Iran and Israel Could Go to War Next Year

February 25, 2018 Topic: Security Region: Middle East Blog Brand: The Buzz Tags: IsraelSyriairanwarConflictMilitaryWeapons

Iran and Israel Could Go to War Next Year

Current converging events are opening scenes of a wider war.

If Iran uses its Iraqi Shia Militias, Afghans, and Pakistanis, as well as its own forces in attacks on Israel, there is likely to be war between Israel and Iran by 2019. See How Iran Fuels Syria War , Iraqis: twenty thousand Shia from ten groups;

Non-Iranian Militia Mercenaries: Afghan, fifteen thousand to twenty thousand; Pakistan, five thousand to ten thousand; Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), eight thousand to ten thousand; Iranian Regular Army, five thousand to six thousand, all estimates as of 2016.

If Tehran uses its militias, and other forces drafted to do Iran’s deeds, as well as its IRGC to launch attacks on Israel, there may be war between Israel and Iran by 2019.

We asked in January if 2018 would bring revolution to Iran. Now we ask: Will Israel and Iran go to war by 2019?

By acknowledging the legitimacy of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, it would result in fewer actions by Tehran to crack down on protestors, e.g., by going to war with Israel to divert the Iranian population from domestic unrest.

 

The lead of the January 17 article was CIA Director Mike Pompeo. He said, “It is my full expectation that you will see the Iranian people continue to revolt against this [crackdown by Tehran on protests.]

Likewise, we lead this article, with Director Pompeo. About Israel and Iran, and North Korea, Pompeo said , “Whether it’s Lebanese Hezbollah, the threat that it [Iran] presents to both Lebanon and to Israel; whether it’s the Shia militias—you can see the impact that they're having today, even in northern Iraq; the threat that they pose to U.S. forces.” And even more to the point of our post, Pompeo also said , “There is a long history of proliferation ties, as between North Korea and Iran.” Proliferation partners share technology, making it easier for both to develop ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons.”

Breaking News

Regarding 2018, direct conflict between Israel and Iran is not only on the horizon, but happening now : interception of an Iranian drone over Israel, downing of an Israeli F-16, and retaliatory strikes against Syrian and Iranian targets. These converging events are opening scenes of a wider war—if Tehran continues trying to fortify its presence in Syria after the defeat of Islamic State.

See the threat by Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu to Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif: “Bibi” said, “Do not test Israel’s resolve,” at the Munich Security Conference on February 18. Zarif has also made threats. He warned Iran would respond “seriously,” if its “interests are not secured.”

Growing tensions between Israel and Iran, show few signs of warmth and may heat up further between 2018 and 2019. But will the countries go to war? And what would this mean for regional peace and security?

The Israeli army’s February 10 announcement that it launched a “large-scale attack” inside Syria on Saturday to target aerial-defense batteries and sites it said were linked to Iran, after one of its aircraft crashed under Syria antiaircraft fire, is a further reminder of the Islamic Republic’s malign regional activities.

There is the “latest sign of rapidly warming relations between estranged neighbors,” North Korea’s Kim Jong-un extended a February 10 invitation to his counterpart in the South—President Moon Jae-in—to commence talks in Pyongyang, just as the 2018 Winter Olympics got underway.

The Backstory

President Donald Trump first placed Tehran on notice for engaging in regional destabilization shortly after taking office in February 2017 and then pursued comprehensive sanctions targeting Iranian ballistic-missile programs in July 2017.

The administration’s October 2017 decision to designate formally the IRGC, as a Foreign Terrorist Organization—effectively blacklisting it and more than forty related entities from the global economy—is necessary to contain the regime’s belligerence.

So too are sanctions placed by Treasury on Iran in November 2017 for involvement in terrorist activity and large-scale counterfeiting. But more must be done to accelerate growing unrest in the country and support the Iranian people, by an Iran plunging toward war with Israel.

There are reports from Israeli and Arab sources about resumption of Israel’s war with Syria. The added wrinkle is in the post-nuclear deal era with the major powers, a resurgent Iran is a new player in the Israeli-Syrian lurch toward war. Indeed, a “ Shadow War ,” between Israel and Iran has been going on for years, bringing us closer to today's events and what is to come in 2019.

Think about the interception of an Iranian drone over Israel, downing of an Israeli F-16, and retaliatory strikes against Syrian and Iranian targets. These converging events are opening scenes of a wider war that is starting, if Tehran continues trying to fortify its presence in Syria, after “defeating” the Islamic State.

First, Iran launched an attack drone into Israel, which Israelis tracked and shot down.