U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin welcomes Israel’s Defense Minister Benny Gantz during an enhanced honor cordon arrival ceremony at the Pentagon, in Arlington, Virginia, U.S., December 9, 2021. REUTERS/Ken Cedeno
December 9, 2021
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. and Israeli military leaders voiced strong concern at a Pentagon meeting about Iran’s nuclear advances on Thursday, with Israel expressing a goal of deepening dialogue on joint military readiness to be able to halt Iran’s regional aggression and nuclear aspirations.
U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said he was deeply concerned about Iran’s lack of constructive diplomatic engagement and cautioned that President Joe Biden was “prepared to turn to other options” if the current American policy on Iran fails.
Reuters, citing a senior U.S. official, exclusively reported that Thursday’s U.S.-Israeli agenda was expected to include discussions about possible military exercises that would prepare for a worst-case scenario to destroy Iran’s nuclear facilities should diplomacy fail and if their nations’ leaders request it.
(Reporting by Phil Stewart and Idrees Ali; editing by Jonathan Oatis)