Thursday Briefing: Israel Seems Poised to Retaliate

The top diplomats from Germany and Britain met with the Israeli president, Isaac Herzog (middle), in Jerusalem yesterday.Credit…Ilia Yefimovich/picture-alliance, via dpa, via Associated Press Images

An Israeli response to Iran’s attack seems inevitable

Top European diplomats traveled to Israel yesterday to make one more plea for the country to show restraint in response to Iran’s aerial attack over the weekend. But David Cameron, Britain’s foreign secretary, said that a reprisal seemed inevitable.

“It is clear that the Israelis are making a decision to act,” Cameron told the BBC. “We hope that they do so in a way that does as little to escalate this as possible.”

Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister, signaled that he plans to move forward with a response, despite pressure from the U.S., Britain, Germany and other countries to de-escalate the situation. After meeting with the diplomats, Netanyahu thanked Israel’s allies for their “support in words and support in actions,” according to his office. But, he added: “I want to make it clear — we will make our own decisions.”

Israeli officials are said to be considering a range of options, including a direct strike on Iran, a strike on an Iranian target in another country, a cyberattack and assassinations. They want to send a clear message to Tehran while not inciting a major escalation.

Israeli detention: Gazans released after being detained by Israel described graphic scenes of physical abuse, according to a report released by UNRWA, the U.N. agency for Palestinian refugees.

Lebanon: Hezbollah, an Iran-backed group, took responsibility for an attack in northern Israel that the Israeli military said had injured 14 soldiers.

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