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Israel’s Lapid, Mossad chief diverge on emerging Iran nuclear deal

Prime Minister Yair Lapid was surprised by the briefings to the press of Mossad Director David Barnea, who accused the West and the United States of generating a strategic catastrophe for the region.
Israeli Prime Minister and Yesh Atid party leader Yair Lapid speaks during the party's opening election campaign rally ahead of the general elections, Tel Aviv, Israel, Aug. 3, 2022.

The intense efforts by world powers to reach agreement with Iran on its nuclear program are sending shockwaves through Israeli politics and diplomacy.

Just this past week, the Iran deal drama set off an impressive number of clashes, both publicly and behind the scenes. In Israel, caretaker Prime Minister Yair Lapid went head-to-head with Mossad Director David Barnea. The spy agency chief, for his part, collided head on with the US administration, which he slammed in briefings to reporters. As always, former Prime Minister and current opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu took advantage of the fallout for his own political needs ahead of the Nov. 1 elections, attacking Lapid directly, and the United States as a “side benefit.”

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