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Showing Results 181-200 of 534 for Nuclear
January 19, 2013

Israel's Perplexed Voters

 The Israeli election campaign has entered the home stretch with all the polls indicating that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's Likud-Beiteinu party will win more seats than other. As things stand, Netanyahu could form a new coalition government with Naftali Bennett's Jewish Home party and the ultra-orthodox parties that could command a 63 seat majority in the 120 member Knesset. However analyst David Essing reports that the Left and Centrist parties contend there are as twenty seats that could be decided by floating voters; this means there is still a chance of closing the gap and forging a blocking majority. In any case, state President Shimon Peres will consult with all the parties that win seats and ask them whom they support for prime minister. Peres will then decide which leader has the best chance of forming a new coalition and authorize him or her to commence negotiations on building a coalition that will command a 61 seat majority in the Knesset.

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January 11, 2013

Chuck Hagel & Shimon Peres

 In the midst of Israel's current election campaign, two developments have caught the headlines in Israel. First, U.S. President Barack Obama's selecting of Chuck Hagel as the new U.S. Secretary of Defense and the New York Times interview with Israel's President Shimon Peres have caught the headlines in Israel. 

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December 03, 2012

Bibi Bungles Big Time!

 'Keep your eye on the ball!' This is one of Prime Minister Netanyahu's adages for smart politics. But Bibi has failed to follow his own advice in his ongoing confrontation, not only with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, but also with the U.S. and nearly all the international community. Netanyahu's conduct of the Palestinian issue has been abysmal – so much so that although Abbas has refused to negotiate, it is Israel that is taking all the blame! This at a time that Israel is counting on vital international support for blocking Iran's nuclear weapons program that Netanyahu warned will soon come to a head. Analyst David Essing is of the view the current furor could affect the outcome of Israel's general election on January 22nd.

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November 27, 2012

Likud Swings Right –Livni Enters & Barak Exits

While Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu portrayed the new Likud list as 'a strong young national team', Labor's Shelly Yachimovich has blasted it as 'an extreme Right wing party with no social agenda'.

Defense Minister Ehud Barak probably left political life after his successful contribution to the recent Gaza operation before his party's poor showing in upcoming election. But he has also left his options open for a possible Netanyahu offer to return as defense minister if he forms the next government.

Tzipi Livni has entered the campaign claiming only she can attract moderate Likud supporters who are turned off by the new Likud ticket.

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November 26, 2012

Israel & Gaza - 'Quiet for Quiet'

 After the intense eight-day conflict both sides claim victory with Israel pledging that 'quiet will be met with quiet'. However Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and his government have been facing criticism for 'not finishing the job' and ordering a ground operation into Gaza to stop the repeated rocketing of Israeli civilians. Not only the Israeli residents in the south who have been terrorized for years from Gaza but also many of the IDF reserve soldiers mobilized for a ground attack, blamed Netanyahu for not going all the way. However analyst David Essing is of the view that Netanyahu along with Defense Minister Ehud Barak and Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman succeeded in blending military force with diplomacy in furthering Israel's national interest at this time.   

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November 15, 2012

Gaza-Israel and the Bigger Middle East Picture

 Regional implications: First, Israel will not allow Egypt's President Mohammed Morsi to hold Israeli peace treaty as ransom for Gaza rocketing of Israel. Second, after rise of Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Hamas felt it could cross Israel's red line with impunity. Analyst David Essing is of the view that Israel will also react with the necessary force, if Iran crosses Israel's nuclear red line this spring.

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November 10, 2012

Isracast Weekend Report: Now to Israel's Election Campaign!

 Will Barack Obama now retaliate against Israel for Bibi Netanyahu's betting on Mitt Romney? Netanyahu's rivals are attacking the Prime Minister for acting irresponsibly by showing his preference for the defeated Republican candidate. Although Netanyahu bet and he bet wrong, the issue is unlikely to be a game-changer in Israel's election campaign that has yet to move into top gear for January 22. First Likud and labor must hold their primaries for the party list of candidates and Shimon Peres, Ehud Olmert and Tzipi Livni must decide once and for all whether to throw their hats into the ring. Meanwhile Netanyahu is trying vigorously to repair some of his damaged bridges with Obama with statements like: "I will continue to work with President Obama to protect the security interests of Israeli citizens". And the PM stressed:"The strategic alliance between Israel and the U.S. is stronger than ever'. (In all fairness it should be said that the much maligned Defense Minister Ehud Barak deserves most of the credit for the 'unprecedented' military collaboration between the two countries. Netanyahu often dispatched Barak on special missions to Washington to smooth over the not infrequent tiffs with the White House and keep relations on the rails with the Pentagon. But the overbearing Barak is often his own worst enemy when it comes to Israeli politics and his Independence party might not win even one seat in the election).

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October 27, 2012

Why Netanyahu Did It!

 Why has Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu shocked Israel by running on the same ticket with Avigdor Lieberman, probably the most controversial Right-wing politician in the country? And how will this surprising partnership affect the general election slated for January 22. Netanyahu and Lieberman are selling their deal as a means to improve 'governance and political stability' at a time the state is facing the Iranian nuclear threat and economic challenges. However analyst David Essing is of the view that Netanyahu studied recent opinion polls and was alarmed by what he saw.

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October 25, 2012

Iran, Sudan, Gaza and Israel

 The Israeli-Gaza border: Hundreds of thousands of Israeli civilians have come out of their bomb shelters this morning after being bombarded by some eighty rockets and mortars. Kids went back to school and their parents left for work. But for how long? During the flare-up, Israeli aircraft and tanks targeted the Palestinian rocket teams. Amid the cross border fireworks, a mysterious explosion demolished a munitions plant in Sudan that was supplying weapons to the Palestinians. Khartoum pointed the finger at Israel - four Israeli jets had bombed the site. Jerusalem did not confirm or deny. Analyst David Essing concludes there are more questions than answers after the latest conflagration.

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October 21, 2012

Iran Prefers Obama to Romney

 The latest signal from Iran, as reported by the New York Times, should not come as any surprise. For years the masters of diplomatic deception have always unveiled some new subterfuge to gain time for moving closer to nuclear weapons. This time it's an offer of one-on-one talks with the U.S. and, without saying as much, the implied partner is Barack Obama and not Mitt Romney.

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October 13, 2012

Current Israeli Approach to Iran

 What is the current thinking in the Israeli cabinet about the Iranian nuclear threat? Moshe Yaalon, a prominent Likud cabinet minister who could be the next defense minister after the upcoming Israeli election, has presented an inside look. At a public gathering, Yaalon articulated different nuances than those expressed by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. Analyst David Essing stresses that any decision to attack Iran's nuclear sites would have to be authorized by a cabinet forum.

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October 09, 2012

Early Israeli Election & Iran

 Israeli voters are going to an early election, probably some time in February. In a statement to the nation, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu blamed his coalition partners for refusing to put their party interest above the national interest - they had refused to agree on drafting a responsible state budget. Netanyahu's decision had been widely expected and came as no surprise to the Israeli people. IsraCast analyst David Essing says the PM's announcement has implications for the current crisis with Iran - it is highly improbable that Netanyahu would press for an Israeli attack on Iran's nuclear target's during an Israeli election campaign.

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September 30, 2012

Netanyahu - Churchill or Cassandra?

Was this Prime Minister Netanyahu's last plea to the UN before Israel implements its last resort to prevent Iran from building its first atomic bombs? Barring unforeseen developments, Netanyahu has warned the world that it has until next spring or summer at the most. Israel's leader made his case and now it was now up to the free world's leader the next U.S. President, be it Obama or Mitt Romney. IsraCast Analyst David Essing has the impression that Netanyahu has had his say and will now wait out the winter as the nuclear clock keeps ticking.

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September 25, 2012

Iran, Netanyahu & Roosevelt's 'Poised Rattlesnake'

 What is at the core of the widening differences between U.S. President Barack Obama and Israel's Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu in the Iranian nuclear crisis? The bad blood has apparently influenced Obama even to refrain from meeting Netanyahu during his visit to the U.S. for the current UN General Assembly session. In an interview with the Israeli 'Yisrael Today', Defense Minister Ehud Barak discussed how Jerusalem and Washington take a different view of the evolving situation. IsraCast analyst David Essing says it is not simply a matter of personality but of geopolitical perspective.

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September 18, 2012

More 'Dirty Tricks' For Iran

 If a new round of clandestine operations are in the works for Iran's nuclear weapons facilities they will have to be more severe than they have been until now. The obvious fact is the Iranian centrifuges are still spinning out enriched uranium and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has warned the Iranians could be ready to break out for 90% weapons grade in another six or seven months. U.S. Defense Secretary estimates another year or so, unless Iran is operating more secret installations such as Fordo.

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September 13, 2012

Dark Side of 'Arab Spring'

 The US did probably more than any other country to aid the Libyan people in toppling their cruel dictator Col. Gadaffi. How egregious that the young American Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three of his body-guards were killed in the attack by Muslim fanatics on the US consulate in Benghazi. In Cairo, more Islamist fanatics stormed the US embassy tearing down the Stars and Stripes and raising a black Islamic flag. Analyst David Essing is of the view that the atrocity in Tripoli and the rampage in Cairo again illustrates how extreme Islamists may be hijacking the hope that democracy will replace dictatorship in several Muslim countries.

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September 09, 2012

Canada's Diplomatic Drubbing Of Iran

 Is the world finally waking up to the danger posed by a nuclear armed Iran? Ottawa, which has always had troubled ties with the Islamist Republic of Iran, has acted decisively by suspending diplomatic relations with Tehran. Foreign Affairs Minister Douglas Baird pulled no punches in stating: "Canada views the government of Iran as the most significant threat to global peace and security in the world today". However in Jerusalem, analyst David Essing is of the view that Israel deeply appreciates Canada's standing up to Iran but there is also a sense the West may have already missed the boat.

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September 05, 2012

Obama's Red Lines On Iran?

 The Israeli intelligence services are at odds over Iran – that was leaked to Yediot Ahronot by a participant at a closed door session of Israel's security cabinet. The meeting on Sept.5 has sparked a firestorm after Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu cancelled a second meeting on Sept 6th. The intelligence services are comprised of the IDF Intelligence Branch, the Mossad foreign intelligence service and the Shabak, the internal intelligence service. Netanyahu told the ministers that the leak was intolerable. Some public officials have called for all the participants to take a lie-detector test. Analyst David Essing says the leak from the classified session on such a delicate issue highlights the public firestorm in Israel over whether to launch a military strike against Iran's military weapons sites. More it comes shortly before Netanyahu is expected to meet U.S. President Barack Obama for what could be a crucial meeting during the upcoming session of the UN Security Council.

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September 01, 2012

Israel Ponders Iran's Nuclear Gallop & U.S. Restraint

 The IAEA issues another damning report on Iran's march to the A-Bomb, Iran hosts over 120 'non-aligned' countries in Tehran with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon serving as the guest of honor and America's top soldier, Gen. Martin Dempsey, declares: 'I don't want to be complicit if they (Israelis) decide to do it'. And then to top it all off, the Yediot Ahronot newspaper carried a banner headline: 'Fireworks With U.S. Ambassador Dan Shapiro After Netanyahu Accuses Obama of Caving In To Iran'. It was not a good week for Israel in its campaign to prevent Iran from going nuclear.

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August 29, 2012

Israel's Landscape of Strategic Threats

 With Iran closing in on nuclear weapons and the 'Arab Spring' in high gear, the stark IDF intelligence estimate comes as no surprise. The outlook for 2013 is for a more unstable and Islamist Middle East and a higher security threat to Israel. IDF Intelligence Commander, Maj.Gen. Aviv Kochavi has briefed the IDF high command and will also present it to the full cabinet. The Yisrael Hayom newspaper has disclosed some details of the classified document that will serve as as Israel's security assessment for 2013.

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