Amos Yadlin
Amos YadlinIsrael news photo: Flash 90

Former Military Intelligence chief Amos Yadlin said on Tuesday that military action in Iran would be less dangerous to Israel than if Iran obtains a nuclear bomb.

Speaking at the annual conference of the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv, Yadlin said, according to Army Radio, “Attacking Iran would be less dangerous for Israel than a nuclear Iran, but we need to work out a strategic plan not only for the attack itself but also for the day after the attack.”

Speaking at the same conference, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu expressed his disappointment over the way the negotiations between world powers and Iran, over its disputed nuclear program, were going.

“Not only should the sanctions on Iran be increased, the demands for which the sanctions were imposed must be increased and it must be insisted that Iran meets these requirements in full,” Netanyahu said.

He added, “Iran should stop all enrichment of nuclear material, it should remove all the material that has been enriched up to now and it should shut down the underground nuclear facility in Qom. Only an explicit Iranian commitment to realize all three of these requirements and ensuring their implementation can stop the Iranian nuclear program. This should be the target of the negotiations, but I say with regret that this is not what is demanded from Iran today.”

Also speaking at the conference was Michèle Flournoy, former U.S. Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, who warned that “Any military strike will only delay, not destroy, Iran’s nuclear program.”

According to Flournoy, who cited the INSS paper that was distributed ahead of the conference, “It is something that would buy us time, but it would not by itself solve the problem in any enduring way.

The paper, she pointed out, said a military strike would need to be followed by international pressure on Iran. This means that the international community would need to have supported a military strike in the first place.

“If Israel, or any other country, were to launch a unilateral strike against Iran’s nuclear program prematurely, it would undermine the legitimacy of the action in the eyes of the broader international community and would undermine the ability of the international community to come together for this critical longer term campaign,” said Flournoy.