Global Alarm: Biden Urges Ceasefire As Iran Flexes Military Might Against Israel

By Victor Smiroff | Saturday, 06 April 2024 10:30 AM
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In a significant show of force, Iran and its military allies in Yemen, Syria, Iraq, and Lebanon conducted a series of joint war exercises on Thursday.

The drills were reportedly in support of the "Palestinian Intifada" and served as a warning to Israel following a major attack on Tehran's consulate in Damascus earlier this week.

The state-controlled media in Tehran reported that the exercises involved a convoy of over 3,000 ships, led by Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and composed of Iran's volunteer Basij forces. The convoy is said to be operating in the Persian Gulf and the Sea of Oman, with the stated aim of supporting the Palestinian Intifada.

The military exercises are also being conducted simultaneously in Iraq, Syria, Yemen, and Lebanon to commemorate International Quds Day, an annual pro-Palestinian event that advocates for the destruction of Israel.

This show of military strength comes on the heels of an Israeli strike in Damascus that resulted in the deaths of two top Iranian commanders and five other IRGC operatives. The CIA has reportedly warned Israel of a potential retaliatory strike from Tehran within 48 hours. The naval drills could serve as a precursor to such an attack, demonstrating Iran's ability to mobilize its regional allies against Israel amidst escalating tensions in the Middle East that could potentially involve U.S. forces.

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In response to the rising tensions, the Biden administration reportedly issued a warning to Iran, cautioning against any attacks on U.S. forces in the region as part of a potential strike on Israel. "We made very clear to the Iranians that we had no involvement in this strike, we didn't know about it at the time, and we warned them not to use this attack as a pretext to attack U.S. facilities or personnel," State Department spokesman Matthew Miller stated on Wednesday.

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Iran's war convoy is reported to include two warships under the command of IRGC Navy commander Adm. Alireza Tangsiri. Iranian president Ebrahim Raisi, in a speech marking Quds Day, declared that peace between Israel and Hamas is unattainable. "Today, any compromise plans have gone to the dustbin of history and it is impossible to implement any plan without the participation of the Palestinians," Raisi was quoted as saying. He also vowed that Wednesday's attack by Israel in Damascus will "not go unanswered."

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In a related development, U.S. President Joe Biden, in a phone call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, called for an "immediate ceasefire" and urged Israel to increase humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip. This request reflects the growing frustration within the Biden administration over Israel's ongoing efforts to eradicate Hamas. Despite the administration's pressure, Netanyahu has rejected calls to increase aid to Gaza and cancel a planned ground incursion into the city of Rafah.

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