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January 9, 2020 3:08 pm

Israeli Analyst: Iran Is Taking a Step Back for Fear of Trump

avatar by Algemeiner Staff

US President Donald Trump. Photo: Reuters / Marco Bello / File.

Iran is pulling back from its latest confrontation with the US because it fears President Donald Trump, a top Israeli analyst asserted on Thursday.

Ehud Yaari, a veteran Israeli journalist and expert on the Middle East, wrote at the Israeli news site Mako that Iran was “reluctant to continue to clash with the US” and “taking a step back or maybe just a time out.”

The reason, said Yaari, was that Ayatollah Ali Khamenei was “scared of Trump.”

“Although he mocks him, he also fears him,” Yaari noted.

The signs of this, according to Yaari, were everywhere. Following the assassination of Iran’s Quds Force chief Qassem Soleimani last week, Iran was “satisfied” with firing missiles at US bases “intended as much as possible to avoid inflicting casualties.”

Missiles fired at a US base in Iraqi Kurdistan, he pointed out, “missed completely” and “at least one missile was launched without an explosive warhead.”

Moreover, Yaari said, “Iran has instructed Shi’a militias in Iraq not to make good on their threats for now to launch a terror campaign against the 5,000 American soldiers in the country.”

Even Kataib Hezbollah, the pro-Iran group whose leader was killed along with Soleimani, was “now calling for ‘de-escalation’ instead of revenge,” Yaari added.

Along with this, Iraqi Shi’as were proving to be increasingly uncomfortable with Iran’s attempt to serve as their patron, meaning Khamenei must “exercise caution.”

“In short: the roar of threats being heard from Tehran should be heard without too much anxiety,” Yaari says. “When the Iranians talk about 80 American dead as a result of the missile fire, they know very well that they are clinging to lies.”

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