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Iranian strike on Israel not intended to provoke regional war

Apr 15


Rising tensions in the Middle East boiled over again on Saturday, April 13, when Iran launched a direct attack against Israel with over 300 combined armed drones, ballistic missiles and cruise missiles. The attack follows decades of simmering conflict between the two nations, amplified most recently by Israel’s invasion of Gaza and a strike on the Iranian consulate in Damascus. Israel intercepted most of the drones and missiles on Saturday, and nations around the world have urged Israel not to escalate the fighting any further due to shared concerns of a wider regional war.

Straight Arrow News contributor Peter Zeihan calls the Iranian strike an act of political theater, one which was never intended to provoke a regional war. Zeihan explains that the Iranian regime felt compelled to respond to the Damascus strike, but that it does not plan to carry out any additional attacks or retaliation, and that this gives Israel a relatively good opportunity to discontinue the hostile escalation.

Below is an excerpt from Peter’s April 15 “Zeihan on Geopolitics” newsletter:

In the early hours of April 14, Iran — both directly and through its many proxies — launched the largest missile and drone assault on the Israeli state since at least the 1973 Yom Kippur War. It was quite a show.

The keyword here is “show.” I have never seen a military assault more telegraphed, choreographed, or bristling with advanced specific notice to ensure that the script does not result in escalation.

Hey everybody, Peter Zeihan here coming to you from the foothills in front range just outside of Denver. That’s Red Rocks Amphitheater in the background.


You’re gonna be seeing this on April 15. So happy tax day. Today’s the 14th for me and early in the morning, local time, my time the Iranians launched the biggest ever assault from another country into Israel since the wars that ended in the 1970s. Over 300 missiles, drones and then an assortment of artillery rockets were fired in some from Iran proper some from Yemen via the Houthi some from proxies that were in Syria, and then the artillery and some of the rockets from Hezbollah in Lebanon, and it has already proven to be the biggest piece of political theater of the year. Why do I say that? Well, within minutes of the launches, the Iranian government issued an official proclamation both directly from Tirana, and via its UN Office, that this is it, we’ve achieved everything that we want, and it’s all over and nobody needs to worry about anything. Ostensibly, the reason for the attack had to do with the Israelis targeting embassy property in Damascus recently, and taking out a couple of senior paramilitary commanders that the Iranians would really rather not loss. But understand how this all fits together, we got to go back a little bit. This all started with Gaza. And I stand by my initial position that aside from the humanitarian point of view, which is horrific, there is nothing about Gaza that matters at all. You’re talking about a chunk of territory that’s about 1/9, the size of Rhode Island, nothing goes through it, nothing comes from it. And the population with edit bird pretty much have subsist on aid. It is an open air refugee slash prison camp. And it doesn’t matter to anyone, unless they choose to make it matter. So the assault that happened from Gaza, upon Israelis in October, obviously, that mattered. And obviously that was going to provoke a response from Israel that was visceral into spanned the political spectrum. But for anyone else who wants to get involved, it is a choice. No one has interest there. The Iranians have publicly referred to Hamas as animals.


And there’s nothing of value. But everyone has chosen to assign some degree of value to it to justify actions in other ways. As regards the Iranians. It’s a way to needle the Israelis, while they’re really focused on something that is of interest to them. However, for the Israelis, they’ve who are in a very much, let’s not fuck around right now mode, because of what happened back in October, they are responding with more punch than is sent against them. So for example, this is the embassy bombing, or the consulate bombing in Damascus, that left the Iranians in a weird position, they have no interest in Gaza, they have no interest in any of the things that they have thrown in Israel until yesterday. But they don’t want to see be losing face, especially if they’re losing senior commanders. And so they launched this assault, but it was the most telegraphed assault that I have ever seen. They announced specifically what they plan to do for several days. And then the Swiss Embassy, which handles diplomatic communications between the United States and Iran, because we don’t have direct relations was very, very busy with the Iranian time, what sort of weapons they were gonna use, where are they going to block from what the flight path was going to be, so that the Israelis and their allies could be capable of shooting down as much as possible so that there wasn’t any damage done so that there’d be no need for another layer of retaliation. And that’s exactly what went down between Jordan and the United States and United Kingdom, everything was intercepted, not one person was killed, damage was pretty much limited to what was hit by a few of those artillery rockets coming in from Hezbollah. And that was it.


And so Israel, or I’m sorry, Iran is now hoping that everyone is going to believe what they said, and that this is really the end of it. And so no one else needs to do anything. The United States is also hoping that that’s what it is, because we really are looking for a way to get broadly out of the region in general. The only question now is whether or not the Israelis see it that way, because they have How should I say this a heightened sensitivity at the moment.


So the ball is in Israel’s court, no one was hurt. The Iron Dome missile defense system works great when you know exactly what’s coming in for wear. I guess that’s a good sign.


But it’s up to them politically, to decide whether or not this is the end or not. And there’s two angles to that. The first, of course, is that Israel is very, very, very, very sensitive right now, and might have a knee jerk reaction, in which case you might even see retaliation before this, you see this video. But if nothing comes from Israel in the next 96 hours, I would say that they’ve calmed down. The second reason is more of a personal political calculation of Benjamin Netanyahu is the prime minister who realizes that if elections were held anytime soon, that he would lose in the landslide. And so anything that he can do to keep the security issue at the top of everyone’s mind is something that is now in his personal best interest. And this is a way that he theoretically could do that. That’s not a forecast. That’s analysis. He’s going to decide for himself whether or not that is what serves his personal interests and that of his real estate All right is that everything yeah that’s everything.

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