Why has Israeli Intelligence been Wrong on Iran?

The Israeli intelligence community used to claim that Iran eventually would return to the JCPOA and now they assume that Iran is interested in an interim agreement that would freeze uranium enrichment in return for some sanctions relief. It appears that the Israeli intelligence community has not learned from its own mistakes. 

Iran has two interests in this matter, nuclear and economic. Iran claims to be interested in an end to sanctions but in practice is unconcerned because it knows that any lifting of the sanctions will be temporary and sanctions will be reimposed by the next Republican administration. Therefore Iran has no interest in an agreement with the United States, whether returning to the JCPOA or an interim agreement. In practice, the United States has nothing to offer Iran economically since any sanctions relief will be strictly temporary as President Biden cannot oblige Republican successors. So there is no reason for Iran to freeze uranium enrichment or return to the JCPOA. The Iranians are acting perfectly logically in accordance with the interests of the Khomeinist regime. 

Then however is the fact that the present course leads to confrontation between Iran and the international community in the form of the emerging coalition to impose a no-fly zone over Iran that would provide air support to armed rebellions throughout Iran. However, the Iranian regime has shown that it does not plan to retreat on the nuclear front and any belief that it currently can be appeased into such retreat is completely delusional and completely misunderstands the motivations of the Iranian regime. The Iranian regime like other neo-imperialist totalitarian regimes of modernity as impelled by belief in Anti-Jewish conspiracy theory is motivated by a curious mixture of fanatical unreason and extreme rationalism. Thus, Iran severely misunderstands international relations and domestic politics in many countries due to the regime’s fanatical belief in Anti-Jewish conspiracy theory, includuding the infamous forgery “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion” as disseminated in Persian by Ebrahim Raisi prior to becoming president. Like the Nazis and the Soviets before them are the Khomeinists nevertheless hyperrational in intelligence warfare, military strategy and foreign affairs strategies despite their flawed Weltanschauung (worldview).

It is difficult to know what is wrong with the Israeli intelligence assessments, but one possible explanation is successful Iranian desinformation through deliberate leaks to Israeli assets in Iranian intelligence. What is clear is that Israeli intelligence (both Mossad and Aman) urgently need to learn from their flawed assessments and possibly replace those responsible for such grave misjudgements.

Published by Daniella Bartfeld

Daniella Bartfeld is the founding director of the Aliyah Organization

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