Yesterday there was more bravado, coming out of Iran. A German TV station aired a video of Iranian Army General Commander Ataollah Salehi claiming that it “Will Take Us 11 Days ‘To Wipe Israel Out of Existence”
Where the 11 days come from he doesn’t say:
“I Do Not Think We Will Need More Than 11 Days to Wipe Israel Out Of Existence”
Voiceover: “Nothing can prevent Iranian missiles from targeting the heart of Israel, if Iran is subjected to a military strike by Israel. This was the response of the Iranian military commanders to the Israeli statements about a possible military strike against Iran, because of its insistence on obtaining nuclear energy. Yet an [Israeli] attack seems improbable to the Iranians, because Tel Aviv does not have the ability to go through a war with Tehran.”
Iranian Chief-of-Staff General Hassan Firouzabadi: “We are fully prepared to confront any attack that would threaten the interests of Iran. We have sufficient means and the necessary force to defend our territory.”
General Ataollah Salehi, general commander of the Iranian army: “The truth is that Israel does not have the courage to attack us. If we are subjected to any attack by Israel, I do not think we will need more than 11 days to wipe Israel out of existence.”
Voiceover: “Tehran denies that its military preparations are aimed at attacking any neighboring country. Iran justifies its military preparedness as a means to defend Iran and the region, which may alleviate the fears and concerns of countries in the region.”
“Our Military Capabilities Are Not Meant to Threaten the Neighboring Countries – But Only to Defend Iran”
General Yahya Rahim Safavi, Khamenei’s chief advisor on military affairs: “Our military capabilities are not meant to threaten the neighboring countries, but only to defend Iran. Iran strives for peace, security, and stability with the countries in the region.”
General Reza Pourdastan, commander of the Iranian army ground forces: “The neighboring countries can rest assured that by no means will we attack any country.”
Voiceover: “But fears about Iran’s missiles remain, especially among Western countries, concerned that Iran might arm its missiles with nuclear warheads, since the superpowers doubt that Iran’s nuclear program is peaceful. This is categorically denied by Tehran, which says that according to the shari’a and the law, it is forbidden to obtain a nuclear bomb.” Source MEMRI
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This came on the same day that the French magazine L’Express reported that Israeli jets practiced a long-distance strike against Iranian nuclear targets over Gibraltar. If accurate, the report means the Israelis rehearsed a strike some 2,600 miles from home — a distance sufficient to simulate a strike on Iranian territory. Source NRO Media Blog.
It is likely however, that the one paragraph report in L’Express is not true. Its hard to foresee an Israeli training mission over Spain that would not be detected by Spanish, or NATO forces. It is possible, that Israel found a way to plant that story in L’Express as a warning to Iraq.
Both sides may be in fact acting like two boxers, staring each other down, before the opening bell rings.