Israel DM: Israel Not Necessarily Behind All Iran Attacks

Suggests Iran just doesn't know how to prevent things exploding

The latest in a flurry of incidents in Iran, all of which have been blamed on Israel, saw explosions and fire last week at Natanz nuclear site. Iran initially downplayed the seriousness of the fire, though they’ve since admitted the damage was more severe.

Earlier reports were that this was some dissident group, but reports of sabotage later led to claims Israel carried out the attack as a cyberattack causing the damage. Israel has, of course, regularly attacked Iran, particularly with cyberattacks.

Israel hasn’t officially commented on what happened at Natanz, and still hasn’t, as on Sunday Defense Minister Benny Gantz cautioned that it was “not necessarily” Israel behind attacks just because they happened in Iran.

Gantz instead said that nuclear systems are complex, and that “I’m not sure they always know how to maintain them.” There is no indication Iran’s enrichment sites have blown up in the past without intervention by Israel or some other group.

This seems to be an attempt to restore a level of uncertainty over Israel’s various attacks, which is an issue because Israel more or less never publicly confirms or denies specific attacks, but carries out so many attacks that it is almost a given that a lot of these are presumably Israel.

If Iran gets hit by a cyberattack, Israel is the top suspect, either by itself or as part of a joint US operation. It would be one thing if Israel denied that this was the case, but that’s not what happened. Instead, Gantz is suggesting that it is at least conceivable that someone else could have done it, without going on the record one way or another.

That Gantz went so far as to suggest that Iranian maintenance problems might’ve caused it, something not at all credible, and points to the problem that Israel’s ambiguity doesn’t exist when they’re the only likely culprit.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of