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Fmr. IDF Head Halutz: Iran Threat 'Not Existential'

Kadima member says force should be used "only when there is no other choice, and be led by others."
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 2/2/2012, 7:53 PM

Halutz at Herzliya Conference
Halutz at Herzliya Conference
IDC Herzliya

"Iran poses a serious threat but not an existential one," said former IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz at the Herzliya Conference Thursday. "The use of this terminology is misleading. If it is intended to give a message in favor of attacking in Iran, it is a mistake."

"The option to use force is a last resort and it should be carried out only when there is no other choice, and be led by others," he added.

"If we are required to take action; if the approach of using power is forced upon us, we will have to do so far beyond the expectations of the other side. With regard to our security, there will be an iron hand always stretched out for peace. A security conception that strengthens the defensive matters because it gives greater freedom of operation to the diplomatic level."

Halutz was IAF Commander and served as Chief of Staff during the Gaza Disengagement and the Second Lebanon War. He resigned in January 2007, shortly before an official committee of inquiry issued a report blaming him, as well as Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Amir Peretz, for mishandling the war.

He joined Kadima in 2010.