Air Force chief: Discussion on Iran strike is damaging

Outgoing Israel Air Force chief Maj.-Gen. Ido Nehushtan calls discourse uninformed, unproductive; UN nuclear chief meets with senior Iranian officials in Tehran to discuss inspections.

May 21, 2012 14:54
1 minute read.
Nehushtan in cockpit of Cobra attack helicopter

Ido Nehushtan in the cockpit of a Cobra attack helicopter . (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)

Outgoing Israel Air Force chief Maj.-Gen. Ido Nehushtan said Monday that public discourse on a possible Israeli strike on Iran's nuclear facilities was "exaggerated and damaging."

Speaking with Army Radio, Nehushtan said, "The public discourse on the issue of attacking Iran is exaggerated and damaging, unproductive from an operational perspective, and taking place without the proper information."

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The general public, he added, is unaware of the details and is liable to work up unnecessary fears.

"There are some things you only understand sitting in this chair," he said, before adding: "The air force is ready and effective for the challenges it will be required to face."

Earlier in the day, United Nations nuclear chief Yukiya Amano kicked off talks with senior Iranian officials, Iranian media reported, on his one-day visit to Tehran that diplomats say could lead to an agreement for further inspections of Iranian nuclear sites.

Amano voiced optimism upon his arrival in Tehran, saying he was hopeful he would be able to reach a deal to investigate suspected atom bomb research - a possible breakthrough that Iran hopes could help ease Western sanctions pressure and deflect threats of war.

Click here for full Jpost coverage of the Iranian threat

In an exclusive interview with The Jerusalem Post last week, Nehushtan said that the IAF is prepared for the many missions and threats it faces in the Middle East, including a possible operation against Iran’s nuclear facilities.

“I understand the missions that stand before the IAF, and we have done everything we can during this period to create capabilities so we can fulfill these missions,” he said in response to a question of whether the air force was capable of dealing with the Iranian threat. “In general, the IAF is prepared for all of these missions.”

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