Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is slated to address Congress Tuesday, March 3, 2015 regarding his concerns over the so-called “P5 (i.e., the U.S., Russia, China, France, and Britain) +1 (Germany)” nuclear negotiations with Iran.
Tuesday, February 24, 2015, a week before Netanyahu’s scheduled appearance� which is clearly unwelcome by the Obama Administration� Susan Rice, the Administration’s national security adviser, told PBS’s Charlie Rose, bluntly:
I think it’s [Netanyahu’s address] destructive of the fabric of the [U.S.-Israel] relationship.
Subsequently, Israel National News (on March 1, 2015) repeated unconfirmed allegations from a Kuwaiti newspaper that President Obama personally thwarted a planned Israeli strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities in 2014, threatening to shoot down Israeli jets before they reached their Iranian targets. By Sunday evening (3/1/15), in a statement issued to The Washington Times, a senior Obama Administration official claimed the Kuwaiti report was “totally false.”
Pair this frank denial of the Kuwaiti story with Ms. Rice’s icy, hostile remark, and it reflects an Obama administration thoroughly, even vindictively dismissive of the Israeli Prime Minister’s grave, rational apprehensions. Mr. Netanyahu appropriately rejects the current negotiations process which abets, and de facto legitimizes, Iran’s nuclear aspirations, under the guise of regulated uranium enrichment for promised non-military uses, while ignoring the Islamic Republic’s long range ballistic missile development, and nuclear weaponization programs. Speaking at Bar Ilan University, on February 9, 2015, Netanyahu offered a plaintive rationale for his Congressional address in early March, highlighting the shared existential threat to Israel, and the U.S:
The true question is whether Iran will have nuclear bombs to implement its intention to destroy the State of Israel. That is something we will not allow. This is not a political issue either in Israel or the U.S. This is an existential issue.
Referencing the disturbing findings of a confidential IAEA report exposed by the New York Times on February 20, 2015 (discussed below), Netanyahu later expressed his “astonishment” that the P5 +1 negotiations had not been abandoned altogether:
Not only are they continuing, there is an increased effort to reach a nuclear agreement in the coming days and weeks. Therefore, the coming month is critical for the nuclear talks between Iran and the major powers because a framework agreement is liable to be signed that will allow Iran to develop the nuclear capabilities that threaten our existence.