DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis June 25, 2012
The Muslim Brotherhood’s rise to power in Egypt will have pushed aside Iran and energy as top issues when Monday, June 25, Russian President Vladimir Putin on a short visit to Israel meets Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. On this at least they have common ground: The Muslim Brotherhood governments rolling out along Middle East shores with US encouragement – Libya, last year; Egypt, yesterday; and Syria, tomorrow – are seen as a threat to regional stability rivaling even the menace of a nuclear-armed Iran.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 4, 2012
US President Barack Obama has again persuaded Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to hold off attacking Iran’s nuclear program in the coming months by promising a new set of tough sanctions against Iran. US administration officials assured debkafile’s Washington sources that Israel’s leaders, were won over once more – this time by the Obama administration’s promise to impose an air and sea blockade on Iran, failing progress at the Moscow nuclear talks. Tehran may hit back by closing the Strait of Hormuz.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 1, 2012
Why did Netanyahu and Barak agree to subscribe to Obama’s latest game plan for Iran and again delay a strike on its nuclear facilities? They were promised that harsher sanctions would be imposed against Iran, even in the course of negotiations.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis May 27, 2012
The Iranian nuclear impasse and the Syrian civil war are more tightly interlinked than ever by President Barack Obama’s decision to cooperate with Moscow for solutions of both - a partnership that promises the eventual three-way carving-up of Middle East influence. The six-month break Israel allowed Obama for diplomatic solutions before exercising its military option, gives Tehran the freedom to defy the six powers in nuclear negotiations and ties US hands against Bashar Assad’s atrocities. Obama's diplomatic path is already cluttered with obstacles.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 11, 2012
Binyamin Netanyahu, freed from the shackles of an election campaign, is more empowered by his new expanded coalition tackling Iran’s nuclear threat by military measures. The Obama administration must think up new devices for holding him down.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 11, 2012
While US officials are upbeat about the prospects of Tehran’s willingness to strike a deal on its nuclear aspirations, Israel sees Iran forging ahead with the concealment of its suspect nuclear sites in “zones of immunity.”
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 8, 2012
The unity government which Binyamin Netanyahu formed Tuesday May 8, is not just the broadest coalition ever to govern Israel, but also the first with three former chiefs of staff who are fully capable of directing an attack on Iran. It was this feature which caught Washington’s attention as the first reports of Netanyahu’s stunning U-turn away from an early election filtered through. All the same, US sources expect the new government to give Obama a few months’ space before a decision on Iran.
DEBKAfile Special Report May 8, 2012
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Kadima leader explained why they agreed to form a national unity government at a joint news conference in Jerusalem Tuesday, May 8. Netanyahu said the new lineup would provide a solid basis for addressing key issues: Legislation to replace the Tal Law with a more equitable distribution of national burdens; approval of a responsible state budget; reform of the electoral system and government structure for greater political stability; promotion of a responsible peace process.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis May 7, 2012
Two stalwarts of the Western confrontation against a nuclear-armed Iran suffered election defeats this week: Nicolas Sarkozy was swept out of the Elysee by the Socialist leader Francois Hollande Sunday, May 6. Three days earlier, the two parties forming UK Prime Minister David Cameron’s government coalition were trounced in local elections across Britain. Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, who faces an election in four months, never imagined he would so soon be left on shifting sands against the Iranian nuclear threat.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 2, 2012
The government has tabled a bill for dissolving the Knesset. The date is still not confirmed, but would-be candidates for seats at the post-election cabinet table are lining up. Defense Minister Ehud Barak launched his bid to carry on in defense at a news conference Wednesday, May 2. Other bidders, on the assumption that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will head the next government, aim to cut Likud’s current right-wing and religious partners out of his coalition and push Likud into a centrist role.
DEBKAfile Special Report April 30, 2012
His death aged 102 was announced by the office of his son, prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu, early Monday, April 30. Prof. Benzion Netanyahu was a historian of note, editor of the Hebrew encyclopedia, professor and lifelong Zionist who believed that Jews would never be free of discrimination and that efforts to compromise with Arabs were bound to fail. Until a year ago, Prof. Netanyahu was academically active and had begun working on his memoirs. He is survived by two sons, Binyamin and Iddo.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis April 29, 2012
Binyamin Netanyahu and Ehud Barak are facing another of the periodic opposition campaigns to unseat them. New faces have joined the opposition lineup, including a fledgling party, “There is a Future.” They are campaigning against an Israeli attack to preempt a nuclear Iran, questioning both leaders’ credentials for leading one and calling for an early election. However, before peaking, the opposition campaign is starting to backfire, debkafile reports. Netanyahu may count on a successful operation against Iran boosting him at the polls.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 26, 2012
Israel Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu acted Thursday, April 26, to correct the damaging impression of divided and conflicting perceptions of the Iranian nuclear threat left by statements delivered in the last two days by himself and Defense Minster Ehud Barak. Israel’s chief of staff Gen. Benny Gantz rallied to the task. He commented Thursday that “other countries have readied their armed forces for a potential strike against Iran’s nuclear sites to keep Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons.”
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 25, 2012
Israel’s prime minister and defense minister were harshly criticized on the eve of Israel’s 64th Independence Day for too much speechifying and no real action against a nuclear Iran. In contrast, the US finally acted, creating a new Pentagon spy agency against the Islamic Republic. The Israeli street has stopped listening to its leaders intoning that Iran will not be permitted to acquire a nuclear weapon. Some military and intelligence sources believe Israel and the US have missed the boat for stopping it, especially concerning a dirty bomb.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 20, 2012
Israel is fed up with being kept in the dark, doesn’t trust American diplomatic maneuvers to stop a nuclear Iran and is getting ready to make its own decisions after the May 23 Baghdad talks between the P5-1 and Iran. That is the message coming from Binyamin Netanyahu and top Israeli figures.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 16, 2012
The rift over Iran between US President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu burst into the open Monday, April 16 when high-ranking Israeli officials close to Netanyahu directly accused the president of reneging on the US-Israeli understandings reached ahead of the Istanbul talks on April 14 between the six powers and Iran. The show biz in Istanbul and Baghdad on May 23, they charged, screened the real nuclear business the US and Iran were contracting in secret contacts through Paris and Vienna.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 9, 2012
debkafile’s Washington sources disclose exclusively that the Obama administration and Netanyahu government have secretly agreed on “Formula of 1,000” ending the forthcoming Six Power nuclear talks with Iran. It would let Iran keep 1,000 centrifuges for enriching uranium up to 3.5 percent and stock 1,000 kilograms of the same grade uranium, while giving up except for medical research its store of 20-percent grade uranium which can be jumped quickly to weapon quality.
DEBKAfile Special Report March 28, 2012
Wikileaks Wednesday, March 28 published mails indicating that Binyamin Netanyahu may have been a source ol the US Stratfor research site. Its Vice President for intelligence Fred Burton claimed in e-mails he was in contact with Netanyahu from May 2007 up until 2010 after he became Prime Minister. One e-mail said that in Dec. 2009, “BB” told him Iran has “two nukes on missiles ready to go.” The Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem has not commented on the publication.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis March 24, 2012
US President Barack Obama sits down with Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan in Seoul, South Korea Sunday, March 25. Earlier, Obama gave the Turkish leader - and Israel’s Binyamin Netanyahu too - a lesson in political expediency: March 20, Washington awarded 11 nations exemptions from new US financial sanctions against Iran. The downscaling of sanctions caught Israel by surprise and angered Turkey, most of all as the outcome of unknown secret US-Iranian talks.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 16, 2012
Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood secretly turned to mending its fences with Iran on the back of the Israeli-Palestinian clash over the Gaza Strip using Hamas as go-between. The Sunni Brotherhood, the dominant political force in post-Mubarak Egypt, decided two weeks ago to forge ties with Shiite Iran, causing a major upset for United States and Israeli policies.