Australia’s The Age, reports
Australia’s intelligence agencies fear that Israel may launch military strikes against Iran and Tehran’s pursuit of nuclear capabilities could draw the US and Australia into a potential nuclear war in the Middle East.
Australia’s peak intelligence agency has also privately undercut the hardline stance towards Tehran of the US, Israeli and Australian governments, saying its nuclear program is intended to deter attack and it is a mistake to regard Iran as a rogue state.
The warnings about the dangers of nuclear conflict in the Middle East are given in a secret US embassy cable obtained by WikiLeaks and provided exclusively to The Age. They reflect views obtained by US intelligence liaison officers in Canberra from Australian intelligence agencies.
”The AIC’s [Australian intelligence community’s] leading concerns with respect to Iran’s nuclear ambitions centre on understanding the time frame of a possible weapons capability, and working with the United States to prevent Israel from independently launching unco-ordinated military strikes against Iran,” the US embassy in Canberra reported to Washington in March last year.
”They are immediately concerned that Iran’s pursuit of nuclear capabilities would lead to a conventional war – or even nuclear exchange – in the Middle East involving the United States that would draw Australia into a conflict.”