Attacks On Iran, Syria Ignite Tensions In The Middle East
- Attacks On Iran, Syria Ignite Tensions In The Middle East
The United States and Israel have been both blamed for a series of attacks that targeted Iran and Syria late in January, igniting tensions in the Middle East. Escalation began late on January 28 with a drone attack that targeted a military industrial complex in the central Iranian city of Isfahan. The Iranian Ministry of Defense said that the complex was attacked with “small drones”, but its air defenses successfully repelled the attack. One of the drones was downed by the complex’s air defense fire, while the other two were caught in its defensive traps and exploded.
The ministry said that the attack did not cause any loss of life and only led to minor damage to the roof of a workshop. The complex, it added, continues its ordinary operations following the attack. Suicide quadcopter drones were used in the attack. The drones were reportedly launched from within Iran territory.
On January 29, the Saudi-owned Al-Arabiya TV reported that the U.S. and “one other country” were behind the attack on the Isfahan military industrial complex. Citing American sources, the news channel said the attack, which took place late on January 28, targeted a depot of ballistic missiles.
Al-Arabiya’s sources said that the attack was meant “to demonstrate to Iran and Russia” U.S. readiness to combat the construction of plants “on production and export of [ballistic] weapons.” The sources were likely referring to an alleged Iranian plan to supply Russia with ballistic missiles for use in the military operation against the Kiev regime. U.S. officials were quick to deny the reports of Al-Arabiya, which revealed credible information on American military activities in the past.
Iranian news sources affiliated with the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) blamed Israel for the drone attack on the Isfahan complex. Some observers speculated that Israel was the “other country” Al-Arabiya referred to. Tensions reached a new peak when three waves of strikes targeted the Syrian side of the al-Qa’im border crossing with Iraq between January 29 and 30.
The strikes, which were unofficially blamed on Israel, targeted a convoy moving goods and humanitarian aid into Syria near the town of al-Bukamal, where Iranian-backed forces maintain a large presence. As usual, Hebrew and Arab news sources said that the convoy was moving Iranian weapons, with the final destination being Hezbollah in Lebanon.
According to the London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a pro-opposition war monitor with questionable veracity and unclear funding, 11 people were killed in the strikes. The recent attacks on Iran and Syria could lead to a new military confrontation in the Middle East. The IRGC and its affiliates will likely attempt to respond by targeting the U.S., Israel or both, as they have done on many occasions in the last few years.