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US Warns Escalation in Middle East Hinges on Iran’s Reaction to Israel’s Response

Pentagon spokesman Pat Ryder explained this Tuesday that the escalating tensions in the Middle East depend mainly on whether Israel decides to respond to the attacks of Iran over the weekend and how the Persian country could react in that case.

“Without entering into hypotheses, much will depend on what exactly happens and how Iran might respond. Regarding a possible Israeli response, it is a sovereign decision that Israel must take. They were attacked by Iran in an unprecedented aggression, with more than 300 air threats,” he declared at a press conference.

However, he insisted that the United States is making all its efforts to avoid a worsening of the conflict in the region, although this does not mean giving up its protection to Tel Aviv or its personnel.

“We do not seek a conflict with Iran but we will not hesitate to take the necessary action to protect our forces,” he commented after Tehran’s threats last Sunday to stay out of the disputes.

Finally, he commented that they maintain a constant dialogue with their counterparts in Tel Aviv but avoided specifying whether they expect advance notice of the actions in question.

This Saturday night, Iran launched an unprecedented offensive over Israel, with more than 300 drones, ballistic and cruise missiles, in retaliation for the attack on its embassy in Damascus in early April, which killed seven Revolutionary Guards. 99% of these projectiles were intercepted by the Defense Forces and allied systems deployed in the area, causing minimal damage to a military base in the south of the country.

Despite not regretting major consequences, Benjamin Netanyahu’s war cabinet met urgently to evaluate how to respond to the aggressions of the Persian regime. While influential actors in this conflict have advocated for a de-escalation, Israel continues to evaluate its options.

The day before, the chief of the Army General Staff, Herzi Halevi announced that “we are looking forward, considering our steps and this launching of so many missiles towards the territory of the State of Israel will receive a response”, although without providing further details.

For his part, in the last hours, the minister Benny Gantz added that “Israel will act with intelligence, strategic, and will respond at the place, time, and manner you choose”.

However, the local news station 12 cited sources close to the discussions and assured that Netanyahu is inclined to attack the Persian nation militarily but is cornered by the international pressure that, for example, in the case of Washington, he would have already announced that he would not support such actions.

At the same time, on a more diplomatic level, Tel Aviv urged 30 countries to impose sanctions against Iran’s missile program and to appoint the Revolutionary Guard as a “terrorist organization”.

“Iran must be stopped now, before it is too late,” said Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz, while Gantz supported his request and assured that “Iran is a global and regional problem, and also a threat to Israel, so that the world should act militarily against it and impose sanctions.”

(With information from EFE)

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