Exactly as I predicted when I reported on the Obama leak on the strike on Hezb’Allah’s military missile base, Israel is stunned by the betrayal by the Obama administration. The target was missiles and related equipment that were being transferred to the jihad terror group Hezb’Allah. These were Russian missiles, and I expect that the world’s most powerful person (according to Forbes), Vladimir Putin, might want to retaliate against Israel. More of Obama’s ugly flair for betrayal and war. Nice work, Obama.
But the US leaks “are pushing Assad closer to the point where he can’t swallow these attacks, and will respond.” This in turn would inevitably draw further Israeli action, Roni Daniel posited, and added bitterly: “Then perhaps the US will clap its hands because it will have started a very major flare-up.”
When it comes to Israel, the Obama administration leaks like a sieve, here and here too. Diarrhea of the mouth is epidemic in an administration that severely punishes leakers, which would be funny if it weren’t so deadly.
Exactly as I warned in my book The Post American Presidency: The Obama Administration’s War on America, an indispensible ally is reeling from being stabbed in the back. One of many allies betrayed by Obama (Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Honduras, Israel, Poland, the Czech Republic, India, Taiwan, et al).
Mind you, this comes from an administration that threatens journalists who criticize Obama and spies on them. And according to Lara Logan of 60 Minutes on the Benghazi cover-up, there was “an extraordinary amount of pressure on the people involved not to talk. And an extraordinary amount of pressure on anyone in the government–the military side, the political side–not to say anything outside of official channels. I mean, to the point where people that we’ve known for years would call people who were no longer in their positions, and they would call someone else that we knew, and messages would be delivered like that because there couldn’t be any trail linking you directly to our story. The administration is cracking down so hard on leakers: no one wants to put anything in writing, everybody is scared to talk over the phone, people want to meet in person–all of that makes it that much harder to investigate anything.”
Jerusalem considers administration’s confirmation of Israeli air attack on missile stores to be ‘scandalous’; TV analyst warns US risks starting ‘major flare-up’
Israel is fuming with the White House for confirming that it was the Israeli Air Force that struck a military base near the Syrian port city of Latakia on Wednesday, hitting weaponry that was set to be transferred to Hezbollah.
Israel has not acknowledged carrying out the strike, one of half a dozen such attacks widely ascribed to Israel in recent months, but an Obama administration official told CNN on Thursday that Israeli warplanes had indeed attacked the Syrian base, and that the target was “missiles and related equipment” set for delivery to Hezbollah in Lebanon.
Israel’s Channel 10 TV on Friday night quoted Israeli officials branding the American leak as “scandalous.” For Israel’s ally to be acting in this way was “unthinkable,” the officials were quoted as saying.
A second TV report, on Israel’s Channel 2, said the leak “came directly from the White House,” and noted that “this is not the first time” that the administration has compromised Israel by leaking information on such Israeli Air Force raids on Syrian targets.
It said some previous leaks were believed to have come from the Pentagon, and that consideration had been given at one point to establishing a panel to investigate the sources.
Channel 2′s military analyst, Roni Daniel, said the Obama administration’s behavior in leaking the information was unfathomable.
Daniel noted that by keeping silent on whether it carried out such attacks, Israel was maintaining plausible deniability, so that Syria’s President Bashar Assad did not feel pressured to respond to the attacks.
But the US leaks “are pushing Assad closer to the point where he can’t swallow these attacks, and will respond.” This in turn would inevitably draw further Israeli action, Daniel posited, and added bitterly: “Then perhaps the US will clap its hands because it will have started a very major flare-up.”
Channel 2 speculated that the US might have leaked word of Israel’s attack as a warning to Israel to desist from such actions. Alternately, it might be seeking to signal that it was part of the tough policy designed to prevent a flow of sophisticated weaponry to Assad. But these and other possible explanations simply didn’t justify the leak, which the TV report described as “illogical” and “foolish.”
Jerusalem’s reported anger with the White House over the leak coincided with efforts by the Administration to assure Israel that it is holding to a tough line on Syria and in the effort to thwart Iran’s nuclear program, and is maintaining its robust military partnership with Israel.
On Thursday, the US ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power, reiterated America’s commitment to thwarting Iranian nuclear weapons ambitions. “Let me be absolutely clear: President Obama is determined to ensure that the Islamic Republic does not acquire a nuclear weapon,” Power said at the Anti-Defamation League’s centennial conference held Thursday in a Manhattan hotel. Addressing the subject of nuclear negotiations with Iran, she said the Obama administration considers a bad deal worse than no deal and that the administration will not accept a bad deal.
Later Thursday, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel told the same gathering that the US is testing Iran’s diplomatic intentions but remains “clear-eyed” on Iran’s role as a state-sponsor of terror and exporter of extremism.
Hagel also announced that the US will fast-track delivery of six advanced Osprey helicopter-airplanes to Israel. “Israel will get six V-22s out of the next order to go on the assembly line, and they will be compatible with other [Israeli defense] capabilities,” Hagel said, anticipating delivery in two years’ time. NBC News said Israel requested that the delivery of the Ospreys be expedited because of threats from Iran and Syria.
Hagel added that “the Israeli and American defense relationship is stronger than ever, and it will continue to strengthen.”
Nonetheless, the ADL’s national director Abraham Foxman, who has close ties to the Israeli leadership, told the conference that American wariness of foreign military involvement is making it seem “weak and retreating.” In unusually bitter comments, Foxman declared that, “The combination of America’s unsatisfactory involvement in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, together with the financial crisis at home, have generated a broader opposition to American military involvement overseas.”
Citing among other things the recent congressional resistance to authorizing a strike on Syria, Foxman said: “America is being seen as weak and etreating… The world looks at our choices, looks at our public opinion polls, looks at congressional reactions, looks at the paralysis in Washington on budgeting matters and wonders.”
The perception of weakness could harm US efforts to get Iran to end its nuclear push, Foxman warned. “I hope that we get our act together.”
Israel has been accused of striking Syrian sites several times in the recent past, including in January and May of this year.