And here I’m not talking about the faux outrage of Iran, which has during its Islamic phase committed numerous acts of terror and is the primary backer behind the worst terrorist group in Israel which is responsible for everything from bus bombings, to kidnapping and killing teens, and its defenders about the assassination.
Mohsen Fakhrizadeh was a leading figure in Iran’s nuclear weapons program which is intended to kill millions of people, especially Israeli Jews. He was a military figure, not just a lab monkey, and a fair target. Much fairer than the Israeli, Lebanese, Syrian, and countless other women and children killed by Iran.
But, as is the case with such assassinations, the story around them has quickly devolved into gibberish.
A top Iranian security official on Monday accused Israel of using “electronic devices” to remotely kill a scientist who founded the Islamic Republic’s military nuclear program in the 2000s.
Ali Shamkhani, the secretary of the country’s Supreme National Security Council, made the comment at the funeral for Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, where Iran’s defense minister separately vowed to continue the man’s work “with more speed and more power.”
Unless Iran is going with one of half a dozen other stories.
Shamkhani’s remarks drastically change the story of Fakhrizadeh’s killing, which took place Friday. Authorities initially said a truck exploded and then gunmen opened fire on the scientist, killing him and a bodyguard. State TV even interviewed a man the night of the attack who described seeing gunmen open fire.
State TV’s English-language broadcaster Press TV reported earlier Monday that a weapon recovered from the scene of the attack bore “the logo and specifications of the Israeli military industry.” State TV’s Arabic-language channel, Al-Alam, claimed the weapons used were “controlled by satellite,” a claim also made Sunday by the semiofficial Fars news agency.
A precision drone attack deep inside Iran would be impressive in its own way, but we’re already seen direct attacks by operatives on the ground on nuclear scientists in Iran. And recently news of the assassination of Abu Mohammed al-Masri, an “austere religious scholar” and Al Qaeda’s second in command in Tehran had been carried out by Mossad gunmen.
If we believe these accounts, then the Mossad seems to be able to freely operate on the ground in one of the most hostile enemy environments around. The Mossad’s operatives are impressive, but they’re not superhuman, and Israel, unlike the Jihadists, doesn’t like risking its people if there’s a better way. On the other hand, these accounts have been coming in for a while.
Iran would have motives for picking and choosing between the two narratives. A remote electronic attack would make it seem like its people are still in control of the ground while the Israelis strike covertly from above. But in-person attacks with no social distancing would give them a reason to round up political dissidents.
The conflict between these two naratives may account for this gibberish.
But it doesn’t even begin to answer the question of how Israel seems to have become very comfortable operating deep inside Iran.