Rabbi Eliezer Melamed, head of Har Bracha Yeshiva and a prominent Religious Zionism leader, said Iran does not pose an existential threat to Israel and a military offense against it was unnecessary. According to him, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak are known to be "men of ego," and he fears this is their main motivation to act against Tehran.
Melamed expressed his opinions in an article published in a religious magazine on Thursday. The Rabbi said he was not a strategic expert, but yet he feels obligated to express his reservations.
According to his analysis, the unconventional arms race is a negative, yet inevitable phenomenon. Melamed explained that even if Israel will succeed in destroying all Iranians nuclear facilities, it would not end the arms race, but only delay it.
Therefore, the entire world must learn to handle such threats. "Israel's predicament is not different than those faced by other countries," wrote Melamed and added, "contrary to what Barak and Netanyahu say, Iran is not the greatest threat on Israel, It is one threat among many."
The proper means to counter these threats, according to Melamed, are anti-missile technology, deterrence, widening Israeli sovereignty over the land and strengthening the West Bank settlements.
Melamed bashed Netanyahu and Barak for eroding Israel's deterrence by making empty threats on Iran, and failing to respond properly to bombardments from Gaza and Lebanon.
Doubting the motives
"It is impossible not to doubt the agenda behind such a decision," wrote Melamed about a possible strike against Iran. "They (Netanyahu and Barak) are known for their inflated egos, and one must fear that personal agenda motivates them to act against Iran." Melamed said that both men have a lot to gain in their personal careers by such action.
Melamed also criticized the IDF's leadership for being "plagued with degeneration," claiming many commanders agree to concessions and "seek peace with terrorists only to avoid inquiries and secure career advancements.
"I have expressed my thoughts before and turned out to be right," concluded Melamed, referring to his criticism following the Second Lebanon war, "I must continue sharing my views."