Mossad Chief David Barnea held an intelligence briefing on Thursday with Prime Minister Lapid, where it was decided to step up the attack on the emerging nuclear deal with Iran.
According to a high-level Israeli source, Barnea told Lapid: “There’s a double standard here. On the one hand, they are sitting in Vienna and getting closer to an agreement, and on the other hand, Iran sends terrorists against the Americans and deceives the world.”
According to Press TV, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian told UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on the phone Thursday, “We possess the serious and real will for the conclusion of a strong and sustainable agreement, and have displayed this will in practice.” He added: “Currently, my colleagues are engaged in examining the US response.”
Barnea argued that “It’s a bad agreement that gives Iran a license to create a bomb.” He warned that “Mossad is committed to preventing Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons, and so it will be. The agreement does not apply to Israel and neither does it limit its freedom to continue to act.”
Regarding the issue of the open files of the International Atomic Energy Agency, the head of Mossad believes that they constitute “proof that Iran will lie even under the agreement,” noting that “there’s no doubt that signing the agreement will not change the files.”
National security council spokesman John Kirby said on Thursday that the US would not agree to make the nuclear deal conditional on the closure of the IAEA probe into those open files. “We have communicated to Iran, both in public and private, that it must answer the IAEA questions. It’s the only way to address those concerns. And our position on that is not going to change,” Kirby briefed reporters.
Maariv’s Ben Caspit wrote last week, citing a senior political official, that “almost the entire top echelon of the security system is now aligned with Barnea’s position. Mossad’s approach has won the day, mainly in light of the fact that the West, led by the Americans, recently surrendered to the Iranians in almost all areas. The main thing for them is to sign the agreement and remove the issue from their agenda. The ones who will remain with this issue on their agenda are us because Iran will receive a ‘license to kill’ and hundreds of billions of dollars that will be invested in terrorism and regional expansion.”
On Friday morning, Caspit blamed the runaway agreement with Iran squarely on then Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. “The prime minister ignored all the warnings he was given, kicked away all the options and scenarios that were put before him, and decided to push President Trump out of the nuclear agreement without preparing an alternative plan and without preparing for the worst scenario that eventually materialized,” Caspit wrote.
“Contrary to what Netanyahu had hoped, the sanctions did not topple the Ayatollahs’ regime, nor did they bring it to its knees. No, they didn’t crawl back for a better deal. Trump did not attack the Iranian nukes and was not re-elected. Everything happened the other way around.”
Likud MK Avi Dichter, formerly the head of the Shin Bet, was doubtful about Mossad Chief Barnea’s threats. Speaking to Reshet Bet radio, Dichter said, “The problems are much more complicated and not related to what Israel has managed to do offensively. The main problem is that when there is an agreement, Israel will have a serious problem taking steps that violate the agreement from the Americans’ point of view.”