Hayman noted that he does not see a war in the near future, but warned that the situation is volatile and explosive.
IDF Military Intelligence Directorate chief Major General Tamir Hayman on Tuesday briefed the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee on various regional and strategic trends, as well as on the effects of the digital information revolution and intelligence gathering.
Hayman noted the current period – which he called “an era of disruption, design and development” -was an opportunity for action in all sectors of the inter-war campaign.
Hayman also briefed the committee on the progress of Operation Northern Shield to uncover and neutralize Hezbollah’s terror tunnels along Israel’s border with Lebanon. Israel has so far exposed three cross-border tunnels, while the operation is expected to last for several months.
Hayman underscored that Hezbollah does not currently have the capabilities to produce accurate weapons. Israel has feared that Iran was exporting its missile technology to Lebanon and building factories for the production of accurate long-range projectiles that would be used by Hezbollah against Israel.
Addressing the situation in Syria and the stability of President Bashar al-Assad’s regime, Hayman stressed that Israel was determined to keep Hezbollah and Iran far from the Golan Heights region, despite their attempts to establish another military front against Israel on its border with Syria.
The price of Iran’s entrenchment in Syria, he revealed, is dissension among top decision-makers in Tehran. In light of this disagreement, the Iranian presence in Syria has significantly decreased, he told the committee.
Commenting on the US’ renewed sanctions on Iran, Hayman said that they have plunged the Islamic Republic into a deep economic crisis, noting that Iran’s oil exports have dropped significantly.
IDF intelligence is successfully monitoring the efforts to circumvent the sanctions and is cooperating with the relevant international organizations on this matter, he said.
In conclusion, Hayman said that in his assessment, Israel’s enemies have no interest in launching a war at this time, but the changing reality creates the potential for escalation. However, he said, this changing reality also presents opportunities to operate in all sectors.