Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Evening Update: Split Between U.S. And Israel Widens

There are a lot of interesting news in circulation tonight, and of course Iran is front and center:

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 White House, Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem, the US National Security Council, Defense Minister Ehud Barak and Defense Secretary Leon Panetta collapsed.

They had aimed at an agreement on a starting point for the meeting that had been fixed between the two leaders for Sept. 28 in New York to bridge their differences over an attack on Iran’s nuclear program.

By calling off the meeting, the US president has put paid to those hopes and publicly humiliated the Israel prime minister, turning the clock back to the nadir of their relations brought about by the comment by Gen. Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on Aug. 30: “I don’t want to be

By rebuffing Netanyahu, the president demonstrated that the top US soldier was not just talking off the cuff but representing the president’s final position on a possible Israel strike to preempt Iran’s nuclear program.

The White House may also have been incensed by the orders given by Netanyahu and Barak to the IDF to keep going on preparations for attacking Iran alongside the forthcoming meeting between the two leaders.

Israel’s latest rebuttal came Monday, Sept. 10 from former Military Intelligence chief, Amos Yadlin, who argued that even without agreed red lines, Israel was quite capable of coping with its enemies without the United States.

Netanyahu's comments to a news conference earlier Tuesday are unlikely to have salved angry administration spirits in Washington.
He said that with every passing day, Iran comes closer to a nuclear bomb, heedless of sanctions and diplomac. The world tells Israel 'wait, there's still time'. And I say, 'Wait for what? Wait until when?' Those in the international community who refuse to put red lines before Iran don't have a moral right to place a red light before Israel," said Netanyahu on a note of frustration against the Obama administration.

This is amazing, given that we are approaching the most critical time for the Iranian situation:

White House says scheduling, election campaign are reasons for not holding a meeting; announcement follows Netanyahu declaration that those who don't place "red lines" on Iran, have no right to give Israel a "red light."

For the first time since taking office, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is slated to visit the United States without meeting US President Barack Obama. The lack of a meeting later this month comes in the midst of roiling tensions between Jerusalem and Washington over setting red lines for Iran’s nuclear program.

Some have seen the absence of a face-to-face conversation as a further sign of strain in the relationship.

News that the two might not meet came after tensions between Jerusalem and Washington over Iran burst into the open on Tuesday when Netanyahu attacked the US’s policy on Tehran at a joint press conference in Jerusalem with visiting Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Metodiev Borisov.

The Egyptian General Intelligence Service warned that a radical jihadi group is planning to launch terrorist attacks against the US and Israeli embassies in Cairo, the Egypt Independent reported.

The Egyptian Al-Masry Al-Youm newspaper reportedly obtained a copy of a top secret letter addressed to Major General Samy Sedhom, first assistant Interior Minister for Social Security, on September 4, which stated that intelligence services notified the ministry’s national security body that elements from the organization in Egypt and Gaza were planning attacks on the two embassies.

The warning said that, “in the wake of the string of attacks and attempted attacks that occurred this year, Iran and Hizbullah are continuing their increased efforts to implement additional attacks, focusing on the intent to harm Israeli tourist destinations around the world.”

The warning specifically mentioned the Sinai Peninsula, stressing that Israelis should avoid traveling to the area due to heightened security alerts.

This recent development (below) certainly won't help U.S. - Israeli relations:

Israel Science and Technology, the national database and directory of science and technology-related websites in Israel, has published an article asserting the long-form birth certificate released by the White House is a forged document.

The website was created by a former science adviser to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel Hanukoglu, Ph.D.

Hanukoglu, an award-winning researcher, is a professor of biochemistry and molecular biology in the Department of Molecular Biology at Ariel University Center of Samaria in Ariel, Israel.

The professor established the first version of his website during his tenure as Netanyahu’s science adviser. The site has evolved into “the premier science and technology portal for Israel.”

The website says that the White House’s release of the Obama document in April 2011, after years of controversy, “raised in our minds the possibility that there could be something suspicious about the information available on this document.”

The website says the publication “of such a blatantly fake document about something so basic as the birthplace of Mr. Obama, should raise great concern about the suitability of the person who is holding the reigns on the most powerful country of the World.

Below, we see another emerging scenario which is worth watching closely:

U.S. intelligence agencies recently monitored a secret meeting between Egypt’s intelligence chief and a senior Iranian spy that is raising new fears the Muslim Brotherhood government in Cairo could begin covertly supporting global terrorism.

According to U.S. officials, the head of the Egyptian General Intelligence Service, Maj. Gen. Murad Muwafi, met in early August with a senior official of Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS).

Disclosure of the Egyptian-Iranian intelligence meeting comes as the Obama administration is planning to provide $1 billion in aid to bail out Egypt’s new Islamist government. The administration is said to be seeking closer ties to the new regime in Cairo, following the ouster in February 2011 of long-time ally Hosni Mubarak.

U.S. intelligence gathering targeting Egypt has been stepped up over the past year as the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, an Islamist party, came to power in June. The group’s credo includes the phrase, “Allah is our objective; the Quran is our law, the Prophet is our leader; jihad is our way; and death for the sake of Allah is the highest of our aspirations.”

The meeting between Muwafi and the Iranian, identified by officials only with his last name, Gerami, set off security concerns because the Iranian spy service is a key player in Tehran’s international support for terrorism, as well as anti-U.S. and anti-Israel operations.

And all of this just as anti-American and anti-Israel tensions increase dramatically:

Angry protesters climbed the walls of the U.S. Embassy in Cairo on Tuesday and tore down the American flag, apparently in protest of a film thought to insult the Prophet Mohammed.

A volley of warning shots were fired as a large crowd gathered around the compound, said CNN producer Mohammed Fahmy, who was on the scene, though it is not clear who fired the shots.

Egyptian police and army personnel have since formed defensive lines around the facility in an effort to prevent the demonstrators from advancing farther, but not before the protesters affixed their standard atop the embassy.

The black flag, which hangs atop a ladder inside the compound, is adorned with white characters that read, "There is no God but Allah and Mohammad is his messenger," an emblem often used in al Qaeda propaganda.

Below is a very interesting article on what may happen in Iran when Ahmadinejad's term is up this summer. The answer is - things may get worse:

Mohammad-Bagher Ghalibaf, the mayor of Tehran and a former police chief, is a likely successor to Iran’s genocide-inciting, homophobic, election-fraud beneficiary. Writing for The Times of Israel after several recent visits to Tehran, Sabina Amidi reports on fears that Ghalibaf’s ascent would signal a turn toward a more militaristic government

“The military section is becoming increasingly more powerful, I’m afraid,” said a mullah who leads Friday prayer at a local mosque in northern Tehran, referring to the IRGC and other branches of the security apparatus. “In the past three years, their influence has become much stronger than that of the clergy and religious leaders. Their voice is heard more. What the Revolutionary Guard are forgetting is that we created them to protect the Islamic system of the clerical government, not the other way around.

Many of my sources said that, were there to be a new upsurge in public protests, this would play into the hands of the IRGC, which is braced and ready to quash any demonstrations and widen its authority. The IRGC leaders take the view that it was they who, in 2009, saved the regime from the greatest challenge it had faced since the revolution, the sources said. The price they demand in return is greater influence over domestic policy, foreign policy, and the economy.

If there are new protests, the sources said, the IRGC will react, and its power will grow, with the Iranian government becoming increasingly militarized. The nomination and possible election of Ghalibaf would emblemize this, they said.

The problem is that an IRGC-favored candidate, Ghalibaf, is now set to seek the presidency. And from what I can tell from my trips to Iran over the past three years, the demonstrators who protested Ahmadinejad’s election three years ago may be too intimidated to dare raise their voices against his IRGC-backed would-be successor.


JD Siegel said...

I am still a bit alarmed by yesterday's news brief about US anti-missile defence system being presently incapable of thwarting an attack.Is there any more on that anywhere? The timing of that story is damaging, in that Iran could feel free to go ahead and take a shot at US cities. I don't think it would be a wise "disinformation" article. Why invite a nuke?

JD Siegel said...

WOAH! US ambassador to Libya and 3 staff members killed today in terror attack.

Scott said...

I saw both of those stories JD and I am wondering of the second one that you mentioned will be an excuse to get overtly involved

ChristineInCleveland said...

Yikes! Scott, PLEASE delete the totally offensive comments from Stephen on Tuesday's headlines thread!!

Anonymous said...


Please ban Stephan and Mrs c per Proverbs 22:10