Theodore's World: From "Why Israel Can't Wait" ~ 'Iran threatens our survival'

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October 01, 2009

From "Why Israel Can't Wait" ~ 'Iran threatens our survival'

Lt.-Gen. Moshe Yaalon


Excerpt: 'Iran threatens our survival'

Jewish state reluctantly preparing military strike – with or without U.S.

By Jerome R. Corsi


"For us, a nuclear-armed Iran is an existential threat," Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Strategic Affairs Moshe Yaalon told the author in a private audio-recorded interview in his Jerusalem office on June 14, 2009. "We have to be ready to defend ourselves."

What I was next told by Yaalon was confirmed to me by virtually all Israeli officials in the Netanyahu government that I interviewed: Iran's nuclear weapons program is an existential threat to the survival of Israel, to the extent that Israel is reluctantly prepared to launch a pre-emptive military strike on Iran, with or without the approval of the United States, as early as the end of 2009 or the beginning of 2010, if the United States and the world community fail to stop Iran.

Today, Yaalon is the second highest official in the Israeli government, outranked only by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. President Shimon Peres serves as Israel's ceremonial head-of-state.

Yaalon has the both the military background and experience at the highest levels of the Israeli government needed to judge realistically the threat represented by Iran's nuclear weapons program.

Drafted into the IDF in 1968, he served in the Nahal Paratroop Regiment. In the Yom Kippur War in 1973, Yaalon served as a reservist. Following this, he returned to active duty in the IDF and served in the elite Sayeret Matkal special forces, dedicated to gathering field intelligence and conducting top secret operations, typically behind enemy lines.

Sayeret Matkal is perhaps most famous for conducting the Operation Thunderbolt raid on the Entebee Airport on the night of July 3 and the early morning of July 4, 1976, in which Israel rescued more than 100 Air France airline passengers being held in Uganda by PLO terrorists. In this operation, Sayeret Matkal lost Lt. Col. Yonatan "Yoni" Netanyahu, the younger brother of the prime minister.

Lt.-Gen. Yaalon held several command positions in the IDF Paratroop Brigade and was wounded in the 1982 Lebanon war. He was named head of Military Intelligence in 1995, after which he served as the chief of staff of the Israel Defense Forces from 2002 to 2005. Vice Prime Minister Yaalon serves as a member of the Knesset, Israel's parliament, from Likud, the party of Prime Minister Netanyahu.

When I interviewed Yaalon on June 14 in Jerusalem, he had just returned from an intense week of meetings in Washington.

I asked him whether Israel has a chance to convince the White House of its position in the narrow window of opportunity before Iran had nuclear weapons capability.

"The appeasement road is not going to work with Iran," he replied. "It will be Israel and the reality of the situation that will convince Washington. I cannot see any U.S. administration ready to submit to radical Islamic jihadism. President Obama told Prime Minister Netanyahu at their last meeting that he was committed not to allow a military nuclear Iran, and I hope he will keep his word."

I asked Yaalon directly whether he would like to tell the world in precise and unequivocal words that Israel will not accept an Iran armed with nuclear weapons, even if that involved Israel launching an attack on Iran without the White House giving a green light for a military strike.

He responded equally directly: "As bad as launching a military attack on Iran would be, the only worse choice would be to allow Iran to develop nuclear weapons. One way or another, Iran must be stopped from developing military weapons. A nuclear Iran represents a clear and present danger to the state of Israel, to the Middle East and to the entire world. Israel expects the international community under the leadership of the United States to take all the necessary steps to halt this grave threat. Although it prefers that the international community prevents Iran from acquiring nuclear capabilities, Israel reserves the right to defend itself and protect its citizens."

How much more time does Israeli intelligence estimate that Iran will need to develop nuclear weapons capability?

"In the 1990s when I was in military intelligence, we spoke about a decade," he answered. "Today we are speaking about months, certainly not more that a couple of years.
"Each day, Iran advances its uranium enrichment technology," he explained. "Each day, Iran moves closer to having the quantity of enriched uranium needed to produce one bomb. That's not enough to have a true nuclear weapons capability, but Iran is well along the way."

What is the Iranian strategy?

"The Iranian strategy has always been to have the indigenous capability to produce all components needed for a nuclear-weapons program," he answered. "This involves not just the ability to enrich uranium, but also the missile technology needed to develop a nuclear weapon.
"Today, Iran has the ability to enrich uranium to weapons-grade and to produce missiles that could carry a nuclear weapon. Iran wants ultimately to have missiles that could reach the United States and eventually Iran will possess that capability as well."

Would a nuclear-armed Iran be a threat to the continued existence of Israel?

"For us, a nuclear armed Iran is an existential threat," he stressed. "We live here and we want to live here. We have to be ready to defend our citizens and our country."

From Yaalon's point of view, Iran achieving a nuclear weapons capability is a game changer in the Middle East that Israel cannot afford to tolerate.

And then this from Jerome R. Corsi that did this interview......

In the final analysis, the government of Israel made a decision during my three-week visit: The State of Israel had something to communicate to the world, and the leaders of Israel decided I would be an acceptable if not appropriate messenger.

The message is simple: Israel will not attack Iran unless Israel feels abandoned by the world at the moment Iran is about to have nuclear-weapons capability. Before attacking Iran, Israel will plead with the West and the moderate Islamic world to help disarm Iran's nuclear-weapons capability in a meaningful manner.

In the final analysis, however, the Jewish state of Israel reserves the right of self defense and will exercise that right, with or without the prior approval of the United States of America.


Wild Thing's comment.........

I think it is too late to stop Iran, they do what they want just like the Democrats do in our counrty. Both destoyers!

We know how Obama feels about Israel and it disgusts me in how he has treated BiBi and others that have come to speak with him to try and make him understand.

....Thank you Mark for sending this to me.

3rd Mar.Div. 1st Battalion 9th Marine Regiment
1/9 Marines aka The Walking Dead
VN 66-67

Posted by Wild Thing at October 1, 2009 05:45 AM


It is NEVER too late! I just feel so bad that our own government refuses to help an ally in their hour of need. Isn't there something that says America will defend Israel should something happen? I thought there was. Obama is more than a jerk. He needs to stop the BS and get down to business and tell Iran that under no circumstances will they be allowed to harm us or Israel. If they do, Iran will be turned to glass. So PeeWee better start thinking about his own people instead of his own twisted sick mind.

Posted by: Lynn at October 1, 2009 08:26 AM

I think Iran should have a nuclear weapon...and we should deliver it to them. Downtown Tehran seems like a nice destination...heh heh.

Posted by: PeteSuj at October 1, 2009 09:38 AM

The Israelis will strike. It will be a difficult strike because most of the world, and certainly the Iranians, knows that it is coming. The Israelis are the best military tacticians in the world, so the actual nature of the strike could be surprising.

I do not expect obama to aid or support Israel. He will read some jive off the teleprompter excusing himself from any responsibility. obama is a wimpy POS.

Posted by: TomR at October 1, 2009 01:20 PM

30 years between 'Carters" that nuke should have been delivered in '79.

Posted by: Jack at October 1, 2009 02:29 PM

The Israeli's will do what it takes to keep their country safe. Regardless what the Soutpiel Puppet thinks and says. Netanyahu will defend Israel. You got to admire his courage.

Posted by: Mark at October 1, 2009 06:37 PM

I agree with you all so much.
Thank you for your comments.

Posted by: Wild Thing at October 2, 2009 02:25 AM