Iran Vows ‘Crushing Response’ After Israel Strikes Kill 14 Militia Members

Strikes killed Shi'ites from Iraq, Afghanistan

A flurry of Israeli airstrikes overnight Saturday targeted Shi’ite militias in eastern Syria. 14 were killed, eight Iraqis and six Afghans. While not actually being from Iran, they are presented as Iranian-backed in keeping with Israeli narratives.

Iran responded angrily, saying the time for Israeli hit-and-run attacks are over, and Iran will give a “crushing response” for the attack. It’s not clear when they intend to retaliate, or how.

Israel has for months been hoping to provoke a war with Iran, preferring to do so while Trump remains in power. Iran is well aware of this and has counselled caution for now, hoping for better diplomatic prospects with Biden.

Given this, Iran’s threatening retaliation may be a ruse trying to reduce the threats of escalation while they wait out the clock, and hope that the environment in general improves after the inauguration.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.