One senior American official said the current American intelligence assessment was that the bomber, who struck Wednesday, killing five Israelis, had been “acting under broad guidance” to hit Israeli targets when opportunities presented themselves, and that the guidance had been given to Hezbollah, a Lebanese militant group, by Iran, its primary sponsor. Two other American officials confirmed that Hezbollah was behind the bombing, but declined to provide additional details.
The attacks, the official said, were in retaliation for the assassinations of Iranian nuclear scientists, for which Iran has blamed Israeli agents — an accusation that Israel has neither confirmed nor denied. “This was tit for tat,” said the American official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation was still under way.
Tit for tat?
In my opinion, ‘tat’ was more likely the killing of master Hizballah terrorist Imad Mugniyah in 2008, attributed to Israel. Hizballah has been trying to get revenge since then.
Mugniyah had the blood of literally hundreds of Americans, Jews and others on his hands, being responsible for the Marine Barracks bombing in Beirut in 1983 (241 American and 58 French soldiers dead), the kidnapping, torture and murder of Western diplomats in Lebanon during the 1980’s, the 1992 bombings of the Israeli embassy in Argentina (29 dead) and the Jewish Cultural Center (AMIA) building there (86 dead). There’s much more.
Israel certainly killed Mugniyah, and the world is a better place for it.
I suppose it is also possible that the attack was retaliation for the killings of the nuclear scientists. You would have to ask the Iranians or Hizballah.
Lest you think that these scientists were innocents:
TEHRAN (FNA) — The wife of Martyr Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan Behdast, who was assassinated by Mossad agents [possibly] in Tehran in January, reiterated on Tuesday that her husband sought the annihilation of the Zionist regime wholeheartedly.
“Mostafa’s ultimate goal was the annihilation of Israel,” Fatemeh Bolouri Kashani told FNA on Tuesday.
Bolouri Kashani also underlined that her spouse loved any resistance figure in his life who was willing to fight the Zionist regime and supported the rights of the oppressed Palestinian nation.
Another example was the engineer and “key figure in Iran’s missile program,” General Hasan Moghaddam, killed in an explosion last November. The explosion may or may not have been an accident, but Iranian media reported that Moghaddam had wanted his epitaph to read “He wanted to destroy Israel” (Google translation and original Farsi here).
I would like to ask the “senior American official” if he or she, on reflection, would take back the ill-considered expression “tit for tat.” It sounds as though the official thinks that blowing a bunch of Jewish tourists to bits is equivalent to executing a serial murderer like Mugniyah, or taking out some people who are working overtime to make practical the murder of thousands, even hundreds of thousands, more.
The Obama Administration has made clear that it would consider an overt Israeli attack on Iran’s nuclear program a Very Bad Thing. The “tit for tat” remark implies that the speaker disapproves of Israel’s clandestine war against it as well.
Am I going too far when I say that it also implies an attribution of responsibility to Israel for becoming a target for terrorism? Would the official say that if Israel would only play nice, leave the Iranians alone, give the Palestinian Arabs what they want, etc., then nobody would bother them? Is the implication that Israel had it coming?
One wonders if any form of Jewish self-defense can be acceptable.