DEBKAfile Exclusive Report October 21, 2012
Barack Obama has agreed to hold direct talks on Iran’s nuclear program with its leaders, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Is this a surprise? On April 16, 2012, debkafile disclosed that Washington and Tehran were conducting back-channel talks in Paris and Vienna. Obama hopes that a summit will lift his chances of reelection. debkafile: He has so far accepted Iran’s right to enrich uranium, erasing all Israel’s red lines. His last demand is for 24/7 inspections which Tehran refuses.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis October 20, 2012
The car bomb which murdered anti-Syrian Lebanese security chief Brig. Gen. Wissam al-Hasan and seven others Friday, Oct. 19, in Beirut also dissipated hopes in the West and Israel of the Syrian civil war sundering the Tehran-Damascus-Hizballah axis, or that liquidating Iran’s nuclear scientists and cyber warfare would turn Tehran away from a nuclear bomb. The Syrian bloodbath grows wider and more malignant and Tehran is closer than ever to a nuclear weapon. A reduced joint US-Israel war game begins Sunday.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report October 19, 2012
Barack Obama this week clued Binyamin Netanyahu in on the latest US intelligence confirming Iran will have enough enriched uranium for 4-6 bombs by March 2013, debkafile reports. It was the first time Obama acknowledged that sanctions and diplomatic pressure are not working. Also revealed was that Iran had doubled the enrichment centrifuges at Natanz to 6,000, and that Iran needs no more than 2-3 weeks to upgrade enriched uranium from 20% to weapons grade. Obama still objects to an Israeli pre-emptive strike.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report October 18, 2012
Eight nations are embroiled on both sides of the Syrian civil war, although the governments concerned pretend they are keeping to a policy led by the Obama administration of non-intervention. Amid cross-border clashes with Turkey, Bashar Assad has embarked on a scorched earth policy against his country.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report October 18, 2012
Instead of Netanyahu attacking Iran, Khamenei has developed a preemptive strategy for harassing Israel without going far enough to provoke an Israel counter-attack. The stealth drone Iran sent over Israel was not only invisible to Israel but also to US Navy and military radar in the region.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report October 16, 2012
Iran has finished transferring all its uranium enrichment plant to Fordo, placing it in an “immune zone,” against bombardment. In so doing, Tehran beat the clock before President Barack Obama faces presidential contender Mitt Romney in a foreign policy debate and responded to the EU's tightened sanctions against its nuclear program. debkafile: Iran plans to go forward next and convert its centrifuges from 20 percent to 60 percent enrichment of uranium, a short step before the 90 percent weapons grade.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis October 15, 2012
Ten days after Hizballah launched an Iranian stealth UAV into Israeli air space undetected, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu unveiled his new security doctrine in a Knesset speech confirming elections on Jan. 22, 2013. He said that his light but firm finger on the trigger had given Israel seven years without war.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report October 11, 2012
Netanyahu was in touch with Barack Obama and Mitt Romney before his UN speech last month and reached agreement with both that he would set up a centrist government with Labor after Israel’s January election and join them n getting set for a showdown with Iran in March.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis October 9, 2012
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision to run for election on the stop-nuclear-Iran ticket opens the door for President Barack Obama, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Hizballah’s Hassan Nasrallah to put an oar in to determine its results. Obama may seek a breakthrough with Iran to impress the American voter and put a spoke in Netanyahu’s wheel; the Iranian and Hizballah leaders may fabricate a grave security crisis to test Netanyahu with a major predicament in mid-campaign. They are all are playing for high stakes.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis October 3, 2012
Less than a week after Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu struck Iran with a red marker, the dire Iranian nuclear threat is thrust aside in Israel by an acute case election fever. debkafile: None of the politicians citing Feb. 13, 2013 as the date of an early election is privy to the prime minister’s carefully calculated agenda. Will that date see a poll followed by messy cabinet-building, or presage a decisive step for preempting Iran’s advance to the threshold of a nuclear bomb? And what other surprises are in store?
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report September 29, 2012
The sabotage of the Fordo uranium enrichment facility’s power lines on Aug. 17, gave Israel Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu the extra leeway to move his original red line for Iran from late September 2012 – now – to the spring or early summer of 2013, debkafile reports. But Tehran hit back fast with two aggressive actions on Israel’s doorstep: an al Qods military buildup in Syria and Lebanon, and Assad’s withdrawal of chemical weapons from storage and likely transfer to incoming Iranian units.
DEBKAfile Special Report September 28, 2012
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is reported by debkafile as berating Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu for the powerful presentation of his case to the UN General Assembly for confronting Iran with red lines, instead of failed diplomacy and sanctions Thursday, Sept. 27. Neither released statements. President Barack Obama would not tolerate the Israeli leader having a say in his Iran agenda, she reportedly said, before announcing that the world powers had decided to go back to negotiations with Tehran.
DEBKAfile Special Report September 24, 2012
US President Barack Obama's assertion Sunday, Sept. 23, to CBS - that on national security decisions, he would do what is right for America and “block out any noise that’s out there” – finally dashed any hopes entertained by Israel’s Binyamin Netanyahu and Ehud Barak of US military cooperation for cutting down a nuclear Iran. Obama’s words rounded out an Iranian general’s dismissal of Israel as lacking the military ability and courage to attack his country. So will Netanyahu go to New York after all?
DEBKAfile Special Report September 17, 2012
Emboldened by certainty that its nuclear program was safe from attack, Iran’s atomic energy chief Fereydoun Abbasi-Davani felt free to heap abuse on the International Atomic Energy Agency. In Vienna Saturday, Sept. 17, he accused the watchdog of a cynical approach and mismanagement, being influenced by “certain states” and infiltration by “terrorists and saboteurs [the US and Israel].” Abbasi was further bolstered by the US-Israel row on Iran and the fresh US-led bid to revive nuclear diplomacy with the Islamic republic.
DEBKAfile Special Report September 11, 2012
President Barack Obama’s refusal Tuesday Sept. 11 to see Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu because “the president’s schedule will not permit that,” left Jerusalem thunderstruck – and Washington too. At one stroke, round after round of delicate negotiations on Iran between the two governments collapsed. By rebuffing Netanyahu, Obama turned the clock back to the nadir in relations marked by Gen. Martin Dempsey when he said on Aug. 30: “I don’t want to be complicit if they [Israel] choose to do it” – meaning attack Iran.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report September 7, 2012
President Obama will throw his last bid to stop an Israeli attack on Iran when he meets Netanyahu in New York Sept. 28. In the same week, Iran is due to have completed its stock of 270 kilos of 20-percent enriched uranium for a single nuclear bomb.
DEBKAfile Special Report September 5, 2012
A third US aircraft carrier, USS Stennis, is moving into place for leading 25 nations in a 12-day naval exercise off Iran’s Gulf coast. A large-scale minesweeping drill will simulate the prevention of Iranian efforts to block the Strait of Hormuz. debkafile: President Barack Obama plans to see Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Sept. 27, the last day of the exercise, hoping to forestall an Israel attack on Iran’s nuclear sites by demonstrating that the US is serious about military action, a message also addressed to Tehran.
DEBKAfile DEBKA Weekly September 4, 2012
The big guns the Obama administration is firing in its dogged battle to head off an Israeli attack on Iran’s nuclear program may be hitting an impenetrable wall. The dynamic of this titanic contest is explored in the latest DEBKA-Net-Weekly out last Friday, with a rundown of the military preparations set in motion by the US, Britain, France, Saudi Arabia, the UAEA, Iran, Hizballah and Israel itself.
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DEBKAfile Special Report September 4, 2012
Cutting through the US-Israeli debate over where to put “red lines” for Iran, Hizballah leader Hassan Nasrallah said Monday night, Sept. 3 that Iran would hit US bases in the Middle East in response to any Israeli strike on its nuclear facilities, even if the Americans were not involved in the attack. debkafile: Iran should have enough 20-percent enriched uranium for a bomb by next month. So Tehran expects an Israeli attack before the Nov. 6 US presidential election and has laid down its own red line for war.