Iran’s Operation, “the True Promise”…

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By: Qamar Bashir

Israel, the US, UK, and France mobilized their diplomatic, military, and reconnaissance assets in response to potential retaliation from Iran following Israel’s direct attack on the Iranian Embassy in Damascus, resulting in its destruction and the deaths of seven high-ranking officials from Iran’s Revolutionary Guards. Sensing a retaliatory threat, prompted Joe Biden and other world leaders to issue public warnings and threats to Iran, urging it to refrain from any retaliatory actions. Biden emphasized the ironclad alliance between the US and Israel, warning Iran against attacking Israel and pledging full support and defense. To demonstrate seriousness, the US redirected its naval assets towards the Middle Eastern theater.

But Iran had had enough and its resolve to punish Israel for orchestrating several attacks on Iran which left the entire Iranian nation wounded, bruised and angered, brushed aside all the warnings and intimidations and both spiritual and formal leadership in Iran vowed revenge, declaring that the time had come to punish Israel for his acts of aggressions.

Iran mobilized its strategic military assets, preparing to turn threats into action. Both civilian and military leaderships named the retaliatory strikes “Operation True Promise.” Iran’s military and defense experts convened to strategize and outline the objectives, scope, impact, and expected outcomes of Operation True Promise.

On the other side of the isle, the combined reconnaissance and intelligence assets of Israel, the US, UK, France, and their allied countries in the Middle East—including Jordan, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and other nations hosting US military assets—were mobilized. Military strategists collaborated to accurately assess the scope and scale of the potential retaliatory attack. Air, land, and sea assets were placed on high alert and fully prepared to neutralize any impending threats.

Iran’s military strategists knew very well the formidable challenge its operation was faced with from the combined airpower of Israel and its allies including US, UK and France in particular. Acknowledging their collective destructive and defensive power and their overwhelming and vastly superior capabilities, the operation “True Promise” needed to be carefully orchestrated, and the launching of varied aerial assets needed to be timed carefully to challenge the air superiority of Israel and its allies to achieve the intended objectives.

Iran first launched 170 suicide drone, knowing very well that they being slow moving will most likey will be intercepted and destroyed even before reaching to their intended targets. As anticipated, as soon as the drones entered into the middle east airspace, they were intercepted by the pilots of Israel, US, UK, who, sitting in their sophisticated fighter jets, with precise weapons systems relished bringing these drones to the ground. As a Result, hardly any drone successfully penetrated the Israel air defense.

While successfully engaging them with drones, Iran put to test their ground to air and sea to air defense system. It fired additional 120 ballistic missiles, and 30 cruise missiles simultaneously launched from the militias in Iraq, the Houthis in Yemen, and Hezbollah in Lebanon. As expected and as claimed by the Israeli defense forces commander, more than 99% of these threats were neutralized, but admitted that the Iranian attack was “unprecedented” and was thwarted by unprecedented accuracy. It also admitted that Nevatim air force base in Israel’s southern Negev desert was hit, one 7 year old girl died and 12 people in southern Israel received hospital treatment.

Iran asserted that it had achieved all of its set objectives. First and foremost, Iran aimed to demonstrate to Israel and its allies that there exists at least one country willing to challenge their perceived invincibility and pose a credible threat to their security. The second objective focused on ensuring there were no civilian casualties on the Israeli side during the retaliatory strikes.

This strategic choice aimed to position Iran on higher moral ground, even amidst conflict, by demonstrating a commitment to minimizing harm to civilians. Additionally, by avoiding civilian casualties, Iran aimed to differentiate itself from Israel, which has been criticized for civilian casualties during ongoing operations in Gaza since October 2023. Iran’s this strategy had successfully prevented Israel from leveraging such casualties to justify its actions or sway international public opinion against Iran.

The third objective was to limit the extent of damage inflicted during the retaliatory strikes to prevent providing Israel and its allies with justification or leverage for a counter-attack on Iranian assets and thereby has successfully minimized the risk of further escalation or retaliation, thus safeguarding its own assets and strategic interests.

Israel was quick to exploit the attack, both internal and internationally. Internally, it claimed that the Iran attack was squarely defeated, and now Israel reserves the right to give a befitting and decisive response to Iran’s direct attack on Israel. The Israeli War cabinet hurriedly convened its meeting to strategize the response.

Internationally Israel requisite the emergency meeting of The United Nations Security Council in the afternoon of 14 April describing the Iranian attack as a “clear violation” of the UN Charter and international law, accused Iran of stoking regional instability, demanded unequivocally condemnation of Iran and designate the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRSC) as a terrorist organization.

Iran defended its attack by saying that the operation was in exercise of its right to self-defense under Article 51 of the UN Charter in response to Israel’s 1 April attack against an Iranian facility in Damascus. It declared that the matter between Iran and Israel has been concluded, but added that if Israel were to make “another mistake”, Tehran’s response would “be considerably more severe”. Iran also warned the US to remain uninvolved in the conflict.

The US also jumped in to exploit the attack and hurriedly convened the meeting of G-7 countries (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States, as well as the European Union) to coordinate a rebuke to Iran for its unprecedented aerial attack on Israel, and to prevent a wider regional escalation. The joint statement unequivocally condemned in the strongest terms” the direct attack by Iran and reaffirmed their commitment towards Israel’s security.

The Iranian attack generated a diverse reaction in the diverse world public. According to Press TV, Iran’s official TV Channel, it was the first night since October 2023, when the entire population of Gaza did not sleep, not because of the fear of Israel’s air bombardment, but to celebrate the Iranian attack on Israel. Yemen, Syria and Hezbollah issued public statements declaring the Iranian attack as legitimate and an act of self defense. The Iranian public came out on the streets with joy and congratulated the Iranians leadership for conducting a successful operation.

Highly controlled Iranian attack has minimized the escalation of the hostility and war to spread to the region of the world. Iran has declared a ceasefire by declaring the matter between Israel and Iran as concluded. With no civilian or military casualties, there would be much less public pressure on the Israeli government to take revenge. Israel has taken the matter to the UN showing its intention to resolve the issue on the platform of the United Nations. The G-7 leaders in their joint statement have shown no appetite for escalating the war. Israel currently has too much on his plate, dealing with Hamas, hostage release, planning and preparing for ground attack on Rafah, dealing with Hezbollah, Iraqi Militia, hostile Syria and Houthis in Yemen. Therefore most likely there may be a big pause before Israel and its allies consider direct attack on Iran.

By: Qamar Bashir
Press Secretary to the President (Rtd)
Former Press Minister at Embassy of Pakistan to France
Former MD, SRBC