What Happened: Iran's government has been giving short-range ballistic missiles to Shiite militias in Iraq, Reuters reported Aug. 31.
Why It Matters: By giving ballistic missiles to proxies in Iraq, Iran is building up deterrents against a first strike from Saudi Arabia, Israel and the United States. If these missiles were deployed from western or southern Iraq, they could potentially reach Riyadh or Tel Aviv.
Background: The United States, Saudi Arabia and Israel have increased pressure against Iran since the United States left the Iran nuclear deal in May. To deter further pressure or even a military strike against it, Iran has built up its asymmetric capabilities in the region.
- The Missile Arsenal at the Heart of the Israeli-Iranian Rivalry (Aug. 8, 2018)
- Back Under U.S. Sanctions, Iran Looks for a Plan B (July 23, 2018)
- Iran's Options Against the U.S. and Israel (June 9, 2018)