Washington Examiner

Blinken asserts US dedication to reducing Israel-Iran tensions after Israeli response

Secretary of State Antony Blinken reaffirmed the US commitment to ‍de-escalate tensions between Israel and Iran after Israel’s retaliatory strike. Israel ⁢targeted a military site in central Iran following Iran’s attack⁤ on Israel. The measured response showcases ⁢Israel’s new ⁤approach in targeting Iranian locations.⁢ Blinken clarified US non-involvement in the strike and emphasized the importance of calming tensions. ⁣International voices also advocate for de-escalation‍ to prevent further conflict.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the United States is focused on de-escalating the heightened tension between Israel and Iran following the former’s retaliatory attack on the latter.

Israel reportedly launched a strike that hit a military site in central Iran overnight early Friday morning. The strike represents a limited response to Iran’s unprecedented attack on Israel last week, and it demonstrates Israel’s ability to hit targets within Iran’s borders, which is a development given Israel’s previous hesitation to aim at targets in Iran.

Israeli officials have not publicly commented on the strike, while Iranian officials have sought to downplay its significance. Iranian state media reported that Iranian air defense systems intercepted “three small drones” in Isfahan province.

Blinken denied U.S. involvement in the strike early Friday morning, saying, “The United States has not been involved in any offensive operations,” though he did not provide more details.

“We’re committed to Israel’s security. We’re also committed to de-escalating — to trying to bring this tension to a close,” he said, also describing Iran’s attack last weekend as “unprecedented in scope and scale; scope because it was a direct attack on Israel from Iran, scale because it involved more than 300 munitions including ballistic missiles.”

The U.S. is not the only country hoping for cooler heads to prevail.

“Significant escalation is not in anyone’s interest,” United Kingdom Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said on Friday, as did China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Lin Jian, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, and Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani, among others.

Hours before Israel’s attack, Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian warned it would respond to any Israeli attack “immediate[ly] and at a maximum level.”

The Biden administration has sought to avoid the Israel-Hamas war expanding into a regional conflict, even as Israel and the U.S. engaged in limited fighting against several other Iranian proxies. Hamas’s Oct. 7 terrorist attack against Israel prompted Israel’s war in Gaza and set off a series of fights between Israel and the U.S. against Iran’s proxies — Hezbollah in Lebanon, militias in Iraq and Syria, and the Houthis in Yemen.

Israel and Iran have engaged in a limited proxy battle for decades, but the events of the last couple of weeks have threatened to turn the shadow conflict into a direct war that could devolve into a regional battle.

Tehran has consistently attacked Israel through its various proxy forces in the Middle East and has done so in the aftermath of the Oct. 7 attack. Israel carried out strikes on April 1 that targeted Iran’s consulate in Damascus, Syria, and killed senior military officials. Iran argued this was an escalation.


In response to the consulate strike, Iran fired more than 300 drones and missiles at Israel last weekend, nearly all of which were intercepted by Israel and a coalition of allies that helped. Iran sought significant casualties and damage, but in totality, only a handful of munitions landed in Israel.

Prior to Israel’s strike, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said they would make their “own decisions” when choosing how to respond to Iran’s unprecedented weekend attack.

" Conservative News Daily does not always share or support the views and opinions expressed here; they are just those of the writer."

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