The deputy commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps says Tehran has plans “to break America, Israel, and their partners and allies” in worldwide attacks.
In a speech aired February 19 on Iran’s IRINN TV, Brig. Gen. Hossein Salami said Iran was preparing to “fight them on the global level, not just in one spot. Our war is not a local war. We have plans to defeat the world powers,” according to a translation published by the Washington-based MEMRI watchdog.
Iran was “planning to break America, Israel, and their partners and allies. Our ground forces should cleanse the planet from the filth of their existence,” Salami said in the latest anti-Western invective from an Iranian military leader in recent weeks.
About a week earlier, on February 11, another top commander in the elite IRGC threatened to destroy two of Israel’s largest cities if Iran is attacked by the United States.
“The United States does not have the courage to shoot a single bullet at us despite all its defensive and military assets. But if they attack us, we will raze Tel Aviv and Haifa to the ground,” Brig. Gen. Yadollah Javani was quoted as saying at a rally marking the 40th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution by Tehran’s state news agency IRNA, according to Reuters.
Top political and military leaders in Iran regularly call for Israel’s annihilation, with a senior general recently claiming it would defeat the Jewish state “within three days” in the case of a war.
In his February 19 speech, Salami said, “We will break our enemy. We have decided to do so. We have a plan. We are organized and motivated. We have faith. We have martyrdom. We have Jihad. Our nation’s sword has been drawn out of its sheath.”
He depicted Iran’s enemies as fragile and all but defeated. “Our enemies should know that we will never let them be,” he said. “The Saud regime should know that it will not last. I know what dreams of horror they have every night. Their lips have become dry [out of fear]. Every day that passes, they are grateful for having lived to see another day. They await death.”
He also addressed the US and Israel. “The same is true of those who are greater than them. America, too, is distressed today,” he said. “It does not have the appearance of a world power at all. America, too, has been defeated.”
Of Israel: “The Zionist regime is struggling to survive by using psychological warfare. Our enemies have despaired. They are helpless.”
He added: “We shall never lay down our weapons. We are holding the banner. We have taken an oath. This is who we are. We were not created for this world. We were chosen to wage Jihad.”
The Iranian regime views Israel as an arch-enemy, and has vowed to destroy it repeatedly. Israel says it has carried out hundreds of airstrikes on Iranian-linked targets as part of a campaign to prevent Tehran from establishing a military presence in Syria.
In response to those threats, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu threatened the Iranian regime with destruction.
“I don’t ignore the threats from the Iranian regime, but I’m also not intimidated by them,” Netanyahu said in a Hebrew-language video uploaded to social media.
“If this regime makes the terrible mistake and tries to destroy Tel Aviv or Haifa, it won’t be successful, and it will be the last anniversary of their revolution they will ever celebrate.”
“They should take that into account,” he said.
Agencies contributed to this report.