Tag Archives: Meir Javedanfar

My comments on the #Iran nuclear deal for the FPA

23 Jul

Two days ago, The Foreign Press Association in Israel (FPA) invited Dr Dore Gold, the Director General of the Israel Foreign Ministry and the former head of the Conservative kham-netanThink Tank JCPA to present the Israeli government’s position on Iran and the nuclear talks.

The FPA then gave me the floor to comment on the official Israeli government’s position, as presented by Dr Gold.

The summary of both of our comments was published in this report by the Jerusalem Post.

Just one correction: where it says “Iran’s ethnic cleansing of Sunnis ” is wrong. I stated “Iran regime Shiite allies ethnic cleansing of Sunnis”

Here is a summary of my points.

Meir Javedanfar, an Iranian- born analyst who now lives in Tel Aviv and lectures at the IDC Herzliya, took issue with some of Gold’s statements Because Iran is obliged to allow inspection of undeclared sites, it cannot hide nuclear activity, he insisted.

“Nuclear material is extremely difficult to remove from air, land, or water,” he said, and therefore no matter what Iran might do, it would not succeed in hiding its nuclear operations.

The deal is not about trusting the Iranian regime, he insisted. “When it’s not in their interests they don’t keep deals. When it is in their interests they keep deals that others would throw away. Nobody trusts the Iranian regime, but you have to look at their political eco system. It’s not a question about trust. It’s a question about mistrust and verification.”

Javedanfar also made the point that if the Iranians had wanted to make a nuclear weapon, they would have done so before the agreement.

He suggested that what the West does not understand is that “in Iran there is a regime and there is a government, and we have to make that distinction.”

President Hassan Rouhani does not make any decisions without the instructions or approval of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said Javedanfar, who remarked that Khamenei is now distancing himself from Rouhani and letting him take the blame for anything that looks like compromise on Iran’s part in the agreement.

“If you want a moderate Iran, you have to worry about Rouhani,” he said.

Javedanfar left room for hope by saying that “Iran’s image in the region is starting to nosedive.” Iran’s ethnic cleansing of Sunnis is impacting on the region and is contributing to a strong anti-Iran coalition, said Javedanfar.

Talking peace with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas would make Israel’s position more acceptable in the region, he added.

As an Iranian who knows the language and the mentality of his former fellow countrymen, Javedanfar was adamant that “the Iranian regime is not an existential threat to Israel. It is a strategic threat.”

Watch: former head of #Israel Mossad condemned publicly for not attacking #Iran

8 Jun

Former Mossad chief Meir Dagan

In 2010, Prime Minister Netanyahu and former Defense Minister Ehud Barak ordered the Israel Defense Forces to increase their level of preparedness, in order to entice Iran to attack Israel. They were hoping to destroy Iran’s nuclear infrastructure in retaliation.

The former head of the Mossad Meir Dagan and the former IDF chief Gabi Ashkenazi refused this order. Why were they not imprisoned? because Netanyahu and Barak were acting illegally. They had issued the order, without consulting the security cabinet. This is a decision to be made by the security cabinet and not just the Prime Minister and Defence Minister. Thats why. Otherwise the head of Israel armed forces have no right to refuse the order of the Israeli public’s democratically elected representatives. If they do so, they would be breaking the law.

At this year’s Jerusalem Post conference, Caroline Glick, the hard-line conservative editor of the Jerusalem Post attacked Dagan and Ashkenazi for not attacking Iran, and for not listening to Netanyahu’s illegal orders. And she was applauded by the participants!

Watch her remarks and Meir Dagan’s reaction. #Classic. This is the same conference in which Obama’s Secretary of Treasury was booed.

And now Yinon Magal, a member of the extremist Bayit Yehudi party wants Dagan and Ashkenazi to be subpoenad for having refused Netanyahu’s (illegal) order. Good luck with that! The law in Israel is on their side.

ICYMI: Netanyahu reverses #Israel stance re: #Iran enrichment

27 Mar
Benjamin_Netanyahu_portrait

A positive move by the Prime Minister which is likely to strengthen Israel’s position.

Israel’s policy has always been that Iran must not be allowed to retain any enrichment capacity. Zero enrichment, zero centrifuges.

In fact this was one of the linchpins of Netanyahu’s speech before the Congress. One of the main reasons why he lambasted the negotiations was because they would allow Iran to have limited enrichment capacity on its soil.

However, two days after his election as Prime Minister, in an interview with MSNBC, Netanyahu suddenly changed course.

According to the JTA, quoting the MSNBC interview:

In the MSNBC interview, however, he made a significant concession, saying Israel could tolerate a limited uranium enrichment capacity for Iran, although with a number lower than the 6,500 reported to be part of an emerging deal.

“A smaller number is something Israel and its Arab neighbors wouldn’t love but could live with,” he said.

By the look of things, not only Netanyahu’s Congress speech failed to convince any Congressmen to change their mind regarding the Iran deal, but as it turns out the only person who seems to have changed their stance towards the Iran negotiations since then is Prime Minister Netanyahu himself.

Welcome to the world of Realpolitik Mr Netanyahu. No one wants the Iranian regime to have nuclear weapons. But your zero enrichment demand was so unrealistic that it hurt  Israel’s credibility.

And no, limited enrichment capacity under tough inspections will not allow Iran to have nuclear weapons as soon as it chooses. Robert Einhorn, one of the world’s foremost experts in this subject explains succinctly why in this op-ed.

For for the record, your truly and Brigadier General Shlomo Brom were the first Israeli specialists of this topic to have the guts to go on the record as far back as in October 2012 to state that Israel could live with limited enrichment on Iranian soil. This was not an easy statement for two Israelis to make as back then Ahmadinejad was still in office and we  were still being subjected to his vicious anti-Israel rhetoric.

Will Yemen split up again?

25 Mar

The situation in Yemen is deteriorating. The Shia Houthi rebels are making advances in their battle

The flag of Yemen

against the elected Sunni president Abd Rabbu Hadi.

The Financial Times interviewed its Persian Gulf correspondent Simeon Kerr about the conflict.

One of the things he addresses is how some Yemenis are discussing the idea of Yemen splitting up again, to North and South, as was the case until 1990. Until then there was North and the Communist South Yemen.

Today’s warring factions are mainly the Sunnis and the Zaidi Shia. The Sunni side, which are Saudi backed are mainly concentrated in the South of Yemen. The Zaidi Shia reportedly supported by Iran are based in the North.

So if Yemen is going to split again, this time instead of using geographical terms (North and South) why not become franchised. Something like “Saudi Yemen” and “Iranian Yemen”. Just a thought.

You can listen to the entire 7 minutes podcast here

Former Mossad chief stated Netanyahu behavior could be interpreted by U.S as spying

24 Mar

A new row has broken out between the Netanyahu and Obama administrations.

Former head of the Mossad Meir Dagan. Source

According to the Guardian:

The US has accused Israel of spying on international negotiations over Iran’s nuclear programme.

Meanwhile according to the Wall Street Journal which first broke this story, its not just the alleged spying thats really upsetting the Obama administration:

“It is one thing for the U.S. and Israel to spy on each other. It is another thing for Israel to steal U.S. secrets and play them back to U.S. legislators to undermine U.S. diplomacy,” said a senior U.S. official briefed on the matter.

This new story reminded me of a quote which I read, by Meir Dagan the former chief of the Mossad.

In an interview with the Yediot Ahronot newspaper on the 27th of February he stated:

“What message does it send when our prime minister says that we don’t need information from the talks and that we have our own sources? Is he implying that we are spying on the United States?”

What this statement possibly tells us is that there were already concerns in Israel that Netanyahu’s statements alone, for whatever reason, could make the Americans think that Israel was spying on them.

The fact that this concern was aired in Israel 3 weeks before the Obama administration made the accusations is certainly noteworthy.

These are just assumptions. But what is not an assumption is that every week many of us think Israel – US government relations can’t get any worst, and every week reality proves us wrong.

This has got to stop.

Happy Nowruz from Tel Aviv, #Israel. Now PUMP UP THE VOLUME

21 Mar

Happy Nowruz, in Hebrew. Its also celebrated here in Israel by Kurds and Persians.

Today is Nowruz. Its the first day of spring and the beginning of a new year in the Persian calendar.

This festival is celebrated not just in Iran, but also by Kurds everywhere and in lands as far away as Kazakhstan and India.

I wish that in the year ahead, the animosity between the Iranian government and Israel ends. I also hope and pray that the people of Israel and Palestine will move closer to peace.

OK, NOW PUMP UP THE VOLUME ON YOUR COMPUTER!!

Yes, I mean YOU.

Its time for another Nowruz tradition, which is to dance and be happy. This is a fantastic Nowruz song by the UK-based Iranian band AJAM. LOVE IT!

 

The letter by 47 Republican Senators could increase chances of an #Iran deal

12 Mar

Republican Senator Tom Cotton (above) wrote the letter to the Supreme Leader of Iran. Picture: WIkipedia

47 Republican Senators recently signed a letter which warned the supreme leader of Iran that:

any deal negotiated by the current White House could be reversed by a new president “with the stroke of a pen’’ in as little as 22 months.

In other words: Dear Mr Khamenei, if you reach a deal with the current U.S President (Obama), such a deal could be considered as meaningless to the next leader of the United States.

Many are wondering what impact this latest development could have inside Iran.

In my opinion, it could end up strengthening the voice of those inside Iran who want a deal with the U.S.

It could also increase the credibility of Obama as someone Iran could reach a deal with.

My logic goes as follows:

Inside Iran, especially to those surrounding the supreme leader, it is most probably becoming increasingly clear what massive pressure Obama is facing at home. How his rivals are trying their level best to scuttle a deal with Iran.

More importantly, it is most probably becoming clear in Tehran how Obama is fighting tooth and nail to keep the chances of a deal alive. How he is going out of his to defend the negotiations, despite the massive and unending pressure.

And this could lead to the conclusion in Iran that:

Look at Obama’s efforts. He is someone we could do business with. He is our last chance to reach a deal to end the sanctions. It’s unlikely that someone like Obama will come to power in the U.S any time soon. So it’s now or never.

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