Saturday February 21, 2015
The latest public spat between the Obama administration and the Netanyahu government centers on Israeli leaks of details of the US negotiating position in the Iran nuclear talks and the US consequently reducing its consultation with Israel on the talks.
Washington Post columnist David Ignatius divulged some of the details of the quarrel this week. It involves the alleged leak to an Israeli journalist of an Obama administration proposal that would “allow Iran to enrich uranium with 6,500 or more centrifuges as part of a final deal,” according to Ignatius.
The immediate issue was White House anger over Netanyahu’s taking advantage of the information on the US negotiating stance to interfere - again - in US domestic politics. But the Ignatius account also provides further evidence that the Obama administration still feels it necessary to clear every significant diplomatic move on Iran with Netanyahu, whose openly declared aim is to prevent any agreement from being reached.
The real reason for Obama’s continued appeasement of Netanyahu on the talks is that the White House believes Israel’s minions in Congress pose a serious threat to the administration’s diplomatic strategy on Iran.