Israel cannot stop Iran’s nuclear drive, and at best could set it back “only a few months to a year,” the leader of Israel’s opposition, who until last month was vice prime minister, said on Friday night.
A day after President Shimon Peres said Israel could not “go it alone” with a strike on Iran and must work with the Americans, Shaul Mofaz, head of the Kadima party, accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak of leading Israel toward a potentially “disastrous” war with a strike on Iran, and said their decision-making was flawed and over-hasty.
He stressed that he had been sitting at the cabinet table just a few weeks ago, and therefore knew what he was talking about.
Mofaz, an Iranian-born former chief of staff and defense minister, accused the Netanyahu-Barak leadership of trying to discredit security chiefs who oppose a strike, and made plain that he shared Peres’s assessment that President Barack Obama means it when he says he intends to thwart Iran.
Mofaz said that when he met with Obama two months ago, the president made clear that “he is determined to stop Iran” attaining nuclear weapons.
The US “cannot attack” before the presidential elections in November, Mofaz said, in part because of the “constant talk” by Netanyahu and Barak about the issue. The Iranians are now braced for attack, he said.