Skip to content

Why Iran attacked Israel and 6 more questions about the rivalry between the two countries

Tension between two former rivals in the Middle East reached its peak this weekend when, for the first time in history, Will wholesale directly Israel.

Iran launched an unprecedented offensive with drones and missiles against Israeli territory, after promising retaliation for an attack on its consulate in the Syrian capital, Damascus, in which Seven members of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard were killed, including two generals.

LOOK: How Iron Dome works, the powerful anti-missile shield with which Israel defended itself from Iran’s attack

Israel has never claimed responsibility for this aggression, but is believed to have been behind the bombing.

Previously, Israel and Iran were involved in a years-long parallel war in which both attacked each other’s targets without admitting responsibility.

Such attacks increased considerably during the war in Gaza, which broke out after an attack on Israel by Hamas on October 7, 2023, in which, according to Israeli data, 1,200 people, most of them civilians, were killed.

At least 33 thousand people, most of them women and childrendied as a result of the Israeli military response.

Why are Israel and Iran enemies?

The two countries were allies until the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran, which brought to power a regime that used opposition to Israel as a fundamental part of its ideology.

Iran does not recognize Israel’s right to exist and seeks its eradication.

The country’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, previously called Israel a “cancerous tumor” that “will undoubtedly be uprooted and destroyed.”

The attack on the Iranian consulate killed senior officials. (REUTERS).

Israel believes that Iran represents an existential threat, as evidenced by Tehran’s rhetoric, the buildup of forces bent on Israel’s destruction, finance and arm Palestinian groups, including Hamas and the Lebanese Shiite militant group Hezbollahand what he believes to be a nuclear program with which Iran intends to build a nuclear bomb, something his enemy denies.

Who died at the Iranian consulate in Damascus?

Iran says Saturday night’s bombing of Israel is a response to the April 1 airstrike on the Iranian consulate building in the Syrian capital Damascus that killed senior Iranian commanders.

Iran blames Israel for the attack, which he considered a violation of his sovereignty. Israel has not said it executed him, but it is a given in the international community.

Thirteen people died, including Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Zahedi, senior commander of the Quds Forcethe overseas branch of Iran’s elite Republican Guard (IRGC).

It had been a key figure in the Iranian operation to arm to the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah.

The attack on the consulate It follows a pattern of airstrikes against Iranian targets widely attributed to Israel. Several senior IRGC commanders have been killed in airstrikes in Syria in recent months.

Iran has invested heavily in missiles and drones.  (REUTERS).

Iran has invested heavily in missiles and drones. (REUTERS).

This military body channels weapons and equipment, including high-precision missiles, through Syria to Hezbollah. Israel is trying to prevent these deliveries, as well as prevent Iran from strengthening its military presence in Syria.

Who are Iran’s allies?

Iran has created a network of allies and forces attorney in the Middle East which, according to him, are part of an “axis of resistance” that challenges the interests of the United States and Israel in the region. He supports them to varying degrees.

A war attorney occurs when a state fights another state, but instead of using its own military forces, it uses the forces of another, which could be a militia.

Syria is the most important ally of Iran. Tehran, along with Russia, helped the Syrian government of Bashar al-Assad survive the country’s decade-long civil war.

Hezbollah in Lebanon is the most powerful of armed groups supported by Iran. It has exchanged cross-border fire with Israel almost daily since the start of the war between Israel and Hamas.

Tens of thousands of civilians on both sides of the border were forced to flee their homes.

Iran supports several Shiite militias in Iraq who attacked US bases in Iraq, Syria and Jordan with rockets. The United States retaliated after three of its soldiers were killed at a military outpost in Jordan.

In Yemen, Iran supports the Houthi movement, which controls the most populated areas of the country.

To show their support for Hamas in Gaza, the Houthis fired missiles and drones at Israel and were also attacking commercial ships near their shores, sinking at least one ship. In response, the United States and the United Kingdom attacked Houthi targets.

Hezbollah and Israel have been exchanging cross-border fire for months.  (REUTERS).

Hezbollah and Israel have been exchanging cross-border fire for months. (REUTERS).

Iran also provides weapons and training to Palestinian armed groups, including Hamas, which attacked Israel on October 7. last year, triggering the current war in Gaza and clashes involving Iran, its proxies and Israel’s allies across the Middle East.

However, Iran denies any involvement in that day’s attack.

How do the military capabilities of Iran and Israel compare?

Iran is much larger than Israel geographically and has a population of almost 90 million, almost ten times that of Israel, but this does not translate into greater military power.

Iran has invested heavily in missiles and drones. It has a vast arsenal of its own, but it has also supplied significant quantities to its proxies: the Houthis in Yemen and Hezbollah in Lebanon.

What What is missing are modern air defense systems and combat aircraft.

If you believe that Russia is cooperating with Iran to upgrade them in exchange for the military support Tehran provided to Moscow in its war with Ukraine: Iran provided attack drones to Shahed and Russia is now reportedly trying to manufacture these devices itself.

On the contrary, Israel has one of the most advanced air forces in the world. According to the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) military balance report, Israel has at least 14 squadrons of aircraft, including F-15, F-16 and the latest F-35 stealth aircraft.

Israel also has experience carrying out deep strikes into hostile territory.

Do Iran and Israel have nuclear weapons?

It is assumed that Israel has its own nuclear weapons, but maintains an official policy of deliberate ambiguity.

Iran does not possess nuclear weapons and also denies that it is trying to use its civilian nuclear program to develop them.

Last year, the global nuclear watchdog discovered uranium particles enriched with up to 83.7% purity – very close to the quality required for weapons – in the Iranian underground facility of Fordo.

Iran has said there may be “unwanted fluctuations” occurred at enrichment levels.

The remains of a rocket that Israeli authorities say seriously injured a 10-year-old girl in southern Israel.  (REUTERS).

The remains of a rocket that Israeli authorities say seriously injured a 10-year-old girl in southern Israel. (REUTERS).

Iran has been openly enriching uranium up to 60% purity for more than two years, in violation of a 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.

However, that agreement has been on the verge of collapse since U.S. President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew and reinstated crippling sanctions against Iran in 2018. Israel opposed the nuclear deal in the first place.

What message is Iran sending with its attack?

“We block. We intercept. Together we will win”, said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

But Tom Fletcher, foreign policy adviser to several UK prime ministers and former UK ambassador to Lebanon, said The Iranian offensive was a “frightening sign of Iran’s capabilities and reach.”

The leaders of Iran and Israel are “under domestic pressure, facing international criticism and are clearly willing to play with fire”he warned.

But he told the BBC that Iran’s unprecedented attack appeared to have been carefully calibrated.

“Iran telegraphed these attacks in advance, which made them easier to repel,” he said, comparing them to the exchanges of fire he saw when he was ambassador to Lebanon, where “The intention is to show capacity, but not necessarily scale.”

He also said it was “positive” that Iran decided to respond directly and not through Hezbollah. Some Israelis called on the military to expand its confrontation with the Lebanese armed group to expel him from the border.

Sanam Vakil of the Chatham House think tank said the attack was a success from Iran’s point of view and that Tehran was “demonstrating Israel’s deception”.

“This is the first time that Iran has directly violated Israel’s sovereignty,” he told the BBC.

“The attacks were certainly calibrated, targeting military installations with the aim of Don’t inflict too much damage or hurt anyone.”

Source: Elcomercio

Share this article:
globalhappenings news.jpg
most popular