Iranian Commander Threatens to 'Raze Tel Aviv to the Ground' if U.S. Attacks

At a rally celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Islamic revolution, marchers burned American flags and carried cut outs of dogs sporting the faces of Benjamin Netanyahu and Donald Trump

Iranians burn Israeli and American flags during celebrations for the 40th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution, Tehran, February 11, 2019.
AFP

A senior Revolutionary Guards commander said on Monday that Iran would demolish entire cities in Israel if the United States attacked the Islamic Republic. 

"The United States does not have the courage to shoot a single bullet at us despite all its defensive and military assets. But if they attack us, we will raze Tel Aviv and Haifa to the ground," Yadollah Javani, the Guards' deputy head for political affairs was quoted as saying by state news agency IRNA. 

He was speaking at a rally celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Islamic revolution.

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Iranian children with signs depicting dogs weith the faces of U.S. President Trump, Saudi King Salman and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Tehran, February 11, 2019.
AFP

Hundreds of thousands of Iranians marched and some burned U.S. and Israeli flags on Monday to mark the 40th anniversary of the triumph of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the Shi'ite cleric who toppled the Shah in an Islamic Revolution that rattles the West to this day.

On Feb 11, 1979, Iran's army declared its neutrality, paving the way for the fall of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the United States' closest ally in the Middle East.

State TV showed crowds defying cold rainy weather and carrying Iranian flags while shouting "Death to Israel, Death to America," trademark chants of the revolution which ousted the United States' most important ally in the Middle East. 

"Much to the dismay of America, the revolution has reached its 40th year," read one banner. 

Marchers carried cardboard cutouts of dogs. One had the face of Trump and the other the face of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. 

An Iranian woman holds an effigy of U.S. President Trump, Tehran, February 11, 2019.
Ebrahim Noroozi,AP

State TV showed a cartoon of the Shah being thrown into the "dustbin of history", wearing clothes in U.S. colors and holding Iranian newspapers headlined "The Shah has left!"