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Cablegate: Israel Media Reaction

VZCZCXYZ0004
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHTV #3475/01 3410911
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 070911Z DEC 07
FM AMEMBASSY TEL AVIV
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4504
RHEHAAA/WHITE HOUSE WASHDC PRIORITY
RHEHNSC/WHITE HOUSE NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEAHQA/HQ USAF WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RUEADWD/DA WASHDC PRIORITY
RHMFIUU/CNO WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEHAD/AMEMBASSY ABU DHABI PRIORITY 3119
RUEHAS/AMEMBASSY ALGIERS PRIORITY 9786
RUEHAM/AMEMBASSY AMMAN PRIORITY 3280
RUEHAK/AMEMBASSY ANKARA PRIORITY 3892
RUEHLB/AMEMBASSY BEIRUT PRIORITY 3139
RUEHEG/AMEMBASSY CAIRO PRIORITY 1240
RUEHDM/AMEMBASSY DAMASCUS PRIORITY 3871
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON PRIORITY 0725
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS PRIORITY 1197
RUEHRB/AMEMBASSY RABAT PRIORITY 7767
RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME PRIORITY 5230
RUEHRH/AMEMBASSY RIYADH PRIORITY 0147
RUEHTU/AMEMBASSY TUNIS PRIORITY 4281
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK PRIORITY 6221
RUEHJM/AMCONSUL JERUSALEM PRIORITY 8570
RHMFISS/CDR USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL PRIORITY
RHMFISS/COMSOCEUR VAIHINGEN GE PRIORITY
RHMFIUU/COMSIXTHFLT PRIORITY

UNCLAS TEL AVIV 003475

SIPDIS

STATE FOR NEA, NEA/IPA, NEA/PPD

WHITE HOUSE FOR PRESS OFFICE, SIT ROOM
NSC FOR NEA STAFF

SECDEF WASHDC FOR USDP/ASD-PA/ASD-ISA
HQ USAF FOR XOXX
DA WASHDC FOR SASA
JOINT STAFF WASHDC FOR PA
CDR USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL FOR POLAD/USIA ADVISOR
COMSOCEUR VAIHINGEN GE FOR PAO/POLAD
COMSIXTHFLT FOR 019

JERUSALEM ALSO ICD
LONDON ALSO FOR HKANONA AND POL
PARIS ALSO FOR POL
ROME FOR MFO

SIPDIS
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OPRC KMDR IS

SUBJECT: ISRAEL MEDIA REACTION


--------------------------------
SUBJECTS COVERED IN THIS REPORT:
--------------------------------

1. Iran

2. Egypt

-------------------------
Key Stories in the Media:
-------------------------

PLEASE NOTE: Only block quotes, December 7, 2007

--------
1. Iran:
--------

Summary:
--------

Senior columnist Yoel Marcus wrote in the independent, left-leaning
Ha'aretz: "Olmert didn't start off well.... But he is striving to
leave his mark as a prime minister with a peace agenda. And for
that, he deserves some support and credit."

Diplomatic correspondent Aluf Benn and Washington correspondent
Shmuel Rosner wrote in Ha'aretz: "And it is also going to be a lot
harder for the Americans to persuade Israel, which has been left
isolated on the Iranian front, to take security risks vis-a-vis the
Palestinians and also perhaps with respect to the Syrians."

Senior diplomatic correspondent Ben Caspit wrote in the popular,
pluralist Maariv: "Note your calendar the month of January 2009, the
month when George Bush will be replaced. Until then, one can still
hope for an American move. But in January, 13 months from now, it's
the end. Israel will have to take its own crucial decision."

Senior commentator Nahum Barnea wrote in the mass-circulation,
pluralist Yediot Aharonot: "Even if Bush wasn't happy with the
reports conclusions, he couldn't do much about it. When all of the
US intelligence branches consolidate a united stance, the president,
even if he is a popular one, has to give up."

Political parties correspondent Sima Kadmon wrote in Yediot
Aharonot: "If it wasn't so sad, it was probably funny. Instead of
leaving the shelters, taking a big breath of fresh air and being
happy that the Iranian threat got postponed at least for a few
years, there is an atmosphere of disappointment."

Block Quotes:
-------------

I. "He Deserves Some Credit"

Senior columnist Yoel Marcus wrote in the independent, left-leaning
Ha'aretz (12/07): "Olmert didn't start off well. But aside from the
fiasco of the Second Lebanon War and a series of criminal probes
from his past dangling over him, he has not made any major blunder.
As an arrogant hedonist, with his cigar and his Breitling watch,
hobnobbing with the world's rich and famous, he is easy to badmouth.
But he is striving to leave his mark as a prime minister with a
peace agenda. And for that, he deserves some support and credit."

II. "Itamar in return for Natanz"

Diplomatic correspondent Aluf Benn and Washington correspondent
Shmuel Rosner wrote in the independent, left leaning Ha'aretz
(12/7): "It is difficult to understate the importance of the blow
that landed on Olmert and his policy this week [with the publication
of the U.S. intelligence report regarding Iran]. 'A terror attack
by intelligence,' is what one Israeli defense source called it. If
Olmert wanted to play the Iranian card and hazard the chance that
the U.S. would destroy the nuclear installations in order to enlist
support for another withdrawal in the West Bank -- 'Itamar in return
for Natanz' -- he has lost this card. And it is also going to be a
lot harder for the Americans to persuade Israel, which has been left
isolated on the Iranian front, to take security risks vis-a-vis the
Palestinians and also perhaps with respect to the Syrians."

III. "Alone Facing Ahmadinejad"

Senior diplomatic correspondent Ben Caspit wrote in the popular,
pluralist Maariv (12/07): "The Israeli government is announcing in
dismay: the Iranian bomb has died.... Israeli officials know that
the American national intelligence estimation that was published
this week creates a new, harsh reality: from now on, its only us and
them. Iran and Israel. Whoever counts on the world to intervene and
prevent Iran from becoming nuclear, will wait a long time.... Note
your calendar the month of January 2009, the month when George Bush
will be replaced. Until then, one can still hope for an American
move. But in January, 13 months from now, it's the end. Israel will
have to take its own crucial decision. Is it taking the chance and
allowing Iran to get closer or to pass the point of no return to a
nuclear bomb, or is it becoming the master of its own fate."

IV. "The Persian Shock"

Senior commentator Nahum Barnea wrote in the mass-circulation,
pluralist Yediot Aharonot (12/07): "And the Americans were happy too
[with the intelligence report regarding Iran]. Their president may
have a military option but they don't. Not after Iraq. They heard
from the intelligence chiefs what they wanted to hear. At least
half of them are willing to live with a nuclear Iran.... Even if
Bush wasn't happy with the reports conclusions, he couldn't do much
about it. When all of the US intelligence branches consolidate a
united stance, the president, even if he is a popular one, has to
give up."

V. "Political Damage"

Political parties correspondent Sima Kadmon wrote in the
mass-circulation, pluralist Yediot Aharonot (12/07): "When it seemed
that everything is working out in favor of Prime Minister Olmert --
Annapolis, the closure of the Leumi Bank case, the renaissance in
the relations with Bark and the proof of the stability of his
coalition -- came the report [the US intelligence report].... If it
wasn't so sad, it was probably funny. Instead of leaving the
shelters, taking a big breath of fresh air and being happy that the
Iranian threat got postponed at least for a few years, there is an
atmosphere of disappointment.... Security and diplomatic officials
did their utmost to disprove the report.... but there is a pure
political interest in all of this. The Iranian threat gave jobs to
many politicians. It was the glue of different elements in the
coalition.... The year 2008 that was supposed to be a year of harsh
decisions is becoming more and more a year without excitements. We
expected to see this year a US action or at least an Israeli action
against the Iranian nuclear reactor. And here the negotiations with
the Palestinians are to begin in a week, the tension with Syria
faded away, the operation in Gaza is lingering. So its no wonder
that people in Olmert's office, when calculating the political
damage against the benefits, captivate the American report is as
damaging. After all, if there was no Iranian threat, someone had to
invent it."

---------
2. Egypt:
---------

Summary:
--------

The conservative, independent Jerusalem Post editorialized: "Egypt
must be made to pay a steep diplomatic price for playing, even if
more through inertia than initiative, the role of enabler for Hamas
that Syria has played for Hizbullah in Lebanon.... Cairo needs to be
told that it cannot enable the sowing of the seeds of war while
pretending to facilitate peace."

Block Quotes:
-------------

"Demand Egyptian Action"

The conservative, independent Jerusalem Post editorialized (12/07):
"The same Egypt whose blessing the US and Israel so eagerly sought
for Annapolis has facilitated the weapons buildup that threatens to
scuttle the process Annapolis sought to launch. This is absurd....
Until now, the US and Israel have politely complained to Egypt
behind the scenes. This obviously has been insufficient. The time
for gentle nudging and hopeful appeals to reason and common
interests has passed.... Egypt must be made to pay a steep
diplomatic price for playing, even if more through inertia than
initiative, the role of enabler for Hamas that Syria has played for
Hizbullah in Lebanon.... Cairo needs to be told that it cannot
enable the sowing of the seeds of war while pretending to facilitate
peace."
JONES

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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