DEBKAfile Special Report September 15, 2013
US President Barack Obama did not wait for the Kerry-Lavrov agreement of Saturday, Sept. 14, to demonstrate its feasibility for the eradication of Syria’s chemical weapons. He jumped in the next day to tell Tehran over ABC that “there’s the potential for diplomatic solutions to arms standoffs.” In Jerusalem, Secretary Kerry tried to defend the agreement against critics. Prime Minister Netanyahu insisted that diplomacy “must be coupled with a credible military threat." debkafile: The Obama administration won’t let Israel’s concerns slow its diplomatic momentum either on Syria or Iran.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report September 12, 2013
Binyamin Netanyahu has been forced to face the fact that the new round of US-Russian-Iranian diplomacy for Syria has finally put paid to any plans he might still have after four wasted years to prevent Iran getting a nuclear weapon.
DEBKAfile Special Report September 2, 2013
Senior IDF circles are concerned by the unrealistic mood of the country on New Year’s eve as though Israel and the US were fully coordinated on Syria and Hizballah and the danger of Syria repeating its chemical attack – this time on Israel – had receded. In fact, since US President Barack Obama aborted the US strike on Syria, Damascus and Hizballah have stepped up their threats to attack Israel in the coming weeks, prompting a warning from Netanyahu that “Anyone wishing to do us harm should know what awaits him.”
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 31, 2013
President Barack Obama shocked a tense world Saturday, Aug. 31, when he dodged a decision on a US strike on Syria by referring it to Congress. In a speech to the American people, he said the use of chemical weapons by Bashar Assad must be “confronted not just investigated,” but then said, “We are ready to strike whenever we choose. This operation could take place tomorrow, next week, or next month. In so saying, Obama granted Assad and Co. time galore for counter-moves and put Israel in a tight spot.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 30, 2013
By promising to pull his punches, President Barack Obama gave America’s rivals, Russia, Iran and Syria the advantage in their bout over Syria – even before the punches were delivered.
DEBKAfile Special Report August 11, 2013
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, 63, is recovering from umbilical hernia surgery he underwent under general anesthetic at Hadassah Ain Karem hospital, Jerusalem Saturday night, Aug 10. He has resumed his duties which briefly passed to Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon as acting prime minister during the medical procedure.
DEBKAfile Special Report August 9, 2013
The formal Israeli-Palestinian meeting scheduled for next Wednesday, Aug. 14 is the outer shell of the secret hard-core negotiations bouncing back and forth for weeks between US Secretary of State John Kerry, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, debkafile reports. The real talks are near a climax on the core issues of borders, Jerusalem, refugees and settlements. Kerry convened Jewish American leaders at the White House Thursday, Aug. 8, to advise them of the “strategic imperative” to arrive at a deal soon.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 9, 2013
Saudi Arabia awaits Putin’s reply to a proposition $15bn for scaling back Russian backing for Bashar Assad. Until then, the planned US-Arab operation against Assad hangs fire, despite heavy pressure from Israel to save Aleppo.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis August 7, 2013
A senior Israeli official commented Tuesday, Aug. 6, that Israel could attack Iran’s nuclear program on its own without American back-up – albeit less effectively than with the US – meaning the destruction of key components but not the entire program. debkafile: Israel is starting to accept that President Barack Obama’s balking at military action in Syria applies equally to Iran. Netanyahu is counting on winning the US Congress around to Israel’s case as his last resort against Obama’s policy. So for now, Iran’s nuclear program can run without interference.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 2, 2013
John Kerry has undertaken two impossible goals: Reaching a final-status accord in nine months of Israel-Palestinian negotiations and holding them in total secrecy.
Kerry in secret final-status talks with Netanyahu and Abbas on borders, security, Jerusalem, Jordan Valley
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 30, 2013
The ceremonial launch of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations in Washington early Tuesday, July 30, made a photogenic front for the real brass-tacks bargaining on the core Middle East dispute issues which Secretary of State John Kerry has been handling discreetly with the principals, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas. This was revealed exclusively in the last DEBKA Weekly issue of Friday, July 26. Kerry has been pushing quietly for answers on borders, security, the Jordan Rift Valley and Jerusalem.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis July 28, 2013
Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s willingness to “do everything” to avoid giving the Palestinians a pretext for not turning up for their first encounter with Israeli negotiators in Washington Tuesday, July 30, bodes ill for Israel’s bargaining position right from the start. So too does his proposal to include jailed Israeli Arabs among the 104 Palestinian prisoners to be released. debkafile: John Kerry is constructing a kind of US superstructure with Arab components to stand over the Israeli and Palestinian negotiators and their principals in Jerusalem and Ramallah.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 25, 2013
The Obama letters to Netanyahu and Abbas are key to the opening of peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians as per Kerry’s initiative. He has set up four mechanisms for controlling every aspect of the talks.
US to media: Israel struck Latakia arsenal last week. Will Putin and Assad make good on threats of reprisal?
DEBKAfile Special Report July 13, 2013
US officials exposed Israel's challenge to Russia, Syria, Iran and Hizballah when they named the Israeli Air Force Saturday, July 13 as responsible for the air strikes against the big Syria arms depot in Latakia eight days ago. debkafile: Russian-supplied Yakhont anti-ship missiles were destroyed in the explosions, and the Syrian-Hizballah Aleppo offensive was delayed by the loss of the arsenal accumulated for the attack. Russian President Vladimir Putin, Bashar Assad, Hizballah and Tehran had all earlier threatened reprisals if Israel attacked Syria again.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 11, 2013
Netanyahu like King Abdullah proved able to think on their feet in the Egyptian crisis and act directly without referring to Washington. Israeli intel and drones made available to support Egyptian offensive against the Muslim Brotherhood and Sinai Salafists.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 11, 2013
The explosions of big Syrian arsenals in Latakia are still a mystery. However, the weapons piled up for the Syrian-Hizballah Aleppo offensive were destroyed, as well as the advanced Russian Yakhon anti-ship cruise missiles.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 30, 2013
US Secretary of State John Kerry wound up his fifth peace shuttle trip for reviving Israel-Palestinian peace talks Sunday, June 30, when Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas turned down the US blueprint for both sides to forego preconditions and return straightaway to the long-stalled peace talks. Abbas reverted to his three-point ultimatum: Israel must first accept 1967 borders as the basis for negotiations, release Palestinians jailed more than 20 years and freeze West Bank and Jerusalem construction. The Secretary, who left Ramallah empty-handed, says he’ll be back in a few weeks.
Israeli leaders rebut criticism of under-reacting to threats from Syria by hinting at covert operations
DEBKAfile Special Report June 28, 2013
Senior Israeli officers in the North estimate that the IDF’s performance is just 40 percent of what is required for defending Israel’s border against the threats building up from the Golan. For too long, Israeli intelligence has been in thrall to the misconception that Bashar Assad’s days are numbered and underestimated Hizballah’s combat effectiveness in the Syrian war. Friday, an Iron Dome anti-missile battery was finally deployed to the northern town of Haifa, after a different kind of rhetoric came from Israeli leaders.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 27, 2013
Rebel factions in Aleppo are deeply fractured and disorganized. They say promised US weapons never arrived. Assad plans to stage a terrorist campaign against Israel from the Golan to steal attention from expected atrocities for conquering Aleppo.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 27, 2013
Abbas plans to go through the motions of direct talks with Israel, then after a couple of sessions, claim they have failed and hand in the keys of the Palestinian Authority to the UN.