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Ex-Shin Bet head criticizes Israel leaders

April 28, 2012 at 3:31 PM

JERUSALEM, April 28 (UPI) -- The former head of Shin Bet, Israel's internal security agency, says he does not trust Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak.

Yuval Diskin, who headed the agency for six years before retiring in May, spoke at a conference Friday in central Israel, Ynetnews reported. While much of his criticism involved Netanyahu's and Barak's assessment of Iran's nuclear program and Israel's ability to use military force against it, he also faulted their handling of relations with the Palestinian Authority and neighboring Muslim states.

"Our two messiahs from Caesarea and from the Akirov Towers are not fit to stand at the helm of the government," he said.

Like Meir Dagan, the former head of Mossad, Diskin accused the current leadership of misleading the Israeli public on Iran, The New York Times said. He said a military option might be the correct one but added he would not want Barak and Netanyahu "holding the wheel" if force is used.

Conservative leaders counterattacked Saturday, the Jerusalem Post reported. Carmel Shama-Hacohen, a member of the Knesset or parliament from the Likud Party, said Diskin would have criticized Netanyahu and Barak in "real time" instead of waiting until shortly before an election if his motives were sincere.

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