Regional tensions escalate as Iran threatens reprisals over Israeli strike on embassy | THE ECONOMIC TIMES

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Regional tensions escalate as Iran threatens reprisals over Israeli strike on embassy | Avi Melamed’s insights quoted in this article by THE ECONOMIC TIMES – INDIA

The Economic Times is an English-language, Indian daily newspaper headquartered in Mumbai, India. It has 30,673,367 readers (print + online).

Regional tensions have intensified following Iran’s warning of retaliation against Israel over an attack on its embassy in Damascus that resulted in the deaths of two Iranian generals. This development has heightened concerns about a potential escalation in the already volatile region, with countries like India, France, and Russia advising against travel to the area.

Threat of Direct Iranian Attack on Israel

Iran perceives the strike on its embassy as an attack on its territory, raising the possibility of a direct Iranian assault on Israel. This threat comes amid ongoing tensions over the war in Gaza, which has entered its seventh month.

Iran may have prepared a hit list of Israeli officials and diplomats to avenge the killing of the top general and other military officers, according to reports. Elliott Abrams, a former US deputy national security adviser, highlighted the potential for Iranian retaliation, suggesting that Iran could target Israeli embassies or officials outside of Israel.

Altered Dynamics Between Israel and Iran

The assassination has potentially changed the longstanding ‘rules of the game’ between the two adversaries. Previously, confrontations were limited to proxy engagements, but the direct targeting of a high-ranking official could signify a shift towards more direct confrontations.

US President Biden’s Support for Israel

US President Joe Biden has pledged unwavering support for Israel, despite diplomatic tensions. He anticipates Iranian attempts to strike Israel and has assured Washington’s steadfast backing for its ally.

Iran’s Signals to Washington

Iran has reportedly signaled to the US its desire to avoid escalation and not to act hastily, according to Iranian sources and US diplomats.

Avi Melamed, a former Israeli intelligence official, suggested that the recent events might be part of a broader strategy to deter Iran from further aggression. He emphasized the complexity of the situation, indicating that Israel might consider direct action against Iranian targets to avoid proxy wars.

Increased US Military Presence in the Region

The Pentagon is deploying additional assets to the region to enhance deterrence efforts and increase force protection for US forces, a defense official revealed.

International Calls for Restraint

Washington has called on its allies to use their influence with Iran to urge restraint, highlighting the importance of avoiding further escalation.

Israeli Military’s Preparedness

The Israeli military remains on high alert, with forces prepared for a range of scenarios. While no fresh instructions have been issued to civilians, the military has bolstered its air defenses in recent weeks.

Civilian Displacement and Military Readiness

Tens of thousands of civilians have fled their homes on both sides of the border, and the Israeli military has recalled reservists in preparation for any along its northern border.

US Warning against Escalation

The US has expressed its commitment to defending its personnel and interests in the region, warning Iran and its proxies against escalating attacks on US forces.

The US has reiterated its commitment to defending its personnel and interests in the region. Deputy US ambassador to the UN, Robert Wood, warned Iran and its proxies against escalating attacks on US forces.

As tensions escalate between Iran and Israel, the international community is closely monitoring the situation, hoping to avoid further escalation and violence in the region.

Regional tensions escalate as Iran threatens reprisals over Israeli strike on embassy | Avi Melamed’s insights quoted in this article by THE ECONOMIC TIMES – INDIA

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Avi Melamed
Avi Melamed
Avi Melamed is an expert on current affairs in the Arab & Muslim World and their impact on Israel & the Middle East. A former Israeli Intelligence Official & Senior Official on Arab Affairs, Fluent in Arabic, English, and Hebrew, he has held high-risk Government, Senior Advisory, Intelligence & Counter-Terrorist intelligence positions in Arab cities & communities - often in very sensitive times - on behalf of Israeli Government agencies. He is the Founder & CEO of Inside the Middle East | Intelligence Perspectives - an apolitical non-partisan curriculum using intelligence methodology to examine the Middle East. As an Author, Educator, Expert, and Strategic Intelligence Analyst, Avi provides Intelligence Analysis, Briefings, and Geopolitical Tours to diplomats, Israeli and foreign policymakers, global media outlets, and a wide variety of international businesses, organizations, and private clients on a range of Israel and Middle East Affairs.

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