Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, still struggling to form a new government, said Israel must increase its defense spending by “many billions immediately and then many billions every year” as the threat from Iran has intensified in recent weeks, Breaking Defense reported.
Israel, he said, faces a significantly growing threat from Iran. The Israeli military recently attacked the Albukamal bridge, perhaps the most important part of Iran’s land corridor from Iraq to Syria, along which Hezbollah reportedly gets missiles and other supplies from Iran.
The situation here is perilous and could spin out of control very quickly, worry a number of Israeli sources.
One potential scenario, based on extensive conversations with a variety of Israeli sources: Israel keeps pounding the Albukamal bridge. Iran retaliates and fires cruise missiles from western Iraq to attack targets in Israel. Iranian proxies in Syria and Lebanon join in. Then Israel uses the situation to strike key Iranian nuclear installations.
The regional situation is already complex. Israeli intelligence sources say that the recent Iranian attacks on the Saudi oil installation is part of Teheran’s plan to control the entrance to the Red Sea. Israel, they say, will not accept such a situation.
While the different parties in Israel struggle to form a coalition, the Israeli defense establishment has come to a conclusion that the country has been left alone to deal with the Iranian threat.
“Washington or more precisely President Trump, has proven again and again that they don’t want to realize the real threat posed by regimes like those in Iran and North Korea,” said an Israeli defense source who spoke Oct. 2 on condition of anonymity.
Meanwhile, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) completed a week-long exercise for its senior combat officers to prepare them for a war against Hezbollah, providing them with the latest intelligence, fighting methods and operational plans.
The Chief of General Staff, Lt. Gen. Aviv Cochavi, said recently that the increased threats require the IDF to make adjustments in the force structures and methods of combat to ensure Israeli’s urban spaces do not serve as a protection for the enemy.
So, sources say, as the feeling in Israel mounts that the US does not intend to act against Iran except through sanctions, the chances for military confrontation with Iran and its proxies look more likely each day.
While the targeting method of the attack on the oil facilities in Saudi is not known, Israeli experts pointed to the accuracy of the weapon systems: they “hit exactly where they should.”
The experts add that the weapon systems were launched either from Southeast Iran or by Iranian allies in Iraq.
““The amazing thing related to the use of these missiles or their copies is the Iranian’s chutzpah. This can be explained only by the way the US has handled the nuclear situation in North Korea and Iran. The Iranians are fast learners and they understood that nothing will happen if they use cruise missiles and UAS against the Saudi oil installations,” Aahron Zeevi Farkash, former head of the IDF’s intelligence, said.
He told Breaking Defense the US and Saudi Arabia knew Iran had bought the cruise missiles.
The weapon systems included seven Quds 1 cruise missiles powered by Iranian-built jet engines derived from a Czech engine. Also, the Iranians used eight “loitering” weapons (drones) that were developed in Iran based on technology acquired in other countries.