World War 3: Israel told ‘don’t underestimate Iran’s weapons’ as tensions soar

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Iran and Israel’s ongoing feud has attracted international concern once more after the assassination of Tehran’s top nuclear weapons scientist. Mohsen Fakhrizadeh’s death came after a firefight in Tehran last week, with Iran’s leaders blaming Israel for the attack.Fakhrizadeh was believed to be a crucial figure in Iran’s nuclear weapons programme, meaning his death comes with huge implications.

The two countries have been engaged in an arms race for some time, as highlighted by former Israel Missile Defense Organisation Director Uzi Rubin.

He told I24 news – an Israeli broadcaster – last year that his country is “ahead” in the arms race but warned of the threat Iranian weapons could pose.

He said: “Whatever is in service you need to test from time to time, and also the enemy is not standing still.

“It is introducing improvements to its missile, so you have to introduce some improvement in your missile.

“I think we are one step ahead, but I don’t underestimate the Iranians. They adopt science and adopt technology, they have a vast array of technical education.

“They also have a lot of engineers now. But I still think we are way ahead of them.

“However, I agree it is a race and you have to keep one step ahead of them all the time.”

During the live broadcast, one presenter asked if Iran’s “thousands of rockets in Lebanon” was a cause for concern.

Hezbollah, a group which wields significant power in Lebanon and is sympathetic to the Iranian regime, boasts missiles which Israel fears could be used to target its civilians.

Mr Rubin added: “If they have precision rockets, it raises the level of the threat.

“You have to build your missile defence of course.”

According to Global Fire Power – a website that gathers data on militaries around the world – Iran has far more rocket projectors and artillery with 2000 of each while Israel boasts just a few hundred.

However, Israeli forces have more presence on the ground – they have slightly more combat tanks and over 10,000 armoured vehicles to Iran’s 4000.

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Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said in a televised speech on Saturday that his country will retaliate for the killing of its prominent nuclear scientist at “the proper time”.

Fakhrizadeh was rushed to hospital after the attack by helicopter, the Iranian Government said, but was pronounced dead.

Experts have warned this could also have a severe impact on President-elect Joe Biden’s foreign policy approach, while presenting a more imminent threat during the Trump administration’s final months.

President Trump’s incoming replacement would have been hoping to mend the worsening relationship between Tehran and Washington since the breakdown of the nuclear deal, agreed when Barack Obama was President and Mr Biden was Vice-President.

The deal limited Tehran’s ability to make nuclear weapons by restricting the uranium that could be enriched – a part of the process of creating nuclear missiles.

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