A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Israel Reportedly Did Not Know Iranian General was in Hizbullah Convoy

It's now being reported that Israel did not deliberately target an Iranian Guards Corps general killed in a weekend strike in the Golan Heights. The Sunday attack on a Hizbullah convoy by a (presumably Israeli) helicopter has prompted threats of a "devastating storm" (note: link is to a Hizbullah website if you prefer not to go there) of retaliation by the Iranian Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) in the wake of the death of IRGC General Muhammad ‘Ali Allah-Dadi.

Also killed in the convoy, according to Hizbullah, was Jihad ‘Imad Mughniyeh, (Hizbullah website again), son of the late ‘Imad Mughniyeh, the Hizbullah planning mastermind killed in a car bombing in Damascus in 2008, an attack widely blamed on Israel.

Hizbullah and Asad regime forces are fighting in the Quneitra area of the Golan Heights against Jabhat al-Nusra forces. Though Israel is hardly likely to be supporting Jabhat al-Nusra, sees Hizbullah as a traditional enemy. It has not, however, ever deliberately targeted senior IRGC officers who serve with Hizbullah, so the claims that it was unaware Allah-Dadi was in the convoy are probably true. But the killing could lead to Iranian support for an escalated Hizbullah-Israeli conflict, further spreading and further internationalizing the Syrian war.

With Israel in the midst of an election campaign, the strike could also ignite a political debate.

No comments: