Israeli Defense Forces responded to an Iranian missile attack in northern Israel with an immediate barrage against Iran’s command and control infrastructure inside Syria, and a retired Israeli general says he hopes Iran got the message that its meddling near the border will not be tolerated.
Iran fired 20 missiles into Israel. Reports suggest the Iron Dome missile defense system worked well and that no Israeli citizens were injured. On the contrary, reports also suggest Israeli airstrikes did considerable damage to Iranian assets.
“I hope after the lessons they have been taught last night…they will change their attitudes,” said retired Israeli Brigadier Gen. Elihu Ben-Onn. “Israel will never accept any Iranian bases on the border between Israel and Syria on the Golan Heights. There is no way Israel will accept that from them.”
He says it’s bad enough that Iran already bankrolls and supplies terrorist groups like Hezbollah and Hamas with threaten Israel on a daily basis from Lebanon and Gaza respectively.
Ben-Onn is also not surprised that Israel is being criticized more harshly for the extent of its response than Iran is for initiating the hostilities.
“Unfortunately, whenever we are winning, we are to apologize for that. I don’t know why.
“Those people are a little bit ignorant and don’t understand what it means to live in the Middle East, what kind of enemies we have, what kind of struggles we are facing every day for our security. We are talking about our lives. This is not a movie. This is not cinema. This is not Hollywood,” said Ben-Onn.
“We don’t like the idea that they don’t understand the situation, but we know that we are the good guys and they are the bad guys,” added Ben-Onn.
Ben-Onn is encouraged that Iranian leadership got the message from the Israeli counter-strike.
“Just a couple of minutes ago, I heard that the Iranian president, Hassan Rouhani, said he didn’t want to open a new front in the Middle East. That was kind of soft language by the Iranians saying, ‘OK, maybe we tried but we learned our lesson and we’re going to stop this policy,'” said Ben-Onn.
Israel and Iran have never been directly at war. In fact, Ben-Onn says before the Islamic Revolution, the two countries had a productive relationship.
“Before 1979, when (Ayatollah) Khomeini came to power, Israel and Iran had a daily flight from Tel Aviv to Tehran. Many Israeli businesses worked in Iran and built the infrastructure in many fields: agriculture, construction, and they had many good times between the two countries.
“We never had a fight or any conflict. The only conflict is that the Iranians are supporting the enemies on the borders of Israel. The moment they are getting closer to the border and using missiles, this is something the Israeli government will never accept,” said Ben-Onn.