BY KHALED ABU TOAMEH/GATESTONE INSTITUTE
As the Biden administration seems to be moving closer to reaching a new nuclear deal with Iran, the mullahs in Tehran are encouraging their Lebanese and Palestinian terrorist proxies to prepare for waging war on Israel.
The mullahs appear convinced that once the Biden administration capitulates completely to their demands for reviving the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, they will be able to step up their already significant efforts to eliminate Israel and export their Islamic Revolution to Arab and Islamic countries. Iran already occupies four Arab countries: Syria, Lebanon, Yemen and Iraq.
The mullahs are not oblivious to the growing voices in the Arab world that complain about the weakness of the US and how the Biden administration's policy of appeasement towards Iran is undermining the Americans' credibility and jeopardizing the security and stability of Arab and Islamic countries.
Iran's mullahs appear to be so confident that the Biden administration has turned its back on its Arab allies in the Middle East that they are issuing direct threats not only against Israel, but also against any Arab country that dares to cooperate with the Israelis.
The latest threat came from the commander of the Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Navy, Commodore Alireza Tangsiri, who warned that cooperation with Israel "threatens security and stability in the Gulf region."
Tangsiri's warning was directed to America's Arab allies, especially the Gulf states, some of which have been conducting security cooperation with Israel.
The timing of his threat was anything but coincidental. It came amid reports that the Biden administration is moving forward towards striking a new deal with Tehran's mullahs.
The mullahs, in short, are sending a message to America's allies in the Arab world that if they believe they can trust the Biden administration to protect them against Iran's expansionist plans or safeguard their security and stability, they are sorely mistaken.
Addressing America's Arab allies, Tangsiri warned them not to allow US or any other foreign countries to use their countries as bases for military and security operations.
Any country that ignores the warning, Tangsiri said, "will pay the price for its unfriendly and provocative behavior." The IRGC, he cautioned, is ready "to carry out any mission to preserve the interests of the Islamic Republic of Iran and its heroic people."
Meanwhile, the mullahs are busy trying to open a new battlefront against Israel, this time in the West Bank.
Iran already has its own proxies in the Gaza Strip: Hamas and Islamic Jihad. In Lebanon, the mullahs have the Hezbollah terrorist militia, which has created a state-within-a-state there and is also continuing to issue threats to attack Israel.
The three terrorist groups -- Hamas, Islamic Jihad and Hezbollah -- for the past three decades have been launching terror attacks against Israel from Lebanon and the Gaza Strip.
The mullahs appear to be so emboldened by the Biden administration's weakness that they are now openly talking about using the West Bank as a launching pad to attack Israel and kill Jews.
The commander of the IRGC, Major General Hossein Salami, revealed that Iran was working with Hamas and Islamic Jihad to extend their terrorist attacks from the Gaza Strip to the West Bank. The goal: To wage a war of attrition against Israel. The two groups already have a strong military presence in the West Bank, especially in the cities of Jenin and Nablus, which are governed by the Palestinian Authority.
"Gaza is not the only field of resistance and struggle, but this struggle has also moved to the West Bank," Salami said, hinting that the mullahs were providing weapons to the Palestinians in the West Bank.
"Just as Gaza was armed [by Iran], the West Bank can be armed in the same way, and this process will happen. Obtaining weapons has become much easier than before. There is no safe place at any time for Israel and its citizens."
He boasted that a "large number of Zionists" have been killed in terrorist attacks by Palestinian terrorists in the past few months and stressed "the necessity of continuing the jihad [holy war]" against Israel.
He said that Hezbollah was also ready to join the fight against Israel:
"Hezbollah, which gained important experiences during the Syrian [civil] war, can lead a ground war and achieve victory... The Zionists know that the land is liberated by ground forces."
Under pressure from the Iranian regime, Hamas and Islamic Jihad representatives held a meeting in the Gaza Strip earlier this week to discuss ways of stepping up the "resistance" against Israel.
The meeting came amid reports of tensions between the two terrorist groups in the aftermath of Hamas's failure to join the recent three-day fighting between Israel and Islamic Jihad. Islamic Jihad and Iran are said to be disappointed with the Hamas terrorists for not coming to the rescue of their brothers in Islamic Jihad during the fighting with Israel.
In an attempt to appease their masters in Tehran, Hamas and Islamic Jihad issued a joint statement after the meeting in which they pledged to step up the "armed struggle" against Israel "until the liberation [of all of Palestine, from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea]," a euphemism for the destruction of Israel.
These threats, in addition, should serve as a reminder to the Biden administration of Iran's bloody schemes against Israel and Arab countries. Anyone who thinks that the mullahs will abandon their plans after the signing of a new nuclear deal is deceiving him or herself. The opposite is true: appeasement will only further fortify the mullahs and their proxies, and place into further peril the lives of both Arabs and Jews.
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