Israel’s new Foreign Minister Yisarel Katz, told an international security conference this week, “We must be prepared for this, and thus the State of Israel continues to devote itself to building up its military might for the event that it will have to respond to escalation scenarios.”
Israel is preparing for its role in a potential military escalation between the U.S. and Iran, Foreign Minister Yisarel Katz told an international security conference this week, suggesting the Islamic Republic may take a decisive step into the “red zone.”
“It should be taken into account that mistaken calculations by the [Iranian] regime…are liable to bring about a shift from the ‘gray zone’ to the ‘red zone’ – that is, a military conflagration,” he said in a speech on Tuesday at the 19th annual Herzliya Conference.
“We must be prepared for this, and thus the State of Israel continues to devote itself to building up its military might for the event that it will have to respond to escalation scenarios.”
A senior Iranian lawmaker warned on Monday that Israel would be destroyed within “only half an hour” if the US were to attack the Islamic Republic.
Earlier on Tuesday, Katz said the U.S.-led “economic war” on Iran would succeed and was in fact a way to prevent military war — suggesting that it would lead Iran to submit to stricter arms controls than those negotiated under the 2015 nuclear deal, rather than instigate military conflict.
“Iran has no chance in this war,” the foreign minister told Israel’s Army Radio. “Therefore there is an opportunity there, through the tough economic pressure and the comprehensive sanctions, to prevent war, to achieve the objectives without war.”
Katz’s comments came after the head of Israel’s storied Mossad intelligence agency claimed on Monday at the same conference that Iran was “definitely” behind last month’s attacks of two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman.
The foreign minister returned from an undisclosed trip over the weekend to Oman, where he said he discussed establishing diplomatic relations as part of normalization efforts between Israel and Arab states, united against Iran.
But on Wednesday, Oman flatly denied Katz’s statements as “baseless.”
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