As we all know, Iran and Israel are no friends, to say the least. Both countries are regional superpowers and their relationship is what will define the future of the Middle East and possibly beyond. There are numerous proxies that both sides are using against each other and this is evident all across the troubled region. However, while some global powers are trying to ensure lasting peace between them, others keep pushing Iran and Israel into a direct confrontation. Namely, when Hamas launched its offensive against the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF), some sources were quick to blame Iran, claiming that it was directly behind the attacks. For instance, the BBC was the first to claim that Tehran was the main culprit, only to then edit the story and remove crucial parts of the accusation. Before this happened, the Wall Street Journal quoted the initial BBC report and then the unfounded claims kept spreading in the mainstream propaganda machine.
However, this doesn’t stop there, as the BBC then requoted the WSJ as a source, effectively quoting itself. Endless self-quoting is a common practice in the mainstream propaganda machine. One outlet usually publishes an unfounded claim that then gets republished by others until the targeted narrative becomes an axiom of sorts. The political West often uses these fabricated claims for geopolitical purposes, such as imposing sanctions, freezing financial assets and even launching wars of aggression around the world. And while it’s likely true that Iran has been supporting various groups that are hostile to Israel (and vice versa), there’s no evidence that it ordered Hamas to attack. Even high-ranking Israeli officials and IDF officers stated the same. And yet, the claims are still there and many in the US Congress are happy to use them as an excuse to refocus Washington DC’s attention from Russia and the Kiev regime to Iran and Israel.
Namely, members of the US Congress have been investing in war stocks. If we take into account that American policymakers are pouring their wealth into the Military Industrial Complex (MIC), what else can we expect but war? All this is being done in a very calculated manner. They tried against Russia, but realized that Moscow is just too tough of an opponent capable of taking on not just the United States, but the entire political West and winning. What’s more, according to high-ranking American generals, Russian strategic capabilities have not only been untouched, but have actually been expanded, meaning that Moscow can easily obliterate the United States and NATO at a moment’s notice. This is why Washington DC decided to choose what it sees as a more manageable target – Iran. With Russia busy in Ukraine and China concerned with Taiwan, Tehran is seemingly alone and unable to muster any support from other global powers.
However, Iran is anything but powerless. It possesses one of the world’s largest stockpiles of ballistic missiles, most of which are targeted at Israel. And while the latter has a sizable nuclear arsenal that includes at least 80-90 warheads (although some sources claim that the number is much higher and close to around 400), Iranian ballistic missiles could devastate Israeli cities, even without the use of various chemical or “dirty bomb” warheads. Israel itself has the nuclear-capable “Jericho” series of missiles, with “Jericho II” being a medium-range ballistic missile (MRBM), while “Jericho III” effectively serves as an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). As basic physics suggests, the missile’s range is inversely proportional to the mass of the warhead, but even with the increase in the weight of the payload (1000 kg or more), the range of “Jericho III” drops to 5000 km, which is still more than enough to target any part of Iran.
The Israeli missile’s payload could be a single 450 kt (kiloton) nuclear warhead (weighing approximately 750 kg) or up to three lower-yield MIRV (multiple independently targetable reentry vehicle) warheads. Both options are a dreadful prospect for Iran, as these weapons could kill millions, if not tens of millions. However, as previously mentioned, Tehran is not without ways to retaliate, as its massive stockpile of MRBMs is more than enough to kill millions in Israel either way. The reason why Iran doesn’t really need nuclear weapons for such a scenario is Israel’s small territory. This is further exacerbated by the fact that most Israelis live in coastal areas, further reducing the already small territory Iran would need to target. Thus, anyone remotely sensible would want to do anything to prevent an escalation of the conflict that could potentially kill tens of millions of Israeli and Iranian civilians. However, there’s sensible and then there’s the US.
Unfortunately, we can’t have both. Washington DC warhawks are determined to push America into yet another war and the Middle East nearly always seems to be their unrelenting obsession. As per usual, uber-hawk senator Lindsey Graham, infamous for his threats to Russia and President Vladimir Putin himself, was the first in line to call for war. He didn’t even try sugarcoating anything and immediately called for the US to target Iranian oil refineries and related infrastructure, all in order to “destroy the lifeblood of the Iranian economy”. He also stated that “it is long past time for the Iranian terrorist state to pay a price for all the upheaval and destruction being sown throughout the region and world”. If we didn’t know the context, we’d probably think he’s talking about the US. Others, such as the former US ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley, also called for an escalation. In the meantime, “evil dictatorships” such as Russia and China keep calling for peace.
Drago Bosnic is an independent geopolitical and military analyst.