According to a report from Israeli TV, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu held a series of meetings over the past few weeks with his top military and intelligence officials on the possibility of attacking Iran.
Israel’s Channel 12 reported that Netanyahu held five meetings with his defense minister, the military intelligence chief, the head of the Israeli Defense Forces, the head of the Mossad spy agency, and other top brass to discuss preparing for possible attacks on Iran.
According to The Times of Israel, the Channel 12 report didn’t attribute a source and didn’t offer much detail about the meetings. The Times said it might have been “designed to telegraph the seriousness of Israeli threats to resort to military action” against Iran’s nuclear program.
Israeli and US officials are constantly threatening Iran over its nuclear program even though the Pentagon acknowledged in its recent Nuclear Posture Review that Tehran is not trying to build a nuclear weapon.
The Channel 12 report said that the result of Netanyahu’s meetings was that the officials decided Israel would act alone against Iran if the US didn’t, something Israeli officials have said publicly.
“If the United States does not establish a credible military threat immediately, either Israel will attack, or Iran will have a nuclear weapon, which we will not allow under any circumstance,” Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen said Tuesday.
Netanyahu made similar comments the same day. “The only thing that has credibly stopped rogue nations from developing nuclear weapons is a credible military threat or a credible military action. You can couple that with crippling economic sanctions, but that’s not a sufficient condition. A necessary condition — and an often sufficient condition — is credible military action,” he said.
The Channel 12 report and the hawkish comments from Israeli officials came after the US ambassador to Israel, Toms Nides, said Israel can “do whatever they need” against Iran and that the US has “got their back.”