Israel Defense Minister Benny Gantz on Thursday said the country is prepared to engage militarily directly with Iran, amid rising tensions in the region as Iran increases its nuclear capabilities and as hardliner Ebrahim Raisi is sworn into the presidency.
Asked in an interview with the Ynet news site whether Israel was ready to strike in Iran if need be, Gantz responded simply, “Yes.”
Still, he added, Israel was focused on an effort to mobilize the international community to rein Tehran in, “because we can’t tag Iran as solely an Israeli problem and absolve the rest of the world from this issue.
“The world needs to deal with Iran, the region needs to deal with Iran, and Israel also needs to do its part in this situation,” he declared.
When asked if he was referring to the world also getting involved in military action against Iran, the defense minister answered in the affirmative.
It follows the UK, NATO, USA and Israel all condemning Iran for the deadly attack that took place on a civilian oil tanker off the coast of Oman last week.
Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said:
“The UK condemns the unlawful and callous attack committed on a merchant vessel off the coast of Oman, which killed a British and a Romanian national. Our thoughts are with the friends and family of those killed in the incident.”
“We believe this attack was deliberate, targeted, and a clear violation of international law by Iran. UK assessments have concluded that it is highly likely that Iran attacked the MV Mercer Street in international waters off Oman on 29 July using one or more unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).”
“Iran must end such attacks, and vessels must be allowed to navigate freely in accordance with international law.”
“The UK is working with our international partners on a concerted response to this unacceptable attack.”
Iran is the world’s leader in sponsoring terrorism around the world. It runs terror organisations such as Hezbollah in Lebanon and Palestinian Islamic Jihad in Gaza, it is also a large donor to Hamas. Iran’s military force the IRGC is also outlawed as a terrorist organisation in some countries, such as the United States. It is not surprising then that Iran is using terror tactics against civilian ships.