Israeli opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu warned the country’s current government for considering to agree to a “no surprises” policy with the U.S. on Iran.
The so-called “no surprises” policy would require Israel to inform the U.S. in advance of any Israeli operations against Iran’s nuclear program.
What Netanyahu said: The former Israeli prime minister condemned the government’s promise to agree to a “no surprises” policy. He argued that such a commitment could backfire as the information that Israel provides to the U.S. might end up in media reports.
“The information that is sent to America could be leaked to major media outlets and in this way our operations will be thwarted,” said Netanyahu, who is now the opposition leader in the Knesset, a single-chamber in Israel that is the equivalent of Congress.
Netanyahu claimed that he refused such requests from the U.S. because he was wary that the Biden administration might leak the information to the media.
“That is why for the last decade I have refused the requests of American presidents to always inform them of our actions,” he added.
He further called the “no surprises” policy “an existential issue for Israel, in which there may be surprises and sometimes surprises are needed,” according to The Times of Israel, and accused the Israeli government of having “turned us into some sort of protectorate with a duty to report. If we have no independence on this matter, we have no independence at all.”
Worth noting: One Israeli official accused Netanyahu of trying “to sabotage Israel-U.S. relations for his political interests” in a statement to Tel-Aviv-based Axios contributor Barak Ravid.
Not a first: Last month, Netanyahu falsely accused Israeli foreign minister Yair Lapid of agreeing to a “no surprises” policy on Iran, Axios reported.
He also claimed that when the U.S. asked him to commit to such a policy, he told them “that on matters that are existential I will maintain Israel’s freedom of operation without any obligation for prior notice.”
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