The United States is keeping a close eye on Israel's growing military program as it strengthens its defenses against Iran, says Bill Gertz, national security columnist for The Washington Times.
"Recently, Israel conducted some unusually large-scale Air Force military maneuvers in the northern part of Israel," Gertz told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.
"They went out over the Mediterranean and an Israeli Defense Force spokesman . . . [said] this was deliberately done to show that Israel has the capability to conduct long-range operations, and this appears to be ... the political message that the Israelis are sending.
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"I know from talking to people at the Pentagon that they're keeping a close watch on what the Israelis are doing."
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Gertz, who is also senior editor at The Washington Free Beacon, said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is very concerned that Israel will be "left in the lurch" in talks the United States is having with Iran about Iran's nuclear program.
"I've seen reports that the administration's clearly getting ready to make some concessions to Iran. The question then is, what do they get in return? What are the Iranians going to do? They're going to promise that they will only enrich uranium for peaceful purposes," he said.
"Well, that would be rewarding them for violating their obligations. They've had a massive enrichment program, it's all been done covertly, they haven't declared it, and by all measures it appears to be headed for a military program to develop military weapons."
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