The head of Iran’s powerful Revolutionary Guards on Sunday warned of retaliation against the Gulf’s strategic Strait of Hormuz, U.S. bases in the Middle East and Israel if his country was to be attacked.
General Mohammed Ali Jaafari, speaking in a very rare news conference in Tehran, also said that he believed Iran would abandon the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty should it be targeted for military action.
The warnings underlined the high tensions surrounding Iran and its disputed nuclear program, which Israel has threatened it could seek to disrupt with air strikes, with or without U.S. help.
Jaafari said the Strait of Hormuz, the narrow channel at the entrance of the Gulf through which a third of the world’s traded oil passes, would be a legitimate target for Iran should it be attacked.
“This is a declared policy by Iran that if war occurs in the region and the Islamic republic is involved, it is natural that the Strait of Hormuz as well as the energy (market) will face difficulties,” he said.
Jaafari suggested that U.S. military bases — such as those in Bahrain, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia — would also be fair game for retaliation by Iranian missiles or proxy forces.