How so you perceive the deal reached last night in Geneva?
It is very bad deal. It gives Iran – and rightly so – some sort of perceived legitimacy to enrich uranium and keep the infrastructure that has definitely only one purpose – to build the nuclear bomb. One who knows the city of Qom: The Fordow site – bunkers inside the mountain that hold something around 3000 centrifuges, this is nothing only for military purpose – and they are allowed to keep it. And the nuclear reactor that is working with heavy waters in Arak- they are expected to stop building it but not rolling back. This reactor also is only for military purposes.
So, how do you sum it up? What is the bottom line as far as Israel is concerned?
The Iranians keep the ability to produce the nuclear weapon. They even are permitted to continue enrich uranium with some sort of legitimacy from the part of the international community. Until now they enriched it by challenging the international community's resolutions, but now they do it want some kind of consent. This is unbelievable! What they pay is ridiculous…
Why is it so? The Geneva negotiators did not think so
All they did in the past year and a half were changes in the configurations of program so, if they have to give up the 20%, it will not inflict any damage to them. On the other hand they still have some measure of sanctions that create the possibility of corrosion of sanctions because many parties around the world will knock of their doors trying to find economic opportunities there.
But they talk now only on interim agreement. We still have the final agreement ahead of us. Maybe Israeli alarm is too early?
I cannot see in what respect the final agreement will be different. Why on earth the Iranian now will show more flexibility? From this interim agreement to reach another final agreement – it is almost impossible, definitely after easing of the sanctions. It is very bad agreement that gives the Iranians option to build the bomb in timing of their choosing.
It is of big concern to Israel and to the Gulf countries and should be of great concern to everyone who is interested in the stability of the region. The Iranians established themselves as ones who challenged the entire world – and survived. They came out victorious to some extent. This will strengthen their position in the Middle East and weaken the pro-western moderates. It is very difficult to understand why the USA decided to take this line of action.
The Iranians came to the negotiations very weak, suffering from the sanctions, flat on their face and instead of taking advantage of that and enforce them to make a good deal, the West rescued them and gave them the deal of their life.
Maybe the West wanted to bolster Ruhani against the radicals in Tehran?
But they did the opposite- they bolstered the radicals. Rafsanjani said few days ago that Iran might need to be ready to make more concessions and Ruhani is protégé of his- but this deal tell them that there is no need to more concessions- so the radicals were right! Instead of enforcing Rafsanjani and Ruhani to work hard to get a deal, the way it was achieved bolstered Khamenei. The radicals may say now—why to give concessions? We can achieve everything without concessions!
You mentioned the Gulf states- there were reports about actual coordination between Israel and Gulf, even meetings on high level leaders—can you confirm them?
I cannot refer to this issue. I can say only that Israel and the Gulf have very similar interests and concerns. We are all concerned the way the international community is dealing with Iran; The potential repercussions of this attitude.
Everybody is asking now – what Israel is going to do next. So, what Israel is going to do next?
We were focused on trying to convince the world not to do that bad deal. We had some impact – not enough. Now we have to sit down and assess. We have to be careful that Iran will play by the deal.
Do you think that they comply?
The little that is expected from them- they can comply. It is in their interest because they keep in their possession close to 20000 centrifuges that can enable them to make the weapon grade uranium in very small number of weeks. This is still the game and is not going to change. But they can use this period of time in order to shorten the time of their way to the bomb once they break out. We must be on alert to make sure that this is not happening. Second – we have to make sure that the gifts that were given to Iran will not be greater than what was announced. We have reason to believe that this will happen and more people will try to benefit more than is allowed.
We have also to keep all preparedness that we shall be Able to defend ourselves, take the necessary steps to make sure that Iran will not have nuclear program.
It means military preparations?
It means a lot of things and the military option is on the table.
In what point Israel may take military action?
We have no intention to give declaration of this kind. We are on alert.