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Israel, US Cautiously Await Iranian Reaction to Fakhrizadeh Assassination

Israel, US Cautiously Await Iranian Reaction to Fakhrizadeh Assassination

Friday, 4 December, 2020 - 07:00
A woman walks by a billboard honoring nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh in the Iranian capital Tehran, on November 30, 2020. (Atta Kenare/AFP)

Security sources in Tel Aviv revealed Thursday that the army and security services in both the United States and Israel are running an unprecedented coordination process to confront the threat of Iran’s retaliation for the assassination of nuclear scientist, Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, a week ago.

The sources confirmed that the two parties believe that Tehran will not swallow this attack and stay silent about it as it did in the past, because the way the operation was carried out in the heart of Iran was a “humiliating act." According to the same sources, the US decided to evacuate most of its diplomatic staff in Iraq, while Israel declared a state of comprehensive alert at home as well as abroad.

"We are not in panic mode. We are always ready to repel Iranian attacks. We hope Iranians understand that any attack from them will be met with a much harsher response,” said a senior Israeli military official.

He added that the Iranians know that anyone committing a strategic assassination of such magnitude will also consider facing a retaliatory response.

"Israel expects Iran to seek to attack targets of great weight in Israel in response to the assassination of Fakhrizadeh, such as Israeli gas fields in the Mediterranean or other targets that Hezbollah would strike from Syria or Lebanon,” the military official explained.

In this regard, the sources revealed that senior officers in the Israeli army had held talks with their counterparts in the US Army Central Command in recent days.

They expect that Iran's announcement to hold Israel responsible for the assassination will be a message and a pledge to respond.

Israel and the US have also taken various defensive actions, including coordinating joint measures for means of detection and monitoring of missile launches towards Israel and US targets in the Middle East.

According to Tel Aviv’s calculations, Hezbollah is currently not interested in getting into a military escalation in the region.

Therefore, the Iranians may use other means to strike Israel from Syria and perhaps Iraq, and even through Yemen's Houthi militias, who can threaten maritime trade with Israel in the Red Sea. In case Iran retaliates, the Israeli sources said Tel Aviv would not remain silent.

A senior military official said: "Our response is not necessarily limited to Iranian military positions and may stretch using our arms."

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