- Israeli Military Chief Warns of New Plans to Strike Iran
by LAURIE KELLMAN, Associated Press, 26 Jan 2021, https://theindependent.com/
TEL AVIV (AP) — Israel’s military chief Tuesday warned the Biden administration against rejoining the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, even if it toughens its terms, adding he’s ordered his forces to step up preparations for possible offensive action against Iran during the coming year.
The comments by Lt. Gen. Aviv Kohavi came as Israel and Iran both seek to put pressure on President Joe Biden ahead of his expected announcement on his approach for dealing with the Iranian nuclear program. In Iran, leaders said they would not wait indefinitely for Biden to act.
The 2015 deal put curbs on Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for the easing of crippling economic sanctions. Israel strongly opposed the deal, saying it did not include sufficient safeguards to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon. It welcomed the Trump administration’s withdrawal from the agreement in 2018.
Biden has said he will seek to revive the deal, with some changes. In his address to the Institute for National Security Studies, Kohavi said a return to the deal, even with some improvements, “is bad operationally and it is bad strategically.” He said allowing Iran to proceed with a nuclear program would be “an unacceptable threat and will lead to nuclear proliferation across the region.” Iran says its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only.