- REUTERS/ Amir Cohen
- A translation of a video message by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appeared to show him saying Israel was trying to “advance the common interest of war with Iran.”
- Netanyahu’s official Twitter account quickly translated and tweeted his statement, but it was taken down just as fast.
- Netanyahu, as well as Gulf Arab states, are involved in conflicts with Iran.
An initial translation of a video message by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday appeared to show him saying Israel was trying to “advance the common interest of war with Iran.”
Netanyahu’s Twitter account translated and tweeted his statement, but it was soon taken down.
Israeli officials told US officials that it was a mistranslation, according to NBC News, and Netanyahu’s office corrected the tweet to “combatting Iran,” using the figurative translation for the Hebrew word used by Netanyahu.
Israel is engaged in a secretive conflict in Syria with Iran. Israel has struck Iranian targets in Syria in air raids that have become routine. Israeli Defense Forces have intercepted rockets fired at Israel by Iranian forces in Syria. Iranian-backed forces in the region have also targeted Israel.
- Twitter/Israel Defense Forces/Business Insider
Netanyahu has acknowledged more than 100 such attacks on Iranian forces in Syria and has vowed to keep them up until Iran backs off, but Israel typically doesn’t acknowledge individual strikes.
Countries in the Arab world may be restrained in their criticism of Netanyahu’s remarks because they have their own conflicts with Iran.
Iran backs Houthi militants in Yemen, where they have seized control of the capital. Saudi Arabia leads a coalition of Gulf states in combating Iran’s influence and the Houthis in Yemen.
The conflict in Yemen has seen frequent, and sometimes horrifically misguided, airstrikes by Saudi Arabia as well as Iranian-made missiles crashing down on Saudi soil.
The US has supported both Israel and the Gulf states in their clashes against Iran but has stopped short of becoming a direct combatant.
Instead, the US has responded Iranian influence through other means – like the recent indictment of a former US Air Force official with top-secret clearance on charges of spying for Iran.