Israel

Bibi, King Maker, Double Agent, Politician, Fool or some combination?


I am afraid that I have to add my voice to the discussion about the speech or should I say, performance of Bibi Netanyahu at the Congress. There was so much discussion leading up to this event about the purpose that the various parties had in creating this situation. I am not going to repeat all of that, but I will assume you hear a great deal about it.

Personally I had a lot of difficulties trying to figure out what was going on. Bibi said that he was giving his speech to have an impact on the negotiations with Iran, but it was hard to see how this would have an impact. The negotiations are being lead on the American side by the very people, he pissed off by accepting the invitation to address a joint session of Congress from the Well of the House which was extended by John Boehner, the Speaker of the House. If Bibi wanted to influence Congress he could have spoken to them privately. If he wanted to influence the American People (like their opinion matters), he could have found a different venue for a major speech and then followed up with interviews on the various Cable Networks.

He said he had to make his speech before a deal was done, but that does not make a lot of sense. Congress will have no role prior to the deal being signed by the Administration. To have a role, they would have to pass legislation which they appear to be very bad at. They would need 60 votes in the Senate and then face a veto by Obama so they would actually need 66 votes in the Senate which is something I don’t think could easily happen. It would have been much better if Bibi spoke to Congress after a deal was signed and asked them to find some way to block it assuming it was really the bad deal he projects.

That leaves the possibility that he did this for political purposes given that the Israeli election is just two weeks away. This is certainly possible and I can imagine this influenced the timetable. But I find it hard to believe that Bibi used a silver bullet for this purpose. But I am not really sure.

So what could be the other reasons? I imaged a behind the scenes deal between Netanyahu and the Republicans. The Republicans asked Netanyahu to speak and said that they would make every effort to block the Obama’s deal if he did. But that still does not make sense to me for the reasons I already mentioned with respect to passing veto proof legislation.

So then I realized what happened. The deal is actually between Obama, Republican, Iran and Israel. The leaks about some of the aspects of the deal, like it being limited to just ten years, are being done on purpose. That way, the real deal will be seen as much better than what was imagined and perhaps seen as good deal. And who can bless such a deal? You got it, Bibi. Bibi will look strong. Boehner and the Republicans will look strong for inviting Bibi and Obama will look, well, stronger in that he got a deal done with Iran. Bibi will say he can go along with the agreement. The Republicans will go along with the agreement claiming that their action in inviting Bibi is responsible for the improvements. The Iranians will also feel good realizing the Americans are not so much different than they are (duplicitous).

9 thoughts on “Bibi, King Maker, Double Agent, Politician, Fool or some combination?

  1. Dear Avram, if this is the deal then what is the gain for the parties involved? Why Obama needs it if the Senate is weak on the legislation against?
    Also, here in Israel it is much speculated that the hidden agenda has nothing to do with the politics but rather by Sheldon Adelson’s wish to poke Obama as much as possible. Since Adelson is Netanyahu biggest sponsor, it was a request Bibi couldn’t refuse, combining it with a short term election thinking.

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    • As I said, Obama wants a deal at almost any cost. Netanyahu would like a better deal and show that he is a king maker. The Republicans want to stick it to Obama but can’t get enough votes to really do it. Iran just wants to get rid of the sanctions and show that they are strong in the process. I don’t think Adelson will be giving Bibi more support than he already does because of this.

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  2. This article may be interesting for you, it cites some Israeli news about Netanyahu, showcasing some of his absurd lies in the last years. There is also some interesting news about Iran in that article:
    https://100wordz.wordpress.com/2015/03/03/christian-science-monitor-israeli-sources-on-netanyahus-track-record-of-lies-and-war-mongering/

    My other link is about why NoDeal is the by far worst option:
    https://100wordz.wordpress.com/2015/03/03/sanctions-cannot-stop-the-iranian-nuclear-program-only-a-deal-can/

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    • Thank your for you thoughtful comments and the links. I am not a support of Netanyahu and agrees that he distorts if not lies about certain things. I do believe he really does as I do, believe that Iran with a nuclear weapon is an existential threat to Israel which would have grave consequences for Israel and he is doing what he thinks is best for the country even if he is misguided in many cases. I use to be a supporter of Obama but because of a number of things and not only foreign policy, I have lost a lot of respect for him.

      I have been to Iran many times pre the overthrow of the Shah. It is a beautiful country with wonderful people. I wish I will have an opportunity to visit again. Sadly, it is run by people that have their own warped view of the world and a strong desire to stay in power even at great cost to their country. Frankly, what is the difference between Netanyahu and the leader of Iran?

      I am not sure that no deal is the worse option. We will first have to see what kind of deal is proposed. I will hold off having an opinion until I know the facts. But I would not want a deal that only lasted ten years and leaves Iran with a break out period of just a year.

      Finally, I do not agree with your discretion of Ynews as a right wing news organization. It is pretty close to the middle with respect to Israel.

      Thanks again.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you very much for your detailed comment. I apologize for saying that ynet is right wing. I just browsed the site and it appeared to me like this, but I am not a regular reader to do an accurate judgement.
        As you said Iran is run by bad people with “a strong desire to stay in power even at great cost to their country”.
        I agree fully with your statement, but it also says these people are interested in power and in the wealth (resources) of Iran. They are not suicidal otherwise they would not collect billions of money.
        http://theotheriran.com/2014/10/19/irans-president-has-more-cabinet-members-with-ph-d-degrees-from-u-s-universities-than-barack-obama-does/
        Even Israeli General Benny Gantz sees it like that:
        http://edition.cnn.com/2012/04/25/world/meast/israel-iran/
        I am happy that you have been in Iran, and know the people of Iran. As you have surely found out Iranians have nothing against Jewish people:
        http://theotheriran.com/tag/jews/

        A lot of Iranians actually see Israel as Iran’s natural ally in the region.
        Last but not least Iran is shown as very militarisitic, but it is actually only trying to deter the US and Israel. Iran is not one of the top weapon importers (Saudi Arabia is), and it is no match for Israel:
        http://www.juancole.com/2012/02/israel-iran-military-comparison.html

        I am pretty much sure that the deal in its current form is good:
        Now Iran has not too much to lose, it is isolated and suffering under sanctions. In 10 years it is different, Iran has experienced 10 years without sanctions, has built business relationships with the west. Iran would not risk to lose all that.
        Also the controls (inspections) will not end after 10 years, they would go on, Iran will only gradually be given more freedom.
        After all the Iranian leaders are after wealth, the better the Iranian economy is the more they can collect. After making the experience with sanctions they will never want to go back and ruin their own income.

        Thank you and peace for all of us.

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  3. The devil is always in the details. I personally believe that the Administration and Dems were just as responsible for making this about politics as the Republicans and/or Bibi. I think David Suissa had an interesting take here: http://www.jewishjournal.com/david_suissa/article/on_iran_we_must_listen_more_carefully_to_obamas_promise

    If one believes that Iran is entitled to have a nuke, than all of this is moot. But if its agreed that Iran should not be allowed to get a nuclear bomb (as both Obama and Netanyahu have repeatedly stated,) than its seems highly risky to let them get 9/10ths of the way there; trying to stop them at that point would likely cause way more bloodshed than increasing sanctions now (instead of lowering them during this negotiation period.) Look at North Korea. No one can help the totally oppressed N.Koreans now, because of those nukes. The world just ignores them.

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    • Ann, I guess the question that is reasonable to ask is what is the alternative. I would be interested in hearing your views on the actions that the USA can take and please consider that it is doubtful that Europe would support an extension or increase in sanctions against Iran.
      I think the best thing that can be done is to have this agreement as long as possible and use the time and energy to find an effective means to take out the current Iranian leadership. Just think about the the weapons of the future. Certainly Israel is capable of developing a micro drone that can fly up the nostril of the leader of Iran and blow out his brains.

      The agreement may also create the environment where Israel, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Egypt can actually work together. There is more and more of that going on.

      What a complicated world we live in.

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