Defense Minister Ya'alon: War Is Not Only Alternative to Bad Iran Deal

Israeli minister pens op-ed in The Washington Post saying the alternative is 'a better deal that significantly rolls back Iran’s nuclear infrastructure.'

Gili Cohen
Gili Cohen
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon.
Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon.Credit: Ofer Vaknin
Gili Cohen
Gili Cohen

Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon has rejected the claim by U.S. President Barack Obama, among other figures, that there is no good alternative to the framework agreement on Iran’s nuclear program. In an op-ed published in The Washington Post on Wednesday, titled “Current Iran framework will make war more likely,” Ya’alon writes, “The claim that the only alternative to the framework is war is false. It both obscures the failure to attain better terms from Iran and stifles honest and open debate by suggesting that if you don’t agree, you must be a warmonger.”

“The choice is not between this bad deal and war,” according to Ya’alon. “The alternative is a better deal that significantly rolls back Iran’s nuclear infrastructure.”

He writes, “This alternative requires neither war nor putting our faith in tools that have already failed us.” He notes that he “know[s] too well the costs of war” and that “Israelis are likely to pay the highest price if force is used — by anyone — against Iran’s nuclear program. No country, therefore, has a greater interest in seeing the Iranian nuclear question resolved peacefully than Israel.”

While acknowledging Israel’s “serious policy disagreement with the United States regarding the framework and its implications,” Ya’alon noted that “Israelis know that the United States is Israel’s greatest friend and strategic ally. No disagreement, not even about this critical issue, can diminish our enduring, profound gratitude to the president and his administration, Congress and the American people for all the United States has done to enhance the security of the Jewish state.”

The defense minister cast doubt in his op-ed on the agreement’s reliance on monitoring and intelligence to detect Iranian violations of its terms, noting that “the Iranian nuclear crisis began and intensified after two massive intelligence failures. Neither Israeli nor other leading Western intelligence agencies knew about Iran’s underground enrichment facilities at Natanz and Fordow until it was too late.”

Ya’alon’s op-ed was published after Obama’s interview with The New York Times last week, in which the president said “that there is no formula, there is no option, to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon that will be more effective than the diplomatic initiative and framework that we put forward — and that’s demonstrable.”

Click the alert icon to follow topics:



Automatic approval of subscriber comments.
From $1 for the first month

Already signed up? LOG IN


Charles Lindbergh addressing an America First Committee rally on October 3, 1941.

Ken Burns’ Brilliant ‘The U.S. and the Holocaust’ Has Only One Problem

The projected rise in sea level on a beach in Haifa over the next 30 years.

Facing Rapid Rise in Sea Levels, Israel Could Lose Large Parts of Its Coastline by 2050

Tal Dilian.

As Israel Reins in Its Cyberarms Industry, an Ex-intel Officer Is Building a New Empire

Queen Elizabeth II, King Charles III and a British synagogue.

How the Queen’s Death Changes British Jewry’s Most Distinctive Prayer

Newly appointed Israeli ambassador to Chile, Gil Artzyeli, poses for a group picture alongside Rabbi Yonatan Szewkis, Chilean deputy Helia Molina and Gerardo Gorodischer, during a religious ceremony in a synagogue in Vina del Mar, Chile last week.

Chile Community Leaders 'Horrified' by Treatment of Israeli Envoy

Queen Elizabeth attends a ceremony at Windsor Castle, in June 2021.

Over 120 Countries, but Never Israel: Queen Elizabeth II's Unofficial Boycott