A senior Iranian military commander boasted that the Islamic Republic could “raze the Zionist regime in less than eight minutes.”
Ahmad Karimpour, a senior adviser to the Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ elite unit al-Quds Force, said if Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei gave the order to destroy Israel, the Iranian military had the capacity to do so quickly.
“If the Supreme Leader’s orders [are] to be executed, with the abilities and the equipment at our disposal, we will raze the Zionist regime in less than eight minutes,” Karimpour said Thursday, according to the semi-official Fars News Agency.
A senior Iranian general on May 9 announced that the country’s armed forces successfully tested a precision-guided, medium-range ballistic missile two weeks earlier that could reach Israel, the state-run Tasnim agency reported.
Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei meets the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Navy unit that detained US sailors earlier in January, in a photo released by Iran on January 24, 2016.
“We test-fired a missile with a range of 2,000 kilometers and a margin of error of eight meters,” Brigadier General Ali Abdollahi was quoted as saying at a Tehran science conference. The eight-meter margin means the “missile enjoys zero error,” he told conference participants.
Iran in March tested ballistic missiles, including two with the words “Israel must be wiped off the earth” emblazoned on them, according to the US and other Western powers.
Under a nuclear deal signed last year between world powers and Iran, ballistic missile tests are not forbidden outright but are “not consistent” with a United Nations Security Council resolution from July 2015, US officials say.
According to the UN decision, “Iran is called upon not to undertake any activity related to ballistic missiles designed to be capable of delivering nuclear weapons, including launches using such ballistic missile technology,” until October 2023.
Khamenei has repeatedly threatened to annihilate the Jewish state, and in September 2015 suggested Israel would not be around in 25 years. In a quote posted to Twitter by Khamenei’s official account on September 9, 2015, Khamenei addressed Israel, saying, “You will not see next 25 years,” and added that the Jewish state will be hounded until it is destroyed.
“After negotiations, in Zionist regime they said they had no more concern about Iran for next 25 years; I’d say: Firstly, you will not see next 25 years; God willing, there will be nothing as Zionist regime by next 25 years. Secondly, until then, struggling, heroic and jihadi morale will leave no moment of serenity for Zionists,” the quote from Iran’s top leader reads in broken English.
In November 2014, Khamenei stated that the “barbaric” Jewish state “has no cure but to be annihilated.” A plan titled “9 key questions about the elimination of Israel” was posted on his Twitter account, using the hashtag #handsoffalaqsa, in reference to the tensions on the Temple Mount. The sometimes grammatically awkward list explained the how and why of Khomeini’s vision for replacing Israel with a Palestinian state.
The first point stated that “the fake Zionist regime has tried to realize its goals by means of infanticide, homicide, violence & iron fist while boasts about it blatantly.” Due to the above, Khomeini argued, “the only means of bringing Israeli crimes to an end is the elimination of this regime.”