Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu .
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu should begin a new diplomatic initiative that will prove his commitment to the two-state solution, a group of dovish former senior security officials wrote in a letter released Monday.
The security officials include former Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) chief Ami Ayalon, former Central Command head Maj.-Gen. (res.) Amram Mitzna (who were both Labor MKs), as well as former Northern Command head Maj.-Gen. (res.) Amiram Levine, who was Netanyahu’s commander in the IDF.
“He [Netanyahu] was a great soldier,” Levine said. “Getting chosen by the people means he has leadership and he should use it. I myself don’t know if it’s possible to make peace, but we need to take advantage of the opportunity of mutual interests with the moderate Arab world,” the group wrote.
Levine said he believes a better Iran deal is possible, and that it was right of Netanyahu to fight against the accord until it was signed. The group wrote that now, however, Israel should end its conflict with the US and make the best of the situation as it stands.
“We, the undersigned, recognize the existence of the P5+1 Agreement with Iran and request that the Israeli government adopt certain policies in light thereof,” the letter says.
“Israel should initiate a political move that will provide credibility to Israel’s support of a two-state solution and enable the establishment of a moderate Sunni-Western axis that will act against the extremist forces that foster instability in the region.”
The former security officials called for renewing trust and enhancing the political and security cooperation with the American administration in order to prepare for challenges arising from the agreement, including setting procedures for monitoring its implementation and preparing for political, economic, and military action if Iran breaches its terms.
They also called for special security assistance to Israel in order to guarantee its qualitative military advantage.
“Such policies will enable both the integration of Israel’s ability with those regional and international players who share the view of nuclear Iran as a serious threat and the recruiting of moderate Arab states for the advancement of a political settlement between Israel and the Palestinians,” the former officials wrote.