy in Damascus on April 1 triggered the recent escalation, with both countries confirming the launch of cruise missiles toward Israeli targets. Iran’s decision to retaliate stems from its obligation to respond to the embassy attack, despite facing economic and security challenges internally.

While the internal dynamics in Iran make a full-scale war unattractive, the regime felt obligated to respond to the attack on its embassy in Damascus. Hardliners within the Iranian government criticized the lack of response to previous escalations attributed to Israel, advocating for a decisive action.

Currently, there are no reports of Israeli casualties. The future actions of Israel in response to Iran’s retaliatory strike remain uncertain.

Correction, April 18, 5:30 pm ET: An earlier version of this story, originally published on April 13, misstated the location of Israel’s primary nuclear research center and one of its largest air bases. Both facilities are located in the Negev desert.

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