Former Head of Israeli Intelligence Service Slams Israel’s Leadership
Recently retired Yuval Diskin, former head of Israeli intelligence service Shin Bet, called Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak’s leadership “messianic” and accused them of promoting a war on Iran. According to Diskin, attacking Iran would accelerate Iran’s nuclear ambitions, rather than delay them. ”The Israeli public is being spun on Iran, what worries me is that, we are creating a sense that if Israel doesn’t act than Iran will get a nuclear bomb,” said Diskin. He expressed worry that the incompetence of the current leadership could lead “into something of the order of magnitude of a war with Iran or a regional war.” Opposition leader Shaul Mofaz defended Diskin’s criticism of Israeli leadership and said that Diskin was acting out of “deep concern” for the direction in which the leadership was steering the country. Former Mossad Chief Meir Dagan has also has repeatedly made public statements expressing his view that an Israeli strike on Iran “would be a disaster.
The former Shin Bet chief also blamed Israeli leadership for the frozen Israeli-Palestinian peace process. “This government is not interested in solving anything with the Palestinians, and I say this certainly…This prime minister knows that if he makes the slightest move forward, then his well-established rule and his coalition will fall apart.” Haaretz reported that his Diskin’s assessment of the Israeli-Palestinian issue is more significant than his views on Iran. According to Haaretz, Shin Bet is the mechanism responsible for the Palestinian issue on both political and security-related levels.
Dennis B. Ross, former Iran policy analyst for the Obama Administration, said that there is an agreement between the U.S. and Israel to give diplomacy a chance. “It doesn’t mean that the threat of using force goes away, but it lies behind diplomacy,” said Ross. The latest round of talks in Istanbul were a turning point in American thinking about Iran, according to the New York Times. An administration official reported that the cooling tensions have come as a result of “a combination of factors coming in line,” referring to the ongoing negotiations and sanctions.