One of the key concerns of Israel launching a preemptive strike against Iran's nuclear program is that the Islamic Republic's response would cause grave damage to Israel and possibly engulf the region in full-scale war.
But a top Israeli official says those concerns are ill-placed, and that the Iranian response to an Israeli strike would likely be rather contained, and cause only minimal damage.
In an interview with the Times of Israel, Strategic Affairs and Intelligence Minister Yuval Steinitz said his estimate was that an Iranian response to an Israeli strike would consist of "two or three days of missile fire" against Israel and Western targets in the Middle East. That missile fire, according to Steinitz, would cause "very limited damage."
Steinitz reiterated Israel's warning to Western leaders to not be taken in by new Iranian President Hasan Rouhani's more diplomatic veneer. Like his government colleagues, Steinitz expects Rouhani to woo the West with promises of compromise, even as Iran continues to inch closer to attaining atomic weapons.
But should the West be duped, as many Israelis expect, Steinitz echoed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in stating that the Jewish state needs no green light from Washington or Europe to take action on its own.