A military adviser to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei threatened on state television that Iran, with help from Hezbollah, could destroy Tel Aviv and Haifa, Agence France-Press (AFP) reported today.
The Shiite militia has more than 80,000 rockets ready to fire at Tel Aviv and Haifa, said General Yahya Rahim Safavi, military adviser to Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
“Iran, with the help of Hezbollah and its friends, is capable of destroying Tel Aviv and Haifa in case of military aggression on the part of the Zionists,” he said, quoted on state television.
AFP reported that a senior Israeli intelligence official had predicted an escalation with Hezbollah over the next two years, saying that “[t]he Iranian threat is a tangible threat to Israel,” referring to Hezbollah.
Safavi himself said something similar last year: “Iran’s line of defense against Israel extends to South Lebanon, and our strategic defense depth extends to the Mediterranean and above Israel’s head [i.e., to the region north of Israel].”
The New York Times reported last week that Israeli officials had demonstrated how Hezbollah had set up its terror infrastructure in civilian homes in southern Lebanon, increasing the likelihood that civilians could be harmed in a future conflict with Israel.
Iran is forbidden from arming Hezbollah by United Nations Security Council Resolution 1701, which ended the 2006 war between Hezbollah and Israel, but the resolution has not been enforced.
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