Iran Focus

London, 4 Jan - According to DEBKAfile, an Israeli military intelligence website based in Jerusalem that provides commentary and analyses on terrorism, intelligence, national security, military, and international relations, with a particular focus on the Middle East, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad delegation that is visiting Tehran has been empowered by Iran to attach Iraqi Shiite militias under Al Qods. Hizbollah will command the common operations on the Gaza Strip.

Iran also decided that only in the event of a full-scale Palestinian-Israeli war centering on the Gaza Strip would the expanded operations room be activated. It would then act as a supportive “second front.”

Iranian officials, including Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, are meeting with the Palestinian Jihad delegation, headed by Ziyad Rashid al-Nakhalah, and the director of the Gaza sector, Muhammed Al-Hindi.

On Monday, December 31st, Israel’s Military Intelligence (AMAN) chief, Major General Tamir Hayman, was prompted by their decisions to warn that Iran had the capacity to attack Israel from Iraq.

Meanwhile, Nakhalah discussed the Iran-backed movement’s expanded capacity in an interview on Monday on Iranian State TV. He said, “Iran and Hizbollah are no longer bound by red lines. Henceforth there are no limits to the scope and depth of the cooperation between Islamic Jihad, Iran, and Hizbollah.”

He boasted about the improved precision of the group’s new rockets — the same ones of which 530 were fired on Israel during the attack launched by the Jihad and Hamas from the Gaza Strip on November 12th and 13th. He referred to the Asklon, which carries a warhead of an estimated 200 - 500kg with a range of up to 10km. DEBKAfile’s military sources say that this weapon is an improved Grad fitted with a target-marking system.

According to Khamenei, who told his visitors from Palestine that the two-day barrage that occurred last November, followed by the subsequent clash, proved Israel’s Defense Forces incapable of withstanding Palestinian “forces of resistance”, during the previous two wars, “the Zionist regime called for a truce after 22 days on one occasion and 8 days on another. But in the latest confrontation it requested a ceasefire after only 48 hours.”

Iran’s National Security Adviser Ali Shamkhani also met with the Palestinian delegation, and senior Iranian Revolutionary Guards commanders are said to have held secret conferences with the delegates, as well.

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