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Descending Into Chaos: The Iran-Israel Conflict


Israel's isolation ended after the Iran attack crossed a new red line, and the world is waiting for how the Israelis will respond

Posted: April 18, 2024 at 3:17 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

HAS WORLD WAR THREE OFFICIALLY BEGUN? After the October 2023 attack on Israel by the militant Hamas terrorists in Palestine, the Holy Land is once again under siege. In the current conflict, Iran let loose over 300 drones and missiles on the night of Saturday, April 13, and into the wee hours of Sunday morning to capitalize on a suspected Israeli airstrike on Iran’s consulate in Damascus that killed 13 people. Referring to the latest attack as “Operation True Promise,” this massive aerial barrage by Iran on Israeli territory is the first of its kind from Iranian soil.

Since 1979 and its Islamic revolution, Iran has despised Israel’s place in the world by trying hard to undermine the Middle Eastern country through training and arming anti-Israeli militant groups. In contrast, Israel has solicited its military to thwart those efforts and disrupt Iran’s nuclear program, which the Holy Land country regards as an empirical threat. The hostilities of the Iran-Israel conflict didn’t appear out of thin air; instead, it has been brewing for decades.

As shell-shocked as Israel has been of late, the five-hour attack by Iran that began on Saturday left cities across Israel in disbelief, as they heard every explosion taking place, including the most populated area of Tel Aviv. The attack was also heard in Jerusalem when the counterattack by Israeli forces attempted to shoot down the 120 ballistic missiles, the 170 drones, and more than 30 cruise missiles. Air raid sirens sounded off once the chaos began, and the United States, the United Kingdom, and France were instrumental in intercepting the projectiles outside of the Israeli borders.

The country of Jordan was also involved in shooting down some of the missiles aimed at Israel as they were launched through Jordanian airspace. The result of the attack left a small number of identified hits, alongside minor damage occurring to sections of Israel’s infrastructure. This, according to the Israeli military, was an unprecedented act of overt aggression. 

The initial casualties involved a seven-year-old girl who was severely injured by missile fragments, while other Israelis suffered minor injuries, and some were treated for anxiety. The US Defense Secretary noted that the US military also intercepted dozens of missiles aimed at the Holy Land from countries such as Iraq, Syria, and Yemen. With more than 300 missiles fired at Israel–and Iran’s proclamation that the matter can now be “deemed concluded”–the conflict is far from over. 

Ironically, Iran sent a telegraph to Israel before the attack, laying out their plans and giving the country and its allies plenty of time to prepare. Israel’s fighter jets and the country’s air defense systems, alongside the United States and England, were the first to intercept the attack. However, as the siege took place in the northern Israeli-occupied area of Golan Heights, the military ordered residents in the southern cities of Nevatim, Demona, and Eilat to stay close to bomb shelters in the event they should be a target. 

Neither side can win against the other. This new phase of conflict in the Middle East has crossed a threshold of escalations with strategic implications and a divided worldview. The April 2024 strike is a turning point, which has emerged from the dark shadows of the early 1980s tensions to only increase the danger for this entire region. Both Iran and Israel displayed new defiances in the process. The airstrike by Israel that killed three Revolutionary Guard generals and other military personnel at an Iranian diplomatic facility in Damascus at the onset of April was met with angry threats from Iran. Tehran then responded overnight with their warlike efforts to attempt to “wipe Israel off the map.” The attack shocked the United States and the Biden Administration, who were blindsided by the initial Israeli siege on Iran’s diplomatic facility, claiming they were not involved or informed in advance of any plans by Israel to create more conflict in Iran.

The United States was even more surprised by Iran’s bold “Operation True Promise” revenge. The brass in Washington had expected the attack to be much smaller than what was carried out, yet U.S. Central Command had increased their estimate of fired missiles to more than a hundred. As a result of who won or who lost, it has been noted worldwide that Israel demonstrated superiority in both offensive and defensive strategy. Because the original Israeli airstrike lasted just two minutes with US-made F35s and leveling the abutting facility of Iran’s embassy in Damascus, it appeared that Iran was caught completely off-guard.

In the end, did Iran accomplish anything with its mission? The strategic coordinator of the National Security Council claimed the operation was nothing more than a strategic “embarrassment” and “spectacular” failure. What lit up the skies on April’s mid-month Saturday night over Israel did not compare to the forces the Holy Land had on tap. Iran has the largest missile arsenal in the region; however, with the help of the US, France, the UK, and Jordan, Iran’s growing isolation and ineptitude were highlighted. 

It was clear that Israel did need backup from its ally countries. Did Israel win this April 2024 conflict? By shooting down Iran’s weaponry and using American warships and warplanes, Israel revealed more of its power in the Middle East and who exactly is coming to its aid. What isn’t transparent, though, is how much the US can be 100 percent involved, given their commitments and concerns in other parts of the world. 

Both Iran and Israel are speculating on what is next for their future, given their track records with each other and across the Middle East. “It seems that Iranian leaders are determined to take action but also [be] seen to take action,” said David Des Roches, an associate professor at the National Defense University in Washington, DC. “What that indicates to me is that there are considerations of pride and prestige that are divorced from strategy and tactical utility that may indicate a more dangerous era than we thought,” he added. The Lebanese-armed group backed by Iran, Hezbollah, and the Israeli military have been trading attacks across the Lebanon-Israel border since early October 2023, and after the Hamas-led attacks in southern Israel, which led to the siege and brutality on the Gaza Strip. 

Israel has made it known that it is not interested in significant military escalation with Iran. Instead, it is seeking to protect and defend itself should more conflict occur. However, Iran gave a clear warning that should the US back any more retaliation, the Iranian military forces would consequently target United States bases. Under Article 51 of the United Nations Charter provision for self-defense, Iran’s mission has been considered done. 

If the US, Britain, France, and Jordan do not comply with Iran’s supposed concluded operation against Israel–and should the Israeli military make another mistake–-Iran’s response will be more severe. President Ebrahim Raisi of Iran shouted on social media’s X platform, “THE US MUST STAY AWAY!!” after hailing the bravery of his men of the Revolutionary Guard Corps, believing they taught the Israelis a valuable lesson. Whatever happens in this tit-for-tat conflict, neither side can ultimately win against the other.

The world is on edge. Reactions across the globe have indicated that any international unity to calm the rising chaos and tension in the Middle East seems out of the question. The superpowers are now declaring their allegiance to one or the other and not backing down. 

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