• First Page
  • Special issue
  • Sports
  • National
  • Arts & Culture
Number Seven Thousand Five Hundred and Forty Nine - 05 May 2024
Iran Daily - Number Seven Thousand Five Hundred and Forty Nine - 05 May 2024 - Page 2

Major General Gholam-Ali Rashid, a leading commander of Iran’s strike on Israel:

Operation True Promise was to bypass Israel’s fake deterrence

Operations Al-Aqsa Storm and True Promise, which were carried out by Hamas and Iran, respectively, can be considered turning points in the developments of the region and changes of the international order. On the one hand, these events proved how fake is Israel’s deterrence by relying on all its allies, and on the other hand, made the struggle for the liberation of Palestine from the clutches of the Zionist usurper regime to be noticed by the nations of the world as an ideal. After Operation True Promise, which was carried out by the Islamic Republic as a legitimate defense in response to the Zionist regime’s aggression against the Iranian consulate in Syria, the power and authority of the discourse of the Islamic Revolution became clear to the world, especially to the arrogant leaders in the West. Nevertheless, Israel and the media hegemony ruling the international space tried to censor various aspects of the operation and make it look like a small action — an attempt that, of course, failed. Iran Daily has conducted an exclusive interview with Major General Gholam-Ali Rashid to inform Iranian and international audiences about the dimensions of Iran’s operations against Israel. Considered to be one of the main commanders of Operation True Promise, Major General Rashid was one of the senior commanders of the IRGC during the holy defense period and held responsibilities such as the replacement of the commander of the IRGC’s ground forces and the IRGC operations deputy. After the war, Major General Rashid became the deputy for information and operations of the General Staff of the Armed Forces and then the deputy of that staff.

IRAN DAILY: How do you evaluate the October 7 operation by Hamas, and what do you think was its most important achievement?
RASHID: The primary achievement of this operation was the exposure of Israel’s vulnerability. The foundations of the Israeli army were revealed as being boastful and deceitful — a military that, over the past 70 years, falsely claimed victories over Egypt, Jordan, and Syria crumbled. This is a fabricated regime, which in recent years has been tasked with vilifying us. Martyr General Qassem Soleimani used to say that every government in the world has an army, but in Israel, it’s the opposite; there’s an army that has fabricated a pseudo-state. Therefore, we are only confronting a military force and nothing more. They have come here and planted something that they believe could become a country; Israel is akin to a dental implant in dentistry that the English and Western countries have implanted, and Israel’s existence depends on the West. Meaning that if one day the West is not there, Israel will collapse, and vice versa; if Israel collapses, the West will collapse too. Israel has no embassy in Iran, but all Western embassies assist it. They provide them with information and any assistance, whether political, military, media-related, etc., that they may require.

So, do you believe that the reality of Israel is not consistent with what it portrays in the media?
Yes. The image that Israel creates of itself in the media never aligns with the actual situation inside the occupied Palestinian territories. It fabricates a false image of being defenseless and having no enemies. In the October 7 operation, all of its false pretenses were shattered by 1,100 to 1,200 fighters of a group that everyone knows has the combat skills and maneuverability of an infantry battalion. These 1,100 or so individuals attacked Israel’s vaunted army; some Hamas fighters say that the Israelis were asleep or drunk in tanks and bases, adding that they could not believe that the Israeli army would collapse to this extent in just a few hours.
Even Americans themselves say that Anthony Blinken, the US secretary of state who is frequently traveling to Arab countries, told the Iraqi prime minister that the Israeli army had collapsed and its work was almost done. He reportedly said that the US went and helped them, lifted their army from the ground and kept it up so that it would not be completely destroyed, and tried to persuade them to stand and continue their work while relying on Americans. Therefore, the Zionist regime, economically and militarily, stands upright with the direct support from Americans and Europeans, who freely provide any means the Israelis need, even weapons of mass slaughter, namely atomic bombs.

The Islamic Republic of Iran has repeatedly stated that Israel, as an occupier and aggressor, must be eradicated. To what extent is this ideal achievable in reality?
I would like to clarify that, unfortunately, some university professors and intellectuals have misconstrued our statements that the Islamic Republic of Iran intends to destroy the occupying Israel. However, the leadership and authorities of the Islamic Republic of Iran have always emphasized that Iran, as a political system, must defeat and destroy the occupying and aggressive Israel, which has occupied the first Qibla of Muslims and the land of the Palestinian people, with the help of all governments and Muslim nations.
This is deeply unsettling and a nightmare for Israeli commanders. Their vulnerability is what shakes them. The nightmare for Israeli commanders is that they say only 1,100 individuals attacked us and scattered us like this; while Hamas has 30,000 fighters; if 10,000 of its fighters again attacked us unexpectedly, along with 10,000 fighters from Lebanon’s Hezbollah and two or three thousand youths from its western shores, Israel’s work would be finished. This figure is just a small portion of their power.
Israel has a very small land area. Once in June of last year, in one of the frequent meetings we had with senior commanders of the IRGC and the army, I made a comparison between our action in this operation and Israel’s situation. The scope of our Operation Beit ol-Moqaddas in the war against Iraq was 6,000 square kilometers. That is, we liberated the geographical scope of the occupied Palestinian territories in this operation. We placed this region on the geographical map of the occupied Palestinian territories, covering the northern half of the southern border of Lebanon, covering the western shores and up to Ashdod; That is, we saw that executive centers, military centers, population centers, and economic centers are all in this area. The remaining areas of southern Israel are mostly desert. Areas like the Negev Desert and around Gaza are all deserts, and there is no significant population there. The bulk of the Jewish and ancient Arab population in 1948 is in this area. All Israeli cities, executive centers, the Ministry of Defense, Army Headquarters, industrial centers, etc., were accounted for.
A reporter had previously asked Commander-in-Chief of the Islamic Republic of Iran Army Sayyed Abdolrahim Mousavi, “What if a war breaks out between Iran and Israel? How can Iran’s army, the IRGC, and armed forces defeat Israel?” He replied that if there is a situation where these forces fight together against the Israeli army, we will end Israel’s work with just one operation on the same scale as operations like Fath ol-Mobin and Beit ol-Moqaddas and no more; That is, if forces from southern Lebanon, the Golan Heights, the West Bank and Gaza, to the extent of these operations, attack Israel, their work is done and the Israeli army is destroyed.
The October 7 incident was an example of this. Israel could not even act properly against a group of fighters, let alone a regular army. It was an attack that lasted about 16 to 20 hours. So, this vaunted army’s self-created image is false.

How do you view the current situation of Israel in terms of geographical and demographic factors? To what extent do you think the various crises that the Israeli regime faces have weakened and destabilized this country?
We should not think that Israel is what it portrays itself and what Western media depicts. Sometimes Israel carries out actions in Iran, for example, assassinating our nuclear scientists or conducting explosions in a limited area, and then it magnifies these actions to appear much larger than they were. The entire Western media empire supports this. Because Israel stands with direct support from the US and Europe, they provide all resources for free — money, equipment, state-of-the-art weapons, and any assistance needed. Currently, CENTCOM has established an operational headquarters in Tel Aviv and is commanding operations up close. French, British, and American soldiers are fighting alongside Israeli soldiers; this shows that Israel is a fabricated regime.
There is a book titled The Middle East and North Africa: A Political Geography written by Alasdair Drysdale and Gerald Henry Blake, two English geographers, in the 1980s. I recommend reading it. In the second part of the book, Israel is discussed. It says Israel is a paradox and the result of an extremist ideology called Zionism. It faces very serious issues and is never able to unify its people, who were gathered from all over the world. This book mentions that the Jewish population of Israel has been brought from 102 different countries worldwide and gathered there. This collected population is multilingual and speaks at least 15 languages — Hebrew, Arabic, English, Polish, Russian, German, Iranian, Spanish, African, etc.
The reason for this failure that has become apparent in Israel and cannot be rectified is nothing other than the fact that this army, this fabricated Israeli cabinet, and the society gathered in this occupied land are devoid of identity and lack the essential existential elements that constitute a nation and a state — they lack national identity, cultural coherence, and none of the important components that a state and nation should have. They lack identity; they have no cultural identity, no national identity, and no coherence among them; that is, there is no cohesion or connection among them.
The situation of its population is not comparable at all to the situation of the people of Iran. The people of Iran have strong and cohesive bonds with each other. Factors such as religious homogeneity, racial homogeneity, linguistic homogeneity, and ethnic homogeneity that exist in Iran are hardly found anywhere else in the world. Enemies and hostile media in the West try to suggest that ethnic diversity in Iran has created rifts within our society, while in reality, this is not the case. Indeed, in Iran, this diversity and differences are utilized to enhance solidarity and unity. In fact, this diversity and differences have strengthened intimacy among us. All these ethnicities and diverse groups in Iranian society remain united and stand together as one heart and one voice whenever they sense any danger, coming together to defend Iran. Factors such as strategic geographical location, territorial integrity, ancient historical roots, cultural structure, political ideals, a strong central government, and linguistic, religious, racial, and ethnic cohesion are internal factors. Meanwhile, external threats, provoked by the global arrogance, contribute to the creation and enhancement of solidarity, unity, and cohesion among the inhabitants of the land of Iran. However, in Israel, none of these things exist; none of these bonds exist. Israel lacks any of the components that are the reason for the existence of a country and based on which a country is formed.

Would you illuminate some of the significant internal and international dimensions of Operation True Promise?
Operation True Promise was a significant military action undertaken directly by Iran against the Israeli regime. It was a response that surprised all adversaries, demonstrating Israel’s vulnerability. This operation, along with other recent events like Operation Al-Aqsa Storm carried out by Hamas, clearly showed that Israel is now facing a new reality after Operation True Promise and other direct military actions. Any form of response by the regime to extricate itself from the quagmire it finds itself in will only lead to further collapse. The axis of resistance holds the upper hand, and the horizon of the next decade foresees the dominance of the resistance axis. History is being rewritten.
The oppressed nations of the region, particularly the oppressed Muslim nations of Palestine and Lebanon, have learned the path of resistance against the Zionist occupier. With the help of Allah Almighty and support from all Muslim governments and nations, including the Islamic Republic of Iran, they will overcome the Zionist occupier regime and defeat it. The true characteristics of America and the Zionist regime are seen by all nations in the region: their occupation of Muslim lands, the displacement of the Palestinian people, coercion, extortion, crimes, genocide, and massacres over the past 70 years. The Muslim nation of Palestine is not willing to surrender to America and the Zionist regime.
The most prominent aspect of Operation True Promise was the manifestation of Iran’s leadership will and determination, catching all enemies off guard. Israel, which thought itself an impregnable military fortress, came under attack and penetrated by missiles and drones. The Iran’s will and the determination of the great Iranian nation, embodied in the revolutionary leadership, hold strategic importance. The degree of accuracy of Iran’s missile strikes on targets is far less important than this strategic significance.
Operation True Promise crossed its self-imposed barriers and shattered the illusion of the Zionist regime, which believed its deterrence was guaranteed by the US and NATO powers. When they realized that Iran’s leadership had decisively chosen to punish Israeli aggression, they all rushed in fear to aid Israel. America, with complete and selective support from NATO powers, especially the UK, France, and some regional countries, deployed multiple defensive layers against Iran’s missile and drone attacks over a geographical area spanning at least one million square kilometers across Iraq, Jordan, the Red Sea, the Eastern Mediterranean, Cyprus, and occupied Palestine. Despite these defensive measures in support of the Zionist regime, powerful Iranian missiles breached the missile defense shields and destroyed the military centers of Nevatim and Shlagim. The Zionist regime dared not show recent images of these two military bases to the world. If it weren’t for the Americans, British, and French, and CENTCOM rushing to Israel’s aid, Iran’s missiles would have certainly devastated 80% of the Zionist regime’s military bases.
Through Operation True Promise, the strategic landscape once again shifted in favor of the Islamic Republic of Iran. This change occurred at a time when America promised Israel “ironclad” US support. America and the Zionist regime, along with other Western powers who came to Israel’s aid, spent 10 hours in fear, anxiety, and turmoil, witnessing the imposition of Iran’s national will and the defeat of Israel’s deterrence. Iran’s power received widespread admiration, having punished the Zionist regime decisively and without surprise, flooding the shameless and criminal elements of the region with torrents and solid fists, and reinstating order.
This offensive operation was carried out in response to the Zionist regime’s crime against its commanders at the Iranian consulate and embassy in Damascus, who were there at the request of the Syrian government. The offensive operation was conducted by the IRGC Aerospace Force, which utilized only a small part, about 20 percent, of its offensive capability. In contrast, the US, NATO, CENTCOM, and the Zionist regime deployed 240 fighter jets and numerous missile defense systems stationed on American aircraft carriers in the Mediterranean and Red Seas, along with the missile defense systems of the Zionist regime, in a defensive posture due to their fear. A small portion of the IRGC Aerospace Force, with 80 percent of its offensive capability ready, was prepared to initiate an attack according to subsequent orders, but Iranian commanders determined that the punishment of the Zionist regime was sufficient at this level. Meanwhile, the support for such a regime from America, the UK, France, and European governments, was not acceptable to the Western people. Are there any wise and reasonable people in Western society who will prevent their governments from supporting the occupation and its destructive policies against the oppressed Palestinian people?

Date archive