Israeli Security Experts Say: Give the Nuclear Agreement with Iran a Chance

israeli_oppinions_iran_deal

July 23, 2015

Ameinu, the largest grassroots progressive Zionist organization in North America, has followed the negotiations over a nuclear deal between Iran and the P5+1 (U.S., U.K., France, Germany, Russia and China) with a combination of hope and apprehension. Our core goal has been to see the best possible deal — one that could reasonably be supported by all P5+1 partners and Iran — to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons.

It is our conclusion that this deal meets this goal and that rejecting the agreement would lead to tragic consequences for the U.S., Israel and the world.

While we hope the deal will expeditiously move to the implementation phase, we are deeply aware of the distress it is causing to some in the United States, to many in Israel and to Saudi Arabia and other allies in the Arab world. These security concerns must be taken seriously. To that end, Ameinu has urged that an international consensus be forged to address both implementation of the nuclear agreement, as well as security issues relating to Iranian support for terrorist groups, destabilization of the region and human rights violations.

Because enhancing security is our primary concern, Ameinu believes the perspectives of Israeli security experts are vitally important in evaluating the agreement. Below you will find brief excerpts and links to a wide array of Israeli security experts and analysts who have come out publicly in support of the nuclear deal and who are urging that a campaign to overturn the deal not be undertaken.

Amram Mitzna
Former Member of Knesset and Mayor of Haifa and Yeruham; Retired IDF Major-General
“Nearly every day since the nuclear agreement with Iran was finalized, more Israeli generals and security chiefs have come forward with the same message: The deal is surprisingly good for Israel’s security. And as a retired major general who oversaw many elements of the Israeli military, I feel it is my duty to join my colleagues…I must state loud and clear — this agreement is better than no agreement and must not be rejected…The most heartening piece of the deal is that it has real teeth to enforce Iran’s compliance. It will impose the strictest inspections program in history, providing 24/7 monitoring of Iranian facilities, and giving inspectors access to literally every inch of the country…And due to Uranium’s near-eternal half-life, Iran will not be able to conceal the damning evidence if it decides to move toward a weapon…For Israel’s sake and all the people of the Middle East, we must not miss this opportunity.”
Learn more at http://blogs.rollcall.com/beltway-insiders/for-israels-sake-dont-reject-the-iran-agreement-commentary/?dcz=.

Open Letter to Prime Minister Netanyahu (August 3, 2015)
Dozens of former senior members of Israel’s defense establishment
Read the open letter to Prime Minister Netanyahu, funded by the Blue White Future organization, which urges him to accept the nuclear accord with Iran as a “done deal” and renew Israel’s trust with the U.S. in order to prepare for the deal’s challenges.
Learn more at http://www.haaretz.com/beta/1.669390?utm_campaign=Echobox&utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Facebook.

Uzi Even
Former IDF Lieutenant Colonel; Physics professor at Tel Aviv University; Former lead scientist at Israel’s Dimona nuclear reactor
“So what has changed? The agreement that was signed between the powers and Iran delays the Iranian nuclear program by 15 years at least, and maybe more. The deal was written by nuclear experts and blocks every path I know to the bomb. The Iranians may be celebrating, but they have in fact swallowed a very bitter pill, more so than they would like to let on.”
Learn more at http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4680188,00.html.

Chuck Freilich
Former Israeli Deputy National Security Advisor
“For at least the next decade, Israel will not have to live under the threat of a nuclear Iran and will not face the danger of annihilation. For Israel, that is a major achievement. It will enable Israel to divert precious resources to more immediate threats, like Hezbollah’s more than 130,000 rockets, Hamas and the Islamic State, and no less important, to pressing domestic needs…No agreement is ironclad, but the inspections provisions provide a high degree of confidence that Iran will not be able to renew the nuclear program without its being detected. A regime that has staked so much on this agreement will be reluctant to incur the costs.”
Learn more at http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/20/opinion/a-good-deal-for-israel.html?_r=0.

Efraim Halevy
Former Mossad Director; Former head of the National Security Council
“Without an agreement, Iran will be free to do as it pleases, while the sanctions regime will anyway crumble, as many of the world’s countries will rush to Tehran to sign profitable contracts…Why if the nuclear issue is of existential-cardinal importance, what is the point in annulling an agreement which keeps Iran away from the bomb in order to try and insert clauses regarding terror, which is definitely not an existential threat to Israel? As far as terror is concerned, other economic and financial sanctions have been declared, and they will remain valid.”
Learn more at http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4681951,00.html.

Ami Ayalon
Former Director of the Shin Bet; Former Navy Commander-in-Chief
“When negotiations began, Iran was two months away from acquiring enough material for a [nuclear] bomb. Now it will be 12 months…Israelis are failing to distinguish between reducing Iran’s nuclear capability and Iran being the biggest devil in the Middle East.”
Learn more at http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/07/21/ex-intel-chief-iran-deal-good-for-israel.html.

Meir Javedanfar
Israeli expert on Iran and nuclear issues
“With what Netanyahu is suggesting, which is the continuation of the current tensions with Iran until Iran completely capitulates … Iran would only need two months to make a nuclear weapon…Nobody is trusting Iran, the Iranian regime…It’s not about trust – it’s about mistrust and verify.”
Learn more at http://www.haaretz.com/blogs/a-special-place-in-hell/.premium-1.667121.

Yitzhak Ben-Yisrael
Chair of Israel’s Space Agency; Former IDF general
“There is a dialogue of the deaf. The agreement is not bad at all, and even good for Israel…The U.S. leader said that the agreement removes the nuclear threat for a decade or two, and he is correct. In terms of the narrow nuclear issue, it removes the danger for a long time, and prevents a nuclear bomb for the next fifteen years. And it’s not bad at all.”
Learn more at http://news.walla.co.il/item/2872982 (text in Hebrew).

Molad – The Center for the Renewal of Israeli Democracy
Israeli think-tank
“Why is the deal better than the alternatives? First, it will roll back Iran’s nuclear program, which is currently mere months away from a nuclear bomb, and maintain this roll back for at least ten years. During that time, emergency scenarios for dealing with an Iranian attempt to acquire nuclear weapons can be further developed, not to mention the fact that it is not certain that Iran will breakout once the decade is over. Also, as part of the deal, the U.S. Administration is offering Israel added security guarantees that can help improve intelligence and operative capabilities for a future strike on Iran.”
Learn more at http://www.molad.org/images/upload/files/Iran-Deal-Eng.pdf.

The Peace and Security Association
Represents hundreds of Israeli security experts, IDF veterans, Mossad, Shin Bet and Israeli police
“Although the agreement signed in Vienna between the world powers and Iran is not optimal, it should remove the immediate threat of an Iranian break-out leading to a nuclear military capability within a few months, as the situation without the agreement and prior to the interim agreement was evaluated. The agreement is expected to lengthen the break-out time to 12 months for at least 10 years.”
Learn more at http://www.peace-security.org.il/page/95/The-position-of-the-Council-on-the-Agreement-with-Iran.aspx.

Avner Cohen
Israeli expert on nuclear issues
“When it comes to the bottom line, a complex compromise was achieved that from Israel’s standpoint has good and less good elements. Diplomatic wisdom requires Israel, in close coordination with the United States particularly on the intelligence level, to put together a package of understandings that will compensate and balance the problematic and weaker parts of the agreement. If Israel manages to create such a package, it will certainly be able to live with the agreement.”
Learn more at http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-1.666481.

Amos Yadlin
Former Israeli Air Force General, IDF military attaché to Washington, D.C. and head of the IDF Military Intelligence Directorate; Director of The Institute for National Security Studies
“Israel must reach understandings with the United States regarding a shared and coordinated way to confront the risks stemming from the agreement. Such agreements and understandings should include the following areas: intelligence cooperation to compensate for lapses in the realm of inspections; a clear definition of what constitutes significant violation of the agreement; response mechanisms in the event of violation; and a security aid package to improve Israel’s ability both to contend with the threats that will stem from the strengthening of Iran and its terrorist proxies, and to thwart an Iranian breakout toward a bomb. These understandings should be anchored in a side agreement between Israel and the United States.”
Learn more at http://www.inss.org.il/index.aspx?id=4538&articleid=10100.

Oded Eran
Former senior official in Israeli Foreign Ministry; Former Director of The Institute for National Security Studies
“It is imperative that Israel realize that though the agreement has become a reality, the debate in the US and especially in Congress has just begun, particularly as the legislation calls for the administration to submit periodical reports both on Iran’s implementation of the JCPA and on other issues, such as Iran’s support for terror. Through sophisticated diplomacy, Israel will be able to influence the discussions, those in Congress and those between the US and Iran, staying away from the political domestic rift that will inevitably widen in the US presidential race. The Iran nuclear file, troubling as it is, is just one of the long term dangers Israel is facing. The more immediate regional threats have to do with the radicalization and fragmentation processes in the region and the proliferation of weapons that are not categorized as WMD but have a significant destructive power. These are the issues that should be on the top of the agenda in a healthier, less acrimonious dialogue that is based a higher degree of trust.”
Learn more at http://www.inss.org.il/index.aspx?id=4538&articleid=10086.

Israel Ziv
Former IDF Major General
“There is no one in Israel who thinks the nuclear agreement is a good agreement, but the discussion should not focus on that. Because this agreement is the best among all other alternatives, and any military strike – as successful as it may be – would not have delayed even 20% of what the agreement will delay, not to mention the risk of another flare-up with Hezbollah, which an operation against Iran would have generated. The agreement is an established fact, and it’s not particularly bad as far as Israel is concerned.”
Learn more at http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4680698,00.html.

Ehud Barak
Former Israeli Prime Minister, Defense Minister, Foreign Minister and IDF Chief of General Staff
“The most important thing we need to do right now is restore working relations with the White House. That’s the only place where we can formulate what constitutes a violation, what’s a smoking fun and how to respond.”
Learn more at http://forward.com/opinion/312461/cracks-widen-as-israel-security-insiders-break-with-politicians-on-iran-dea/.

Yaakov Peri
Former Director of the Shin Bet and Minister of Science, Technology and Space; Current Member of Knesset
“The way things work in Israel is this: When a deal is signed, a report is presented or an international agreement reached, first there is an overwhelming wave of defamatory comments, such as ‘It is a bad deal’ and ‘It is disastrous for Israel’…Only after these statements are made, people begin to ask whether anyone actually looked into the alternatives. Is freezing the Iranian nuclear program for what could amount to 10 years really so bad? In practical terms, there are some good clauses in the agreement with Iran. I also agree that it is not an ideal agreement. Due to our troubled relationship with the United States, we weren’t a partner in this agreement. A better agreement could have been reached. I say that it’s a good thing we have an agreement, but it could have been a better agreement.”
Learn more at http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2015/07/israel-interview-peri-yesh-atid-iran-nuke-deal-liberman.html?utm_source=Al-Monitor+Newsletter+[English]&utm_campaign=7c855aa7f0-July_28_2015&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_28264b27a0-7c855aa7f0-93129625.

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358 Responses

  1. Ameinu Community,

    I am reaching out to you today in regards to the letter you sent to members of our community on the subject of the Iran Nuclear Agreement.

    The question I pose to you is: If you have indeed have thoroughly read and understand the potentially disastrous ramifications of the current Nuclear Agreement with Iran, how can you possible support it? How can you, with a clear conscience, promote this deal to members of our community?

    The following requirements which the current agreement does not contain, MUST be included in any Nuclear Agreement with Iran:

    #1. The dismantling of centrifuges in all Iranian nuclear facilities.

    #2. The inclusion of anywhere, anytime, short-notice inspections.

    #3 Gradual relief of sanctions.

    #4. Blockage of Iran’s nuclear weapons quest.

    #5. A ban on obtaining ballistic missiles and continued arms embargo.

    If indeed, your first priority is the welfare of America’s Jewish community, the United States and the State of Israel, I urge to do the following: Reread the above five points and then walk to a mirror, look at yourself and explain how you are able, not only as a Jew, but as a citizen of the free world to still support this historically tragic agreement.

    I implore you to use your intelligence and clear common sense and voice your opposition to the “Iran Nuclear Agreement” today!

    Sincerely,

    Joan Rutberg
    joan.rutberg@yahoo.com

  2. Thank you Joan Rutberg for you opposition to the proposed deal.

    I sent this e-mail to the Democrat members of the U.S. Senate:

    [BEGINNING OF LETTER]
    I am writing to encourage your opposition to the proposed JCPOA guaranteed sanctions relief, conventional weapons, thermonuclear weapons, and proxy terrorism deal.

    I have read the available English versions of the proposed JCPOA and the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Let us assume that the English translations match the Farsi versions.

    The proposed JCPOA is a guaranteed sanctions relief program for funding a conventional military modernization program to defend a thermonuclear weapons program and to fund and arm terrorists.

    Sanctions relief funds the conventional weapons and terrorists; the conventional weapons defend the thermonuclear weapons and arm terrorists, all the rest is smoke.

    Sanctions relief also includes trade financing and unrestricted access to international debt markets.

    Debt leverages assets, geometrically multiplying the guaranteed and virtually immediate 50-60 billion dollar Iranian cash windfall.

    The “snap-back” sanctions provisions exempt all existing contracts and virtually guarantee that any “snap-back” sanctions will be toothless and worthless.

    Timing under the proposed JCPOA can be overridden with an IAEA “Broader Conclusion.” Eight years can, and likely will, become eight days (see JCPOA Article 24 for one example). Worse, under secret agreements, the IAEA is both the regulator and a party to Iran’s nuclear development.

    Despite what President Obama suggests, Iranian leadership cannot evolve into Disney characters through free trade and student exchanges.

    The JCPOA negotiations were premised upon regime preservation.

    Iranian leadership evolution is constrained by the Iranian Constitution, the murder of dissidents, the proposed JCPOA and Obama Administration policy.

    The United States government did not come to the aid of Iranian political dissidents seeking regime change in 2009; there is no reason to believe it will do so in the future any more than it has done so for others in the past. We could cite withholding of support for Chinese dissidents as one such example.

    The proposed JCPOA guaranteed sanctions relief, conventional weapons, thermonuclear weapons, and proxy terrorism deal is THE international feeding tube for war and human atrocity. Are these your values? Are these now the values of the Democrat Party? Are these supposed to now be American values?

    The MAJORITY of the American people oppose this extraordinarily bad deal, they do not accept the underlying premise that Iran’s leaders will evolve or that Iran will morph into a youth-lead Disneyland.

    The proposed JCPOA does not reflect American values. The American MAJORITY is correct on this point. The American MAJORITY opinion is supported by facts on the ground.

    As a United States Senator, you should be birthing utopian dreams, not midwifing dystopian nightmares.

    What the soulless, shameless, salivating Iranian sanctions relief-spending entrepreneurs hope to bring to the bottom line in profits is not a fraction of what it will cost the American people (not to mention the remainder of humanity) in direct national defense and other defense expenditures.

    Wealth diverted is wealth squandered.

    The proposed JCPOA is a deal by, of, and for the one percent at the expense of the other ninety-nine.

    The global opportunity cost of wealth squandered is terrorism by other means.

    Move Iran from plastique to peace, not plastique to plutonium.

    Please join the AMERICAN MAJORITY and the GOVERNMENT MAJORITY in opposing and improving upon this extraordinarily bad deal.

    [END OF LETTER]

    Please contact them, it helps. The score card is here: .

    The contact information is on the politicians websites. Mostly e-mail for Senators; faxes and phone calls for members of the House of Representatives.

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