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Washington reveals position on retaliatory Israeli strike against Iran – ABC

The US does not intend to take part in any potential retaliatory strike on Tehran on West Jerusalem’s behalf, unnamed officials told the outlet

The US will not help Israel retaliate in the wake of Iran’s missile and drone attack by launching offensive military operations, Biden administration officials have been privately warning, according to ABC News.

Israel has promised a “response” following the massive Iranian strike on the country over the weekend, which West Jerusalem said involved more than 300 drones and missiles. Iran said the attack was a reprisal for the bombing of its consulate in Damascus, Syria earlier this month, which cost the lives of several senior Iranian military personnel.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said that they shot down the vast majority of the incoming projectiles, with help from the US, UK, France, Jordan, and others.

Shortly after Iran’s attack ended, a senior US administration official reportedly told journalists that the White House believes Israel “has freedom of action to protect itself and defend itself.” 

“That’s a long-standing policy, and that remains,” the official reportedly said.

However, when asked if the US would help Israel counter with offensive military operations, that official said there was no such plan.

“We would not envision ourselves participating in such a thing,” the person said.

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Israel promises ‘response’ to Iranian attack

According to a second US official cited by ABC, this message was also delivered directly to Israel’s top brass in a private phone call on Sunday between Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant.

Austin made clear in a very “direct” manner that the US was not planning to take part in a potential counteroffensive on Israel’s behalf, the official claimed.

ABC noted that the comments were “an unusual message for a close ally that’s spent decades receiving more US military aid than any other country in the world and whose relationship with America is often described as ‘ironclad’.”

The outlet added that the reasoning behind the decision was the Biden administration’s fear of a “broader war” erupting in the Middle East.

Israel’s war cabinet has reportedly decided it will take “clear and decisive” action following Iran’s mass missile and drone attack on Saturday. However, the Israeli outlet Mako reported on Monday evening that the retaliation will need to be acceptable to the US and “comply” with rules set by Washington, so as not to “degenerate the region into a war.”

Tehran has promised to respond “within seconds” if Israel decides to launch any form of attack against the Islamic Republic.

 

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