Israels bombardment on Hamas has come under strict scrutiny. The Israeli government have given Palestinians opportunities to leave the north of the Gaza Strip and move south out of harms way. “The Palestinian civilians in Gaza are not our enemies,” an Israeli military spokesman, John Conricus, said. “We don’t assess them as such, and we don’t target them as such. We are trying to do the right thing.” This comment stresses that Israel is there to fight Hamas not the Palestinians. Hamas had other ideas and urged ordinary Palestinians to stay in their homes.
Hamas needs human shields. As a ruling body inside the Gaza Strip, they have done little to help the population living there. Rather than spend funds on improving the life of the Palestinians they have spent it on cement. Shoring up tunnels to be used to attack Israel takes money. A British newspaper wrote the underground network in Gaza now branches dozens of miles through the Gaza Strip reaching the towns of Khan Younis, Jabalia, and the Shati refugee camp. They also stretch into Israel.
Hamas whose terrorist ideology is to destroy Israel does not take into account the population. The news outlet continued, the tunnels, which are believed to have cost between $30 million (£21.3 million) and $90 million (£63.9 million) to build, are extremely difficult to detect from the air. Some of the three dozen tunnels built since the end of the 2014 Israel-Gaza conflict are estimated to have cost $3 million (£2.13 million). The tunnels are reinforced with concrete to protect them from airstrikes and from caving in. The vicious cycle of attacking Israel through tunnels, having them destroyed and rebuilding them does not come from what Gaza exports, its believed that Iran funds Hamas with $100 million each year. The money comes from funds that are to improve life for the Palestinians.
Human shields would be used in order to stop Israel from retaliating. Another method would be when the ground war starts the deaths of those who chose not to go south would be used to apply pressure on the international community to decry Israels ground war. The pressure would be used to make Israel halt its campaign of putting a stop to Hamas once and for all. Hamas are using its own population to carry through its ideology of destroying Israel. Nothing more.
While Israel’s response will tragically include the loss of innocent Palestinian lives, this will be the result of Hamas using their homes and hospitals as launching pads, while not providing bomb shelters or other means of protection. Stated the Jerusalem Post.
German foreign minister Annalena Baerbock said, “Hamas is now barricading itself behind more innocent people and is using them as a shield in Gaza.” She continued, “Hamas has taken the entire population of Gaza hostage,” also adding, “Their tunnels, their weapons depots and command centres are deliberately located in residential buildings, supermarkets and universities. Maybe even in hospitals.”
The Palestinian envoy to the United Nations described Israels use of munitions in the Gaza Strip as “nothing less than genocidal.” Iran calls the siege a war crime and urged the United Nations to stop what they deem as ‘atrocities’ and it was their responsibly “to end the Zionist regime’s heinous crimes and acts of aggression against Palestinian people.”
Iran has not denounced the indiscriminate attack on Israel nor the taking of hostages instead they refer to the attack as “self-defence” by the Palestinians.
Iran decries war crimes and those conducting the crimes against the ‘Palestinian people’ stating they will be brought to account. It is in the wording. Iran does not use the term Hamas but Palestinian. Likewise, it does not refer to them as terrorists or freedom fighters. They refer to such groups such as Hamas. Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Hezbollah and others as ‘resistance fighters’ or the ‘axis of resistance.’ Iran funds them all.
Possible ‘New Front’
In September 2021 Al Arabiya published a report that originated in Iran whereby they boasted of having six armies. “A prominent Iranian military commander said that his country has “six armies outside its borders that work for it.” Gholam Ali Rashid, the commander of what is known as “the headquarters of Khatam al-Anbiya”, said in statements carried by the Iranian Mehr Agency, that Qassem Soleimani, the former commander of the Quds Force, announced, three months before his death, that he had organized six armies outside Iranian territory. He added that Soleimani was supported by the leadership of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards and the General Staff of the Army. He added that these armies have ideological tendencies, live outside Iran, and their mission is to defend Tehran against any attack, according to his claim. In his statements, he also said that these armies include the Lebanese Hezbollah, the Hamas and Jihad movements, the regime forces in Syria, the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces, and the Houthi militia in Yemen, stressing that these forces represent a deterrent force for Iran. “Although the report states ‘for the protection of Iran’ it does not say that they could be used in a different modus operandi.
Hadi Al-Amiri on the 10 Oct 23, a powerful Iraqi politician close to Iran and a key figure in the cross-party alliance backing Iraq’s government, has threatened to target US interests if Washington intervenes to support Israel in its conflict with Hamas in Gaza. Amiri leads the Badr Organization, a Shi’ite political group supported by Iran that makes up a big part of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), the state paramilitary organization that contains many Iran-backed factions. “If they intervene, we would intervene...if the Americans intervened openly in this conflict...we will consider all American targets legitimate … and we will not hesitate to target it,”
On the same day that Hadi Al-Amiri made his statement senior Iraqi and Yemeni leaders aligned with Iran and in charge of heavily armed groups have threatened to target US interests if Washington intervenes to support Israel in its conflict with Hamas in Gaza.
Hezbollah has not as yet dedicated itself to joining in the fight against Israel. The Lebanese government is weak and is separate to Hezbollah who control the south of Lebanon. But on the 9 Oct 23 Al-Arabiya reported that Iran was ‘urging’ Hezbollah to prepare for conflict. Hezbollah has been cautiously firing mortars and rockets into Israel but nothing on a large scale. This could be for two reasons. Firstly, to show support for Hamas, secondly to test the Israeli reactions. Israel would have to deploy troops and assets in that area should Hezbollah escalate its intentions and to counter these attacks. Its possible that should the attacks become more severe the Americans would offer assistance to israel.
Hezbollah deputy chief Naim Qassem stated on the 13 Oct 23 “that the group would not be swayed by calls for it to stay on the sidelines of the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, saying the party was “fully ready” to contribute to the fighting.” “The behind-the-scenes calls with us by great powers, Arab countries, envoys of the United Nations, directly and indirectly telling us not to interfere will have no effect,” he told supporters gathered in the southern Beirut suburb.
Tasmin News (semi-official news agency in Iran associated with the IRGC) on the 14 Oct 23 reported that “Secretary General of the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement Seyed Hassan Nasrallah conveyed to Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian the robust state of the resistance and its preparedness for any scenarios regarding recent developments in Palestine.” “Hezbollah knows its duties perfectly well. We are prepared and ready, fully ready, and we are following developments moment by moment,” Qassem said.
Iran and other proxies that they use have been warned by the United States not to become involved. The United States and other countries in the Region do not want to the conflict to escalate. Iran has other ideas and its proxies also appear to have other thoughts.
Iran warned on the 14 Oct 23 that if Israel’s “war crimes and genocide” are not halted immediately, “the situation could spiral out of control & ricochet far-reaching consequences,” Tehran’s mission to the United Nations in New York posted on X.
The Tehran Times reported that Amir Abdollahian also met with some senior Hamas and Islamic Jihad officials in Beirut as he continued his visit to Lebanon recently. They discussed the latest developments in Palestine. The Palestinian officials noted that Operation Al-Aqsa Storm was a natural reaction of the Palestinian nation’s resistance to the daily and continuous crimes of the Zionist regime, specifically the extremist cabinet of Netanyahu against Palestinians and the regime’s frequent desecration of the Al-Aqsa Mosque.
They also said despite the war crimes by the usurping Zionist regime against the oppressed people of Gaza, resistance groups have stood up strongly against the regime’s aggression, with their morale, motivation and capability being high as they press ahead down the path of resistance. Amir Abdollahian, for his part, said the Palestinian people have an inalienable right to resistance against occupation. He added that just as some Western officials have admitted the Al-Aqsa Storm proved that Palestine is alive and despite some claims the Palestinian issue will not slip into oblivion due to normalization deals between some countries and the Zionist regime. Clear reference to the Abrahams Accord and the talks between Israel and Saudi Arabia.
United States President Joe Biden said on the 7 Oct 23 the United States was ready to offer “all appropriate means of support” to Israel after an attack from Hamas and warned “any other party hostile to Israel” not to seek advantage. The following day in a televised speech, Biden issued a blunt warning. “Israel has a right to defend itself and its people — full stop,” he said. “Let me say this as clearly as I can. This is not a moment for any party hostile to Israel to exploit these attacks to seek advantage. The world is watching.”
Now we have a chicken and egg syndrome. Which will come first. Should Hezbollah, or any other Iranian proxy decide that when Israel commences its ground war and Hamas become the losers will Hezbollah decide to strike therefore opening up a second front? Or through intelligence gained that an Iranian proxy decides to attack Israel and the United States stops the attack will others then use that as an excuse to join the conflict? Is there a pre-arranged event that will spark a regional war?
Indications are that there is a real time possibility of a second front opening. Iran possibly thinks it is in a position to be the grand master of manipulation. It has numerous proxies at hand to move as chess pieces across the Middle East chess board and strong allies in Russia and China.
Iran will be clever. There will be no paper or communication trial as every order will have been carried out by word of mouth or through a courier. Osama Bin Laden used couriers to relay his directions and not by modern communication methods as he feared being caught by the United States using tracking methods to find where he was hidden.
During the attacks on Saudi Arabia by the Iranian backed Houthi’s, Iran would constantly deny that they were behind the attacks. Just before diplomatic relations were restored between the two countries the missiles and drones launched into Saudi Arabia stopped. Nikki Halley the United States ambassador at the time to the United Nations gave proof that the aerial bombardment against the Saudi’s were carried out by Iranian supplied and manufactured drones. The Iranians denied that they belonged to them and that anyone can put markings on a drone in Farsi and claim they came from Iran.
The war in Ukraine instigated by Russia has seen numerous drones used in the conflict. There is a track record of Russia using drones supplied by Iran. Iran denies that they are their weapons. Iran learnt from the accusations aimed at them by the Americans regarding how easy it was to supply evidence that Iran can and do supply drones to its allies. This time they requested proof by demanding the Ukraine, America and other nations accusing them of supplying the drones for documentation when they were supplied to Russia. Iran knows that they will not find any such transactions. The point is they learnt from a past mistake.
The current conflict between Hamas and Israel may well turn this into a Middle East nightmare. Reports of attempting to stop it overflowing into other countries by the United States and its Arab allies are constantly ongoing.
In the case of Hamas where Iran denies any involvement meetings would have taken place but no paper trail by way of communications would be used. A total comms blackout. Everything done by way of word of mouth from one party to another or the use of couriers. This attack would have been too big to chance anything getting out prematurely.
Iran’s main news outlets continuously talk about others getting involved. The Iranian foreign minister said any action by Hezbollah would amount to an earthquake for the Zionist regime and “the responsibility for any expansion of war in the region lies with the Zionist regime.”
No matter how the conflict between Hamas and Israel ends, Iran will walk away claiming that they had nothing to do with the attack. One of their favourite sayings is 'baseless'. Any claims made that Iran was behind the 7 Oct 23 attack will be as they say, "baseless." What they have not thought about is that although Osama Bin laden used couriers, he still got caught.