On Thursday, Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz said Israel must cooperate with the US on Iran regardless of differences, and said the issue must not affect ties with Washington.
“I’ve been dealing with the Iranian issue since 2007, and we must cooperate with the US on it, ensuring that we are speaking with both sides of the aisle in the US, maintaining bipartisanship and not going into American politics as we have done in the past,” Gantz said at the end of a two-day visit to Morrocco.
Israel has been very vocal about its opposition to the Biden administration’s plans to resume nuclear deal negotiations on November 29th, but Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has made sure not to publicly clash with the US, avoiding a tactic of his predecessor, Benjamin Netanyahu.
Israeli officials have also been constantly threatening Iran leading up to the next round of JCPOA negotiations. Gantz said Israel is obligated to build up its military to face Iran. “Our obligation concerning Iran is to influence our partners and maintain an ongoing conversation. Our second obligation is to build up military power, which is something important in and of itself,” he said.
In April, Israel launched a covert attack against Iran’s nuclear program that coincided with the start of indirect negotiations between the US and Iran. The move was a clear attempt at sabotaging diplomacy, but the US never publicly condemned the attack. The New York Times reported that US officials warned Israel against covert attacks on Iran, calling them “counterproductive.” But Israeli officials said they have no intention of “letting up.”