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Israel approves $1.5 billion budget for possible Iran strike

The funds comes days after the US announced the successful test of a new bunker buster.

The 40th Flight Test Squadron at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., prepares to release a GBU-72 Advanced 5K Penetrator bomb for the first time, Oct. 7, 2021. (Samuel KingU.S. Air Force)
The 40th Flight Test Squadron at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., prepares to release a GBU-72 Advanced 5K Penetrator bomb for the first time, Oct. 7, 2021. (Samuel King/U.S. Air Force)

Israel has approved a 5 billion shekel ($1.5 billion) budget to train the military for a possible strike against Iran’s nuclear program, Channel 12 report.

According to the report, one billion will come from this year’s national budget and another half-billion from next year’s budget, which the government is expected to adopt in November.

The funding will be used to acquire a variety of aircraft, intelligence-gathering drones, and special munitions required for such an attack on heavily guarded underground installations.

Last week, the US Air Force announced the successful testing of its new “bunker buster,” the GBU-72 Advanced 5K Penetrator. To hit Iranian nuclear targets, the 5K bomb might be employed.

A fighter plane or a heavy bomber can carry the GBU-72. Israel lacks bombers capable of carrying the current US bunker busters.

It is believed that the GBU-28 cannot penetrate Iran’s deep-under-mountain Fordo nuclear site.

While Israel considers a possible military attack on Iran’s nuclear facility, world countries are attempting to reintroduce the Islamic Republic to the Vienna negotiating table in an effort to resurrect the 2015 nuclear deal.

The talks paused in June with the election of hardliner Ebrahim Raisi as president, although there have been conflicting indications in recent days that the negotiations could begin soon.

Iranian media stated Sunday that a meeting to discuss restarting the Vienna talks would take place in Brussels on Thursday. Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian confirmed the meeting in Brussels. The European Union, meanwhile, denied on Monday that a meeting was arranged for Thursday, contradicting Tehran.Nabila Massrali, the EU’s spokeswoman, stated on Monday that “there will be no meeting on Thursday,” adding that “at this moment, we cannot confirm whether or not a meeting will take place.”

The Biden administration maintains its pursuit of joint US-Iranian discussions on resuming the 2015 nuclear deal, but acknowledges that it will not wait endlessly for Tehran to return to the negotiating table.

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