The Iran nuclear deal that US President Barack Obama keeps defending seems to be gaining opponents by the day here in the Middle East.
It’s no secret that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is no fan of the framework agreement reached in Lausanne, Switzerland earlier this month.
On Sunday, Netanyahu again explained why deal was doomed to failure, and pointing out that in the few short days since it was announced, Iran has already contradicted the “historic achievements” lauded by the Obama Administration.
“Iran insists on maintaining its formidable nuclear capabilities with which it could produce nuclear bombs. Iran insists on removing all sanctions immediately. And Iran refuses to allow effective inspections of all its suspect facilities,” said the Israeli leader. “At the same time, Iran continues its unbridled aggression in the region and its terrorism throughout the world.”
Netanyahu received unexpected backing from popular Egyptian television host Tawfik Okasha, who insisted on his top-rated program “Egypt Today” that Israel should “trust in God and bomb [Iran’s Bushehr nuclear reactor]. We are with you. And if you need fuel for the jets we will give it to you.”
Perhaps even more surprising was the Sunday publication of a position paper by Israeli opposition leader Isaac Herzog and Tzipi Livni (pictured) demanding that Washington give a green light to any military action Israel deems necessary in facing the Iranian threat.
Herzog and Livni have been outspoken critics of Netanyahu’s approach to Obama and to the American president’s handing of the Iran nuclear crisis.
Even so, Herzog and Livni themselves suggested fundamental dissatisfaction with Obama’s nuclear deal by demanding that the US “give legitimization ahead of time to any action Israel will need to take to protect its safety.”