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Tue Sep 4, 2012, 01:40 PM

CSM: Bomb Iran? Why 5 top Israeli figures don't want to do it.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s threat of a unilateral strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities, supported by Defense Minister Ehud Barak, has sparked an unusually public debate in Israel about the wisdom of the move. While nearly all of those involved seem to agree that Iran poses a serious nuclear threat, they disagree about the timing and method of best countering that threat.

Meir Dagan, former Mossad chief

Meir Dagan has spearheaded opposition to a unilateral Israeli strike on Iran since May 2011 – shortly after he retired as head of Israel’s foreign intelligence agency, the Mossad.

He has called such a move “the stupidest thing I have ever heard” and “patently illegal under international law” since Iran’s nuclear infrastructure is operating under the framework of the International Atomic Energy Agency.

He also opposes a unilateral strike because:

* A surgical attack such as Israel’s 1981 strike against Iraq’s Osirak nuclear reactor is not possible because Iran’s nuclear program is much more dispersed
* A strike could lead to a regional war and regional, or even global, arms race
* A strike could cause Iranians to rally around the current regime, strengthening its hand

Great article, much more at the link! The other four Israelis are:
Yuval Diskin, former director of Shin Bet
Gabi Ashkenazi, former military chief of staff
President Shimon Peres
Shaul Mofaz, opposition leader


On matters of national security, it is unusual for Israeli leaders, especially military leaders, to publicly disagree with the Prime Minister. It has often been seen as weakening and possibly endangering Israel. Reading through the comments by each, however, it's clear that they believe the most dangerous thing to Israel right now is a rogue war-hawk Prime Minister named Benjamin Netanyahu. Former director of Shin Bet (Israeli General Security Services) describes him as "messianic" and "not to be trusted".

A real eye-opener.

Related article at DU: Article describing how Netanyahu may attempt to politically force Obama to go along with a unilateral Israeli strike or risk losing the support of pro-Israeli voters in the US. Low.

PB

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