The recent confirmation by US military officials that Israeli warplanes were responsible for the recent attack on an Iranian military base in Iraq demonstrates the alarming extent to which the so-called proxy war between Tehran and Jerusalem has escalated in recent weeks.
According to senior Israeli security sources, spoken to on an off-the-record basis, the base in the northern Iraqi province of Salaheddin was targeted because they believed it was being used to assemble Iranian-made medium-range missiles with the capability to hit targets in Israel.
The threat was deemed so important that senior Israeli officers decided to launch a daring bombing raid that required F-35 stealth warplanes to penetrate Saudi airspace to achieve their objective. It is unclear whether the Saudis, who oppose Iranian meddling in Iraq but do not have diplomatic relations with Israel, gave permission for the Israeli warplanes to enter their airspace.
The attack, which took place on July 19, on the base run a group of local Shia militias known collectively as the Popular Mobilisation Forces, which are sponsored by Iran, is said to have resulted in the deaths of two Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) commanders, as well as several fighters from the Iranian-backed Hizbollah militia.
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