18 February '15..
A comprehensive report by MEMRI (Middle East Media Research Institute) warns of Iran's accelerated preparations for a massive attack on the Jewish state.
According to the report, Iran has established substantial forces within striking distance of Israel's border. The Iranians can call upon regional Shiite forces, including Hezbollah in Lebanon and a new Hezbollah force formed out of local Syrian militias numbering 70,000 that is made up of Syrian Alawites, Shiites and collaborating Sunnis.
However, to supplement this force, Iran has "130,000 trained Iranian Basij fighters waiting to enter Syria."
These forces only represent the first line. Iran, with a population of over 70 million and the allegiance of regional Shiites, has enormous manpower reserves that could be mobilized in time of war.
MEMRI quotes Yahya Rahim Safavi, former IRGC commander and security affairs advisor to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, who boasted in May 2014: "Our strategic depth reaches to the Mediterranean, and above Israel's head."
The MEMRI report continues,
"As part of this implementation, the Syrian Golan has become an Iranian theater of operation as well. This strategic Iranian presence in the Golan was at first clandestine... but later became public, and was accompanied by open threats to target Israel from the Syrian border."
The report identifies the arming of Palestinians in the West Bank and even sympathetic Israeli Arabs as one of the next steps.
The report does not discuss new revelations about advances in Iran's ballistic missile program, the introduction of new fighter jets or the recent disclosure of an Iranian built submarine capable of launching ballistic missiles. Nor does it mention Iran's ability to utilize its newly acquired strategic base in Yemen.
The MEMRI report concludes,
"Israel faces a fateful crisis. As much as it feared the Iranian nuclear program, it never imagined that Iran would be standing on its border even before its nuclear agreement with the Americans was complete. The Iranian threat to Israel is no longer theoretical, nor does it have anything to do with Israel's deterrent of using its nuclear weapons, which cannot be used considering the international power balance. The threat has become direct, practical and conventional."
One conclusion that is implied, though not spelled out, is the importance to Iran of completing an agreement on its nuclear program that leaves its capability intact. With a capacity to rapidly deploy nuclear weapons, Iran could nullify any Israel threat of using un-conventional weapons with one of its own.
One only hopes that MEMRI underestimates the foresight of the Israeli defense establishment and that Israel has been actively developing the means to counter the imminent and escalating Iranian threat.