Contrary to Netanyahu, Israeli military favors a deal with Iran

Contrary to Netanyahu, Israeli military favors a deal with Iran
Fri Nov 22, 2013 10:38:33

The Israeli military has put a positive spin on how a deal with Iran could bolster regional stability, showing deep rift among Israeli authorities over Iran talks.

Even as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu continues his diplomatic offensive against what he claims a "dangerous" compromise on Iran’s nuclear program, Israel’s military intelligence seems open to a deal, even one that relaxes the Western sanctions on Iran, Christian Science Monitor reported on Thursday.

According to an unclassified assessment shared by a senior Israeli officer, military intelligence is focused on the implications of a potential compromise between Iran and the P5+1 (the US, Britain, France, Russia, China, and Germany).

In the background briefing with foreign journalists, which covered a wide range of Middle East hotspots, an intelligence officer said Iran was one of several countries that could buck the general turmoil across the region.

"We see a bit of a possibility, although it’s quite problematic, of more … stability," said the officer, who spoke on the basis of anonymity. But that is dependent on the success of negotiations "over the nuclear project, but more than that, over the relief of the sanctions on the Iranian economy," he said.

Though it’s not the first time that parts of Israel’s security establishment have broken with Netanyahu’s approach on Iran, the intelligence report offers fresh evidence of stark differences within Israel's power structure.

While Netanyahu has demanded that negotiators seek the full dismantling of Iran’s nuclear capability, the military official said the intelligence branch does not think this demand is realistic. The international community isn't talking about "deleting" Iran's nuclear program, he said.

Iran is a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and a signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and has been conducting its nuclear program under IAEA supervision.

Some Western countries and the nuclear-armed Israeli regime have accused Iran of seeking military purposes in its program.

Iran has categorically denied the allegations.

During the course of numerous inspections of Iran’s nuclear facilities by the IAEA, no evidence has ever been found showing that the Iranian nuclear energy program has been diverted toward non-civilian purposes.


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