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Cablegate: Israel Media Reaction

VZCZCXYZ0029
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHTV #2196/01 2791022
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 061022Z OCT 09
FM AMEMBASSY TEL AVIV
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 3697
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 6060
RUEHAS/AMEMBASSY ALGIERS PRIORITY 2633
RUEHAM/AMEMBASSY AMMAN PRIORITY 6663
RUEHAK/AMEMBASSY ANKARA PRIORITY 6871
RUEHLB/AMEMBASSY BEIRUT PRIORITY 6117
RUEHEG/AMEMBASSY CAIRO PRIORITY 4753
RUEHDM/AMEMBASSY DAMASCUS PRIORITY 6964
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON PRIORITY 3741
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS PRIORITY 1956
RUEHRB/AMEMBASSY RABAT PRIORITY 0623
RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME PRIORITY 8140
RUEHRH/AMEMBASSY RIYADH PRIORITY 3149
RUEHTU/AMEMBASSY TUNIS PRIORITY 7129
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK PRIORITY 9192
RUEHJI/AMCONSUL JEDDAH PRIORITY 1952
RUEHJM/AMCONSUL JERUSALEM PRIORITY 2920
RHMFISS/CDR USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL PRIORITY
RHMFISS/COMSOCEUR VAIHINGEN GE PRIORITY
RHMFIUU/COMSIXTHFLT PRIORITY

UNCLAS TEL AVIV 002196

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

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

1. Mideast

2. Iran

-------------------------
Key stories in the media:
-------------------------

All media emphasized the continued violence around the Temple Mount
in Jerusalem. Clashes continued yesterday between Palestinian
demonstrators and security forces. One Israeli soldier was stabbed
and the number of people detained since the start of the latest
disturbances reached 50. HaQaretz reported that sources close to
the situation told the newspaper that the U.S. and Jordan are trying
to ease the tensions surrounding the Temple Mount area, with Jordan
asking Israel to prevent the entry of Jews and tourists to the site
until the situation calms down. HaQaretz reported that Israel, the
PA, and the Waqf Muslim authority will hold talks on rules for
visiting the site until the crisis eases. Yediot cited a Shin Bet
warning that the PA has embarked on a takeover of East Jerusalem for
the past few months. Yediot and other media reported the PA has
injected millions of dollars to strengthen East JerusalemQs economic
infrastructure with effective Palestinian supervision. Speaking on
Israel Radio this morning, Vice PM Silvan Shalom called on the
government to outlaw the Islamic Movement and arrest the leader of
its northern branch Sheikh Raed Salah and his deputy, Kamal Khatib.

The media reported that thousands of people demonstrated against
Israel in Istanbul in support of the Palestinians at the Temple
Mount.

Israel Hayom reported that official spokesmen at the Prime
MinisterQs Office and at the Foreign Ministry have clarified that
the postponement of the vote at the U.N Human Rights Council that
would have endorsed the Goldstone Report was the result of massive
diplomatic pressure on the U.S., Russia, France, Germany, the U.S.,
and others by Israel. HaQaretz and other media reported that
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is facing unusually harsh
criticism from within Fatah and other Palestinian groups for his
decision last week to withdraw the draft document. HaQaretz
reported that a few hundred protesters demonstrated in Ramallah

yesterday against the PAQs decision to delay endorsing the Goldstone
report.

The Jerusalem Post and other media reported that the Obama
administration has cautiously welcomed the Iranian gestures coming
out of the talks over its nuclear program last week, saying they are
a "constructive beginning" even if much more work is needed and
progress cannot be taken for granted. However, The Jerusalem Post
said that many Washington hands are warning that the key factor
behind IranQs more cooperative approach has been a shift in
America's posture rather than in Tehran's. The Jerusalem Post
quoted Ilan Mizrachi, a former head of IsraelQs National Security
Council and deputy head of the Mossad, as saying that Israel would
not be able to oppose a deal under which IranQs uranium is enriched
in Russia. Yediot reported that the notion of Russian enrichment of
uranium for Iran was an Israeli idea raised by Shaul MofazQs team in
its strategic dialogue at the end of President BushQs term, and
cited concern that Iran will breach the agreement. MaarivQs Web
site NRG reported that ahead of the large-scale IDF-U.S. Army aerial
defense exercise that will simulate a missile attack from Iran, 15
missile boats, cargo planes, and aerial defense systems have arrived
in Israel. A senior Israeli defense source was quoted as saying:
QSoon an American officer of the rank of general will arrive,
attesting to the importance of the drill. This is a clear message to
Iran.

Maariv reported that the Kadima and Yisrael Beiteinu parties are
cooperating to change the Israeli political system through the
mediation of politician Haim Ramon: they will reportedly draft an
initiative to strengthen the status of the prime minister and they
intend to have a bill to this effect passed with the support of
Likud and Labor Knesset members. The newspaper cited LikudQs anger
over the move and Avigdor LiebermanQs cooperation with the
opposition.

The Jerusalem Post reported that an archeological project funded by
a Jewish-Ukrainian philanthropist made possible the rehabilitation
of a Second Jewish Temple-era hall that was recently unearthed in
the Western Wall tunnels. All media cited the newly uncovered
areas.

HaQaretz and The Jerusalem Post cited a Peace Now investigation
reporting that 800 housing units in 34 West Bank settlements are in
early development stages and 100 are already under construction.
According to the organization, settlement movement leaders are
rushing to begin construction in as many places as possible, so that
when a construction freeze as ordered these locations are not
affected. Peace Now said that merely not issuing new permits wasn't
enough and that a direct order banning all new construction was
needed. Media quoted right-wing figures as saying that Peace Now is
a QtreacherousQ group or a "foreign agent."

The Jerusalem Post reported that Palestinian schoolchildren in
U.N.-run schools may soon learn about the Holocaust as part of a new
curriculum on human rights that is being developed by the U.N Relief
and Works Agency (UNRWA). The newspaper reported that UNRWA is
pushing forward with the curriculum despite Palestinian opposition.

Leading media reported that yesterday a court in Azerbaijan
sentenced a group of militant Islamists, including two Lebanese men,
to between 12 and 15 years in jail for plotting attacks on the
Israeli and U.S. embassies in Baku. A spokesman for the court said
the group was linked to Hizbullah, al-Qaida, and the Iranian
security services.

All media reported that on Sunday unknown people vandalized the
southern archaeological park of Avdat. Yesterday police arrested
two Negev Bedouin in relation with this act. Leading media reported
that they are suspected of destroying the site as revenge for the
recent demolition of homes in the area. The media reported that
the perpetrators may have causedwhat one high-ranking preservation
official called "unparalleled damage" to the site. Avdat's
archaeological section was recognized by UNESCO as a Heritage Site
four years ago.

HaQaretz reported that FM Avigdor Lieberman has withdrawn his
nominee for the position of Israel's ambassador to Cairo. Lieberman
had planned to appoint his close Yisrael Beiteinu associate, Col.
Shaul Kamisa. The idea was criticized across the board both inside
and outside the Foreign Ministry and a few days ago the candidacy
was shelved. The Jerusalem Post reported that some Foreign Ministry
diplomats are upset at FM Avigdor LiebermanQs decision to appoint
former Mossad man Reuven Dinal as ambassador to Turkmenistan.

The media pin hopes on Israeli candidates for Nobel Prizes: Yakir
Aharonov (Physics) and Amos Oz (Literature).

------------
1. Mideast:
------------

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

I. "Obama Is No Sucker"

Senior op-ed writer Akiva Eldar commented in the independent,
left-leaning Ha'aretz (10/6): QA report of the planned presence [of
Netanyahu] at the volatile site of Silwan in East Jerusalem] reached
Washington, and the order came to cancel the event with lightning
speed.... A senior person from the National Security Council at the
White House recently told Jewish leaders that Obama had mustered all
his charm to convince Arab leaders to offer Netanyahu a series of
gestures. It all ended, said the official, when the Prime Minister
decided to approve construction of 450 housing units in the West
Bank. The President, to put it mildly, was not amused.

II. "Third Intifada?"

The conservative, independent Jerusalem Post editorialized (10/6):
QIsraeli authorities foster coexistence and maintain free access to
the holy sites. Palestinian factions, by contrast, want just the
opposite. Jews do not deny the religious significance of the Muslim
sites on the Temple Mount. Yet Palestinians can't abide the fact
that the Jewish presence in Jerusalem anteceded the Muslim arrival
in 636 CE by well over [two?] millennia.... Sadly, not one
Palestinian leader is willing to tell his people that, ofcourse,
there was a Jewish temple where the Aqsa osque stands today. To
admit a Jewish civilizational connection would demand that
Palestinians agree to share the area and to treat Jewish holy places
with respect. It would turn upside down a Palestinian political
culture that has socialized generations to think of Jews as
interlopers. And this neither Fatah's Abbas, nor Hamas's Ismail
Haniyeh nor the Islamic Movement's Sheikh Raed Salah will ever do.
Since the liberation of Jerusalem in 1967, the Jews have been
magnanimous in victory. Not only have they permitted Muslims to
retain administrative control over their holy places, Israeli
authorities have forbidden Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount.... So
while Israel's QThird TempleQ fanatics are carefully policed and
marginalized by mainstream society, the Palestinian leadership
continues to mainstream fanatical ideas about Jews -- making
reconciliation unreachable.

III. "The Temple Mount Is the Heart of the Conflict"
Columnist Assaf Golan wrote in the editorial of the nationalist,
Orthodox Makor Rishon-Hatzofe (p. 6) (10/6): QOne of the most
complex problems that Israel will have to face in the next few years
is the issue of the Temple Mount.... It is impossible to produce
historic reconciliations between national entities only based on
instant politics when both sidesQ deep foundations lean on profound
spiritual and emotional worlds. This simple truth teaches us that
not only might fleeing the challenge of the Temple Mount blow up in
IsraelQs face but it might as well drag the entire Middle East into
a terrible bloodshed despite itself.

---------
2. Iran:
---------

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

"No Cause for Celebration"

Intelligence affairs writer Ronen Bergman opined in the
mass-circulation pluralist Yediot Aharonot (10/6): QThe supposedly
dramatic agreement produced by the talks between Iran and the
[world] powers will not lead to the disappearance of the nuclear
peril from the regime of the ayatollahs. Anyway this a nice
achievement for the Iranians -- an agreement that will only slightly
delay their race to the bomb, provide them a bonus in public
opinion, provide Russia and China with an alibi for the continuation
of their excellent economic ties with Iran.... The positive side of
this arrangement is that the quantity to be transferred to Russia --
as long as it stays in Russia -- will be supervised.... But there
are drawbacks. First of all, the agreement doesnQt prevent Iran
from continuing to enrich ... uranium on its territory. It will be
able to produce a bomb.... Those who stand to earn most from this
agreement, should it materialize, are the Russians. Not only will
they receive a lot of money for this process, but they will succeed
in creating for themselves an alibi for continuing their vast
economic, military, and civilian ties with Iran.

CUNNINGHAM

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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