Israel halts military leave amid Iran threats

The Israeli military halted all military leave as threats grow from Iran following an alleged Israeli strike on the Iranian consulate in Syria this week, which killed two top generals.

The IDF said Thursday in a statement that it was pausing leave for all combat units “in accordance with the situational assessment.”

“The IDF is at war and the deployment of forces is under continuous assessment according to requirements,” the military said on Telegram.

The decision will keep forces on deployment and duty as Israel is on increased alert following the alleged Israeli strike on the Iranian consulate next to Tehran’s embassy in Damascus.

The Monday strike killed a senior commander with the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Quds Force who was a top official for the Iranian military in Lebanon and Syria. It also killed another high-ranking general and five other officers.

Iran has vowed revenge for the strike, which amounted to the most high-profile loss for Tehran since Israel began fighting against the Iranian-backed Palestinian militant group Hamas in Gaza in October.

“They will also be slapped for these acts,” Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said in a speech this week, according to the state-run Islamic Republic News Agency.

It’s not clear how Iran will reply, though experts have long cautioned that the nation does not want an all-out war with the U.S. or Israel.

But Tehran could respond through attacks through its proxies, including Hezbollah in Lebanon, a group that has been fighting against the Israeli military in northern Israel since the Gaza war broke out in October. Those attacks have largely been limited to border shelling.

The IDF said Wednesday in a statement that it was increasing manpower and drafting reserve soldiers for aerial defenses following a situational assessment.

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