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Senior American official: If Iran attacks Israel, US will protect it

56627249962385640360noF-35 fighter jet: only for Israel (Photo: AFP)

Following nuclear deal with Iran, Washington tries to ease Israel’s fears; official states Israel’s military qualitative edge will be ensured, adding: ‘US intelligence will check Iranian compliance with laser accuracy’.

If Israel is attacked by Iran, the United States will protect it, a senior US official said in a press briefing on Monday.

“We live this commitment every day, it’s something we do for Israel on a daily basis,” he said. “We have a relationship of allies and the word ally has meaning for us. It means that if you are attacked we will defend you as we would a NATO member.”

According to the official, the US is “shocked” by the Iranian leadership’s calls to destroy Israel after the signing of the agreement.

“This is not the way a country should behave in today’s world. But that does not mean that we shouldn’t sign an agreement that reduces the risk of Iran becoming a nuclear state. We do not expect Iran to radically change its behavior following the agreement. We are trying to deal with the nuclear issue and bring it to a level of transparency and visibility. It’s not that we think that Iran has changed and its leaders want to create peace and harmony. I do not think that Iran is a part of the solution. Perhaps in the future if it changes its behavior.”

“We believe this deal reduces the need for a military attack,” the official said. “We understand that the military option is always an option for Israel and the US, but the agreement makes the military option less necessary. But Israel has a right to self-defense, we understand that.”

He pledged that the United States will ensure Israel’s qualitative military edge and increase its military aid in the field of missile defense and the war on terror.

“This is something that is in legislation. It is about what we sell to Israel to secure the lead, and how we monitor arms sales to the region so that Israel maintains its superiority. Therefore, the sale of F-35 and other systems is critical. This was our way to maintain Israel’s qualitative edge and it will remain so. The agreement with Iran is about its nuclear capabilities and not its conventional capabilities. We ensured the qualitative edge before the agreement and will continue doing so.”

The official went on to say that on the day after the implementation of the agreement there will not be a conflict of interests between Israeli intelligence and American intelligence in the effort to discover violations of the deal in Iran.

“US intelligence will continue to check Iranian compliance with the agreement with laser accuracy, and any attempt to deceive or mislead the supervision will be revealed. The goal is to provide policymakers with the right information and share it with the Israelis.”


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