• Mon. May 27th, 2024

Hit the mullahs and hit ’em hard, Israel — and 5 key takeaways from Iran’s failed attack

Hit the mullahs and hit 'em hard, Israel -- and 5 key takeaways from Iran's failed attack

Joe Biden’s timid advice for restraint notwithstanding, there’s zero doubt that Israel will retaliate against Iran.

The mad mullahs’ attack last weekend aimed to kill thousands of Israelis, and they get no discount just because they failed miserably. 

Iran’s terrorist leaders must be taught a painful and public lesson, one that will deter them from soon taking on Israel directly again.

It will also clarify for their proxies just how weak their patron is. 

As the debate in Israel’s war cabinet continues over its response, it is helpful from a distance to grasp the significance of what happened last weekend.

Here are five key takeaways. 

Evil and incompetent 

First, Iran was unmasked as a third-rate military power, one whose malignancy far outstrips its competency.

The mullahs aimed to overwhelm Israel’s defense system and kill enormous numbers of people by launching more than 300 drones and missiles, yet they scored zero hits. 

Let that sink in: Zero. 

Most of the drones were shot down, and some missiles reportedly exploded on their launch pads.

German-made Sa'ar 6-class corvette of the Israeli Navy docked at the Red Sea port city of Eilat, Israel on 16 April 2024
A German-made Sa’ar 6-class corvette of the Israeli Navy docked at the Red Sea port city of Eilat, southern Israel, 16 April 2024. ABIR SULTAN/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

Overall, Iran’s military proved to be better on paper than in action, which helps explain why it relies so heavily on its terror proxies to do its dirty work. 

The proxies are cheap and expendable and don’t involve funerals of dead Iranians. 

Second, much of Iran’s failure stems from the technological superiority of Israel and the US.

No defense system in modern warfare ever produced such a lopsided outcome, and the results are sure to spur a new defensive arms race. 

The football cliche that “Defense wins championships” now has a national security corollary. 

Fortunately, Ronald Reagan understood as much 40 years ago, and his 1983 plan that the media mocked as “Star Wars” has grown into America’s lifesaving Strategic Defense Initiative. 

Third, Biden deserves enormous credit for deploying and ­using military assets, as our ships and aircraft destroyed Iranian weapons. 

It marked the first time the US played an actual military role in defending Israel, which is ironic given Biden’s frequent public criticism of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

It also was the first time Biden followed Teddy Roosevelt’s advice to “Speak softly and carry a big stick.” He merely said “Don’t” to Iran, and when it did, he ­unleashed American firepower. 

Fourth, France and Britain also helped, and the successful coordination of the Western powers with the Israeli military is a game changer in the Mideast.

This remarkable teamwork is a force multiplier that adds another layer of deterrence. 

Fifth is the significance of two Arab militaries — Jordan and ­Saudi Arabia — helping to defend the Jewish state. 

This is history being written before our eyes.

While it is true that Jordan and the Saudis have long feared Iran, Hamas and Hezbollah more than Israel, the fact that they publicly acted on that interest offers great promise for regional military and economic security. 

A Saudi treaty with Israel now seems inevitable.

One was in the works before Oct. 7, and Hamas leaders admitted that their desire to stop the normalization of Arab relations with Israel, as exemplified by the Abraham Accords, was a prime factor in their invasion. 

Imagine the disillusionment in the gilded towers of Qatar and the filthy tunnels of Gaza when the realization strikes that some Arab leaders trust Israel more than their fellow Muslims. 

Perhaps some of the brainwashed American college kids spewing their antisemitic slogans will also take notice that Iran’s ­hatred for Israel makes it an outlier among Muslims. 

Mideast naiveté 

Unfortunately, Biden’s warning to Netanyahu to “Take the win” and not retaliate shows he has ­relapsed into the Obama-Biden dream world of treating the mullahs with kid gloves. 

The aim, as it has been since ­Obama took office in 2009, has been to bribe and sweet-talk Iran back into the mainstream of nations. 

Election-year hopes for peace also play a role in the White House thinking. 

But appeasement never works and, even worse, has served to convince Iran that it will pay no price for spreading terrorism throughout the region.

Sanctions are waived, frozen accounts are unfrozen, American hostages are ransomed and money from oil sales is pouring in. 

Much of the cash goes to terrorism and repressing internal dissent.

Instead of looking westward, the ever-tighter alignment with Russia, Syria and China shows this generation of Iranian leaders has made its choice. 

Iran is still, in Henry Kissinger’s insightful formula, a cause instead of a country. 

Against that backdrop, Israel has been handed a unique opportunity.

Its right, indeed its duty, to punish Iran is a given among most military and political leaders around the world. 

Although the possibility of a wider escalation cannot be ignored, that’s not a reason to ­accept the status quo. 

In fact, coming so soon after Oct. 7, the Iran attack has convinced even peacenik Israelis that a strong response is essential. 

My guess is that Netanyahu & Co. are not putting strict limits on their decision, meaning they are planning a retaliation, but also something far beyond a tit-for-tat approach. 

It’s likely they will again try to set back Iran’s nuclear program.

After all, by crossing the historic threshold of making a direct ­attack on Israel from Iranian soil, the mullahs showed they will probably use any weapon they have. 

Israel has long assumed as much, which is why it frequently carried out pinpoint attacks against nuke-linked facilities and individual scientists.

And now it has further proof. 

Among Iranian leaders, assuming its failure came as a humiliating shock, considering the use of a nuke is almost logical. 

Underscoring the dangers, international inspectors recently reported that Iran was increasing its production of a fuel closer to weapons-grade uranium and installed new equipment capable of enriching uranium faster. 

Tehran power supply 

Another possible factor in Israeli thinking is the international outcry over the humanitarian situation in Gaza.

Because of it, Israel might opt for targeting its firepower on Iran’s nuclear facilities, where few if any innocent bystanders would be harmed. 

(Iran, unlike Hamas, is not known for using its own people as human shields.) 

Some of the known nuclear facilities are buried in mountains to protect them.

But Israel again proved its intelligence advantage with the targeted strike on the terror chiefs meeting in Syria, so it likely knows which sites its weaponry can damage and destroy. 

That’s not to suggest there is no benefit in going after Iran’s conventional weapons.

The drone factories that produced the munitions used against Israel are also turning out thousands of aerial weapons for Russia’s use in Ukraine and for Syria in its civil war. 

Taking them out would protect Israel and benefit much of the world.

Similarly, Iran’s missile factories are ripe for destruction. 

Ultimately, the holy grail would be a retaliation that sparks a public uprising against the mullahs, leading at least to regime change if not an open democracy. 

Bombs away!

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