The 14-member Security Cabinet, the body authorized to approve military attacks, met Tuesday to hear the annual intelligence assessments provided by the country’s intelligence agencies.
The 10-hour meeting is believed to be the first time in months that this body conducted an in-depth discussion on Iran that is believed to have included timelines, Iran’s “zones of immunity,” and what sanctions could still be adopted.No further details were made available. While Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s inner cabinet, which is made up of eight ministers, can give an advisory opinion on whether to attack Iran, the actual decision needs to be made by the security cabinet. This body could also choose to bring such a decision to the full 29-member cabinet.It is likely that among the issues discussed were the “red lines” that Israel would like the United States to establish as a way of deterring Iran from moving ahead. While Netanyahu has not publicly declared what he thinks those red lines should be, Uzi Arad, the former head of the National Security Council, said that they could include a declaration that any uranium enrichment beyond 20 percent would be a direct trigger for military action.
In addition, Arad said that the US has not yet spoken in “categorical terms” making crystal clear its determination to stop the Iranian nuclear march.Other “categorical” expressions of this determination, Arad said, could be congressional authorization now of the use of force if diplomacy fails to convince the Iranians to halt, and a clear statement that the military objective of any US action would not be to “buy time,” but rather to prevent Iran from ever being able to build a nuclear bomb.
There is a growing American assessment that Israel will not attack Iranian nuclear facilities before the U.S. presidential elections on November 6.
U.S. House of Representatives Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers, who visited Israel last week, told a breakfast panel at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida on Tuesday that he believes the Israeli government is likely to wait until after the elections.Rogers said that after his trip, during which he met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, he’d been left with “no doubt in my mind” that the U.S. election cycle was part of Israel’s calculations. Asked why he thought Israel would wait, Rogers said, “Because I think they believe that maybe after the election they can talk the United States into cooperating.”
Earlier this week, the New York Times reported that Obama was considering a series of steps, both overt and covert, with the goal of helping Israel climb down from the tree and convincing Netanyahu to hold off on attacking Iran’s nuclear facilities.
According to the report, Obama is considering making declarations regarding the United States’ “red lines” that may bring about an American attack on Iran if crossed.
But just last week, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) issued a report that very much legitimized Israel's concerns and sense of urgency.In the report, the IAEA noted that Iran has now installed no fewer than 2,140 centrifuges at its main underground uranium enrichment facility, giving it the ability to produce 200 kilograms (about 440 pounds) of weapons-grade uranium each year.A bit of math reveals that given its current stockpile of enriched uranium, Iran only needs another 50 kilograms to build its first nuclear warhead. In other words, the Islamic Republic could potentially test its first nuclear bomb within three months.These advancements have occurred in spite of a decade of international negotiations and sanctions.
For years the international community dragged its feet and responded only with half-hearted talks and sanctions to North Korea's nuclear program, despite repeatedly promising to prevent Pyongyang from going nuclear. In 2006, North Korea tested its first nuclear bomb, and it was then too late for anyone to do anything about it.
In 2007, the Obama Administration commissioned a national intelligence report that all but insisted that Iran had halted its nuclear weapons program years earlier, with no intention of restarting it. Either American intelligence is less capable than the sleuthing skills of the IAEA, or the White House was deliberately trying to downplay what could be a very real existential threat to the Jewish state.
Israel's largest daily newspaper, Yediot Ahronot, on Tuesday cited Israeli officials who claimed relations between Israel and Washington had reached an unprecedented low over the two nations' differing views regarding the urgency of the Iran nuclear threat.According to the sources cited, coordination between American and Israeli security forces has been reduced, while the New York Timesreported that US President Barack Obama is looking at a number of new policies aimed at preventing Israel from taking unilateral action against Iran's nuclear facilities.
The same Yediot report may provide insight into one of those new Obama policies. The newspaper reported that in recent weeks Washington sent a message to Iran via two European nations stating clearly that the US would not take any part in an Israeli strike on Iran, and therefore requesting that Iran not retaliate for such a strike by hitting American assets in the region.
Officials on both sides continue to insist that relations between Jerusalem and the White House are as good as ever, but anyone willing to see past the public pronouncements of politicians can see the obvious tension.
Speaking to a gathering of wounded Israeli and American combat veterans on Monday, Netanyahu hinted that if Obama would issue a clear ultimatum to Iran, Israel could put any possible attack plans on the back burner:
"[Iran's] is a brutal regime that is racing ahead with its nuclear program, because it doesn't see a clear red line from the international community. And it doesn't see the necessary resolve and determination from the international community. The greater the resolve and the clearer the red line, the less likely we'll have conflict."
Scott, what do you make of it? The USA denying the bunkerbuster deal. Some Israeli news sites saying there is a bunkerbuster deal. Some American politicians saying Israel will wait until after the election. Many saying they won't. Now this security cabinet meeting.
Are they trying to stir up misinformation in order to veil their plans for a strike on Iran?
Caver may have a better feel for this than me, but I am indeed starting to believe that at least some of the 'information' we are reading is misinformation by intent.
Having said that - I believe that much of what we read coming from US Administration sources is stated for manipulation (manipulation of Israeli leaders) and some of Israeli information is doing the same - aimed at the US administration.
I'm beginning to believe that Israel feels that they do need US support to pull this off and now, perhaps they are hoping Romney wins and after he is in office Israel/US combined will take out the nuke facilities.
Thats a big gamble, because by late Jan, it could be too late. Plus Obama may win in a fraudulent election.
So who knows. Its anybody's guess at this point - remember, we only get bits and pieces of info and that is based on what the two governments WANT us to see.
I would say it is either heads or
tails. If the truth is that elusive,
then one can ONLY CONCLUDE that no one really knows, right ??
I will say this, I will be watching
EWI and market action closely from this point on, that will tell me
the real truth....
If Israel is SMART, they will take
action, Iran is crazy, every one
knows that......wait long enough
with the STALL game and all of a
sudden they will have 20 nukes
that is what happened with N. Korea, STALL STALL STALL, and then
in 2006 they already have the bomb.....and ALOT more since then.
Hmm a little bit of blasphemy on the part of Obama? On the DNC calendar for August, it has Obama's short form Birth Certificate with John 3:16 written underneath it. Here's the link.
And thanks Scott for doing your best to answer my question. I guess we'll just have to wait to see what happens with Iran.
Yea - I wanted to end my comments by saying "this is probably the worst answer/non-answer you've ever had"...Short answer "I don't know!" !
To add to the above - there is SO MUCH 'conspiracy stuff' floating around recently - involving the US and Europe, its hard to keep up. I have never ever seen an era in which so much conspiracy stuff is being written about - anything from martial law in the US, to worldwide total financial collapse, to EMP terrorism, someone taking down our electrical grid, nuclear terrorism, false-flags etc etc etc....You assume a lot of it is false, but still, there is just so so much of this type of information floating around these days, in every respect, its really really hard to discern the truth from fiction.
Wow! Dylan, that's just WEIRD and CREEPY! I don't think it's an official DNC souvenir - looks like it's made by a freelancer - but still!!! Clearly the man who put the calendar together thinks of O as a savior....
I'm just speechless! Truly, a glimpse of how people will worship the ac in the not-to-distant future.
During obama presidency, The USA started to loose its grip in the middle east.
Iraq Pull out, Rise of Muslim brotherhood, afghanistan failure.
No wonder if re-elected, USA will abandon middle east leaving Israel to the hands of radical islamist.
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