Following a weekend during which Israeli officials warned that Iran was preparing to use proxies to attack northern Israel in retaliation for an airstrike against an Iranian airbase in Syria, a former Israeli national security advisor asserted that for any Iranian attack “there will be consequences.”
Maj.-Gen. (Ret.) Yaakov Amidror made the comments on a conference call hosted by The Israel Project on Monday.
Israeli defense officials warned on Sunday that Iran was planning to retaliate for recent airstrikes in Syria attributed to Israel by having its proxies fire missiles at military targets in northern Israel in the near future, The Times of Israel reported.
Officials in the Islamic Republic have vowed to respond to several alleged Israeli strikes in Syria that targeted Iranian installments, including the Tiyas military airbase in Homs. The attacks killed at least seven members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).
Iran launched a drone from the T-4 airfield into Israel in February. Israeli air defenses followed the drone and shot it down in Israeli territory. Late last month, a second strike against an Iranian-controlled base in northern Syria killed more than a dozen of Iranian troops.
Israel’s news broadcasters on Sunday reported that the Israeli intelligence community had identified preliminary efforts by Iran in Syria to carry out strikes against the Jewish State with the help of its proxies – the IRGC, Hezbollah and other Shiite militia groups. The Shiite bloc plans to launch a barrage of precision-guided missiles, likely at Israeli military targets in the north.
“Israel has recently identified with certainty Iranian preparations to fire at the north,” Channel 10 said. “We are not on the eve of war with Iran… but Iran is very determined to carry out an attack” to avenge the T-4 strike and the deaths of its military personnel, the report stated. Israel Radio reported the Iranian planning for an attack was at “an advanced stage.”
“We know the Iranians are preparing and are very close to the end of the preparations to launch some rockets, missiles into Israel,” Amidror said. “I think it is very important to reveal it beforehand because what they (Iran) try to do is to build an Iranian war machine in Syria – to use the Yemenite model in which they launch their rockets and their missiles while they stay behind other names.”
He added: “The Iranians try to build an Iranian war machine in Syria and we are determined to stop it. It means that we are preferring to engage now and not to wait until they will have all these capabilities in Syria and to face the threat then.”
Amidror further warned that if Iran tests Israel’s red lines, the Jewish state will respond. “If the Iranians will attack Israel, as they did with the explosive drone more than three months ago, there will be consequences (…) such as a counter attack by Israel on Iranian interests.”
He continued: “We made a huge mistake in Lebanon, we allowed Hezbollah to get 120,000 rockets and missiles. We are not going to make the same mistake in Syria.”
Amidror also commented on elections in Lebanon: “From our point of view it’s just a symbolic change, which gives us the exact situation of Lebanon very clearly (…) that Lebanon [is] controlled by a terrorist organization.”
The complete conference call is embedded below.
[Photo: Tasnim News Agency / WikiCommons ]