Israel threatens military action against Iran still possible

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Israel official: Military action against Iran still possible
Apr 6, 2:23 PM (ET)By ALON BERNSTEIN

(AP) In this Monday, July 30, 2012 file photo, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin...







JERUSALEM (AP) — A senior Israeli government minister on Monday warned that taking military action against Iran's nuclear program is still an option — despite last week's framework deal between world powers and the Islamic Republic.

The comments by Yuval Steinitz, Israel's minister for strategic affairs, reflected the alarm in Israel over last week's deal, which offers Iran relief from economic sanctions in exchange for scaling back its suspect nuclear program. Israeli leaders believe the framework leaves too much of Iran's nuclear infrastructure intact and could still allow it to develop the means to produce a nuclear weapon.

Steinitz, a confidant of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's, said the government would spend the coming months lobbying the world powers negotiating with Iran to strengthen the language in the deal as they hammer out a final agreement. While stressing that Israel prefers a diplomatic solution, he said the "military option" still exists.

"It was on the table. It's still on the table. It's going to remain on the table," Steinitz told reporters. "Israel should be able to defend itself, by itself, against any threat. And it's our right and duty to decide how to defend ourselves, especially if our national security and even very existence is under threat."

Israel considers a nuclear-armed Iran to be a threat to its survival, pointing to years of Iranian calls for Israel's destruction, its support for anti-Israeli militant groups and its development of long-range ballistic missiles that could be armed with nuclear warheads. Israel — which is widely believed to be a nuclear power — says a nuclear-armed Iran would set off an arms race in the world's most volatile region.

The framework agreement was announced last Thursday in Switzerland after years of negotiations between Iran and world powers.

The deal aims to cut significantly into Iran's bomb-making technology while giving Tehran relief from international sanctions. The commitments, if implemented, would substantially pare down Iranian nuclear assets for a decade and restrict others for an additional five years. Iran would also be subject to intrusive international inspections.

Netanyahu believes the deal leaves intact too much of Iran's suspect nuclear program, including research facilities and advanced centrifuges capable of enriching uranium, a key ingredient in a bomb. He also says the deal fails to address Iran's support for militant groups across the Middle East.

Since the deal was announced, Washington has tried to calm Israeli nerves and on Monday, White House official Ben Rhoads gave a pair of televised interviews promising continued U.S. support for Israeli security.

Rhodes, the deputy national security adviser, told Channel 2 TV that sanctions will be "snapped back into place if the Iranians don't comply."

"There are significant limitations on the nuclear program and with inspections if they break the deal we will know very quickly and then we will be able to make decisions about what to do," he said.

When asked if a military strike was still an option during the implementation stage of the agreement, Rhodes said: "We believe its best frankly if we don't have to exercise that option and Iran complies with this type of good comprehensive deal, but certainly if there was a violation we would have all options to consider in response to a violation."

Steinitz said Monday that Israel has drawn up a list of 10 issues Israel wants addressed in the final agreement.

The list includes a halt to "research and development" with advanced centrifuges, a reduction in the number of earlier-generation centrifuges that will be allowed to operate, and the complete closure of the underground Fordo nuclear research site.

Under the outlines in Switzerland, Iran has agreed to halt enrichment activities there but the site will be allowed to continue research, and some centrifuges will remain.

Israel also wants Iran "to come clean" about its past efforts on developing nuclear weapons, stronger assurances on how its stockpile of enriched uranium will be removed, and wants clarity on when sanctions on Iran will be lifted and how quickly they could be re-imposed.

Steinitz said Israel will lobby the world powers — the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China and Germany — to amend the final version of the deal ahead of a June 30 deadline. He said Israel still hopes the final deal can be improved.

"It might become a much better deal and a more comprehensive and trusted deal than it is today. This is a bad deal," Steinitz said.

Netanyahu has warned of the dangers of a nuclear-armed Iran for years, but after the Switzerland announcement, it remains unclear how much of an impact he could have on the final negotiations.

Reminding the world of the military option is one way to gain some leverage — many in Israel believe that Israeli threats to strike Iran's nuclear installations several years ago helped trigger international sanctions and the dialogue that led to last Thursday's framework deal.

Questions also remain on Israel's military option. A long-range aerial mission would be dangerous and could trigger retaliation from Iran or its various proxies across the region. It also remains unclear how much damage it could inflict on a program that is spread out and in some cases, hidden underground.

President Barack Obama has said any military attack would only set back Iran by a few years.

Ronen Bergman, an Israeli military-affairs commentator, said Israel would have to produce clear intelligence showing that Iran has resumed a military nuclear program before striking.

"If Israel decides to attack — that evidence will be what will probably save it from international isolation," Bergman wrote in the Yediot Ahrono
 
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I don't think Israel will have to look too far to find this evidence. While the rest of the "free world" plays footsies under the table with these terrorist countries, Israel has the clearest view of the danger, because they have lived it since they became a country. I'm glad Israel has a man in power who will not cave to diplomacy when clearly, more is required.
 
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Once again these news agencies need desperately to find something to write about. Israel has, as long as they have existed, been ready to use their military in offensive operations in order to guarantee their existance. Nothing has changed now that the USA and Iran are in talks about making a deal.

If Israel sees Iran as an imminent threat, they will not hesitate. It's that simple, and has been that simple for decades.
 
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Once again these news agencies need desperately to find something to write about. Israel has, as long as they have existed, been ready to use their military in offensive operations in order to guarantee their existance. Nothing has changed now that the USA and Iran are in talks about making a deal.

If Israel sees Iran as an imminent threat, they will not hesitate. It's that simple, and has been that simple for decades.
Agreed, this is nothing new. I find it interesting people get up in arms when Israel says it will defend itself. Yet Iran leaders have said they want to destroy Israel and how it is a fake state multiple times. Even going so far as mentioning the holocaust at times, which I find hilarious since Iran wants to look like the down-trodden ones.
 
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Why are they concerned about Iran and its nuclear program? As if Iran's the only country with a nuclear program. While they're so adamant on making Iran bend to their will, other countries like North Korea, Russia, Pakistan, India and China will have developed weapons that are far more dangerous than the weapons Iran produces. Yuval Steinitz is trying to profit from all this. There's pretty much no point of adding to current burdens. Those guys sure are masochistic.
 
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Why are they concerned about Iran and its nuclear program? As if Iran's the only country with a nuclear program. While they're so adamant on making Iran bend to their will, other countries like North Korea, Russia, Pakistan, India and China will have developed weapons that are far more dangerous than the weapons Iran produces. Yuval Steinitz is trying to profit from all this. There's pretty much no point of adding to current burdens. Those guys sure are masochistic.
Well for one, there is the whole Iranian president saying they want to destroy Israel. And clearly there is a lot of bad blood betweent the two. Also out of the countries you mentioned, it's the closest to Israel. Nothing can be done about the Russian or Chinese programs, the Chinese (as well as the Indians) aren't really anything to be threatened about since they deal peacefully... Pakistan is a bit 50-50 and North Korea is far away and already being dealt with by the USA.

So long answer short: because Irans nuclear program poses a direct risk to Israel, whereas the others don't.
 
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Iran is going through such a tough time right now. It's no wonder they want nukes ( not NEED, but WANT). It would be nice if they stopped their childish games, though. The world today has more drama and bs than an all girl's high school.
 
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Well for one, there is the whole Iranian president saying they want to destroy Israel. And clearly there is a lot of bad blood betweent the two. Also out of the countries you mentioned, it's the closest to Israel. Nothing can be done about the Russian or Chinese programs, the Chinese (as well as the Indians) aren't really anything to be threatened about since they deal peacefully... Pakistan is a bit 50-50 and North Korea is far away and already being dealt with by the USA.

So long answer short: because Irans nuclear program poses a direct risk to Israel, whereas the others don't.
That's Netanyahu's problem. That bloody massacre in Gaza was largely his fault. No wonder Iran's rearing to exact revenge. USA is just being dragged into this. Because of its longstanding political relationship with Israel, it can't help but back it up. They'd be dealing with more important matters had it not been for this relationship.
 
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I don't think Israel will have to look too far to find this evidence. While the rest of the "free world" plays footsies under the table with these terrorist countries, Israel has the clearest view of the danger, because they have lived it since they became a country. I'm glad Israel has a man in power who will not cave to diplomacy when clearly, more is required.
I think Israel has a long way to go to prove Iran isn't ab
I don't think Israel will have to look too far to find this evidence. While the rest of the "free world" plays footsies under the table with these terrorist countries, Israel has the clearest view of the danger, because they have lived it since they became a country. I'm glad Israel has a man in power who will not cave to diplomacy when clearly, more is required.
I think Israel will have to look real hard to find evidence Iran is moving beyond the terms of the agreement. These negotiations have been going on for months and there has been no evidence Iran is cheating. Keep in mind that thru negotiations we have the framework today that includes rigorous inspections and serious rollbacks in Iran's nuclear program. Netanyahu has now soured US/Israeli relations by trying to undermine an agreement and offering no viable solution other than military attacks. The man has no idea of how to move forward and bring about peace agreements.
 
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Iran is going through such a tough time right now. It's no wonder they want nukes ( not NEED, but WANT). It would be nice if they stopped their childish games, though. The world today has more drama and bs than an all girl's high school.
LOL! All girl's high school! Good one, and so true!
 
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Israel has no serious concern over Iran. The fuss over Iran is due to Israel wanting the world's attention on something other than the occupation at home. If the deal goes through with P 5+1 and iran, that means next major goal of US/EU is securing two state solution. Israel opposes peace and opposes a Palestinian state. Therefore it will continue to divert attention or make excuses in avoiding bringing forth a solution to the I/P conflict. If the Iranian boogeyman effect fades away through this deal, it means Israel will need to create a tense situation to force world into dropping idea of peace.

So it may resort to false flag terrorist attacks or incite religious war between Muslims and Christians as a way to keep itself dominant over Palestinians.

Also Iran has large natural gas reserves. So if a deal is reached, Iran could become major western partner and provide natural gas to Europe as subsitiute to Russia. Which would hurt Russia badly. Would also hurt Israel as Israel has natural gas reserves. Could cause alliance shift in region too.
 
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These two,countries have not been eye to eye with each other and also they could start war on each other anytime and wander what happens between the two countries. Any peace, would be only until both sides agree to do what the agreement says and also it will be interesting to see what happens later on and hope bloodshed does not happen. Destroying a country will not bring the results they want, and also it will lead to innocents to die and also cause more tension as well.
 
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If they will see that a military action is required, they will do so. US won't even come to their mind before doing so. Israel has away been a fearless country. They do what it takes for a country surrounded by enemies to survive. If you mess with them, they will mess you up.
 
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