Former Mossad chief: Iran using Obama's desire for deal to extort concessions

"Their patience is much greater than the patience of western negotiators. They will exhaust the Americans, they will squeeze them," Shabtai Shavit says.

June 9, 2015 18:48
1 minute read.
US President Barack Obama (L) and Vice President Joe Biden

US President Barack Obama (L) and Vice President Joe Biden. (photo credit: OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE PHOTO BY PETE SOUZA)


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Former Mossad chief Shabtai Shavit said Tuesday that Iran's superior skill at negotiations will give them the edge in getting what they want in the emerging nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers.

Speaking at the IDC's Herzliya Conference, Shavit said, "Their patience is much greater than the patience of western negotiators. They will exhaust the Americans, they will squeeze them."

Shavit argued that the Iranians will use the fact that US President Barack Obama wants an Iran deal as part of his legacy to their advantage, leveraging his desire to get a deal to extract further Western concessions.

He warned that the world's vigilance in making sure that Iran was not pursuing a nuclear weapon would eventually fade, allowing the Islamic Republic an opportunity to develop a bomb.

"As time goes by and the world is busy with other problems, there will be less attention paid to them."

He warned of the dangers that a nuclear-armed Iran would pose. "A radical Shi'ite leader with his hand on the nuclear trigger is a mind-boggling proposition," he said.

Iran and six world powers are currently seeking to overcome remaining differences with a self-imposed June 30 deadline looming to end a 12-year standoff.

A framework accord was reached between Iran, the United States, France, Britain, Germany, Russia and China on April 2, but several major substantive disputes remain to be resolved, including access for UN nuclear inspectors to Iranian military sites and the pace and timing of sanctions relief for Tehran.

Israel has argued that the emerging deal with Iran is a bad deal that will enable the Islamic republic to remain a nuclear threshold state and that it will allow Tehran to pursue nuclear weapons when it expires in ten years time.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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