NEW YORK (CBSDC) – As Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu remains firm in his stance to establish red lines for Iran in regard to its nuclear capabilities and potential actions, the U.S. ambassador to Israel has reaffirmed that the U.S. has already put in place “the necessary preparations” against Iran.
Shortly after Netanyahu’s speech Thursday to the United Nations, Dan Shapiro, the U.S. Ambassador to Israel, said that the U.S. and Israel are on the same page in regard to Iran’s ability to possibly acquire a nuclear weapon, saying that the appropriate measures are in place to resort to force in case Iran puts its nuclear program into practice. In an interview with The Times of Israel Thursday, Shapiro stressed the cohesiveness on the part of the U.S. and Israel, as well as the mutual desire on the part of both nations to establish red lines against Iran.
“We’re totally focused on the same goal, which is preventing Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon. We’re in the closest possible consultations at the highest levels of our government,” Shapiro told The Times of Israel. “We’re absolutely focused on achieving that goal together. And we’ve been very well coordinated until now and I think we will remain very well coordinated.”
Shapiro later added: “We made very clear that we’re going to do everything we need to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon. That includes having a military option on the table. The necessary preparations have been taken to make sure that’s the case. I’ll leave it at that rather than address public opinion.”
The question of whether the U.S. was indeed in sync with Israel about setting clear red lines and deadlines against Iran has lingered as concerns have continued about Iran’s potential to use its nuclear program. President Barack Obama touched on these concerns Tuesday to the General Assembly, stressing the need, for now, to see what options there are through diplomacy.
“Make no mistake: A nuclear-armed Iran is not a challenge that can be contained,” Obama said Tuesday. “It would threaten the elimination of Israel, the security of Gulf nations, and the stability of the global economy.”
On Thursday, Netanyahu had a modified take on the situation, making his case to the U.N. that the red lines and boundaries needed to be immediately developed against Iran.
“The red line should be drawn right here … before Iran completes the second stage of nuclear enrichment necessary to make a bomb; before Iran gets to a point where it’s a few months away or a few weeks away from amassing enough enriched uranium to make a nuclear weapon.”