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Fear of an Attack on Iran: Donilon’s Clandestine Visit to Israel

Israel, Ma'ariv

By Eli Bardenstein

Ma’ariv has learned that Israel begged the American administration to officially announce the failure of the talks,– however, the Americans refused.


Translated by Viktoria Lymar

Edited by Steven Stenzler


15 July 2012



In the aftermath of the failure of the negotiations with Iran, the U.S. is concerned about an Israeli operation in the summer months and has dispatched the national security adviser for a round of talks with the senior government officials.


The U.S. national security adviser, Tom Donilon, secretly visited Israel this weekend. A short while ago, the White House decided to unveil the fact of the visit and issued an official statement apropos his stopping by. Donilon met the Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Ehud Barak and his Israeli counterpart, Ya’akov Amidror.

The announcement conveys that in his meetings, Donilon has reaffirmed the unwavering commitment of the U.S. to Israel’s security. It also conveys that Donilon’s visit took place following ongoing consultations between Israeli and American officials on the issues of regional security.

In the wake of the failure of the talks between the six [super] powers and Iran, there is renewed concern of a likely Israeli military action against Iran’s nuclear facilities. The visit by Donilon was designated to check Israel’s intentions in this respect and try to thwart a possible military offensive from its side.

Just to remind: as Ma’ariv reported, the Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu allowed the U.S. President Barack Obama a time window of several months to exhaust the nuclear talks of the world powers with Iran – and not to strike meanwhile.

As of the moment, it is clear to Israel, and to the U.S., too, that the negotiations have hit an impasse and in practice failed upon the end of three rounds of talks, even though the Americans have not declared their fiasco officially – and therefore, the Israeli military option is back to being relevant.

The estimation in Washington is that Netanyahu might pull the attack in the summer months, toward the fall season. The Americans, of course, are worried about that and oppose the military assault, definitely until the elections.

Ma’ariv has learned that Israel begged the American administration to officially announce the failure of the talks – however, the Americans refused. In the meantime, the negotiations continued on the low level of the experts. Another meeting of the P5+1 representative, Helga Schmidt, and Iran’s deputy nuclear negotiator, Ali Bagheri is to be held on July 24.


Original Hebrew article:


Update: U.S. Defense Secretary Panetta Is to Visit Israel