We had grown accustomed to seeing and hearing in the media, that Israel attacked one Iranian target or another in Syria, and as usual, there is was a muted response, or at best, we got to hear that the Israeli Iron Dome had dealt with the incoming threat.
By – Khairi Janbek
However, this time Israel managed to attack three Iranian, or Iranian proxies in the area one after the other; in Syria, inside the Iraqi borders, and Hizbullah in Lebanon. In all three attacks, Iran is making sure that it hits Iran in the periphery rather than go for broke and attack Iran proper. Of course, Israel is sending the message that it does not accept the current arrangement in Syria and is not willing to cohabit with Iran under the current status quo.
Interestingly, hitting three extended arms of Iran one after the other, seems almost like a biblical invitation to Iran to respond also to the three attacks from three different zones under its hegemony simultaneously or separately mainly ; The Golan, Lebanon, and /or Gaza. Some say that the current escalation and its wiser range is all about electioneering and the re-election of Netanyahu , but one had to differ with this logic, because one is certain like many others, that Netanyahu , no matter what you think of him, is certainly a seasoned politician and he is very much aware that the upcoming Israeli elections are in reality, a contest between right wing-right wing of Israeli politics, and if wars as common wisdom dictates pushes the electorate to the right that would not be in his electoral interests because there are always more extreme right wingers whom are willing to pick up the pieces. Also secondly, he is very much aware that, victors in wars do not necessarily and automatically get elected, therefore, one would say that this escalation and blunt invitation to Iran to sanction a response against Israel is to do with other factors.
Strategically , one would say that Netanyahu has one eye on the Meditteranean and its gas, and one eye on Trump with the possible overtures to start talks with Iran. Of course everything hinges on whether Iran sanctions a counter-strike against Israel or not, or even worse gets involved itself though very unlikely, but Israel has been training for some time on war on three fronts , and any retaliation if painful will give Israel the opportunity to move and occupy the Golan in its entirety , destroy any form of resistance in Gaza, and deliver a massive blow against Hizbullah with the reminder to the Lebanese government that it holds delivering the choice between revenue from the gas or Hizbullah and Iran. Also , this scenario would burry trump deeper into the notion of Israel having the right to defend itself with the major approval of many Arab countries as an extra bonus , especially if Israel can wreck the prospects of US-Iran dialogue.
Of course one having said all that, one is aware that wars; more often than not tend to be subject to the law of unintended consequences, and unlike the US and Israel where elections do actually matter, on the other side of the divide where such democratic niceties do not matter, it would depend on the extent to which Iran judges the best way of maintaining its gains, in other words by war or by avoiding war, also for Trump, whom does not seem in favour of getting involved in foreign adventures and will be going soon into the motion of US presidential elections , would most likely try to avoid being dragged into the quagmire of the Middle East , while for Netanyahu war can backfire badly on his prospects to become a prime minister, so we can see clearly how a wider war is not an easy decision at all, but the temptation will always be there for Israel, to eliminate the extended arm of Iran in the region; with Arab approval, and impose its hegemony on the Deal of the Century with some Arab applaud.