Middle Eastern Tension Escalates

Oren Weiner, staff

A recent series of attacks on Israeli diplomats in numerousregions of the globe have escalated the tensions between Middle Eastern superpowers Iran and Israel.

Over the course of February 13-14, three assassinations attempts, via method of explosives, were carried out on Israeli diplomatic missions in Georgia, India, and Thailand respectively.

The first wave of attempts occurred on February 13 in Tbilisi, Georgia and New Delhi, India, both the capital cities in their respective countries.

The following day, an attempt was also made in Thailand’s capital city, Bangkok.

The three assailants involved in the assassination attempts in Thailand were all apprehended. Two were arrested by local police in Thailand, while the third was arrested in Malaysia.

The assailants involved in Thailand and India are believed to be associated, due to the similarity in the mechanical and magnetic nature of the explosives.

Seeing this as an act of provocation, Israel has begun accusing Iran of acting aggressively. Iran has denied any affiliation with the men charged with arming the explosives.

Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, commented on the matter in a public address, “Nations of the world must condemn these incidents and draw red lines against this Iranian aggression.”

This series of attacks on Israeli diplomats intensified the political tension between Israel and Iran amid fears of an Iran with nuclear capabilities. Since 2002, Iran has been suspected of developing nuclear materials, for use as weapons. Several nations have made unsuccessful efforts to halt Iran’s nuclear program, including several sanctions. There has been speculation among Western nations that the United States and Israel may initiate a pre-emptive strike on Iranian nuclear facilities to ensure that it cannot develop a nuclear weapon.

Wilfrid Laurier University’s Modern Middle East professor, Dr. Amir Locker-Biletzki, expressed his opinion on the escalating tension and the recent events between Israel and Iran.

“The two nations, as superpowers in the Middle East, are in what one could call a ‘Cold War; a covert type of war,” he said. “I expect that Israel should retaliate. How they retaliate is only known to the Israeli government.”

Dr. Locker-Biletzki sees the tension as only a temporary phase that “should calm down,” back to the level it remained at prior to these incidents.

, “Iran’s government is using this nuclear weapons program as a propaganda tool, and as a means to boost the regime’s confidence,” he continued.“I can only speculate how Israel will react to Iran’s progressing nuclear program. And that is precisely it; the entire scenario is only speculation. No-one knows for sure what will likely happen.”

The situation between the two nations appears to be drifting toward a tenser relationship following these attacks on Israeli foreign diplomats.As for now, the nations of the world will be closely scrutinizing Iran.


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