Last week, Defense Minister Bnei Gantz made it clear in an interview with the American magazine "Foreign Policy" that Israel does not oppose the Biden administration's intention to return to the nuclear agreement with Iran.
In fact, with Gantz's announcement, the last pillar of government policy regarding the Iranian nuclear program was revealed - and the whole picture is very disturbing.
Most of the headlines surrounding the nuclear program in recent weeks have revolved around the question of Iran's proximity to the status of a nuclear threshold state, that is, a country with an independent capacity to assemble a nuclear bomb in a short period of time. In late January, just days after taking office, Secretary of State Tony Blinken said Iran was three to four months away from a nuclear-threshold state. Today - eight months later - the administration believes that Iran is a month to a few weeks away from this point.
These estimates are not new.
In February 2020 for example, the American estimate was that Iran was up to four months away from the status of a threshold state.
On the eve of the entry into force of the 2015 nuclear deal, a former United Nations Atomic Energy Agency official may have estimated that, contrary to the Obama administration's claim that the agreement was to extend Iran's time to become a threshold state - in practice, restrictions on activity The nuclear deal in the agreement extended the period by a maximum of seven months.
These disputes do not prove that the assessments themselves are not important. They are.
"This thing" is Israel. Over the past decade, Israel has pursued a multi-dimensional strategy aimed at harming Iran in four main ways: nuclear, military, political, and economic. In the nuclear program itself, Israel has acted both in cooperation with the American governments and independently. Iranian nuclear scientists have been killed. Through cyber warfare, Israel has repeatedly sabotaged the centrifuge system and other key components of the nuclear program. And through physical sabotage, Israel caused significant damage to Iran's various nuclear facilities.
As for Iran's military capabilities, Israel has focused on harming Iran's military forces and capabilities in Syria. Israel has reached an unprecedented political agreement with Russia, which has allowed it freedom of action against Iranian targets and against arms shipments to Hezbollah that were transferred to Syria en route to Lebanon. But it has also acted against Iranian naval assets in the Red Sea, the Gulf of Oman and more.
At the political level, Israel's stubborn and constant unequivocal opposition to the nuclear deal, including any move that has strengthened Iran, has allowed it to forge alliances with Arab states in the Persian Gulf and North Africa that spawned the Abrahamic Accords. The alliances served as a force multiplier of Israel and the other countries in their joint and separate campaigns against Iran and its metamorphoses - in Yemen, Iraq, Gaza and Africa. Israel's diplomatic activity has also led to the nuclear deal and any other reconciliation efforts towards Iran - including its strategic cooperation agreement with China - being seen as controversial and causing their supporters to be on the defensive.
At the economic level, Israel's activity in persuading the Trump administration to abandon the nuclear deal and renew economic sanctions has prevented Iran from being able to reap the benefits of its nuclear progress.
On the eve of Joe Biden's entry into the White House, Iran was on the verge of an economic and political collapse.
Protests by the Iranian public against the regime reached all over Iran and all sections of society participated in it.
The implication was clear - even if the regime had crossed the nuclear finish line, it could not have enjoyed it even for a moment.
Its regional systems have become increasingly difficult to maintain due to lack of funding.
And Iran's enemies have united around and against it in every area.
Iran, which was a few months away from the status of a nuclear threshold state, was also a few months away from an internal revolution, which, with the backing of its neighbors, could overthrow the ayatollahs' regime.
Gantz's remarks from the outset mean that Israel is giving up on the economic pillar of the strategy that has been implemented so far. This is because the meaning of the US agreement back in 2015 that the United States will cancel all its economic sanctions on Iran, and would allow the regime to not only survive financially but also bring economic prosperity to the Iranian public, at least to stabilize the internal situation in favor of the government.
The government canceled the direct campaign Israel's anti - nuclear facilities in its early days, when Foreign Minister Yair Lapid announced that Israel would not surprise the administration with independent and uncoordinated measures. Since the announcement, no damage to Iran's nuclear facilities has been reported.
As for the military aspect, Russia effectively halted the Israeli campaign in Syria after President Putin decided to revoke his agreement not to interfere with IDF operations against Iranian targets there. But Syria is not the only arena where the government has stopped acting in the face of Iran's regional intensification. July against the Israeli cruise ship docked off the coast of Oman, in which two crew members were killed, passed without an Israeli response, and last week, Israel did nothing to prevent Iran from supplying fuel to Hezbollah in Lebanon, even though the fuel supply was a blatant violation of US sanctions.
Politically, Israel's trend has always been both to strengthen Iran's enemies, and to fight against the readiness of the West - including the Democrats - to give legitimacy to the Iranian nuclear program. The nuclear deal not only preserved Iran's capabilities and allowed it to develop more advanced nuclear capabilities and a missile array capable of carrying nuclear warheads. It also gave international legitimacy to the nuclear program developed in blatant violation of international law.
Ganz's statement that Israel does not oppose a US return to the nuclear deal constitutes an Israeli readiness to join the administration in giving political / legal legitimacy to Iran's nuclear program.
In light of all of the above, the government's strategy for dealing with Iran's nuclear program is to raise a white flag on every level and plain.
The government's way of marketing its surrender strategy vis-à-vis Iran is also clear.
She justifies her inaction by blaming her decision on who built and implemented the Israeli strategy that has prevented Iran from becoming a nuclear threshold state so far - the man Naftali Bennett calls "my predecessor."