The changing dynamics of the Iran-Israel conflict

General Qasim Solemani of Iran was assassinated after he, and Iran, was blamed for the death of many American soldiers. Soon after, American and Israeli forces deployed to punish Iran. Instead of direct confrontation, Iran preferred a ‘strategy of deterrence’. According to this, “If Iran was attacked, the response would begin with massive use of free flight rockets, missiles and drones from several directions to degrade the iron-dome air defense system of Israel as well as the public morale, followed by explosive loaded vehicles to breach the barrier at multiple places and the suicide bombers rushing forward through the breaches, to cause fear, panic and rout to the enemy.”
The deterrence forecasted an existential threat to Israel, forcing its retreat, including the fleet blocking the Persian Gulf. A ‘Stealth Strategy’ was therefore developed to harm Iran through punishing strikes at several targets. Reportedly, 5th generation F-35 air superiority stealth fighter aircraft was used against which Iran has no defence. It stated, “Israel has apparently been conducting what amounts to a slow motion, semi-covert military campaign against Iran’s nuclear and missile programmes, and perhaps other industrial and infrastructure targets as well. Mysterious explosions and fires have struck a key centrifuge production facility; a military base where missiles are produced, as well as power plants, aluminium and chemical factories. A fire erupted at the port of Bushehr on the Persian Gulf, destroying seven ships.”
Similarly, Hezbollah was targeted with a huge blast in Lebanon, as a punishment for defeating Israel in the 2006 war. The trilateral US-Israel-Arab Strategic Alliance, called Abraham Accord, is exploiting the Shia-Sunni divide in order to isolate Iran. Ever since the Iranian Revolution of 1979, the USA has demonised Iran as a threat to the Sunni Arab countries, who have been buying weapons and military hardware from the USA, worth billions of dollars. Now as the threat becomes more focused, there would be a spree of defence purchases from Israel in particular.
The diplomatic offensive of the Israel-UAE Agreement—the Abraham Accord—has ruptured decades of Arab unity. The deal also reverses the order of diplomatic offensive by the Arab Peace Initiative of 2002. Under this treaty, Egypt and Jordan recognised Israel but they stand cheated, now. As a matter of fact, a creeping annexation that would dash all hopes for the two-nation strategy is already underway. Oman, Bahrain and Sudan appear more interested in establishing diplomatic ties with Israel. In fact, the trilateral US-Israel-Arab strategic alliance is shaping up against Iran, seeking a cynical alliance and not benevolent peace.
In response, Iran lost no time forging the Strategic Defence Partnership with China. This partnership has kicked-up a geo-political storm, defining the contours of the new world order. China has succeeded building a financial system that bypasses the US and its ‘maximum pressure’ policy. For the first time, the Chinese ‘Economic Order’ has created an economic deterrence which provides security to Iran, and to all those who come under the security umbrella of this order.
At present, Iran is vulnerable to Israeli attacks by its superior F-35 fighters and accurate intelligence. It is a matter of time that China develops the capability to counter this threat, which is so critical for Iran. The Chinese J-20 also is a 5th generation stealth jet fighter. It may or may not be able to challenge the American F-35, but given that China is able to shoot-down a satellite in outer-space, it should not be difficult for them to develop the capability to shoot-down the F-35. When that happens, the Israeli stealth strategy, which rests at the cutting edge of technology as of now, will fade away.
Our best wishes are for the Arabs, seeking peace with Israel but not at the cost of Palestinian blood. The movement of truth will soon arrive, when the Israeli Prime Minister visits UAE, and their national anthem is played, relaying a message from Tel Aviv: “Let those who are our enemy shudder, Let all the inhabitants of Egypt and Canaan tremble, Let the inhabitants of Babylon shudder, To loom over their skies, panic and terror from us, When we plant our spears in their chests, And we see their blood being shed, And their heads cut off.”

The writer is a former COAS, Pakistan. He can be reached at

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