Both the stateless militant group Hezbollah, mainly located in Southern Lebanon, and Iran's government have warned that a strike on Iran's nuclear sites by Israel or the U.S. would trigger extensive retaliation against both countries, including U.S. bases in the region that are within range of Iran's conventional missiles.
“The [only] difference between the U.S. and Israel [in concept of operations] is in the timing,” Yadlin says. “This has to do with the U.S. Air Force having many more assets and operational capabilities than the Israeli air force.”
Israeli military planners do not delude themselves that an attack is a solution to Iran's nuclear threat. There is still uncertainty and debate among them and government officials about the Iranian nuclear threat.
In early September, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu canceled a meeting of his security cabinet because of leaks about its deliberations. The cancellation followed a report in the Yediot Aharonot newspaper that there is no consensus among intelligence agencies about when Israel's ability to damage Iran's nuclear program would no longer be effective. A participant reportedly said briefings by the Mossad, Shin Bet and military intelligence agencies presented information that was “very troubling, but still not frightening.”