US, Israel plan joint military exercise to confront Iran
Press Tv June 25, 2012
Israel and the United States are planning to hold their largest ever joint military drill aimed at confronting Iran in October when the result of international sanctions against Tehran will be determined.
About 3,000 US soldiers and thousands of Israeli troops will take part in the drill.
In line with efforts to coordinate the details of the exercise, Commander of the US 3rd Air Force Lt.-Gen. Craig A. Franklin has recently paid a visit to Israel to establish a planning committee with the representatives of the US and Israeli militaries.
During the drill, Israel will deploy its upgraded Arrow 2 missile defense system for the first time while the US will bring its Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System to Israel and install PAC-3 Patriot air defense systems as a security network.
Security officials believe that the exercise sends a clear message to Iran which has announced that it will attack the Israeli regime in case of any act of aggression against its nuclear facilities.
Some analysts say the drill will be a test of the situation that may occur following the Israeli regime’s attack on Iranian nuclear facilities.
The United States and Israel have repeatedly threatened Iran with a military ‘option’ in an attempt to force the Islamic Republic to halt its nuclear energy program, which Washington and Tel Aviv claim has a military component.
Iran rejects the allegations, arguing that as a committed signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), it has the right to use nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.
On Sunday, Commander of the Aerospace Division of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Brigadier General Amir-Ali Hajizadeh said the Islamic Republic will strongly confront any possible assault against the country.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran has no interest in wars with other countries, but we will strongly confront the enemies’ possible aggression and will give them a response that will make them regret the aggression,” he stated.