Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz said the US and Israel are working to develop a “Plan B” for if the indirect negotiations to revive the Iran nuclear deal fail.
According to The Times of Israel, Gantz warned if Iran acquires nuclear weapons, it would trigger an “international arms race,” a comment that ignores the fact that Israel already has a nuclear arsenal and is the only nuclear-armed country in the Middle East.
“The United States and Israel share intelligence information, and the cooperation with the United States in this field is only getting stronger. We are working with them in order to establish a Plan B and to demonstrate that if there is no deal, other activities will begin, as President Biden said,” Gantz said.
During a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett on Friday, President Biden said if diplomacy with Iran fails, he was ready to “turn to other options.” Iran took Biden’s comment as an illegal threat.
Bennett presented Presented Biden with an Iran strategy described as a “death by a thousand cuts.” Ahead of the meeting, Bennett told The New York Times that he would continue Israel’s covert attacks against Iran, which the US tacitly endorses by never condemning them.
The constant threats from Israel are part of the country’s strategy to sabotage a US return to the JCPOA. When the JCPOA talks began in April, Israel carried out an attack on Iran’s Natanz nuclear facility. The attack led Tehran to increase some uranium enrichment to 60 percent, which is still lower than the 90 percent needed for weapons grade.
Israel uses Iran’s increase in enrichment as evidence Tehran is racing to develop a bomb when that is not the case. If Israel’s real concern was uranium enrichment, it would favor a JCPOA revival since the agreement restricts Iran’s enrichment levels to 3.67 percent.
The JCPOA talks have been on hold since June 20th. Iran’s new President Ebrahim Raisi has signaled that he is ready to return to the negotiating table, but it’s not clear when the talks might resume.