The former chief of Mossad: « I believe the US is returning to the Middle East»
An exclusive interview with former Head of Mossad, major general Danny Yatom (res.)
- Mr. Yatom, why did US President Donald Trump give the order for the assassination of Iranian general Qasem Soleimani, and admitting this publicly?
- I assume President Trump has decided to eliminate Qasem Soleimani because Soleimani was, among other things, behind the rocket attack that killed a US citizen and attempts to seize control of the American embassy in Baghdad. In addition, Soleimani was the Iranian policy architect in the Middle East, terrorizing and leading Iran's attempts to take over other countries. According to the US, Soleimani has planned major attacks on several American embassies and its elimination is intended to prevent these attacks.
- Do not you think that such a policy of the Trump administration can lead to even greater chaos, the emergence of new armed conflicts in the Middle East?
- In the war against terror, no terrorist is immuned and we should chase both junior and senior officials. If we do not fight against terrorism by any means, terrorism will chase us and commit terror attacks in our communities.
- Do you think that one should expect an increase in the US military presence in the region against the backdrop of a growing Iran-US confrontation?
- I believe the US is returning to the Middle East. Maybe on a smaller scale than before. In my opinion, this is a right decision because it is wrong to abandon the region to the control of Russia, Iran and Turkey.
- In your opinion, in what scenario will events in the Middle East develop after the assassination of Soleimani?
- After Soleimani elimination, Iran had to respond and at that stage did not respond strongly. Soleimani elimination restored US deterrence, signaled to the rivals that the United States is ready to act with great force, and should not be dealt with. I believe that Iran will try to take revenge by further actions, but the US and Iran have no interest in a wide war and therefore the conflict will fade.
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