Tag Archives: Netanyahu

Israel and Saudi Arabia present united front over Iran deal

Iran’s enemies unsettled by its deal with the West, but Bashar al-Assad of Syria says it is ‘a great victory’
bibiIsraeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivers a statement in his office in Jerusalem after world powers reached the historic nuclear deal with Iran Photo: AFP
By ,Middle East Editor and Robert Tait, Jerusalem

The nuclear deal with Iran caused fury in Israel and consternation around the region at the likely increase in influence and resources of a newly enriched Iran.

Most telling was the loudest expression of support. “I am happy that the Islamic Republic of Iran has achieved a great victory by reaching an agreement,” President Bashar al-Assad of Syria said in a message to his Iranian opposite number, Hassan Rouhani.
“In the name of the Syrian people, I congratulate you and the people of Iran on this historic achievement.”
Israel and the Sunni Arab world have set aside old grievances to stand together against the West’s engagement with Iran.

• Netanyahu intends to fight Iran nuclear deal all the way, says Philip Hammond
The more strident denunciations came from Israel, which regards Iran as a direct threat. Benjamin Netanyahu, the prime minister, said the country would not be bound by what he called a “stunning historic mistake”.
“Israel is not bound by this deal with Iran,” he said in a televised address hours after the conclusion of the accord. “Iran continues to seek our destruction and we will defend ourselves.”

bibi2Benjamin Netanyahu during an earlier, tense press conference (Reuters)

Mr Netanyahu, who had condemned the deal even before it had been announced, said its terms failed to achieve the goal of denying Iran the capacity to build a nuclear bomb while, by lifting sanctions, enabled its theocratic rulers to increase their support for groups Israel considers terrorists.
What will the nuclear deal mean for Iran’s tourism industry?
“The bottom line of this very bad deal is exactly as Iran’s President Rouhani said today – the international community is removing the sanctions and Iran is keeping its nuclear programme,” he said.
Saudi Arabia regards Shia Iran as a competitor for leadership in the Muslim world, and sees its hand behind many of the region’s conflicts. The two are supporting opposite sides in wars in Syria and Yemen, while Saudi Arabia and its Gulf allies fear Iran’s influence among their own Shia populations.
Saudi officials have previously voiced fears that increasing rapprochement between Washington and Tehran could eventually lead to Iran supplanting Saudi Arabia as America’s main ally in the Persian Gulf.
Some Western supporters of the deal hope that having been brought “into the circle of nations” Iran will become what they call a “constructive player” in Middle East regional negotiations.
That means, in Syria’s case, agreeing to a deal whereby Mr Assad is forced out in favour of a transitional government representing all non-jihadist factions in the civil war.
Estimates of the cost to Iran of propping up Mr Assad with cash, military advisers and Shia fighters hired from across the region range from $6-35 billion annually.
“Iran must show that it is ready to help us on Syria to end this conflict,” Francois Hollande of France said.
However, there is nothing in the deal that would force Iran to change its stance on Syria or any of the other conflicts, such as in Yemen, where it is backing the Houthi rebels against the recognised, Saudi-backed government.
Last month Hassan Rouhani, the Iranian president, was quoted as saying: “The Iranian nation and government will remain at the side of the Syrian nation and government until the end of the road.”
Torbjorn Soltvedt, an analyst with the Maplecroft risk advisory group, said Iran had an ambition to establish itself as the dominant power in the Gulf and beyond.
“Iran will remain in conflict with Saudi Arabia in Syria and Yemen in particular,” he said.


Obama Explains His ABC For Ending The Jewish State

8By Vic Rosenthal

This past week Barack Obama laid bare the pincer maneuver he is executing against Israel. As he explained it in an interview with Ilana Dayan on Israeli TV, he intends to squeeze Israel between a nuclear Iran and a terrorist base next door to Tel Aviv.

The precise nature of the Iranian threat is important for understanding Obama’s strategy. Although one can’t completely discount the possibility, Iranian officials have been relatively honest when they say that they don’t intend to nuke us: they would prefer to see us wiped off the map conventionally by their non-state proxies. The bomb will primarily be used to threaten the Sunni states and as a deterrent against Israel’s option to (in the words of the previous Saudi king), cut off the head of the Iranian snake.

Thus, a) providing Iran with its nuclear backstop,

while b) empowering the PLO and Hamas, and c) increasing Israel’s vulnerability to terrorism and conventional attack by reducing its strategic depth, is the perfect three-point strategy for finally achieving the goal that Yasser Arafat dedicated his life to, ending the Jewish state.

Obama told Dayan that Israel is behaving immorally in its actions toward the Palestinian Arabs, that he sees it as his personal duty to change this, that PM Netanyahu’s negotiating positions are unrealistic and disingenuous, and that he intends to change the traditional American position: the US will no longer insist on a bilateral agreement between Israel and the Palestinians, but will support a UN-imposed Palestinian state.

It is interesting that the Palestinian issue is so important to him, that he feels the need to help Palestinian children so deeply, when (for example) there is ongoing rape, abuse and murder of children on a massive scale in much of Africa.

It is interesting that he can brush aside Netanyahu’s reasonable conditions — for security and the need for a commitment to end the conflict — but that maximalist Palestinian demands are treated as non-negotiable.

And his remarks about the Iran deal are interesting too. For the first time, he admits that the military option is off the table:
I can, I think, demonstrate — not based on any hope, but on facts and evidence and analysis — that the best way to prevent Iran from having a nuclear weapon is a verifiable, tough agreement. A military solution will not fix it, even if the United States participates. It would temporarily slow down an Iranian nuclear program, but it will not eliminate it.

So much for leverage! The deal that he is making is apparently neither tough nor verifiable, as the French Foreign Minister has recently noted, not to mention Israel’s PM. It won’t stop Iran or even slow her progress very much. What it will do is to criminalize an Israeli attack while ending sanctions and freeing up tens of billions of frozen Iranian dollars to fund its aggression.

While military action won’t rule out the possibility that some day Iran could reconstruct its program, there are persuasive arguments that it could delay it for a good long time — and who knows what might happen in the interim?

Obama isn’t prepared to take that chance. His alliance with the expanding Shiite caliphate is too important, which is also why he made a joke of American red lines to protect Iranian lackey Bashar al-Assad.

While he will do whatever it takes to help the “Palestinian youth in Ramallah who feels [his] possibilities constrained by the status quo,” he is able to abandon the Syrian child choking his chlorine-gas filled lungs out, or even the barrel-bombed Palestinians in Yarmouk.

But if it isn’t children and it isn’t Palestinians, it isn’t Shiites either. After all, he is still miffed at Abdel Fattah el-Sisi for overthrowing the Muslim Brotherhood regime in Egypt. Now what could the Ikhwan possibly have in common with the Iranian mullahs? Not much, except the desire to destroy Israel.

The enemy of Obama’s enemy is his friend, and he seems determined to make friends of all of Israel’s enemies, even if they turn out, like Iran and the Brotherhood, to be deadly enemies of the United States too.

Irrational? Perhaps, but not surprising. It’s the same irrational current that drives academics and liberal church groups to say “you have to start somewhere” when asked why, with all of the real oppression and occupation in the world, they choose Israel to boycott. It’s the same force that caused Hitler to divert Reichsbahn trains to carry Jews to death camps instead of supplies to his beleaguered troops at Stalingrad.

In another recent interview, Obama made the silly and ahistorical statement that anti-Semitism doesn’t cause national leaders to make irrational decisions when stakes are high.

Clearly untrue. But maybe the truth would have hit too close to home?

This weeks News Summary: Iran Deal | Blood Moon | Israel | Christians | Israel


This weeks News Summary: Iran Deal | Blood Moon | Israel | Christians | Israel