Iran might respond to sanctions passed against it in the US last week with terrorist violence in the Middle East, said Israel’s Washington Ambassador Michael Oren on Tuesday in an interview with Foreign Policy magazine.
Oren said that Teheran would respond to the sanctions by either returning to the negotiating table or by starting a war in the Middle East to divert attention from the sanctions and its nuclear program. He said that in the case of Iran deciding to start a war, they would use Hamas and Hizbullah to attack Israel and perhaps others.
The ambassador stated that it is basically a matter of seeing who can hold out longer and that the international community must perservere in enforcing the sanctions.
Oren also commented on US President Barack Obama’s Israel policy, stating that the more experience the administration gets in dealing with the Middle East, the more they will sympathize with Israel’s position.
He said that despite US and international calls for further liberalization of Israel’s Gaza blockade, opening another crossing or adding EU monitors would be dangerous.
The envoy stated that Israel would “love” to see a greater role for the Palestinian Authority in the Gaza Strip but that opening sea lanes to Gaza would lead to the end of the peace process.
Oren also said that to the best of his knowledge the US is satisfied with Israel’s internal investigation into the Gaza flotilla incident but that he does not know whether they would support Israel’s position if the UN insisted on carrying out an international probe.