Former Mossad head: Netanyahu almost triggered war with Iran

Tamir Pardo said that in 2011 the prime minister nearly began a process that he was sure would lead to war. 

By: Israel World News Staff

A former head of the Mossad spy agency said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered Israel’s military to prepare for an imminent strike on Iran, a move that could trigger a war.

Tamir Pardo, who revealed details of the alleged events in an interview on the Uvda investigative show that appeared on Israeli TV, said that he was faced with a dilemma: to carry out an order that he believed the premier was not authorized to make alone or resign.

In 2011, Netanyahu and then-defense minister Ehud Barak were concerned that the opportunity to hit Iran’s nuclear facilities was slipping away, Pardo related. He said that the sites would become so well-protected that any attempt to bomb them would be rendered ineffective.

The two men feared that Iran was close to producing nuclear weapons.

Pardo said that Netanyahu instructed then-IDF chief of staff Benny Gantz to prepare the military to be ready to carry out an attack on Iran within 15 days of being ordered into action.

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That order, Pardo explained in a promo for the interview, let him to contemplate resigning rather than participate in an attack.

Asked if a strike on Iran was tantamount to starting a war, Pardo said, “Certainly.”

In the end, Pardo and Gantz both objected to Netanyahu’s plan and the prime minister dropped the instruction, he said, but perhaps not before Pardo had considered taking drastic actions.

Pardo’s account is actually a rerun of the comparable confrontation that Netanyahu and Barak had with Pardo and Gantz’s predecessors —  Meir Dagan and Gabi Ashkenazi, who additionally opposed a strike on Iran and questioned its legality.

Israeli legislation presently needs a declaration of war to be approved by the government. A recently proposed amendment would transfer the authority to a smaller security cabinet.

Netanyahu’s preparations for an attack and his threats are thought to have affected the Obama management.

But it is unclear how. Some argue that the risk of attacks pushed the US to impose stricter sanctions as means of satisfying Netanyahu.

Others claim they caused the US to rush to sign a deal that will prevent Israel from attacking the Islamic Republic.