Iran Denies Being Israel’s Target in Syria

Says Iran has only 'advisory' presence in Syria

The Iranian Foreign Ministry issued a statement Monday responding to recent Israeli attacks in Syria, dismissing the narrative that Israel is attacking Iranian targets there.

Iran said it was “absurd” to claim they were the target when they only had a very small “advisory” mission in Syria. Israel rarely comments on the attacks, but when they do it’s always to drag Iran into the story.

The credibility of this has always been in doubt, not just because Iran has limited troops in Syria, but because those times when the targets are identified, they are Iraqis, Pakistanis, Lebanese, or general Shi’ite militias which are falsely identified as “Iranian” by Israel and the Israeli press.

This conflation of Iranian and Shi’ite has become so common that few media outlets even acknowledge the difference anymore. Israel’s far-right has a narrative where they are fighting the Shi’ites as a whole ideologically, so for them, Iranian is a convenient shorthand, and international hostility toward Iran makes the narrative work on the global stage.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of