Not Relying on US Declaration, Israel Readying Itself to Deal with Evolving Iranian Nuclear Threat

By Arie Egozi

Foreign Affairs

Tel Aviv: Israel does not rely on the US declaration that it won’t let Iran to build a nuclear weapon and is getting ready to deal with a fast evolving nuclear threat. 

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The US State Department released the declaration last week. “[President] Biden and [US Secretary of State Antony] Blinken will not allow Iran to have a nuclear weapon,” State Department deputy spokesperson Vedant Patel said in a press briefing.

According to Iran International the website operated from London by the opposition to the regime in Tehran, the American declaration was made in reaction to comments by Kamal Kharrazi, a senior advisor to Iran’s ruler Ali Khamenei, that the Islamic Republic would be left with no option but to alter its nuclear doctrine if Israel threatened its nuclear facilities or its existence.

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“We continue to assess, though, that Iran is not taking any key activities that would be necessary to produce a testable nuclear device,” Patel told Iran International correspondent Samira Gharaei.

According to the website, Kharrazi said that Iran does “not possess nuclear weapons, and there is a fatwa from the leader regarding this matter. But what should you do if the enemy threatens you? You will inevitably have to make changes to your doctrine.”

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Asked if these comments were a concern for the United States, Patel said, “We don’t believe that the Supreme Leader has yet made a decision to resume the (nuclear) weaponisation program that we judge Iran suspended or stopped at the end of 2003.”

When asked about the Biden administration’s strategy toward a “nuclear threshold state” like Iran in the absence of ongoing negotiations, Patel told Iran International, “We have ways of communicating with Iran when it’s in our interest, I’m not going to comment on that.”

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Israel does not rely on the American declaration. A source here said that the Americans continue to “look aside” and don’t fully understand the real plans of Iran.