Obama Threatened to Shoot Down Israeli Jets Targeting Iran: Report

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Al-Akhbar Management

Published Sunday, March 1, 2015

A Kuwaiti newspaper reported Saturday that US President Barack Obama thwarted an Israeli military attack against Iran's nuclear facilities in 2014.

Al-Jarida newspaper quoted "well-placed" sources as saying that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had taken a decision to carry out airstrikes against Iran's nuclear program after consultations with his minister of defense Moshe Yaalon and foreign minister Avigdor Liberman in the presence of top security commanders.

The decision came, according to Al-Jarida, after Israel discovered that the United States and Iran had been involved in secret talks over Iran’s nuclear program and were about to sign an agreement in that regard behind Israel's back.

According to the report, Netanyahu and his commanders agreed after four nights of deliberations to task the Israeli army's chief of staff Beni Gants to prepare a qualitative operation against Iran's nuclear program. In addition, Netanyahu and his ministers decided to do whatever they could do to thwart a possible agreement between Iran and the White House because such an agreement is, allegedly, a threat to Israel's security.

The sources added that Gants and his commanders prepared the requested plan and that Israeli fighter jets trained for several weeks in order to make sure the plans would work successfully. Israeli fighter jets even carried out experimental flights in Iran's airspace after they managed to break through radars.

However, an Israeli minister "who has good ties with the US administration revealed Netanyahu's plans to Secretary of State John Kerry" and as a result Obama then threatened to shoot down Israeli jets before they could reach their targets in Iran.

Netanyahu had to abort the operation and since then relations between Israel and the United States have been declining, according to the sources quoted in the report.

On Wednesday, Kerry said that Netanyahu was wrong to oppose negotiations with Iran over Tehran’s nuclear program.

In November 2013, Netanyahu said an interim agreement with Iran on its nuclear program was the "deal of the century" for Tehran as it would not stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, rather it would formalize it.

On Monday, leaks from Netanyahu’s secret service also contradicted his claim in 2012 that Iran was less than a year away from making a nuclear bomb.

Weeks after the Netanyahu’s speech in 2012, Mossad shared a report with South African intelligence which concluded Iran was "not performing the activity necessary to produce weapons," according to The Guardian.

Kerry and Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif held two-day talks in Geneva last week. Negotiators from Iran and six major powers agreed to resume talks next Monday. Both parties hope to meet a self-imposed deadline for an initial political deal.

On Monday, a senior Iranian official in international talks on the country's nuclear program said differences remained on key questions.

"The gap still exists, differences exist, and all parties are negotiating with seriousness and determination, but we haven't found solutions to key questions," Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi said.

Washington suspects Iran’s nuclear program is designed to develop nuclear weapons; Iran denies this, saying it is for peaceful purposes.

"Today, no one can pretend that Iran's nuclear program is not peaceful," President Hassan Rouhani told science ministers from Non-Aligned Movement nations gathered in Tehran on Monday.

"The Iranian people have suffered the worst pressure during the past dozen years for having sought to realize their rights in the fields of science and nuclear technology," he said.

A key stumbling block in any final deal between Iran and world powers is thought to be the amount of uranium Tehran would be allowed to enrich, and the number and type of centrifuges it can retain.

So far two deadlines for a comprehensive accord with the six world powers have been missed. Both sides agreed last year that a final deal must now be reached by June 30.

(Ma'an, AFP, Al-Akhbar)

Comments

sounds like a load of BS. kuwaitis have a vivid imagination

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