Iran is manoeuvring to ‘overwhelm’ Israel’s missile defence systems in a strike on multiple fronts, former general Jack Keane has warned, as fears grow tensions could spiral into World War 3.

Iran plans to strike Israel from positions in Syria and Lebanon, a defence analyst has warned, as hostilities between the two countries threaten to spark World War 3.

Retired American four-star general and chairman of the Institute for the Studay of War Jack Keane was talking to Fox News about the febrile situation in the Middle East, as tensions ramp up following the USA’s withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal.

Mr Keane said: “Syria for Iran is a strategic anchor in the region.

“It’s from there that they really want to gain more influence and domination of the countries in the area.

“Case in point here is Israel. For months now the Iranians have been conducting a military build-up in southern and south-western Syria with the single purpose in mind of encroaching on Israel’s sovereignty and their security.

“What they really want to do is replicate what they’ve done in Lebanon, where Hezbollah have in their hands 130,000-plus rockets and missiles capable of reaching Tel-Aviv and Jerusalem.

“They want to do that in southern Syria and put the infrastructure in there to do that, so it would overwhelm Israel’s missile defence system because they would be swarming at them from multiple directions.

Mr Keane added: “This is serious stuff, what Iran is up to. They certainly want to undermine the government of Israel, create instability in the country and eventually, in time, destroy it.”

Simmering tensions between Israel and Iran escalated this week following President Donald Trump’s decision to pull the USA out of the Iran nuclear deal on Tuesday.

Following the move, the US reimplemented heavy sanctions against Iran, including on six individuals and three companies the administration says has channeled millions of dollars to the Iranian Revolutionary Guard’s elite Qods Force.

Israel launched airstrikes against dozens of Iranian targets in Syria on Thursday after Iranian forces fired around 20 rockets into the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights.

The Israeli Defence Force said in a statement that it “views this event with great severity and remains prepared for a wide variety of scenarios.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said: “The Iranians declare their intention to attack us. They are trying to transfer forces and deadly weapons there with the explicit goal of attacking the state of Israel as part of their strategy to destroy the state of Israel.”

Iran insists it needs the ability to strike Israel as a deterrent to threats against its territory. Israeli hardliners, among them Mr Netenyahu, have previously advocated airstrikes to destroy its nuclear programme.

Source » express