Report: Israel Keeping US In the Dark on Its Covert Attacks Inside Iran

Israel has ramped up its attacks and assassinations inside Iran, and the US hasn't asked Israel to stop

Citing current and former US officials, CNN reported Tuesday that Israel has ramped up its covert attacks and assassinations inside Iran but has kept the US in the dark about its operations.

Over the past month, Israel has been suspected of being behind a string of mysterious deaths inside Iran. US officials told CNN that Israel was responsible for the killing of Hassan Sayyad Khodaei, a colonel in Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), who was gunned down in Tehran at the end of May.

Israel was also likely behind the death of a young Iranian engineer, who was killed in a drone attack on an Iranian military facility outside of Tehran. Israel is suspected because it has launched similar operations against Iranian facilities in the past. Iran believes Israel was also behind the killing of two Iranian scientists, who were both poisoned separately at the end of May and died within a few days of falling ill.

Other mysterious deaths have occurred inside Iran, including two men working for the IRGC in the aerospace industry, who were labeled “martyrs,” suggesting Iran thinks they were killed.

While it’s not known if Israel was responsible for all the deaths, it’s clear there has been a serious escalation in its covert operations inside Iran. The CNN report said that Israel hasn’t informed the US of its plans ahead of time and that the US has taken a “hands-off” approach to the operations and hasn’t directly asked Israel to stop.

The report could be an attempt by the US officials to absolve Washington of being suspected of involvement in the attacks, although the US still tacitly supports Israel’s covert operations by never condemning them or trying to stop them.

The officials said that while they think it’s unlikely a conventional war between Israel and Iran will break out, they think the possibility of a miscalculation that spirals out of control is higher than usual.

The ramped-up Israeli attacks come ahead of President Biden’s trip to the region, where he will visit Israel and Saudi Arabia. A major part of Biden’s visit will be focused on increasing regional cooperation against Iran.

Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz revealed Monday that Israel has been working with Arab countries to build a new US-backed military alliance to isolate Iran in the region. The alliance is focused on integrating air defense systems and is the result of the US-brokered Abraham Accords, which resulted in Israel normalizing with the UAE and Bahrain.

Biden is attending a summit of Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) leaders in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, next month where he is expected to push for more Arab involvement in Israel’s alliance. He will also hold a separate meeting with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, which Israeli officials reportedly pushed for.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.