Instead of attacking Iran’s “symbols” in Syria, Lebanon, etc., the US military should target targets inside Iran as well. Former CIA boss and former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is demanding the same. But will the Biden administration really go that far?
Even though neoconservative agitator Mike Pompeo no longer holds official government office, Republicans remain a loud voice in American politics. He continues to find his place in the American media as senior foreign policy advisor for the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), an evangelical, conservative organization with a strong pro-Israel bias.
Asked by the moderator whether the US military should attack not only Iranian proxies in the Middle East, but also Iran itself, Pompeo replied “yes” to “Fox News.” In an ACLJ article, he also defended the aggressive stance against the Islamic Republic, citing the targeted killing of Iranian Revolutionary Guard commander Qassem Soleimani in Iraq during the administration of President Donald Trump. After that, Tehran ceased “aggressive behavior” towards the rest of the Trump administration.
So far, despite growing pressure from neoconservative and interventionist forces on both sides, the Biden administration has shown no intention of escalating tensions with direct attacks on Iranian territory. This will probably not happen unless the Islamic leadership in Tehran launches direct attacks on Israel from its own territory.
But the higher the death toll in the Gaza Strip, the greater the likelihood of a military response from Israel’s Muslim neighbors. After all, we are talking about about 10,000 civilians killed and about 20,000 injured by Israeli forces in the Gaza Strip. This is within a matter of a few weeks, while civilian damage in Ukraine as a result of the Russian invasion remains at almost the same level since the end of February 2022 (i.e. after more than a year and a half).