The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) is reported to have requested major budget increases to the tune of billions to make ready for a potential strike on Iran’s nuclear program.
Military officials tabled the request during preliminary discussions on the passing of the state budget, which Prime Minister Naftali Bennett's government seeks to push through in the coming months, public broadcaster Kan reported on Thursday.
This comes as talks between the Islamic Republic and the United States on reviving the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), or the Iran nuclear deal as it is commonly known, have hit a hard place.
Separately, defense sources accused former prime minister and current opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu of neglecting to ensure the state was adequately prepared for a military option in Iran while he was in office.
As per Channel 12, unnamed defense sources said that Netanyahu has failed to allocate the funding required to carry out the complex operations a strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities would entail.
Such an operation would require intense, lengthy preparation and the former administration's hold-ups could lead to a scenario where Israel is effectively “waving a gun without any bullets in it,” the officials told the TV station.
Netanyahu has argued that the new Bennett-led government was “silent” as “the Iranians are rushing toward the bomb.”
Netanyahu has made the Iranian threat a cornerstone of his foreign policy.
Meanwhile, Iran will put negotiations on ice until the handover of the nation’s presidency from President Hassan Rouhani to hardliner Ebrahim Raisi next month, a diplomatic source told Reuters.
Reprinted with permission from i24NEWS.