Obama’s message to Netanyahu: Weapons with strings attached

By Barak Ravid, HAARETZ

[..] The administration refrained from any public response at the time, but it sent harsh messages to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office via diplomatic channels. A few days later, however, when Israeli shells hit a UN school where hundreds of Palestinian civilians had sought refuge, the administration issued harsh denunciations of Israel of a kind that hadn’t been heard from Washington in years.

That “Black Friday” in Rafah brought the administration’s frustration over Israeli tactics in Gaza, and over its inability to influence its closest ally, to a boiling point. The White House’s decision to delay a transfer of Hellfire missiles to Israel, as revealed by the Wall Street Journal on Thursday, shows that the Americans subsequently decided to move from talk to action in their effort to restrain Israel’s use of force in Gaza and the resultant civilian casualties.

The U.S. State Department confirmed Thursday that it was taking “additional care” in supplying weapons to Israel. An extra set of eyes will be put on every Israel Defense Forces request, its bureaucracy will put in overtime and the pace of arms deliveries will be slowed down. There will be no immediate repercussions on the IDF’s operational abilities, but Israel will suffer serious diplomatic damage.

The American move drew a red line for Israel on everything related to wielding power in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The Americans made it clear they support Israel’s right of self-defense, but not at any price. The message from the White House to the Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon is that Israel’s access to the best of America’s military industry does not come without strings attached.

The White House’s decision is a further example of the way in which the escalation of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the freezing of the peace process threaten Israel’s national security. The United States is the latest Israeli ally signaling dissatisfaction with its policies toward the Palestinians via arms deliveries.

In May, Germany nixed subsidies for Israel worth hundreds of millions of dollars to acquire missile boats to protect its offshore gas fields because of the collapse of the peace process and continued Israeli construction in the West Bank settlements. Spain announced during the war in Gaza that it wasfreezing arms exports to Israel in protest of civilian casualties caused during IDF operations.

In Britain, the war in Gaza spurred a wave of anti-Israel protests and a bitter political confrontation within the coalition. The result was the decision to make a general review of Britain’s policy of selling arms to Israel and to freeze 12 arms exports licenses for items such as parts for the Merkava tank as well as drones.

Israel is very far from facing an arms embargo, but the unambiguous trend is not encouraging. The EU’s growing economic sanctions against the settlements over the past two years signals what is liable to happen in future. The war in Gaza further suppressed Israel’s international standing and provided a tailwind for its isolation in the world.

After the war then at six o’clock in the evening, the Israeli government will have to launch a diplomatic offensive to halt this downslide. It is far from a sure thing that it is capable of doing so.

August 15, 2014 | 18 Comments »

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18 Comments / 18 Comments

  1. yamit82 Said:

    Dump Fox if you want news.

    And go where??????? I watch for news [i.e. Fergusson, Missouri]. As for the various opinions they offer, eh !!!!!!!! I am not good a listening to any ones opinion on any thing ,but yours and TXs of course.

  2. honeybee Said:

    Where are the voices from Liberal Jewish member of the Congress, of Hollywood in support of Israel or recognition of the anti-Semitism sweeping Europe.

    I dont think there is much reporting of the extent of euro anti semitism in the states. Do you get it on your sources.

    As for Israel, I believe that as sources like Haaretz are the main quoted sources on what Israelis believe that US jews figure they should support what Israelis want and they are shown that most Israelis want what Israeli leftists want except for “lunatic extremists” like us here. They are brainwashed on MSM and probably don’t have time to research the truth. They accept MSM.

  3. yamit82 Said:

    I would offer a half million dollars for whistle-blowers to come forward with indictable evidence, including the FAA Ban.

    Put that $ 500.000 in a escrow account and then will talk, Darlin.

  4. bernard ross Said:

    Israel should look into this Soros influence of US policy

    I believe I have said it before that I prefer dealing with anti-Semitics than Liberal Jews , some in my own family, who support Obama. Where are the voices from Liberal Jewish member of the Congress, of Hollywood in support of Israel or recognition of the anti-Semitism sweeping Europe. Why do they pander after those who hate us and denounce those who befriend us?

    Yamit82, Max, Bernard any answer for poor gnat brained little ol’me.

  5. LtCol Howard Said:

    The refusal of many post offices to accept mail for Israel was another signal.

    The main difference that antisemitism in the USA has never reached the proportions and effectivness of Europe, is that American institutions and the constitution protected Jewish rights. There have been exceptions but since post WW2 these exceptions have not been the rule but rare exceptions.

    But In the last 10 years or so I have seen a weakening of American institutional protections of Jewish civil rights and it’s especially visible in the courts where Jews are singled out and even denied bail with the explanations and excuses of being a flight risk to Israel. The US military never terribly favorable to Jews have treated some Jewish servicemen in an obvious discriminatory manner.

    AIPAC is a Joke and is only effective in the sick minds of Jew haters and those who will believe any conspiracy theory and urban myth.

    Re Polls: Israel is usually paired with and compared to countries like Saudis Arabia, Iran, and the Palis. None very popular with Americans without any consideration to Israel. When you start comparing Israel with Canada, England, Germany and Japan Israel is not on top.

    I wonder if The US Postal Service can be sued as a class action suit? Certainly damages can be claimed and while racism would be a tough if not impossible claim to make it’s obvious that there is an element of antisemitism involved.

    I would offer a half million dollars for whistle-blowers to come forward with indictable evidence, including the FAA Ban.

    CFCA- The Coordination Forum for Countering Antisemitism
    is a state forum that monitors antisemitic activities throughout the world. It coordinates the struggle against this phenomenon with various government bodies and Jewish organizations around the world.

    Jews better wake up 2014 is much worse than 2013 shown below:


  6. Obama is trying to end run US public support of Israel. Obama is the soros stooge who created Jstreet for the sole purpose of end running Jewish support of Israel by US Jews and providing a Jewish support base for Soros(Obama) policies knowing that the anti Israel venture would require a US jewish support base for the projected Soros anti Israel policies. In that venture at some point I expect him to use the anti semite card.

    Israel should look into this Soros influence of US policy. He already is involved with manipulating the policies and election outcomes of nations globally. I believe Obama is a puppet who was so riddled in scandal before arriving to the presidency that he makes the prime candidate for the blackmail, extortion and manipulation necessary to operate puppets. In this network of the easily manipulated scandal ridden national leaderships globally, we find the Israeli segment. They are instructed to support each other. Funding the corrupt into public office is now a multi national business with multi national agenda. Hence, the immediate jumping up to support Obama against Israel during a war by herzog, Lapid, gal on, Peres, etc etc etc

  7. I tried to post this on the Haaretz site without success. If you have access you can post it in my name.

    When the new”review” procedures were announced this was the DOD assessment: Hamas has received the message loud and clear. So has Iran and Hezbollah.Military Assessment:
     An imminent delivery of Hellfire missiles set to arrive in Israel from the US has been held up by the White House.The Obama administration is clearly signaling Hamas during this negotiation–––HAMAS,WE HAVE YOUR BACK. We will not let Israel strike back at  you when  you  continue to fire rockets and missiles against Israel. Further, holdout for your maximalist demands: unrestricted imports through air and sea and NO DISARMAMENT.

    The claim is made that it was the strike near the UN school that was a causal factor. DOD and State knew full well that the missile struck outside of the school and that it killed the Hamas launching team that was firing from immediately adjacent to the school. NO ISRAELI VIOLATION. Also, video was circulated that showed the doctoring of the scene including the introduction of the dead child who was placed immediately next to the bodies of the Hamas missile team. THUS, THE STATE DEPARTMENT HAD ADEQUATE EVIDENCE THAT THIS WAS ANOTHER HAMAS FRAUD.

    I will now paraphrase and supplement some materials from Caroline Glick. In these remarks she has the full endorsement of my office.

    Israel’s problem today is not the anti-Semitism of Western societies. It is the hostility of the Obama administration.

    Unlike the situation in Europe, anti-Semitism is not a significant force in the US. However due in large part to Obama administration actions, there is a growing acceptance in Washington of the false, anti-Semitic charge that Israel dictates US foreign policy.

    But the US public views Israel as an ally and a fellow democracy. And as a consequence, the majority of Americans consistently support Israel and expect the US government to support Israel in its wars against Islamic terrorists and its desire to prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear power. This general view is in turn reflected in the predominant pro-Israel positions taken by the vast majority of members of both houses of Congress.

    Since his position is out of step with the US public, Barack Obama has not been able to break openly with Israel. But behind the scenes, since the outset of Operation Protective Edge he has used his administrative powers to help Hamas and its Islamist sponsors in Turkey, Qatar and Iran to the detriment of Israel and the Sunni Arab regimes.

    As The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday, Obama’s latest anti-Israel action was the institution last week of an unofficial arms embargo against Israel. Ignoring standard procedures adopted over the years in accordance with the US’s strategic cooperation accords with Israel, Obama has chosen to deny the US military the power to automatically approve Israeli requests for resupply of ammunition and spare parts. All such requests must now receive specific approval from the White House.

    To hide the hostile nature of his action, Obama has sought to present it as a simple reassertion of presidential control over US foreign policy – and so resonate the anti-Semitic undertones of allegations of Israeli control over US foreign policy.

    In fact, Obama’s actions constitute a presidential decision to abandon US official policy of upholding the US’s alliance with Israel.

    Obama took a similar path last month with the highly discriminatory FAA flight ban on Ben-Gurion Airport. The FAA has not instituted such bans on countries like Ukraine and Pakistan where civilian passenger flights have actually been shot down. Yet, citing “an abundance of caution,” the FAA instituted a flight ban on Israel where no civilian passenger jet was endangered.

    As the administration presented it, the FAA decision to directly threaten Israel’s economic viability did not derive from hostility to Israel, but from a concern for the welfare of airline passengers.

    In a similar fashion, last month US Secretary of State John Kerry sought to misrepresent the administration’s adoption of Hamas’s cease-fire terms as the US’s official position. Kerry claimed that he was merely amplifying the Egyptian cease-fire agreement that the administration claimed it supported, when he was actually abandoning it.

    The refusal of many post offices to accept mail for Israel was another signal. Instead of being the simple error as was claimed, which could have been easily fixed by just a few phone calls if was a persistent action which took a lot of pressure to override.

  8. Max Said:

    It’s interesting – Israel/Gaza is no longer on CNN web news in any way shape or form.
    So they murder Israel on the QT – in private when no one is watching. There is no news about Israel unless Israel is killing babies.

    (CNN) – Rick Santorum is heading to Israel.

    “The former senator from Pennsylvania and 2012 presidential candidate leaves Sunday for a three-day trip with a delegation of conservative and religious leaders, according to his group, Patriot Voices.”

    Conservative delegates are coming to Israel on Sunday to show their solidarity.

  9. It’s interesting – Israel/Gaza is no longer on CNN web news in any way shape or form.

    So they murder Israel on the QT – in private when no one is watching. There is no news about Israel unless Israel is killing babies.

  10. ISIL establishing cells in Baghdad, aided by ex-Saddam security forces
    The sources said ISIL was aided by former members of the ousted Saddam Hussein regime, including military and security officers. They said the ex-officers were helping ISIL transport fighters and explosives through Baghdad’s sewers and tunnels, many of them built more than 20 years ago as escape routes by Saddam aides.

    CIA probalby maintained contacts with saddams subordinates AND with the sunni clans they enlisted in that areas for the surge a few years back. I wager that the military planning for the blitzkrieg ISIS actions were concocted between the CIA and the Baath officers with Saudi/GCC involvement

  11. Who armed ISIL? Former Soviet bloc nations aided by Turkey, sources say
    They said the weapons and equipment were being procured from such former Soviet allies as Bulgaria, Croatia, Romania and Ukraine……………
    On Aug. 12, a diplomatic source said the flow of ISIL weapons was aided by NATO, particularly Turkey. The source said NATO intelligence services were facilitating payment and arms shipments to and from Europe under the guise of humanitarian supplies to Syria……..
    The source told Russia’s state-owned RIA-Novosti news agency that ISIL began ordering weapons and military equipment in early 2013. The unidentified source said Croatia was supplying armored personnel carriers and rocket launchers while Romania was selling main battle tanks and Ukraine infantry fighting vehicles. He said Bulgaria was supplying munitions………

    Assron klein said a couple of years ago that the CIA had brokered a deal for the saudis for weapons from Croatia for Syria for 500 mill.
    this was all preplanned and ISIS is one of the many sunni jihadi incarnations funded and armed by the GCC and western nations.

  12. The war in Gaza further suppressed Israel’s international standing and provided a tailwind for its isolation in the world.

    The evidence is very clear for all to see regarding Hamas repeated criminal acts. There is willful ignorance by some countries and jealousy and envy by others. They can’t accept the a fact that Israel being small in number but excels them in so many factors.

    Trying to frighten Israel through withholding of arms sale would be in vain. Israel even survived in 1948 on its own with God’s help. It exports arms to different countries. It can use its own arms to defeat the terrorists.

    What ever decisions Israel wants to take should be based on its own security. Some who want to have some sort of international recognition (to get prizes) should not be allowed to succeed at the cost of Israeli’s.

    If possible, Israel should stop fighting on its own as a formal indirect agreement with Hamas may not worth a paper it may be written on.