(photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
The fighting in Yemen between Saudi Arabia and the Iranian-supported Shi’ite Houthis will have no impact on how the US views the Iranian nuclear talks, former National Security Council head Ya’akov Amidror said on Thursday.
Amidror, now a fellow at Bar- Ilan University’s BESA center, said the US is determined to reach a nuclear deal, and refuses to link anything that Tehran is doing in the region to the talks.
“Everyday there is something new,” Amidror said of the turmoil in the region. “And Iran is behind it all.”
He said the nuclear talks will continue as long as the Iranians continue to give the US some “rope,” but that Tehran will continue to shorten the “rope” out of a sense that by doing so it will get more concessions from the US negotiators.
“I am pessimistic,” he said. “I don’t think what is going on in Yemen will have any impact on the US regarding Iran.”
Amidror said that the American willingness to reach a deal with Iran, even if it means turning a blind eye to what else the Islamic Republic is doing in the region, stems from a concern that if an accord is not reached, the US might be forced to act militarily – something Obama wants to avoid.
Washington’s ratcheting up the rhetoric against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu since last week’s elections is a means of trying to reduce the weight of Israel’s position on Iran, Amidror maintained.
He pointed to the Wednesday Wall Street Journal article alleging Israel of spying on America’s talks with Iran as part of an effort to undermine Israel’s standing in the eyes of the American public, thereby limiting the effectiveness of its ability to argue against the deal.
The ferocity with which the US responded to Netanyahu’s pre-election comment that a Palestinian state would not emerge during his tenure, a comment he since walked back, is also aimed at undermining Israel’s credibility, he said.
Amidror said the administration is attacking Netanyahu on a variety of issues to try and detract from his ability to impact the internal US debate on Iran.