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(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])
An impending "global jihad tsunami" is set to converge on the entire Middle East, former Military Intelligence chief Maj.-Gen. (res.) Aharon Ze'evi (Farkash) warned on Monday.
"The Middle East is currently standing before a global jihad tsunami," Ze'evi, who retired from the army four months ago, told a conference on intelligence studies organized by the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University. "Nowadays everyone is learning how to assemble a bomb in his home and is consulting with religious leaders to find out whether it is permissible to drop a nuclear bomb or commit a suicide [attack] in a place where there are Muslims."
Iran, he said, would soon obtain missiles with the ability to reach targets within a 5,000-kilometer range placing all of Europe under a nuclear threat.
"Iran's determination to obtain nuclear capability is the most revolutionary development [and threat] against the Western world and the United States," he said.
In addition to the Iranian threat, Ze'evi said Israel could still find itself under attack in a "classical" and conventional war. The most likely enemy he said would be Syria and Hizbullah.
Maj.-Gen. (res.) Amos Gilad, head of the Defense Ministry's Political-Security Bureau, told the conference that in 1996 the government did not believe Iran was in the process of turning into the world's greatest threat. Gilad, who at the time was head of research at Military Intelligence, said the government believed Iraq was a greater threat than Iran.
"I won't forget the way our estimations about Iran were repeatedly dismissed by government officials," Gilad said, adding that 10 years ago he never would have believed that the entire world, including Russia, China and France, would unite to try and stop Iran's race to the bomb.
Meanwhile, three Islamic Jihad operatives were wounded after missiles fired from an IAF aircraft slammed into their pickup truck in the southern Gaza Strip. The cell was apparently on its way to fire Kassam rockets. One of the wounded was reported to be in critical condition.