IDF Chief of General Staff Benny Gantz 390 (R).
(photo credit: Ronen Zvulun / Reuters)
The IDF will carry out orders to attack Iran’s nuclear facilities if it receives
them from the government, Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz said Tuesday,
dismissing reports that he is opposed to such a strike.
“We tell the
political echelon what we think and we will do what we are told,” Gantz said
during a visit to the Tel Hashomer Military Induction Center. “None of the
reports came from me.”
Gantz was referring to a report Tuesday morning in
Yediot Aharonot citing US officials as claiming that the top defense leadership
in Israel including Gantz, Mossad chief Tamir Pardo and Israel Air Force
commander Maj.- Gen. Amir Eshel are opposed to an attack against Iran.
am not in favor of discussing disagreements if there are such, but I am in favor
of telling the government what I think,” he said.
Gantz’s position on
Iran has long been to hold off on military action and to give as much time
possible for diplomacy and sanctions to try and stop Iran’s nuclear
In April, Gantz said that he believed Iran would ultimately
refrain from developing a nuclear weapon. In private meetings he has also
predicted that international pressure could potentially delay a possible
confrontation with Iran until 2013.
“Iran is continuing to provoke and to
work to obtain a nuclear military capability,” Gantz said. “This is a major
problem for the entire world and region and we should not ignore it since this
is the only country in the world that is developing a nuclear weapon and calling
for the destruction of another country. All options are on the table and this is
not a slogan but a fact.”