November 16th, 2017 – Fort Russ News –
– Agencies – – by Samer Hussein –
The chief of staff of Israeli Defense Forces (IDF), Lt. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot, told the Saudi newspaper Alaf that his country is ready to share intelligence on Iran with the Saudi regime.
“With President Donald Trump, there is an opportunity for a new international alliance in the region and a major strategic plan to stop the Iranian threat,” Lt. Gen. Eisenkot told the paper, adding that Israel is prepared to work with the “moderate” Arab states against the “Iranian threat.”
When the journalist asked him whether Israel has recently shared any information with Saudi Arabia, Eisenkot noted that Israel is always ready to share any relevant information since that serves the interests of both nations, pointing out that Israel and Saudi Arabia have never ever been at war with each other.
Previously, while speaking to Haaretz, Eisenkot said that Iran remains the biggest threat to the region.
Regarding the situation in the region, Eisenkot said that Israel’s security has never been better, especially now that it can also rely on its new Arab allies. He, however, said that Iran should nevertheless be stopped by all means necessary as, according to himself, Iran is constantly building weapon factories and supplying “terrorist groups” (as he put it) with advanced weapons.
“Iran seeks to take control of the Middle East, creating a Shiite crescent from Lebanon to Iran, and then from the Gulf to the Red Sea”, Eisenkot said, adding that it’s time for joint Saudi-Israeli efforts to prevent this from happening.
The IDF chief of staff noted that Israel has no intention of launching any attack against the Iranian-backed Lebanese movement Hezbollah.
Eisenkot’s interview is the first of its kind to be published by a Saudi newspaper. No Israeli official before has ever spoken to any Saudi outlet.
Although Israel and Saudi Arabia do not have diplomatic relations, the two nevertheless became closer in recent years.
Earlier in the year, Saudi activists revealed that Saudi Arabia has been maintaining secret relations with Israel since the 1980s. They also revealed that Saudi regime is gearing up to open the Israeli embassy in Riyadh.
Tehran and Tel Aviv cut all diplomatic ties in the wake Iran’s Islamic Revolution in 1979. They have been arch enemies since.
The interview with the Saudi newspaper comes right in time of the Lebanese political crisis.
On November 4th, the Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri unexpectedly announced his resignation while being on a diplomatic visit to Saudi Arabia, citing the growing influence of Iran and Hezbollah, as well as possible attempts on his life, as the main reasons behind his decisions.
According to the Lebanese President Michel Aoun, Hariri is being detained in Saudi Arabia alongside his family.
The move has caused an uproar in Lebanon.
On Sunday, Hariri gave his first interview since his alleged resignation during which he appeared to be a bit anxious.
The interview has also sparked a lot of controversy as on the video footage, a man, supposedly checking what Hariri says, can be seen in the background.