News Release

“Iran’s Attack and Prospects for Regional War”


On April 3, Reuters reported: “The United States, Britain and France on Wednesday opposed a Russian-drafted U.N. Security Council statement that would have condemned an attack on Iran’s embassy compound in Syria, which Tehran has blamed on Washington’s ally Israel.”

On April 11, the Iranian mission to the UN stated: “Had the UN Security Council condemned the Zionist regime’s reprehensible act of aggression on our diplomatic premises in Damascus and subsequently brought to justice its perpetrators, the imperative for Iran to punish this rogue regime might have been obviated.”

The Israeli journalist Gideon Levy, writing for Haaretz just before the Iranian attack in “If Iran Attacks Israel, the Blame Lies on Israel’s Irresponsible Decision-makers,” said: “For several years now, Israel has provoked Iran constantly, in Lebanon, Syria and also on Iranian soil, and has not paid any price. It would be foolish to believe that the rope Israel has stretched will not break. That moment may have come.” For example, see from Nov. 26, 2023 from Reuters: “Syria says Israel strike puts Damascus airport out of service.”

After the Iranian attack, the Israeli author and activist Miko Paled wrote: “The world is distracted by the Iranian attack on Israel … but Palestinians are still dying. The attack succeeded only in diverting attention from the ongoing genocide.”

Politico Europe quotes Yaakov Amidror, a former adviser to Netanyahu, stating that Netanyahu may be positioning himself to tell Biden that he will refrain from striking back at Iran but what “we want in return is that America will give Israel all the help needed” to escalate attacks on Palestinians, including in Rafah.

Asa Winstanley of the Electronic Intifada (which had a livestream on Sunday) highlights comments by a New York Times reporter: “Mossad stooge Ronen Bergman says that Israeli occupation authorities are privately in an absolute panic and that if the discussions were broadcast openly ‘4 million’ Israelis would rush to the airport to leave the country. … As is his habit, Bergman writes such things only in Hebrew.”

JOSHUA M. LANDIS,, @joshua_landis
Landis is director of the Center for Middle East Studies at the University of Oklahoma. In February, Reuters reported: “U.S. launches strikes in Iraq, Syria, nearly 40 reported killed” and Landis was featured on the IPA news release “Why Does the U.S. Have Troops in Syria and Iraq?” See his writing at Responsible Statecraft.

Silverstein writes at Tikun Olam. His most recent piece is the in-depth “Iran’s Attack and Prospects for Regional War,” which states: “Yesterday’s attack failed to inflict any serious damage on Israel. This was no accident. Iran expected this result. It warned the U.S. in advance of its plans. Unlike Israel, [the Iranian government] exercised calculated restraint.” The Iranian government told the U.S. government “through back-channels what it intended. It negotiated an understanding with the U.S. about what the latter would do in response. …

“Israel will counter-attack. The only question is whether it will be symbolic or full-force. The latter would demand an Iranian response. And not the restrained one of yesterday. Then, we would be right back where we started, when Israel initiated this tit-for-tat cycle with its Damascus bombing. …

“It didn’t have to be this way. U.S.-Iran relations could have been significantly different had U.S. presidents taken advantage of various Iranian overtures during the years. Most notably, the Grand Bargain, a comprehensive deal then-Pres. Khatami offered Pres. Bush for full normalization of relations. … Another was Pres. Biden himself refusing to renew the nuclear deal in the first months of his administration and last few months of Pres. Rouhani’s term in office.”