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US Chief of Staff Says Military Attack on Iran ‘Premature’

In a candid interview with the National Journal on Thursday, chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Martin Dempsey said that current US efforts to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon is effective, and that a military operation would be “premature”.

“I do think the path we’re on—the economic sanctions and the diplomatic pressure—does seem to me to be having an effect. I just think that its premature to be deciding that the economic and diplomatic approach is inadequate.”

Dempsey was speaking after his return from a visit to Israel, where he was reported to have cautioned against a military strike against Iran. “My intervention with them was not to try to persuade them to my thinking or allow them to persuade me to theirs, but rather to acknowledge the complexity and commit to seeking creative solutions, not simple solutions,” he said,

In the same interview, Dempsey said that he and his Israeli counterparts argued their positions “aggressively,”  but conceded that “We [the US] have to acknowledge that they … see that threat differently than we do. It’s existential to them.

 

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