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In unprecedented interview given to Saudi media, the Chief of Staff addresses the Shia threat and the unlikelihood of war with Hezbollah

Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot gave an unprecedented interview Thursday to a Saudi news agency, saying the Jewish state is prepared to share intelligence with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as part of their coordinated efforts to curb Iranian influence in the region.

Eisenkot gave this first interview to the London-based, Saudi-owned site Elaph. He offered his vision of Iranian ambitions in the Middle East, and talked about how they could be countered.

The Chief of Staff was clear that Israel is not interested in going to war with Hezbollah, a Lebanese terrorist organization supported by Lebanon, despite Iran's attempts to reach an escalation of violence on Israel's borders.

Asked about sharing “information” with the Saudis, Eizenskot replied that “we are ready to share information if necessary. There are interests that [Saudi Arabia] and we share.”

On Iranian ambitions in the region, Eisenkot said that “Iran's plan is to control the Middle East through two Shia crescents. The first [will be directed] from Iran via Iraq to Syria and Lebanon, and the second from Bahrain via Yemen and the Red Sea”.

“This is what needs to be prevented in the region,” he said.

“In this matter, there is total understanding between us and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, which has never been our enemy. He never fought us nor we fought him. »

“When I met with the Joint Chiefs of Staff [in the United States] and heard what the Saudi representative had to say, I heard my thoughts echoed there. when it comes to confronting Iran and how to manage its expansion in the region. »

On the sudden resignation of former Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri last week, Eizenkot said it was a "complex" and "surprising" move.

Hariri said he was resigning because he feared the Iranians were planning to assassinate him.

Eizenkot said the move also reflects the decline in Lebanese support for Hezbollah, and stressed that "Hezbollah is starting to feel financial pressure and have big material problems."

In response to allegations that suggest Israel intends to attack Hezbollah, the Chief of Staff said that "we have no intention of attacking Hezbollah in Lebanon in such a way as to go to war ".

"However," he added, "we will not accept any strategic threat against Israel."

He said he was pleased with the XNUMX years of calm on the Lebanese border, which Israel sees as "Iran's attempts to achieve an escalation [of violence]", but added that he believes it is "unlikely at this stage".




Source: Eizenkot: Israel ready to cooperate with Riyadh to "deal with Iran"


  • Samy Bochner
    Posted November 17, 2017 8h55 0Likes

    These perspectives, I evoke them in detail in my recent heralding book: “Iconoclastie du Moyen-Orient” ( )

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