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Dempsey: Dialogue with Israel critical (YNetNews.Com -Yedioth Internet) Yoav Zitun Published: 03.20.12, 12:59)Source: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4205403,00.html YNet News - Yediot Achronot YNet News - Yediot Achronot Articles-Index-TopPublishers-Index-Top
US, Israeli chiefs of staff meeting focuses on growing concerns over Iran, Syria as both sides discuss importance of dialogue in facing ´common threats, challenges´

IDF Chief of Staff Lieutenant General Benny Gantz and US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey met on Monday night in Washington. Dempsey stated after the meeting that "regular and candid dialogue is critical as we face common threats and challenges."

According to the official announcement which was posted on Dempsey´s official Facebook page, the meeting focused on "talking about growing concerns with Iran and Syria," Dempsey said, adding: "I´m glad we had the opportunity to discuss issues of importance to our two countries."

Meanwhile, on Monday night the New York Times published a report that claimed the US military held a war simulation this month with the purpose of assessing American capabilities should Israel carry out a strike against Iran. The sources told the times that the war game revealed that such a strike would lead to regional war that could draw in the US and leave hundreds of Americans dead.

Speaking on Monday before the Knesset Foreign Affair and Defense Committee, Defense Minister Ehud Barak hinted that it was preferable not to carry out a strike against Iran without the US government´s consent and asked that "some sensitivity be shown towards the US election campaign."

Barak believes that "Israel must have increased levels of sensibility and awareness to the demands that stem from the reality in the US and implement a policy of strengthening the special relationship."

"The security relations and strategic cooperation between Israel and the US have reached levels of greater depth than we have ever known in the history of the relationship between the two countries," Barak said.

The defense minister´s statements were made less than a week after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu´s reverberating speech in the Knesset in which he hinted that Israel would carry out a strike against Iran without US backing.

"In 1981 the same sense of duty guided (Menachem) Begin vis-à-vis the nuclear reactor in Iraq. He was well aware of the international scrutiny – including from the United States and President (Ronald) Reagan, but he nevertheless fulfilled his duty." (Copyright 2012 © Yedioth Internet 03/20/12)


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