Moments before Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip, former Director of Military Intelligence Major General Amos Yadlin said he would "be happy" if it happened, a diplomatic cable published on WikiLeaks revealed on Monday.
In the beginning of June 2007, American Ambassador Richard Jones met with Yadlin following violent clashes between Fatah
in the Gaza Strip.
According to a cable sent from the embassy to Washington, Yadlin ranked Gaza as Israel's fourth largest threat – after Iran,
The military intelligence chief, who recently retired and was highly esteemed among Israel's political and military echelons, underrated Iran's involvement in the Strip "as long as they have no (air or sea) port."
According to the document Yadlin said a Hamas takeover would be a positive step, because Israel would then be able to declare Gaza as a hostile entity.
A few days later, his prediction came true as Hamas took control of the Strip.
The American ambassador noted that if Fatah loses control of the Strip, Abbas would be urged to form a separate government in the West Bank.
Yadlin responded by saying that such developments would please Israel, because the IDF would not have to deal with Hamas as a stateless body. He also added that Israel would be able to cooperate with a Fatah-controlled West Bank.
Additional documents revealed details of Yadlin's December 2008 meeting with Jewish US Representative Robert Wexler, who is considered a strong proponent of Israel.
During their meeting, Yadlin explained that the Palestinians have formed two entities. "Abu Mazen "(Mahmoud Abbas) and (Salam) Fayyad are controlling the West Bank while the Hamas has established a terror entity in Gaza," he said.
Shortly prior to Operation Cast Lead,
Yadlin warned that Israel could reach any Hamas member's house or workplace, adding that If they shoot rockets or mortar shells, Israel would be able to use this information.
Before Israel's change of governments, Yadlin claimed that negotiations needed more time. "The next prime minister and Palestinian president would need time to build trust," he was quoted as saying.
The military intelligence chief estimated that attempts to immediately move into direct talks may result in violent clashes such as those that erupted after Camp David in 2000.
During his 2007 meeting with Jones, Yadlin warned the ambassador that a war between Israel and Syria may easily break out, although neither side wants war.
The meeting was held some three months before the bombardment of a nuclear reactor in Syria.
Yadlin estimated that Bashar Assad's
regime would not survive the war, but stated that it was not Israel's job to protect their "evil regime." Yadlin also noted that Syria had been busy preparing ahead of a future clash with Israel.