When something happens that no one expected, that doesn’t make sense at first, asking why is a natural reflex. Even two days after a new, now historic bloodshed began in Israel, after images of horror went around the world, there are more questions than answers. Below: Cui bono? Who benefits from it? Who benefits from dying in the Middle East?

Immediately after the first rocket hit Israeli territory, observers were already sure who the puppet master in the shadows was, who was the real mastermind behind the surprise attack: Iran, Israel’s arch-enemy. There is no evidence of this. Hamas pulled the trigger, but Iran gave the terrorists the weapons in the first place, according to another assumption. There is plenty of evidence for this.

It is no secret that the slaughter took place not only with the consent but with the express benevolence of the mullahs. But the reactions from Tehran go far beyond schadenfreude. What the Western world sees as a historic act of terror, the regime calls a “proud effort.” The Islamic Republic congratulates the Palestinian fighters on this “liberation strike,” an adviser to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei said. The regime is said to have even organized street parties including fireworks in Tehran.

One can only speculate as to whether Hamas perhaps even got the okay from Tehran before the attack on Saturday morning. In any case, the attacks were “in line with the continuation of the victories of the anti-Zionist resistance,” said a spokesman for the Iranian Foreign Ministry. One thing is already certain: Terrorism is very convenient for Iran.

If you want to get an idea of ​​how deep the Iranian leadership’s hatred of the Jewish state runs, you only need to take a look at Ali Khamenei’s official X account (formerly Twitter). The religious and political leader of Iran has been carrying out unprecedented anti-Semitic incitement on the platform since yesterday. So his reaction to the Hamas attack surprised very few people. “God willing,” he wrote on Saturday, this would “eradicate” the “cancer” of Israel.

Enmity with Israel has, in principle, been a raison d’être since the overthrow of the pro-American monarchy and the rise to power of the Shiite revolutionaries in 1979. As the protector of the hated Shah, the USA and everything associated with it became the overarching enemy of the new leadership. Above all: the still young Jewish state. After all, it was the Israeli and American secret services Mossad and CIA that had a hand in building the feared Iranian counterpart Savak. The organization, which existed until 1979, became known for the persecution, torture and murder of thousands of Iranians.

In the new, radical regime, Israel is viewed as a “colonial outpost of the West and Zionism as a variant of imperialism,” wrote former Iranian ambassador Shireen Hunter in an article for the US think tank Stimson Center. From the perspective of the ultra-conservative new Iranian elite, the Israel-USA alliance represents the greatest threat to the Islamic world. Joining forces with the Palestinian people, who from their point of view are also oppressed, is only logical, as Iran sees itself as a protective power for Muslims.

Meter-high fences, soldiers patrolling day in and day out, highly sensitive motion sensors, not even a handful of entrances and exits: Hardly any other region is as well guarded as the Gaza Strip. And yet Hamas was able to stockpile enough ammunition here to launch its most violent attacks on Israel in years. The highlight: The warheads that have been raining down on Israeli territory since Saturday are apparently not “made in”, but largely “paid by” Iran. Hamas is said to receive up to $30 million per month from Iran, which is itself struggling economically. Enough to cobble together firepower locally – making the risky import unnecessary. Not to mention providing military and technical knowledge. Without the mullahs’ patronage, experts are certain, the Palestinian Jihad and Hamas would not have had anywhere near sufficient resources.

Iran still has a lot more iron in the fire. The Houthis in Yemen and several smaller militias in Iraq and Syria also belong to the “Axis of Resistance,” whose operations are supported and allegedly partially coordinated by the Quds Force, the elite of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard. According to a report by the think tank “Council on Foreign Relations”, the leader of the Kuds, General Esmail Qaʾani, only met with the actors in the spring in order to persuade them to carry out a joint attack on Israel – including supposedly representatives of Hamas.

The Lebanese Hezbollah also belongs to this anti-Israel club. This “state within a state,” which Iran once formed from a motley crew of Shiite resistance fighters, is far more powerful than Hamas. It was foreseeable that the militia members would use the opportunity to launch their own strike against their hated neighbor.

Barely 24 hours after the first attack by like-minded people in the southwest, Hezbollah also fired on Israeli positions. However, the smaller skirmishes in the area of ​​the Israeli-occupied Shebaa Farms could only be a foretaste of what is to come. In the worst case scenario, Hamas has merely thrown the first stone – and the Shiite militia Hezbollah is following in an avalanche.

Empowered by Iran, the three terrorist groups, Islamic Jihad, Hamas and Hezbollah, could involve Israel, which is weakened by domestic political disagreements, in a two-front war. Those in power in Tehran are applauding from the sidelines – probably also for themselves. A proxy war in which only one side provides representatives. Now Iran is certainly not the cause of the bloodshed in Israel and Gaza; the wounds that have been inflicted on each other over decades were already too deep for that. Rather, Tehran takes on the role of a false friend who puts a knife in a thug’s hand just before he loses his temper.

In particular, Israel’s gradual rapprochement with Sunni Saudi Arabia, the largest economic and ideological regional competitor, was difficult for the Iranian leadership to bear. An economic, perhaps even military alliance between the two once-enemy states mediated by the USA would reorganize the power structure of the entire region – with Iran as the clear loser. This is also why Hamas’ terror is very convenient for those in power in Tehran. Potential friends of Israel should see the attacks as a warning, according to the official message. Apparently a similar conclusion was reached in Riyadh. Hamas did not condemn the Foreign Ministry in any way. It remains to be seen whether the flirtation with Jerusalem is off the negotiating table.

Iran cannot afford a direct attack. As it turns out these days, he doesn’t have to. The fanatics in Tehran are pushing the fanatics in the Gaza Strip across the sh(l)ach(t)field with an invisible hand as expendable pawns. When the dust settles, the winner of this carnage has long been determined. And the losers – among them the Iranian people.

Quellen: “Conversation”; “The Atlantic”; “Council on Foreign Relations”; “Tagesschau”; “Washington Post”