Labor MK Shai mocks Israeli threat to Iran

We will make well thought-out decisions in the future but an attack is beyond our arsenal by now," Shai says after Israeli officials told 'Post' that attack is possible in event of bad nuclear deal.

November 23, 2014 21:44
1 minute read.

Israel Air Force planes fly over Tel Aviv. . (photo credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)


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Labor MK Nachman Shai reacted with derision to a new threat from Israeli officials over the weekend to attack Iran if a deal reached by the international community with the Islamic Republic is not good enough.

The Jerusalem Post reported exclusively Sunday that Israel has issued a stark, public warning to its allies with a clear argument: Current proposals guarantee the perpetuation of a crisis, backing Israel into a corner from which military force against Iran provides the only logical exit.

The Israeli officials warned that "Iran's been giving the IAEA the run around for years about its past activities" and expressed concern that if a deal were reached and violated the international community would "sweep it under the rug."

Shai, who is a member of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, said government officials should go back to speaking generally about all options being on the table instead of issuing empty threats.

"Anyone trying to attribute aspirations of an Israeli attack on Iran is not being realistic," Shai said. "I don't think Israel intends to attack Iran, even if the deal will not be good. We will make well thought-out decisions in the future but an attack is beyond our arsenal by now."

Yesh Atid MK Dov Lipman said he believed there was a consensus in the Knesset on Iran. But he appeared to disagree with Shai regarding a potential military strike.

"If Israeli intelligence assesses that there is a tangible risk to Israel, then action beyond diplomatic efforts would be required," he said. "All politics are put aside when it comes to our security. We will watch the developments carefully regarding the deal with Iran and then the security apparatus will make its assessments and decisions."

Tourism Minister Uzi Landau said Israel needed to be lobbying in capitals around the world, especially Washington, to ensure that there would be the best deal possible. Regarding the statements about a possible military strike, he quoted Tuco in the 1966 film: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly: "When you have to shoot, shoot; don't talk."

Michael Wilner in Washington contributed to this report.

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