As the international community struggles to come up with a resolution to the current chemical weapons crisis in Syria, Iran has made its intentions clear.
“Any attack on Syria would burn down Israel,” said Maj. Gen. Hassan Firouzabadi, chief of staff of Iran’s armed forces.
“In case of a U.S. military strike against Syria, the flames of outrage of the region’s revolutionaries will point toward the Zionist regime,” said Mansur Haqiqatpur, an influential member of Iranian Parliament.
“A U.S. attack on Syria is not wise, particularly considering the issue that it would happen in a region that is like a powder keg, and Syria’s reaction to the air strike by the U.S. or NATO is unpredictable,” said Hossein Sheikholeslam, an advisor to the Iranian parliament speaker.
These sentiments were further stressed by an unnamed senior Syrian official:
If Damascus comes under attack, Tel Aviv will be targeted too and a full-scale war against Syria will actually issue a license for attacking Israel.
If Syria is attacked, Israel will also be set on fire and such an attack will, in turn, engage Syria’s neighbors. Thus, a US attack on Syria will herald frequent strikes and attacks on Israel, not just by Damascus and its allies in retaliation, but by extremist groups.
Israel has been in close communication with the President Obama over the current situation regarding Syria. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has also made his intentions clear in the event of an attack on Israel.
“The State of Israel is ready for any scenario. We are not part of the civil war in Syria but if we identify any attempt whatsoever to harm us, we will respond and we will respond in strength,” Netanyahu said Tuesday.
Western forces have begun to mass in the region, with four U.S. Navy destroyers being reported off Syria’s coast earlier this week, and seven more vessels moving into position today.
The new additions include five U.S. destroyers, one U.S. submarine, and one British submarine.
The Syrian population has begun to prepare for what seems like an imminent multi-day U.S.-led attack on Syrian infrastructure. People have started to stock up on supplies and leave areas that are likely to host missile strikes. It has also been reported that roughly 15,000 people have fled Syria and crossed into Lebanon in the last 24 hours alone.