JERUSALEM (Reuters) – President Barack Obama visits Israel next week at the onset of spring – the “red line” previously drawn by his host, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, to trigger an attack on Iran’s nuclear sites.
But an Israeli-Iranian war, Washington’s nightmare as it tries to scale back defense commitments abroad and avoid a draining Gulf oil crisis, does not appear trip-wire imminent.
REVIVIM, Israel (Reuters) – Wary of a spillover from the conflict in Syria, Israel is preparing to take on the Hezbollah militia that it suspects is getting advanced weapons from a distracted Damascus.
The Jewish state believes the Lebanese Shi’ite guerrillas also stand ready to retaliate if it carries out long-threatened strikes on the nuclear sites of Iran, another Hezbollah patron.
JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Renewed international efforts to negotiate curbs on Iran’s disputed nuclear program have backfired by giving it more time to work on building a bomb, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday.
His remarks on the inconclusive February 26-27 meeting between Iran and six world powers signaled impatience by Israel, which has threatened to launch preemptive war on its arch-foe, possibly in the coming months, if it deems diplomacy a dead end.
JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Deadlocked talks with potential coalition partners have forced Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to seek more time to build a new government and avert a possible snap election, officials said on Friday.
They said Netanyahu would meet President Shimon Peres on Saturday to ask for a two-week extension after his right-wing party, the narrow victor in Israel’s January 22 ballot, exhausted the standard four weeks allotted to build a coalition.
EER, West Bank (Reuters) – Masked Palestinian gunmen fired in the air on Monday as thousands marched at the West Bank funeral of a prisoner whose death in an Israeli jail has raised fears in Israel of a new uprising.
Arafat Jaradat’s death on Saturday and a hunger strike by four other Palestinian inmates have raised tension in the occupied territory after repeated clashes between stone-throwers and Israeli soldiers in recent days.
JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel carried out a successful test of its upgraded Arrow interceptor system on Monday, which is designed to destroy in space the kind of missiles held by Syria and Iran, the Israeli Defense Ministry said.
The U.S.-backed Arrow III system deploys “kamikaze” satellites that target ballistic missiles above the earth’s atmosphere, hitting them high enough to allow for any non-conventional warheads to disintegrate safely.
JERUSALEM (Reuters) – An Oscar-nominated Israeli documentary has brought little joy to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government, the focus of the film’s criticism of Israel’s policy toward the Palestinians.
Featuring searingly confessional interviews with six former chiefs of the shadowy security service Shin Bet, “The Gatekeepers” portrays the 46-year-old West Bank occupation and Jewish ultranationalism as threats to Israel’s survival.
JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel denied on Tuesday that an Australian immigrant who committed suicide in 2010 while jailed for security offences had spied for his native country.
The statement by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office, which oversees Israel’s intelligence services, was the first to confirm the affair concerned Ben Zygier, who was named in an Australian TV expose last week.
JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel released details on Tuesday about the 2010 jailhouse suicide of an Australian immigrant reported to have been a disgraced Mossad spy, saying he hanged himself in his cell and no foul play was involved.
The affair was kept under wraps until it emerged last week with an Australian television expose that identified the dead man as 34-year-old Ben Zygier, a likely Israeli foreign intelligence recruit held for suspected security offences.
JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israeli lawmakers announced plans on Sunday to investigate the 2010 jailhouse death of a reported Australian immigrant recruit to the Mossad spy agency.
The statement by Parliament’s Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee followed calls by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at a cabinet meeting to dim a growing media spotlight on the affair he saw as at risk of jeopardizing national security.