IRGC chief vows revenge for slain colonel amid Israeli bluster

May 30, 2022 - 22:18

TEHRAN – In a visit to the family of the recently assassinated colonel, Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) General Hossein Salami vowed revenge for the slain colonel. 

He blamed the assassination of Sayad Khodaei on Israel, underlining that Iran will avenge his killing. 

The IRGC colonel was assassinated by gunmen on a motorcycle in front of his home in Tehran. Israel has not claimed responsibility for the assassination. But the New York Times has reported that Tel Aviv was behind the killing and it did so to send a warning message to Iran. 

This was the first time Israel targeted a non-nuclear expert in Tehran. Israel has long been involved in the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientists with Mohsen Fakhrizadeh being the last case. 

By the assassination of Khodaei Israel appeared to be broadening the scope of its confrontation with Iran. A few days after the assassination of the IRGC colonel, Israeli media reported, with great fanfare, that Israel was also behind an alleged quadcopter drones attack on Iran’s military site in Parchin, where Commander of the IRGC Aerospace Force General Amir Ali Hajizadeh was supposed to be assassinated. Iran didn’t confirm that there was an attack. Iran’s Ministry of Defense said in a statement that an incident took place in one of its research units that resulted in the martyrdom of an engineer named Ehsan Qad Beigi. 

Fars News said Israel’s strategy for confrontation with Iran is slowly moving from the nuclear sphere to “geopolitical concerns” regarding the Axis of Resistance. Perhaps the starting point of this shift was the February Israeli strike on an Iranian drone facility in Mahidasht, west of Iran. Citing sources familiar with the matter, the Arabic-language Al-Alam news television said in March that Israel’s attack on Mahidasht took place from Iraqi Kurdistan. In March, Iran struck a “center of conspiracy” in the outskirt of Ebril, the capital of Iraq’s Kurdistan region. 

In an indication that Israel’s strategy has changed, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett hinted on Monday that Israel would take the battle to Iran rather than the Arab countries in which Tehran wields influence. 

Speaking at a cabinet session, Bennett accused Iran of carrying out “terrorism” against Israel via “proxies.”

“But for some reason the head of the octopus – Iran itself – has enjoyed immunity,” he added.

He then said Iran “will pay the full price” for its activities against Israel.

Bennett’s bluster came at a time when Israel is under growing pressure for suppressing Palestinians and letting Jewish extremists profane Islamic sanctities in Jerusalem, which resulted in global condemnation.

On the other hand, Iran has shown that it can respond to Israel. Iran’s Army recently unveiled a secret underground drone plant that was hailed as putting Iran at the forefront of drone technology. 

In addition, Fars News published a list of Israelis with backgrounds in Israel’s military and cyber warfare sectors in a report titled “Zionists who must live secretly.”

It said these people have been involved in acts of sabotage against Muslim countries and assassinating Axis of Resistance activists.


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