1. Home
  2. English
  3. Business
  4. Roving Periscope: Uncertainties force Iran and Israel to hold their horses
Roving Periscope: Uncertainties force Iran and Israel to hold their horses

Roving Periscope: Uncertainties force Iran and Israel to hold their horses

Social Share

Virendra Pandit

New Delhi: Israel attacked the Syrian capital Damascus on April 1, killing some Iranian soldiers, including a general. Iran warned the US to keep off. Washington asked Israel to go slow on Iran and also gave Jerusalem an “ironclad” guarantee. Iran attacked Israel on Saturday last week…but not as fiercely as many feared.

For, they realize that wars are unaffordable and their outcomes unpredictable in the long run. Intense ‘public pressure,’ however, pushes them into conflicts they would like to avoid. So, if the popular pressure in a democratic Israel has forced Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to go for the Hamas jugular, the lurking fear of an anti-Ayatollah civil war has forced Tehran into a ‘limited edition’ conflict.

Despite their bravado, they are making sure they don’t invite hara-kiri. Iran knows that going all-out against Israel could unite the Sunni Arabs against it—Jordan and the Saudis have already attacked Iranian interests with drones. Israel also realizes that Iran cannot afford a war outside and a popular revolt within.

The two adversaries also know all about the foolhardiness of an all-out war, keeping in view the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine reaching nowhere even after two years of wanton destruction and exodus and death of hundreds of thousands.

While Iran launched the first attack from its soil on Israel with more than 300 missiles and drones, and declared it a “massive success”, no one was killed nor the damage was major. Israel—with its Western allies—stopped almost every one of the missiles and drones, and Iran knew about it.

Security analysts said since Iran could inflict no damage on Israel, Jerusalem was in no hurry to respond with a quick show of force. On its part, Iran merely wanted to make a point rather than start a war. That was why, shortly after attacking Israel, its envoy told the United Nations that “the matter can be deemed concluded.”

Besides, Iran is also aware that although Hamas killed 1,200 Israelis on October 7, 2023, more than 33,000 Palestinians have since been killed in Gaza. That was why it has been fighting against Israel through proxies like Hamas, Hezbollah, and Houthi terror groups rather than directly engaging in a long war with the Jewish state.

Meanwhile, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said on Monday that Tehran will allow Indian officials to meet 17 Indian crew members of a cargo vessel that was seized by the Iranian military near the Strait of Hormuz on Saturday.

Amir-Abdollahian conveyed this to External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar during a telephonic conversation on Sunday, according to an Iranian statement.

Dr. Jaishankar called for the release of the Indians onboard the Portuguese-flagged cargo vessel MSC Aries.

“We are following up on the details of the seized ship and soon it will be possible for the representatives of the Indian government to meet with the crew of the said ship,” the Iranian readout quoted Amir-Abdollahian as saying.

Dr. Jaishankar expressed his concern about the situation of the 17 Indian crew members and requested assistance from Iran in this regard, it noted.

Special Naval Forces of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) seized ‘MSC Aries’ reportedly given its links with Israel.

The MSC (Mediterranean Shipping Company) said on Saturday that it is working closely with relevant authorities for the well-being of 25 crew members and the return of the vessel.

Hours after the Iranian action, White House National Security Council Spokesperson Adrienne Watson said the ship’s crew comprised Indian, Filipino, Pakistani, Russian, and Estonian nationals.

Official sources in India said it is in touch with Iran to secure the release of 17 Indians.


Your email address will not be published.

Join our WhatsApp Channel

And stay informed with the latest news and updates.

Join Now
revoi whats app qr code