Current Israeli Strategic Affairs Minister Yuval Steinitz insists that there is no reason for Israel to get a “green light” from the US before attacking Iran, because Iran poses such a trivial threat to the nation that it could barely retaliate at all.
“I think Iran’s possibilities to retaliate are very limited,” Steinitz insisted, adding “I suppose there would be a response of two or three days of missile fire, perhaps even on Israel, on American bases in the Gulf. But I don’t think it would be more than that – very limited damage.”
Israeli officials have regularly tried to downplay the risk of retaliation as a way of arguing that attacking Iran wouldn’t be a very big deal, and isn’t something worth serious public debate.
At the same time, arguing that Iran is so weak and such a non-threat that it can’t even theoretically retaliate makes Israel’s attempts to portray them as a threat to the entire planet even more nonsensical than it already was.
Iran has, of course, a considerable arsenal of missiles with a range capable of hitting Israel, and has spent much of its military budget on the idea of having retaliatory capability against oft-threatened Israeli attacks. Though it is impossible to say what Iran’s response would be if it was randomly attacked, the capability is clearly to launch more than just a couple of days of strikes.