Home Featured After Iranian barrage, Palestinians brace for Israeli reaction – POLITICO
After Iranian barrage, Palestinians brace for Israeli reaction – POLITICO

After Iranian barrage, Palestinians brace for Israeli reaction – POLITICO

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“There are some Palestinians who will say ‘Finally, someone has attacked Israel’ and hope that others will follow,” he added. “But some will be very concerned that the conflict between Israel and Iran overshadows the attack on the Gaza Strip and will provide renewed support for Israel.”

Iran’s attack, a response to an Israeli strike on its embassy in Syria that killed two senior military commanders, could have profound implications for Palestinians in a conflict that has already killed over 30,000 of them and displaced 1.7 million more.

Israel vowed  “a significant response” to the bombardment on Sunday, which saw its Iron Dome air defense system and U.S. fighter jets shoot down almost all of the over 300 incoming projectiles.

The U.S. has been pressing Benjamin Netanyahu to hold back in Rafah. | Pool photo by Jacquelyn Martin via AFP/Getty Images

“The Israelis could pocket this and try to react at the right time and the right place,” said Ahron Bregman, a war studies lecturer at King’s College London. “Or they could listen to those who want to try and deteriorate the situation, saying now is the time to, for example, strike Iran’s nuclear facilities.”

However, few of Israel’s own allies want to see direct attacks on Iranian territory, which Tehran has claimed would trigger fierce retaliation. According to White House spokesman John Kirby, while Israel has the right to respond, “the president’s been very clear: we don’t seek a war with Iran.” Behind the scenes though, Washington is understood to have warned Israel not to escalate the conflict further with a disproportionate reaction against Tehran. But Israel has a wide choice of other Iran-linked targets closer to home it could aim for that are unlikely to have the same consequences.

Hours after the barrage, Israel struck a site deep inside neighbouring Lebanon that it says was used by Hezbollah, the Tehran-backed paramilitary group that has been using the country as a launch pad from which fire rockets across the border into Israel. Now, concern is growing that it could again step up its offensive in Gaza against Iran’s ally Hamas as well, just as speculation was growing that both sides were looking for an off-ramp after six months of brutal conflict.

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