Speaking of Israel's threat to attack Iran, General Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters on Thursday, “I don't want to be complicit if they [Israel] choose to do it.”
General Dempsey is the highest ranking officer in the U.S. military and is currently in London, U.K, serving as head of the U.S. delegation at the Paralympic Games.
In a media statement, Dempsey announced that he is against U.S. participation in any Israel-led attack on Iran, even though pressure to destroy Iran's nuclear program continues.
He told reporters in London on Thursday that an Israeli attack would “clearly delay but probably not destroy Iran’s nuclear program,” and added that he was against U.S. cooperation in a unilateral attack on the Islamic Republic.
He stated to reporters, “I don't want to be complicit if they [Israel] choose to do it.”
At the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) meeting held on August 30 and 31, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei told heads of state, "Our motto is nuclear energy for all and nuclear weapons for none. Iran will never pursue nuclear weapons but it will not give up its national right to peaceful nuclear energy."
This claim has not yet been independently confirmed or denied by any foreign nations, and on Thursday, the UN International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) reported that Iran was uncooperative with attempts to investigate their facilities and suggested that Iran could be procuring nuclear weapons.
In regard to a claim by the IAEA on Thursday that Iran was doubling the number of uranium enrichment centrifuges at the country's underground Fordow site, General Dempsey said, “There are many cracks in the ring closing tighter on Iran. We criticize this,” he said, also mentioning UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon visit to Tehran, where Ban was invited to tour the nuclear facilities to reassure himself of the peaceful intentions of Iran's nuclear program.
With regard to the pursuit of peaceful nuclear energy, on August 30, Iran officially began operations of its first nuclear power plant at Bushehr in Iran's southwest.
Israel, who is closely allied to the U.S. has also claimed that Iran's nuclear program is motivated by the manufacture of nuclear warheads, and in May, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak stated, “Our position has not changed. The world must stop Iran from becoming nuclear. All options remain on the table."
However, in London on Thursday, General Dempsey said that an Israeli strike against Iran, over fears regarding their nuclear program, would be without merit, and might even erode the pro-Israeli alliance currently existing.
Dempsey told the media that, "International coalition" applying pressure on Iran "could be undone if [Iran] was attacked prematurely,”
He added that, “Intelligence did not reveal intentions” to procure nuclear weapons.