Top Israeli Security Experts Agree — Withdrawing from the JCPOA Nuclear Agreement Has Been a Total Failure

“What happened in 2018 was a tragedy. It was an unforgivable strategy, the fact that Israel pushed the United States to withdraw from the agreement ten years early. It was a strategic mistake.”

Tamir Pardo

Former Director of Mossad (2011-2016)

“If we want to be honest what postponed Iranian progress towards achieving nuclear weapons was the nuclear agreement — and not military action….[Iran] are closer now than they have ever been before. And that is because of the very wrong policy taken by the State of Israel…They were years away from achieving nuclear weapons. And that is a much better achievement than we would’ve been able to make with military action.”

Amos Yadlin

Former Chief of IDF Military Intelligence, 2006-2010


“Looking at the policy on Iran in the last decade, the main mistake was the withdrawal from the agreement…it gave them an excuse to go ahead [with enrichment]”

Moshe Ya’alon

Former Defense Minister (2013-2016)

“The fact that the US withdrew in 2018 [from the Iran nuclear deal] released Iran from all restrictions and inspections in the deal, even if there were holes, and brought Iran to the most advanced position today with regard to its nuclear program.”

Gadi Eisenkot

Former IDF Chief of Staff (2015-2019)

“[JCPOA withdrawal] was a delusional decision that allowed the Iranians to move forward quickly in the direction of becoming a nuclear threshold state.”

Ehud Barak

Former Prime Minister and Defense Minister

“The agreement — with all of its flaws — rolled back the Iran nuclear program significantly, more than any other clandestine activity that was aimed at doing the same…[Withdrawal from the JCPOA] was a catastrophe…It’s a failure because we pushed the US side to leave the agreement when there are no other options….I think that through the adoption of a failed policy, we’ve put ourselves in a situation with Iran that is the direst that it’s ever been.”

Danny Citrinowicz

Chief of Israeli Military Intelligence’s Iran branch (2013-2016)

“Netanyahu’s efforts to persuade the Trump administration to quit the nuclear agreement have turned out to be the worst strategic mistake in Israel’s history. We need to end the negativity and encourage the U.S. to conclude a deal that focuses on the main thing…Blocking the imminent Iranian acquisition of a bomb.”

Major General Isaac Ben Israel

Former Chief of Israeli Air Force Intelligence and current Chairman of the Israeli Space Agency

“[JCPOA withdrawal enabled] Iran to accumulate a lot more material, work on advanced centrifuges, and maybe other things that we don’t know about, all which brought Iran closer than ever before [to a nuclear weapon]…The nuclear deal was flawed, but at least it put a lid on Iran’s advancement, which we don’t have now.”

Yoel Guzansky

Former Head of the Iran Desk at Israel’s National Security Council

“Today, it’s clear that maximum pressure did not yield its political objectives.”

Raz Zimmt

Iran expert, Israel’s Institute for National Security Studies