All posts tagged: Khatib

Iran seems like it’s in escalation mode – but all-out war with Israel is the last thing it wants | Lina Khatib

Iran seems like it’s in escalation mode – but all-out war with Israel is the last thing it wants | Lina Khatib

[ad_1] Tit-for-tat confrontation between Israel and Iran has sparked concerns about escalation dragging the Middle East into all-out war. Such a scenario remains unlikely because neither Israel nor Iran would benefit from full-on conflict. But while Israel is feeling emboldened, Iran is on the defensive. Iran’s main interest is self-preservation. It wants to protect its nuclear facilities inside Iran, and its assets in the Middle East, mainly the armed groups it supports, the most valuable of which is Hezbollah. Iran’s leadership continues to claim that it neither directed nor was informed about Hamas’s attack on Israel on 7 October, because they do not want Israel and its allies to target it, or to retaliate in a way that would erode Iran’s influence in the region. Regardless of the nature of Iran’s involvement in Hamas’s unprecedented assault, the country is a key financial and military backer of Hamas and bears part of the responsibility for Hamas’s actions. Iran is also the sponsor of several militia organisations operating across the Middle East, including the Houthis in Yemen, …