Former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton pushed for Washington’s “green light” for a unilateral Israeli strike against Iran, according to a report.
She raised the possibility during a White House meeting in 2010 when the US was concerned that Israel might attack Iran’s nuclear energy program, two former officials revealed to the Time magazine.
Clinton suggested at the time that instead of trying to restrain Israel, Washington should provide what one official described as “a tacit green light to the Israelis to take care of the problem for us.”
The report said the former secretary did not actually “endorse the idea” but raised the issue “as one option to consider,” according to one former official who added that it gained no traction inside the Obama administration.
Meanwhile, in his newly-published book, former Pentagon chief Robert Gates has also revealed that officials had warned President Barack Obama about Iran’s retaliatory response in case of any such attack.
“Militarily, I thought we needed to prepare for a possible Israeli attack and Iranian retaliation,” Gates writes in his new memoir, Duty.
At a January 2010 Oval Office meeting, the former defense secretary also warned Obama “he needed to consider the ramifications of a no-warning Israeli attack,” and whether the US would get involved.
Several Israeli lobby groups including the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) are now pushing lawmakers on Capitol Hill to pass legislation to enact new sanctions against Iran.
A sanctions bill, introduced by Sens. Mark Kirk (R-Ill) and Robert Menendez (D-NJ) last month, has gathered 59 cosponsors in the 100-member Senate.
The White House has warned that the passage of fresh sanctions would represent a “march toward war” and challenging those members of Congress who support the bill to acknowledge that they favor military action against Iran.