Israel Plays Spoiler in US-Iran Talks

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U.S. President Barack Obama meets with Israeli President Benjamin Netanyahu in the Oval Office, 30 September 2013 in Washington, DC. (Photo: AFP / GETTY Images - Mark Wilson)

Published Tuesday, October 1, 2013

During his visit to the US, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will do his best to create some distance between Washington and Tehran after the recent breakthrough in relations between the two countries.

In his meeting with US President Barack Obama at the White House, Netanyahu used the sharpest language, hoping to raise suspicion in Washington over Iran’s intentions to negotiate a settlement with the West over its nuclear program.

As the Iranians and Americans broke the ice with a phone call between the presidents of the two countries and began preparations for what will likely be laborious negotiations over a number of outstanding issues, hardliners on both sides are making their voices heard. On the Iranian side, the Revolutionary Guards openly criticized President Hassan Rouhani’s eagerness to make a quick deal.

On the other side, Israel has stepped up its incitement against Iran, with Netanyahu raising questions in Washington about whether Tehran is genuine in seeking to allay fears over its nuclear program in the West. The Israeli prime minister pressed Obama not to lift economic sanctions against the Islamic Republic, insisting that the military option should remain on the table.

Obama readily agreed, saying that it was due to the sanctions that Iran has decided to negotiate, adding that “we will conduct these talks with our eyes wide open,” and “we will not leave out any option, including the military option.” Nevertheless, the US president did concede that diplomacy should be given a chance in order to see whether the Iranians are serious about abiding by international law.

The Israeli paper Maariv reported that Netanyahu will be handing Obama an intelligence file on Iran’s nuclear program and the “terrorist” activity it has conducted in the region and internationally against Jewish and Israeli targets. The daily added that Netanyahu hopes to convince Obama that Tehran must halt all its enrichment activity during the negotiations, including taking such steps as the removal of all 20 percent enriched material outside the country.

The Zionist prime minister plans to spend several more days in the US, during which he will conduct more than 10 interviews with local media outlets to make his case. He also intends to use the occasion of a farewell gathering for the Israeli ambassador in Washington – which will be attended by many members of Congress – to raise Tel Aviv’s concerns. Netanyahu’s campaign in Washington was backed by statements from Israeli politicians such as Shimon Peres, who also raised doubts about Iran’s real intention, saying that what he heard from the Iranian president was “unsettling.”

Some opposition leaders questioned the wisdom of Netanyahu’s approach, with some raising concerns about portraying Israel’s and America’s interests as being “contradictory,” while others openly admitted that US-Iranian negotiations are an “important and necessary step toward making Iran a country free of nuclear weapons.”


This article is an edited translation from the Arabic Edition.


Netanyahu and the US War Mongers are desperate to derail all negotiations not just nuclear negotiations and not just with Iran but with Assad as well.

Israel needs external enemies as cover for its' ongoing Apartheid crimes and the US War Mongers need enemies to fund their hegemonic military aspirations for profit and imperialism.

It is important that Iran while refuting the obvious lies maintains its' composure and rise above the taunting and provocations to maintain a world opinion that hopes diplomatic success.

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