Iran always couches its determination to destroy Israel in Islamic terms, based on the Qur’anic exhortation to “drive them out from where they drove you out” (2:191). Yet the Islamic motivation for the destruction of Israel is routinely discounted by Western analysts.
TEHRAN — Iran held major anti-Israel rallies across the country Friday, with protesters chanting “Death to Israel” and declaring that destroying the Jewish state is “the Muslim world’s top priority.”
Iranians participating in Quds Day rallies also called for unity among pro-Palestinian groups against the “child-murdering” Israeli government, according to Iran’s Tasnim News Agency.
Marchers in Tehran headed from various points of the city to the Friday prayer ceremony at Tehran University. Similar demonstrations were held in other cities and towns in Iran.
Iran’s powerful Revolutionary Guard used the demonstration in the capital’s Valiasr Square to showcase three surface-to-surface ballistic missiles, including the Zolfaghar — the type that Iran used this week to target the Islamic State group in Syria. The Guard said it fired six such missiles on Sunday at IS targets in the city of Deir el-Zour, more than 600 kilometers (370 miles) away. The Guard said the airstrike was in retaliation for an IS attack earlier in June on Iran’s parliament and a shrine in Tehran that killed 18 people and wounded more than 50.
Another missile on display at the Tehran rally was the Ghadr, with a range of 2,000 kilometers (1,250 miles) that can reach both Israel and US bases in the region.
Iran’s ballistic missile program has been the subject of persistent concern in Washington and the target of repeated US sanctions.
Iran claimed its missile strike on Sunday killed 360 Islamic State fighters. Israeli sources, by contrast, said the strike was a “flop,” that most of the six or seven missiles missed their targets, and that three of them fell to earth in Iraq and didn’t even reach Syria.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, in remarks carried by the official IRNA news agency, said Israel supports “terrorists in the region.”
Parliament speaker Ali Larijani, in a speech to Tehran demonstrators, called Israel the “mother of terrorism” and said that in the “20th century, there was no event more ominous than establishing the Zionist regime.”
The rally also inaugurated a huge digital countdown display at Tehran Palestine Square, showing that Israel will allegedly cease to exist in 8,411 days.
In 2015, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei predicted that after 25 years — by 2040 — there will no longer be a State of Israel.
“Death to the House of Saud and Daesh,” demonstrators chanted, using another name for the Islamic State. “Death to America”, “Death to Israel”, “Death to the UK.”…