Friday, March 10, 2006

Former IDF Chief of Staff Yaalon: Israel can neutralize Iran's threat

Speaking at the conservative think tank The Hudson Institute in Washington Thursday, Gen. Moshe Yaalon said strategic targets spread across Iran could be struck by means other than an air force attack. Because they are stationary, they can be hit with greater accuracy than Israeli air force attacks on terrorists , who are usually traveling in vehicles.

This was the first explicit reply to Iranian president Mahmoud Ahamdinejad’s repeated threats to wipe Israel off the map and its nuclear delegate’s warning to inflict “pain and harm” on the United States.

Yaalon, who was IDF Chief of staff until he fell out with Sharon over the Gaza withdrawal nine months ago said it would be preferable for other nations to do the job, “but you can’t rule out Israel.”


The general appears to have contradicted statements by acting prime minister Ehud Olmert and former Israeli leader Ariel Sharon that Israel cannot deal with the Iranian nuclear threat alone and must work with the United States and the international community.

Students of recent history might remember how the late Likud prime minister, Menahem Begin, ordered a successful Israeli air force strike against Saddam Hussein’s nuclear reactor in 1981...also right before an election.

Yaalon says Israel could expect an Iranian counter-attack to an Israeli knockout blow to its nuclear installations. They might shoot missiles, but would more likely activate Hizballah in Lebanon which has 12,000 rockets supplied by Tehran which are capable of striking inside Israel. However, the joint venture Israeli/American Arrow anti-missile system is fully deployed and operational, Yaalon revealed, and capable of intercepting the missiles, either from Iran or Hezbollah.

He further predicted the Iranians could have enough know-how for building a nuclear device within the next six to 18 months and produce one within three to six years.

I personally think he's optimistic, and that a nuclear-capable Iran is a lot closer than that.

1 comment:

Dan Zaremba said...

Moshe Yaalon was ayyacked for revealing Israeli secrets.
A bit funny to say that.
It probably shoud give the Mullahs something to to think about.