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August 25, 2015 2:52 pm

Israeli Defense Officials Say Country’s Military Capabilities Have Improved Since 2012 Talk of Strike on Iran’s Nuclear Facilities

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Former Israeli defense minister Ehud Barak. Photo: Barak Weizmann/Wikimedia Commons.

Former Israeli defense minister Ehud Barak. Photo: Barak Weizmann/Wikimedia Commons.

Israeli defense officials responded harshly to recordings released by former Defense Minister Ehud Barak, Israel’s Walla news reported on Monday.

In the tapes, broadcast on Israel’s Channel 2 last week, Barak claimed that a strike against Iranian nuclear facilities could have been carried out in 2010-2012, but was nixed by hesitant ministers and military men.

Breaking their silence, defense officials blasted Barak, both for his remarks and for revealing sensitive military information. According to Walla, they also argued that Barak’s presentation of the IDF and certain ministers as reticent about striking Iran’s nuclear facilities has harmed Israel’s deterrence capabilities.

One defense official commented, “Whoever says that between 2010 and 2012, the IDF was at the peak of its readiness to carry out a a strike against Iran is wrong and misleading. With every passing year, the IDF is improving. We are not frozen in place, and our professional level keeps rising.”

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The official added, “In the coming year, we will get another submarine, F-35s and other platforms. Our intelligence is also better.”

He also asserted that such a military option in relation to Iran necessitates defensive capabilities as well as offensive ones. “If we are required to carry out a strike in Iran, we will also require defense, because Hezbollah will attack Israel with rockets and missiles,” he said. “You cannot compare Israel’s system of defense in 2010-2012 to today’s, since we have more Iron Dome batteries. Nor can it be compared to that of the coming year, when the ‘David’s Sling’ [anti-ballistic missile system] will be operational.”

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