June 26, 2024 | Flash Brief

Iranian Proxies in Iraq, Yemen Launch New Attacks on Israeli Targets

June 26, 2024 | Flash Brief

Iranian Proxies in Iraq, Yemen Launch New Attacks on Israeli Targets

Latest Developments

Iranian-backed terrorist groups in Iraq and Yemen launched fresh attacks on Israeli targets on June 25 and 26 as the prospect of a regional escalation continues to intensify. The Iranian-backed Islamic Resistance in Iraq claimed responsibility for a drone attack targeting the southern Israeli port city of Eilat in the early hours of June 26, the Israeli website Ynet reported. Sirens sounded in the city, whose population has been boosted by the arrival of Israelis evacuated from other parts of the country during the ongoing war in Gaza. According to Ynet, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) reported “that the UAV exploded in the maritime space near the city.” The drone attack on Eilat took place as Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen took responsibility for an attack on a Liberian-flagged vessel in the Red Sea that they claimed was “Israeli.” In a statement published by the Turkish state-run Anadolu Agency, Houthi spokesman Yahya Saree said that the ship, the MSC Sarah V, had received a “precise and direct hit.” Saree added that “the missile used in this operation is a newly deployed ballistic missile that demonstrated its accuracy during trial runs.”

Expert Analysis

“Separate Iranian-backed attacks from Lebanon, Iraq, and Yemen illustrate how Iran is seeking to increase the pressure on Israel as Hamas is being defeated in Gaza. Iran has mobilized its proxies throughout the war in Gaza to make it harder for Israel to focus on the destruction of Hamas. It is essential to understand that the attacks from Iraq, Yemen, and Lebanon do not come in a vacuum but are part of a wider Iranian-backed offensive.” — Seth J. Frantzman, FDD Adjunct Fellow

“Over the past eight months, Iran has been utilizing its network of proxies and clients to wear down the Israeli military. Despite these efforts, the IDF has continued to make progress in Gaza. While one could argue that Iran’s multi-front attacks have prompted Israel to reassess its strategy for a large-scale response to Hezbollah’s ongoing aggression, it appears that these efforts have not significantly impeded Israel’s overall military momentum in the war.” Joe Truzman, Senior Research Analyst at FDD’s Long War Journal 

Iranian-backed Attacks Threaten Regional Conflict

Iran’s support for attacks on Israel threatens to push the region into a wider conflict. Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant told his U.S. counterpart Lloyd Austin on June 25 that Israel is reaching a “crossroads that will impact the entire Middle East.” Iran has activated its proxies in Iraq and Yemen, as well as Hezbollah in Lebanon, to create a multi-front war against Israel. As the intensity of the war against Hamas in Gaza winds down, there are rising concerns in the region, expressed via news reports in Arabic media, that a war between Israel and Hezbollah could become inevitable if the Iranian-backed escalation does not end.

Hezbollah Turns Down Offer From Fellow Iran Proxies to Send Troops for War Against Israel,” FDD Flash Brief

Hezbollah Threatens Cyprus Over Israel Links,” FDD Flash Brief

Biden Administration Warns Israel Against War With Hezbollah,” FDD Flash Brief

Issues:

Issues:

Iran Iran Global Threat Network Iran-backed Terrorism Israel Israel at War

Topics:

Topics:

Anadolu Agency Arabic Cyprus Eilat Gaza City Hamas Hezbollah Houthis Iran Iran–Israel proxy conflict Iraq Israel Israel Defense Forces Joe Biden Lebanon Lloyd Austin Red Sea Sari Turkish Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Yahya Saree Yemen Yoav Gallant