U.S. Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro told the Israeli Bar Association Thursday that the option of striking Iran in the coming months is “not just available, but it’s ready.”
“The necessary planning has been done to ensure that it’s ready,” he said, according to The Associated Press.
The comment comes within a week of nuclear negotiations with Iran. Shapiro noted that while the issue is not desperately urgent, there is “some time, not an unlimited amount of time,” adding “at a certain point we may have to make a judgment that the diplomacy will not work.”
Escalating tension between Israel and Iran has resulted in both nations taking hawkish stances regarding possible warfare in the near future.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has called for “serious and responsible” negotiations with the Islamic Republic, though in the last year he has not shied away from suggesting that the option of force is not off the table.
Behrooz Shojaei, a political analyst in Tehran, told CBS that “insisting on a halt to [nuclear] enrichment is a deal breaker. It is Iran’s red line.”
Since forming his new “unity” government earlier this week, Netanyahu has refused to comment on Iran ahead of the nuclear negotiations.
Shapiro has served as ambassador to Israel since July 2011. Prior to his appointment, he served as senior director of the Middle East and North Africa on the United States National Security Council.