U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken warned Iran that Washington would have a decisive response if its military or proxies in the Middle East tried to attack American forces in the region.
“The U.S. Does not seek conflict with Iran; we do not want this war to widen,” he told reporters last week. “But if Iran or its proxies attack U.S. personnel anywhere, make no mistake, we will defend our people, we will defend our security, swiftly and decisively.”
The U.S. military has already responded to what the Pentagon has said has been an uptick in attacks by Iranian proxies in the region on U.S. bases, causing minor injuries to 21 troops. The Associated Press reported that U.S. Fighter jets conducted airstrikes on Friday in Syria that have ties to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps.
The news outlet reported that the Biden administration is trying to define a delicate balance where these targets can be hit without “inflaming the region provoking a wider conflict.”
Biden wrote a letter to Congress and said the strikes “were intended to establish deterrence and were conducted in a manner to limit the risk of escalation and avoid civilian casualties.”
“I directed the strikes in order to protect and defend our personnel, to degrade and disrupt the ongoing series of attacks against the United States and our partners, and to deter Iran and Iran-backed militia groups from conducting or supporting further attacks on United States personnel and facilities,” he wrote.
CNN reported that Biden said the strikes had nothing to do with Israel’s war in Gaza.
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said, “Iran wants to hide its hand and deny its role in these attacks against our forces. We will not let them.”
Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, Iran’s foreign minister, told NPR that if women and children continue to be killed in Gaza, and in the West Bank, then “anything is possible.”
Amir-Abdollahian rejected the idea that Iran was the mastermind behind the 7 October attack by Hamas, and said Tehran only provides “political” support.
“They have whatever it takes to produce their own weapons and they have their own training and that is why they decided themselves to go ahead with this operation,” he said.
TRENDPOST: The warmongers in Washington are hoping for a smoking gun tied to Iran to justify a military strike on Tehran, which has been the dream of neocons Sens. Lindsey Graham, Tom Cotton, and Richard Blumenthal. (See “MIDDLE EAST MELTDOWN: IRAN BEING BLAMED FOR HAMAS ATTACK. YES OR NO?” 17 Oct 2023, “TOP TREND 2023, MIDDLE EAST MELTDOWN: ISRAEL LAUNCHES DRONE ATTACK ON IRANIAN MILITARY FACILITY” 31 Jan 2023, “IRAN, RUSSIA MOVE CLOSER AND COULD BECOME ‘FULL-FLEDGED DEFENSE PARTNER’” 13 Dec 2022, “ISRAEL AND U.S. RAMP UP MILITARY DRILLS WITH EYES ON IRAN” 6 Dec 2022, and “GANTZ: ISRAEL CAN STRIKE IRAN’S NUCLEAR FACILITIES, BUT WARNS OF FALLOUT” 15 Nov 2022.)
Anti-Iranian rhetoric is a tradition passed down through generations in the Israel-aligned Congress.
Former Sen. Joe Lieberman, the warmonger pro-Israel hawk, went on an unhinged rant during an interview Wednesday and said the U.S. needs to start striking targets inside Iran because the Hamas attack on Israel was an act of war.
“In an earlier time, this would be an act of war and the United States would respond,” he told 77WABC. “And I think we’ve come to that time where we have to point the finger at all the people making all of this misery occur….who hate America and hate Israel, and that’s the current regime in Iran,” he said.
Lieberman, who was one of Congress’s strongest supporters for war in Iraq, said the U.S. can’t let Iran get away with creating instability in the region any longer. He said it is likely not the right time to strike nuclear sites, but rather Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corp facilities “where they plan this stuff,” including the missile factories and drone factories.
Shortly after Hamas carried out a major military attack on Israel, Western countries pinned blame on Iran, despite having no evidence that Tehran was involved and early reports that Iranian leaders were just as surprised about the attack as Tel Aviv.
Scott Ritter, the former UN weapons inspector, who has warned Israel against conducting a ground invasion, said in an interview last week that it is likely that the U.S., Iran, Hezbollah, or Iranian proxies in the region do not want the Israel war to expand because it would take a major toll on all the forces. The U.S., for example, has two carrier groups and moved 2,000 Marines into the region, but they would not perform well against entire armies.
Israel Fighting WWIII?
Israel Katz, the Israeli energy minister, said Israel’s fight in Gaza is part of a “World War III against radical Islam,” according to RT, the Russian news outlet.
He made the comments to Bild, the German outlet, and said WWIII is “against radical Islam—with Russian involvement.”
Katz has been overseeing the criticized blockade into Gaza since the 7 October Hamas attack in Israel.
“Humanitarian aid to Gaza? No electric switch will be turned on, no water tap will be opened and no fuel truck will enter until the Israeli abductees are returned home,” he said in the first few days after the invasion.
Katz also appeared to indicate that Israel is close to approving a ground invasion in Gaza to make good on its vow to smash Hamas.
“Hamas expects us to deal with the hostages and abandon the ground operation, but this will not happen. We are doing everything to bring the hostages back, but when we make the necessary decision, there will be a ground operation,” he said.