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Israeli PM criticizes Obama for diplomacy with Iran



Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu launched an unexpected attack this week on the world’s six major powers led by President Barack Obama over how they were conducting nuclear talks with Iran. The attack underscored the fact that relations between the Israeli and U.S. leaders are as bad as they ever were, just as the presidential election in the United States gets into full swing.

Indeed, indications are that not only is Mr. Netanyahu more comfortable with the views on Iran held by Mitt Romney, the leading Republican candidate who is sure to be Mr. Obama’s opponent in this year’s election, but also with Mr. Romney as a person.

Mr. Netanyahu accuses the world powers of stringing out their talks with Iran over its nuclear program. His criticism came one day after the first meeting between Iran and representatives from the so-called five-plus-one countries: the five members of the United Nations Security Council – Russia, China, France, Great Britain and the United States – plus Germany.

“My initial impression is that Iran has been given a ‘freebie,’” Mr. Netanyahu said, referring to the five-week hiatus before the second round of the talks and complained that the gap will allow Iran “to continue enrichment [of uranium] without any limitation, any inhibition.”

Mr. Netanyahu is among Iran’s harshest critics, arguing unceasingly that the Islamic Republic not be allowed to develop nuclear weapons, and threatening that if the international community did not prevent this from happening, Israel would.

Few people, however, expected him to launch such an undiplomatic broadside, and so quickly, especially after a recent visit to Washington during which the Israeli and U.S. leaders appeared, finally, to be singing from the same song sheet.

So strident was the Netanyahu attack that Mr. Obama felt compelled to reply while on a visit to Colombia. Iran had gained nothing from the opening round of talks, insisted Mr. Obama, and certainly not a “freebie.”

The Netanyahu government, however, was not appeased. One senior Israeli minister was quoted Wednesday saying that the Obama administration has an interest in dragging the talks out until after November’s election.

There is no doubt that, when it comes to the all important issue of Iran, the Israeli leader prefers the position held by Mr. Romney. Indeed, it was the former Massachusetts governor who last year uttered the line that in his Mideast policies, Mr. Obama had “thrown Israel under the bus.”

The two conservative politicians first got to know each other more than 35 years ago when their early careers overlapped at the Boston Consulting Group. Mr. Netanyahu, then 26, had been at MIT studying management; Mr. Romney, then 29, had just graduated from Harvard. Both had elected to accept offers from the up-and-coming BCG.

They participated in the firm’s famous weekly discussion groups that showed off both men’s verbal skills and analytical acumen.

“He [Mr. Netanyahu] was a strong personality with a distinct point of view,” Mr. Romney told the New York Times, the publication that first reported on this interesting intersection in the two men’s careers. He added: “I aspired to the same kind of perspective.”

Mr. Netanyahu recalls Mr. Romney, three years older and son of a former Michigan governor, as having the much higher profile. He was the one “seen as a winner,” Mr. Netanyahu said, speaking through a senior aide.

To be sure, the period of overlap between the two men was just over a year and was often interrupted by Mr. Netanyahu’s frequent trips to Israel where he established a foundation against terrorism in honour of his late brother, Jonathan, a commando killed during the famous hostage rescue operation at Entebbe, Uganda.

Despite the brevity, both politicians were said to have adopted the BCG style of analysis, giving them a certain comfort zone when dealing with each other.

“We can almost speak in shorthand,” Mr. Romney said. “We share common experiences and have a perspective and underpinning which is similar.”

Mr. Netanyahu’s aide was at pains to emphasize that the newspaper article “overstated” the closeness of the relationship – “they weren’t soul mates or anything,” he said. But it is clear the two men feel comfortable with one another.

Mr. Netanyahu acknowledges that he offered advice to Mr. Romney when the Republican was the governor of Massachusetts on how best to shrink the size of government, and that Mr. Romney advised him to whom he should speak on the subject of corporate divestment from Iran.

The two men had breakfast together in Israel last year, and Mr. Netanyahu called Mr. Romney last month when the Israeli was in Washington.

“There was no formal meeting with Romney,” Mr. Netanyahu’s aide explained, “because, at that point, we’d have had to meet with all the Republican candidates.”

Now the two old colleagues are in a position to help each other.

Mr. Netanyahu can use Mr. Romney and his position on Iran to keep pressure on Mr. Obama in the nuclear talks, and Mr. Romney can demonstrate his politically desirable closeness to Israel, by his frequent references to “my friend Benjamin Netanyahu.”

Mr. Netanyahu is very careful to remain officially neutral in the presidential race, declining to answer any questions that might indicate a preference for Mr. Romney.

“It would be a fatal mistake to inject ourselves in the U.S. race,” said his aide.

What about where the two men’s stand on Iran? he is asked.

“I would say this,” the aide carefully replied : “The Prime Minister is very concerned with Iran, as you can see by his comments this week.”

 
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Added: Apr-20-2012 Occurred On: Apr-20-2012
By: MB-UK
In:
World News
Tags: israel, iran, talks, US, presidential, elections, president, obama, nuclear, tensions, silly, joos
Location: Israel (load item map)
Views: 2190 | Comments: 61 | Votes: 0 | Favorites: 0 | Shared: 0 | Updates: 0 | Times used in channels: 2
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  • Comment of user 'mannixxx' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
  • Why has no one locked up this fucking neonazi, Netanyahu the zionist piece of shit.

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (6) | Report

  • Thanks for the post.

    While Obama haters will hate and lovers will love, there's still many sanctions on Iran by many nations. No one is loving Iran but they're trying to use this thing called 'Diplomacy' and it can save lives.

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (3) | Report

  • Comment of user 'nomadlife' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
  • when israel signs the NNPT and allows IAEA and UN inspections. and abides by UN resolutions against it then and only then should they have a say in anything. they cant demand their neighbors get inspected and abide by UN resolutions and they themselves dont.

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (2) | Report

    • @OnlyLiarsBlock If a country threatens another with nuclear destruction, then that country can expect resolutions, inspections, and the threat of war.

      Posted Apr-21-2012 By 

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    • @John Coleman

      http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/talktojazeera/2012/04/2012413151613293582.html

      Israel's Deputy Prime Minister Dan Meridor admitted that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad never said Iran wanted to "wipe Israel off the face of the map" in an interview with Al Jazeera last week.

      So you see in reality Iran is not threatening anyone...but Israel is and Israel possess nuclear weapons and they are threatening to attack Iran and they have refused to sign the NNPT and More..

      Posted Apr-21-2012 By 

      (0) | Report

    • Comment of user 'MB-UK' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
    • @MB-UK

      ridiculous isnt the word. i dont think they have a word to describe the leeching they do. only way we can end our problem is to stop allowing dual citizens to serve in our congress and government, that way we only have ppl who are concerned with this country in political office.

      Posted Apr-21-2012 By 

      (2) | Report

  • Some crazy shit's about to go down over there...

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (2) | Report

  • When Israel feels it's opinion no longer matters is when Israel will careless about the World's opinion and attack.

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (2) | Report

  • Comment of user 'Surfsock' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
  • Vote Ron Paul and the funding stops,.also the funding for Hamas,.also the funding for allot more American titty sucking Countries,.
    don't make sense to fund two Countries that are enemies anyways,.
    America better wise up on this Presidential election,.

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (2) | Report

  • Netanyahu is a douchbag and his days as PM are numbered- the ppl here in Israel wants his head for his brutal economy policies.

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (1) | Report

    • @aydeo
      Like it or not, Bibi is the best we have!
      Extreme radical Leftists like you would rather see some inept fool like Livni in power, and watch Israel be destroyed by our enemies.

      Leiberman is the only realistic option to Bibi....i know you would love that!!

      Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

      (-4) | Report

    • Comment of user 'mannixxx' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
    • @mannixxx
      Well if you are a Muslim extremist you would know.
      Maybe you do know.

      Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

      (0) | Report

    • Comment of user 'mannixxx' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
    • @mannixxx
      No...thats just what the Muslim extremists want you to think!

      Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

      (0) | Report

  • Comment of user 'MB-UK' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
  • This barking dog wants others to do the biting.


    .

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (0) | Report

  • ---> "Mr. Netanyahu is very careful to remain officially neutral in the presidential race, declining to answer any questions that might indicate a preference for Mr. Romney."

    Earlier in the article -----> Mr. Netanyahu is more comfortable with the views on Iran held by Mitt Romney, the leading Republican candidate who is sure to be Mr. Obama’s opponent in this year’s election, but also with Mr. Romney as a person.

    LOOOOL

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (0) | Report

  • He should shut up. He recieves support. It just is _never_ enough.

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (0) | Report

  • Netanyahu if you want war then fucking do it yourself you PUSSS!

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (0) | Report

  • Iran should just address the Jewish Question by wiping them off the face of the Earth!

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (0) | Report

  • The poll would have turned upside down if "to the candidates" had been added at the end.

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (0) | Report

  • Iran and most muzzlim states have said this wish to wipe Israel off the face of the Earth.
    0bama is a Usurper and a muzzlim.
    If he were white, he wouldn't even be in office right now.

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (-1) | Report

  • Bibi is right!
    Obama is trying to throw Israel under the bus!

    Posted Apr-20-2012 By 

    (-2) | Report