Everything you need to know about today’s media coverage of Israel and the Mideast.
PM Netanyahu goes to Washington. IAEA expresses more concerns about military potential of Iran’s nuclear program. Syrian forces turn their attention to the rebel-controlled city of Rastan.
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Iranian Atomic Urgency
• The entire US intelligence community is convinced that Israel will attack Iran. The Times of Israel writes:
The Channel 2 report claimed that the US and Israel are deeply at odds over the consequences of the purportedly planned Israeli attack. The Americans are warning that an Israeli strike at Iran’s nuclear facilities will trigger a regional war and possibly even World War III. Their assessment is that the Arab states will join the war against Israel, under pressure from the Arab “street.”
The Americans foresee a scenario in which Israel would be attacked with thousands of missiles, causing thousands of fatalities, the report continued. Ben-Gurion Airport would shut down and the stock market would crash, causing a critical blow to the Israeli economy . . .
In response, Channel 2 reported, sources in the prime minister’s circle dismissed the ostensible nightmare scenario as being part of an American effort to constrain Israel from making any decision to attack.
• The IAEA’s concerned about Iran tripling its monthly production of enriched uranium. Reuters writes:
“The agency continues to have serious concerns regarding possible military dimensions to Iran’s nuclear programme,” Mr Amano told the closed-door meeting, according to a copy of his speech.
The agency “is unable to provide credible assurance about the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities in Iran, and therefore to conclude that all nuclear material in Iran is in peaceful activities”, he added.
• Israeli Military Industries has developed its own bunker-buster bomb. Details at YNet.
• Netanyahu and Obama: Details, details, details.
• Staff-eds weigh in on the summit. The Financial Times (via Google News) is disappointed that Obama’s not more “robust” with Israel on Iranian and Palestinian issues. A mealy-mouthed NY Times worries that diplomacy and sanctions won’t curb the Iranians and further frets that military action will be messy. The Guardian and Toronto Star also call for restraint. The Washington Post is more measured.
• For more commentary/analysis of Netanyahu in Washington, see Eli Lake, the LA Times, Bret Stephens (WSJ via Google News), Anthony Cordesman (CNN), Wolf Blitzer, and Benny Avni. But Tim Marshall‘s take is the one most worth reading.