DEBKAfile Special Report February 19, 2014, 10:58 PM (GMT+02:00)
Saudi Intelligence chief Prince Bandar bin Sultan was reported by debkafile’s US and Saudi sources Wednesday, Feb. 19, to have been removed from policy-making in Riyadh. The prince was the live wire of kingdom’s drive against President Barack Obama’s détente with Tehran. Bandar’s removal is one up for Obama, and a significant loss for Israel’s Binyamin Netanyahu as the only other Middle East leader ready to publicly decry US policies on Iran and Syria. No word about the prince’s status has come from Riyadh since he dropped out of sight a month ago.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report December 18, 2013, 7:55 PM (GMT+02:00)
The European Union and Iran announced Wednesday that the talks on the technical aspects of the interim nuclear accord with the six powers - broken off in Vienna Friday Dec. 13 - would be resumed in Geneva Thursday, Dec. 19. debkafile: This is a desperate attempt to enliven the dying momentum of nuclear diplomacy. The meeting is is being convened to camouflage the fact that the Geneva accord is on the brink of collapse. Iran now denies any pact was signed, saying "it was only a statement of intent.”
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report December 18, 2013, 12:06 PM (GMT+02:00)
Mr. X is the first point man the US has headhunted in the ruling elite of post-revolutionary Islamic Iran. Close to Ali Khamenei and Hassan Rouhani, he is the object of high expectations on the part of Barack Obama and John Kerry. The last DEBKA Weekly out Friday, Dec. 20 divulged his arcane identity, his mode of operation and his prospects of meeting those expectations. This issue also traced the slow demise of the nuclear deal the six powers signed with Iran last month. To catch such exclusives, subscribe to DEBKA Weekly by clicking here.
No US, EU objections to Iran holding nuclear-capable missiles able to reach Israel, Saudi Arabia and Turkey
DEBKAfile Special Report December 13, 2013, 1:50 PM (GMT+02:00)
Iran’s Revolutionary Guards chief Maj. Gen, Mohammad Ali Jafari revealed in a lecture to students in Tehran that under the Geneva interim accord negotiated last month, Iran had agreed to apply a six-month nuclear freeze additionally to halting the extension of its nuclear-capable ballistic missiles to ranges of 3,000-5,000 km, able reach the US and Europe. US and UK negotiators agreed Tehran could keep the missiles with ranges of 1,500-2,000 km capable of reaching Israel, Saudi Arabia and Turkey.
DEBKAfile DEBKA Weekly December 10, 2013, 10:03 PM (GMT+02:00)
Tehran wins two key Gulf emirates away from their close alignment with Saudi Arabia by two steps: Its consent to discuss the future of three islands claimed by the UAE in the Strait of Hormuz; and the conspicuous absence of Oman’s Sultan Qaboos from the GCC summit in Kuwait this week. The Saudis were prevented from passing anti-Iranian measures, which must be unanimous under GCC rules, and were therefore isolated. The Obama administration’s silence – even when Iran posted assault aircraft on a Hormuz island – resounded across the region.
Pakistan’s new army chief: Nuclear ties with Saudis, US exit from Afghanistan, Riyadh’s anti-Iran drive
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis December 1, 2013, 7:22 PM (GMT+02:00)
If Pakistan’s new army chief, Gen. Raheel Sharif, goes through with the transfer of nuclear arms and missiles to Saudi Arabia, he ranges Islamabad on the side of Sunni versus Shiite by lending a Sunni power a nuclear capability versus a nuclear-armed Shiite Iran, whose “nuclear rights” have just been recognized by six world powers. Gen. Sharif must also adapt Pakistan’s armed forces to the US military exit from Afghanistan next year and decide whether to allow Saudi covert operations against Iran to continue from Pakistani soil.
Jerusalem, Riyadh stunned: Obama makes Iran 7th world power on regional issues, including Palestinians
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report November 25, 2013, 10:04 PM (GMT+02:00)
debkafile exclusive: President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry have secretly consented to elevate Iran to the status of seventh world power, for signing the interim nuclear accord in Geneva on Nov. 24, living up to its obligations in the coming six months and then signing a comprehensive agreement. While demanding respect as a regional power, never in its wildest dreams did Tehran expect big power standing with a recognized authoritative role in the wider Middle East, including the Palestinian issue. Jerusalem and Riyadh are aghast.
DEBKAfile Special Report November 25, 2013, 2:53 PM (GMT+02:00)
Certain US media suddenly this week claimed to have broken the news of a secret track used by President Barack Obama for secret negotiations with Tehran through Oman’s Sultan Qaboos. debkafile and DEBKA Weekly in fact uncovered the Qaboos track on Aug. 26, 2013 and were on the trail of those back-channel communications as early as Jan.26, 2012 more than a year ago, when we exposed the early rendezvous US and Iranian emissaries held in secret in Baghdad. The relevant dates of our disclosures are listed below.
Nuclear deal may sink in Geneva between hardline pressures in Tehran and tough Franco-Israel demands
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report November 18, 2013, 10:40 AM (GMT+02:00)
Washington and Moscow may sound upbeat about the prospects of a signed interim deal at the next round of nuclear negotiations between Iran and the six powers in Geneva Wednesday, Nov. 20. However, according to debkafile’s intelligence and Iranian sources, the way ahead is still bristling with mines, more so even than the first round. Iran’s Hassan Rouhani and Javad Zarif fear retribution at home for yielding, while France and Israel toughen demands. Binyamin Netanyahu reiterates that a “bad deal” won’t bind Israel and brandishes Israel’s military option.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis November 16, 2013, 4:10 PM (GMT+02:00)
French President Francois Hollande and Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius arrive in Jerusalem Sunday, Nov. 17. Their talks with Israel’s leaders will show if France stands by its independent stance against Washington’s détente with Tehran and is willing to throw in its lot ad hoc with Israel, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Egypt. Their outcome will determine whether Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu goes to Moscow next Wednesday alone or with French and Saudi backing. The next round of nuclear negotiations in Geneva on Nov. 20 will also be influenced.
Major Israel-US rift over Washington plan to let Tehran continue enriching uranium with sanctions relief
DEBKAfile Special Report November 7, 2013, 10:12 AM (GMT+02:00)
Israel voiced early Thursday, Nov. 7, its utter opposition to the new proposal the US plans to put before the two-day Geneva conference opening later in the day on Iran’s nuclear program. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, when he met US Secretary of State John Kerry in Jerusalem Wednesday, bitterly accused the Obama administration of yielding to the Russian-backed Iranian position. Should Tehran renege on the deal, the US proposal leaves it with the capacity for enriching enough weapons-grade uranium in 10 days to build several nuclear weapons.
Braced for imminent nuclear accord with Iran, US pulls away from military option, IDF stays on the ready
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report October 31, 2013, 9:52 AM (GMT+02:00)
Israel’s high command, assuming that an American-Iranian nuclear accord is near its final stage, plans to continue preparations for a unilateral military strike on Iran’s nuclear program into 2014 – hence the IDF’s request for a supplemental NIS3.5bn (app. $1bn) defense budget this week. debkafile: The main body of the accord is complete. All the same, President Barack Obama plans to announce before Christmas that only partial agreement has been achieved and negotiations will continue - to avoid coming clean on the full scope of the deal with Tehran.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 5, 2013, 12:42 AM (GMT+02:00)
Washington’s insistence that Iran has slowed down nuclear progress out of political motivations impelled the IAEA chief Yukiya Amano to offer proof that Iran is secretly continuing to develop nuclear weapons.
DEBKAfile DEBKA Weekly December 4, 2012, 11:59 AM (GMT+02:00)
The US and Iran launched bilateral nuclear talks in total hush Saturday, Dec. 1, an event DEBKA-Net-Weekly 567 was first to disclose on Nov. 30. Tehran insisted on the session going forward on schedule, while at the same time staging a string of military incidents for racking up tension to strengthen its bargaining position at the table. The latest DEBKA-Net-Weekly out Friday opened an exclusive window on the secret session and charts the next US and Iranian moves.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report December 3, 2012, 1:14 PM (GMT+02:00)
Iranian and Pakistani warships had planned a joint Red Sea drill to start Friday, Nov. 30 in Port Sudan. It was rumored in Khartoum that the Pakistani Shashmir carrying nuclear arms or nuclear-related equipment had docked Thursday ready to meet two Iranian warships. Washington then warned Tehran that the US-Iranian nuclear talks due to open Saturday, Dec. 1, would be called off, if this first ever joint drill between a Muslim nuclear power and a close nuclear candidate went ahead.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 28, 2012, 1:51 PM (GMT+02:00)
Tehran was forced to eat crow and backtrack on its ploy for winning international recognition for its nuclear program by showing Non-Aligned Summit leaders and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon around its nuclear sites. The tour was planned for Wednesday, Aug. 29. However, debkafile reports that Washington intervened Tuesday and “advised” NAM participants as well as Ban to turn Tehran down on its nuclear tour, which was to have included the suspected nuclear-related explosives testing lab at Parchin.
DEBKAfile Special Report May 15, 2012, 11:57 AM (GMT+02:00)
A new US battle strategy against Iran (ASB) hinges on tightly coordinated air, land, sea, undersea, space and cyberspace capabilities for defeating closure of the (Hormuz) strait, cyber attack, mines, cruise and ballistic missiles. US and Israeli Air Forces, Navies and their special forces are operating on the ABS concept after an Israeli drill which ended in its navy setting up a dense defensive line against enemy sea assault by unconventional weapons. Monday, a large US amphibious marine vessel anchored in Jedda.
DEBKAfile Special Report May 13, 2012, 9:00 AM (GMT+02:00)
The 60 Iranian experts employed by 11 different Iranian agencies controlled by the Iranian Defense Ministry (under the IRGC) were revealed by names and addresses Saturday, May 12, by the opposition Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK/PMOI) in the first ever detailed exposure of a highly secret, central Iranian organization working on building a nuclear weapon. debkafile: Through the secret US-Iranian track, Khamenei told Barack Obama that Fordow will not be shut down. Jerusalem: The evolving US-Iran deal is “bad for Israel.”
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 11, 2012, 12:09 AM (GMT+02:00)
Iran’s latest proposals contain a couple of concessions but are essentially a bargaining vehicle for using its clandestine dialogue with the US for acceptance of its nuclear program in one form another but equally important recognition as America’s respected regional partner.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 20, 2012, 9:59 AM (GMT+02:00)
Israel’s Defense Minister Ehud Barak arrived in Washington Thursday, April 19 with tough questions for US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta about the administration’s dialogue with Iran, on the lines of, “What’s going on? Is there a deal? Don’t tell me what you have settled with the Iranians, just your minimal demands, your bottom line.” Because Israel was in the dark about the dialogue, Barak sought the truth about Obama’s concessions, especially on IAEA inspections, directly from Panetta.