With launching missile strikes on ISIS positions in Syria, Iran has sent a strong message to the world that if London, Paris, Ankara and other major capitals are targeted by ISIS and nothing is made in retaliation, the story is different with Tehran.
Iran has no hesitation in giving a strong response to any terror attack, says an Iranian analyst on the latest missile attacks by Iran on ISIS positions in Syria.
In a Farsi piece published by the Iranian news website Tabnak, Mostafa Najafi said that Iran has shown that it is different from many other states that have remained silent towards ISIS attacks on their capitals.
“With the strikes, Iran didn’t intend to create tensions but to remind ISIS militants of the fact that targeting Iran will not remain unpunished. To put it differently, the strikes were totally defensive,” he noted.
The analyst added, “I wrote a piece immediately after Tehran terror attacks arguing that Iran would give a retaliatory response to ISIS terror attacks. Now with Iran’s missile strikes on ISIS positions which have grabbed the headlines across the world, we can make different analyses on the attacks.”
Najafi said as things stand, the attacks carried out by launching six missiles had three main messages:
“The first message was directed at the terrorists (not only ISIS). With these strikes, Iran frankly told them that if London, Paris, Ankara and other major capitals of the world come under attacks and there is no retaliatory response to them, the story is different with the Iranian capital Tehran. Iran showed that it gives a crushing response to any terror attack. So, with these strikes, the terrorists would think twice before launching any attack on Iran. In fact, the missile strikes acted as a powerful deterrent against new terrorist attacks,” he said.
According to Najafi, the second message was for the US.
“As we know, the US-led coalition in Syria has been repeatedly targeting the positions of Syrian army as well as Iran-backed forces in southern Syria over the past weeks. The attacks, if continued, can lead to serious tensions between Iran and the US in Syria. Now with the missile strikes, Iran has showed the US its capabilities to target US-led forces in any region. So, we need to wait for the US’ reaction. It goes without saying that, the US has already received Iran’s message,” he wrote.
Najafi also pointed to the fact that the missiles used by Iran against ISIS’ positions in Syria were of the same models which were sanctioned by the US Senate some days ago.
“By using certain missiles, Iran has also reminded the US of the fact that it would not sit back from its missile programs under any pressure,” he added.
Najafi went on saying that the US deployed a missile system in Syria a couple of days ago with the alleged aim of coping with the potential missile attacks against its forces in southern Syria. He added Iran’s missile strikes could also be viewed as Iran’s response to the US missile system deployment in Syria.
And the third message of Iran’s missile attacks, according to Najafi, is directed at Israel, Saudi Arabia and their allies in the region which have been launching new regional campaigns to establish an anti-Iran coalition. The main aim of the coalition is to undermine Iran and change the regional power balance against Iran.
“It seems this message has already been taken by Israel and Saudi Arabia. A report by Israel’s Channel 7 said Iran’s missile strikes indirectly threatened Saudi Arabia, Israel and the US,” he wrote.
On the other hand, Iran’s missile strikes had some operational objectives as well, Najafi added.
“ISIS has been changing its self-proclaimed capital from Raqqa to Deir ez-Zor. At the same time, the Syrian army is advancing towards Deir ez-Zor. So, Iran’s missile strikes have paved the way for Syrian army in its operations against ISIS militants in the city.”
He also noted that no regional development including diplomatic crisis between Saudi Arabia and Qatar, Tehran terror attacks, Iran’s missile attacks on ISIS and targeting of Iran-backed forces in Syria should be analyzed separately because they are all closely interconnected.