In near dare, Iran says Israel impotent to attack

Iranian official: IDF chief of staff’s talk is empty, Israel has ‘no ability’ to attack us.

By Paul Shindman, World Israel News

Senior Iranian officials responded Wednesday to a statement by the head of the IDF that Israel is preparing military contingency plans to deal with Iran’s nuclear ambitions, saying “that Israelis keep talking all the time but can’t do anything against Iran.”

“Israel is not in a position to issue a threat against Iran,” said Iran’s First Vice President, Es’haq Jahangiri, in comments reported by the Tehran Times.

On Tuesday, IDF chief of staff Lt. Gen. Aviv Kochavi said Israel would not accept a U.S. return to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal by the Biden administration and that he had “ordered the IDF to prepare a number of operational plans.”

In Tehran, the chief of staff to Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani said that Israelis keep talking all the time but can’t do anything against the Islamic Republic.

“Our people and the people of the region both are familiar with the rhetoric of the Zionist regime’s officials,” Mahmoud Vaezi told Iran’s ISNA news agency. “They have virtually no plan and no ability to do so.”

“I think the new U.S. administration is independent like other countries and that this Zionist regime’s rhetoric is psychological warfare,” Vaezi said, adding he thought that the U.S. may return to the Iran nuclear deal, but that Israel and Saudi Arabia are working to make sure that that won’t happen.

“Saudi Arabia and the Zionist regime are lobbying in Washington but we should not take that seriously,” Vaezi said.

Last month, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu congratulated President Joe Biden on his inauguration and said that Israel and the Arab states, six of which now have peace agreements with Israel, had shared concerns over Iran’s nuclear ambitions.

“I look forward to working with you to further strengthen the U.S.-Israel alliance, to continue expanding peace between Israel and the Arab world and to confront common challenges, chief among them the threat posed by Iran,” Netanyahu said.

While Kochavi echoed Israel’s position that it rejected an American return to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal without major changes to stop Iran’s nuclear program, Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said there was no way the Iranians would agree to make any changes or concessions in order to renew the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) that President Donald Trump withdrew from in 2018.

“Why on earth should Iran – a country that stood firm & defeated 4 years of a brutal US economic terrorism imposed in violation of JCPOA & UNSC Resolution – show goodwill gesture first?” Zarif tweeted Wednesday, putting the ball in Biden’s lap. “It was the U.S. that broke the deal – for no reason. It must remedy its wrong; then Iran will respond.”