Israel hits Iran with 'limited' strikes despite White House opposition

The Biden administration has maintained its commitment to Israel is 'ironclad'

Biden's Middle East policy led to 'terrifying' results: Rep. Michael Waltz

Rep. Michael Waltz, R-Fla., joins 'Fox News @ Night' to discuss how President Biden's 'de-escalation policy' in the Middle East turned into 'open warfare' between Iran and Israel.

Despite the White House voicing its opposition against Israel striking back at Iran, the Jewish state issued "limited" strikes early Friday.

Fox News Digital has confirmed there have been explosions in Isfahan province where Natanz is located, though it is not clear whether it has been hit.

A well-placed military source has told Fox that the strike was "limited."

The news came after President Joe Biden warned Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that the U.S. would not take part in a counter-offensive against Iran.


Joe Biden and Benjamin Netanyahu

Democrats have expressed concern that President Biden has ruined his standing among progressives with his support for Israel. The president criticized Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over Israel's conduct during its war with Hamas.  (Getty Images)

John Kirby, the White House's top national security spokesperson, told ABC's "This Week" program on Sunday, April 14 that the United States will continue to help Israel defend itself, but does not want war with Iran.

Kirby said "our commitment is ironclad" to defending Israel and to "helping Israel defend itself," after being asked if the U.S. would support retaliation. 

John Kirby

John Kirby, White House national security communications advisor, during a news conference in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House in Washington, DC, US, on Monday, April 15, 2024. (Bonnie Cash/UPI/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Kirby doubled-down on the fact that Biden does not "seek" war with Iran.

"And as the president has said many times, we don't seek a wider war in the region. We don't seek a war with Iran. And I think I will leave it at that," Kirby added.


"We don't seek escalated tensions in the region. We don't seek a wider conflict," Kirby said.

Pentagon Press Secretary Air Force Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder

Pentagon Press Secretary Air Force Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder holds a press conference at the Pentagon on October 19, 2023 in Arlington, Virginia. (Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)

Pentagon Press Secretary Major General Pat Ryder echoed Kirby's sentiments, sharing in a press briefing that the U.S. does "not want to see a wider regional war."

"As I've highlighted, we do not seek escalation in the region, but we will not hesitate to defend Israel and protect our personnel," he said during the question and answer segment of the briefing.

"Again, we do not want to see a wider regional war," he added. "We don't seek conflict with Iran, but we won't hesitate to take [the] necessary actions to protect our forces."

Iran missile launch

Iran's medium-range ballistic missile called Hayber (Hurremshahr-4) is seen after the launch during the promotional program organized with the participation of high-ranking military officials in Tehran, Iran on May 07, 2023.  (Iranian Defense Ministry/Hanodut/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Reports of Israel's "limited strike" against Iran came following a retaliatory strike over the weekend. 

Iran attacked Israel over the weekend in retaliation for Israel's deadly strike on Iran's consulate in Syria earlier this month that killed a dozen people, including a top general. 

The weekend attack by Iran marked a major escalation of violence. Despite decades of hostilities between the two nations, Iran has never directly attacked Israel, instead relying on proxy forces in Iraq, Lebanon and elsewhere. 

Fox News' Bradford Betz and Jennifer Griffin contributed to this report.

Sarah Rumpf-Whitten is a breaking news writer for Fox News Digital and Fox Business. 

She is a native of Massachusetts and is based in Orlando, Florida.

Story tips and ideas can be sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and on X: @s_rumpfwhitten.

Authored by Sarah Rumpf-Whitten via FoxNews April 18th 2024