A recent article in the Jerusalem Post (JPost) has asked whether Israel’s military has the capacity to kill the Iranian nuclear program, which is estimated to be at least a decade away from a bomb.
The article, by journalist Michael Oren, is based on interviews with Israeli military officials and on information gathered by the Israeli intelligence service.
Oren believes that Israel has at least two airbases at the Negev in the Neve Zera region, close to the border with Syria and that it is planning to use them to launch a cruise missile attack on Iranian military facilities.
Oros findings could have serious implications for US policy towards Iran, which has been criticized by Israel and its allies for failing to act against the Iranian program.
Israel’s air force, for example, has repeatedly targeted Iranian bases, and in 2014 launched an air strike against Iranian nuclear facilities in the Quds mountains.
The Israeli military has repeatedly denied the existence of any such air base.
But the Israeli military also has the ability to launch an air raid, and if it does, the target will be located in the area that Oren describes as the “most sensitive” for Iran’s activities.
The air raid could be aimed at Iran’s underground nuclear sites, he wrote.
In the past, Oren has questioned whether Israel has sufficient capabilities to launch such an air attack.
Israel has also used air raids against Iran’s military installations.
The most recent air raid against a Hezbollah weapons factory near Qom, Israel’s main military base in southern Lebanon, killed 19 Hezbollah members and wounded more than 40.
The Israel Air Force also carried out a series of air raids over Lebanon in April 2016, killing several Iranian soldiers.
The Israelis have also conducted an aerial bombardment of the Syrian city of Quneitra, which the United States has accused of supplying weapons to Hezbollah.
The United States and its Gulf Arab allies have accused Syria of arming Hezbollah and supporting it with missiles.
Israel, however, says it is the victim of a conspiracy orchestrated by the United Nations and the Syrian regime.