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Israeli drones responsible for attack on Iranian military compound, according to US officials

Iran and Israel have been locked in a protracted shadow war that takes place across the region

Screenshot of video circulating on social media reportedly of explosion at a defense facility in the Iranian city Isfahan after a drone strike, Jan. 28, 2022 (Photo: Screenshot)

Israeli drones reportedly attacked a military compound in Iran, according to The Wall Street Journal, citing unnamed U.S. officials who allegedly knew of the military operation. 

Three compact quad-copters reportedly struck a munitions factory in the Iranian city of Isfahan. The target was located next to a site connected to the Iranian Space Research Center, which Washington sanctioned after it began developing Tehran’s ballistic missile program. 

The drone strike comes amid growing tensions between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Western world. With a new Iranian nuclear agreement increasingly unlikely, Washington and its allies are looking into alternative ways to prevent Iran’s military expansion and development of a nuclear bomb. 

Iranian officials initially downplayed the drone strike, claiming that its air defenses had succeeded in neutralizing the drones with only minor damage to the factory's roof. 

“At around 23:30, an unsuccessful attack using micro-aerial vehicles was carried out on one of the Defense Ministry’s workshops,” said a statement by the Iranian Defense Ministry.

However, images on social media show that the drones caused a significant explosion at the site. 

Later, Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian condemned the drone attack as a “cowardly strike.” 

“Such actions cannot impact the determination and intent of our experts for peaceful nuclear progress,” Amir-Abdollahian said, according to the Iranian regime-controlled news outlet PadDolat. 

The sharp statement by Tehran’s top diplomat could be interpreted as an indirect admission of significant damages at the military site. The Israeli government followed Jerusalem’s long-held policy to neither confirm nor deny its involvement in the strike. 

Iran regularly claims that its nuclear research is merely for peaceful purposes. However, few observers in the West or the Middle East believe the regime, which has a long history of false claims and propaganda. 

The Tehran regime’s duplicitous nature is not limited to its controversial nuclear program or the Middle East. For instance, Iran initially denied it had provided lethal drones to the Russian military for its war effort in Ukraine. However, in early November, Iran admitted that it had provided drones to Russia. 

U.S. Special Envoy Robert Malley was even clearer: “Iran has military personnel in occupied Ukraine helping Russia use the drones.” 

The Islamist regime in Iran and Israel have been locked in a protracted shadow war that takes place across the region. Seven people were reportedly killed when an aerial strike targeted a convoy smuggling Iranian weapons from Iraq into eastern Syria. 

The warplanes targeted “truck drivers and their assistants, all of them non-Syrians,” said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights the day after the attack, stating that it had been “a convoy of Iran-backed groups.”

Syrian Observatory Director Rami Abdel Rahman on Sunday told the Associated Foreign Press that “the trucks were transporting Iranian weapons.”

Neither the Israeli military nor the Israeli government commented on the strike in eastern Syria. However, senior Israeli officials have said that the Israeli Air Force has conducted hundreds of strikes against Iranian military targets throughout Syria. 

Iran has tried for years to entrench itself militarily in war-raged Syria. The Iranian regime seeks to encircle Israel’s borders with pro-Iranian forces and to establish a Shiite corridor of influence that stretches from Tehran to Syria and Lebanon by the Mediterranean Sea. 

Israel and the United States recently held the largest joint military exercise to test their capabilities against Iran. The “Juniper Oak” training exercise included 142 aircraft, 12 naval vessels, 6,400 U.S. personnel and 1,100 Israeli soldiers. 

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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