Intelligence chief, Netanyahu’s most senior aides in Washington amid security concerns – report

The White House confirmed its meetings with Netanyahu’s most senior aides regarding the Iranian threat, but there has been no official comment about the Shin Bet director’s visit to Washington.

By World Israel News Staff

Ronen Bar, director of Shin Bet, Israel’s internal security agency, is in Washington this week for discussions with the Biden administration, Axios reported.

As noted by Axios, Bar is the most senior intelligence authority regarding Judea and Samaria and the Gaza Strip and carries great influence on Israeli government policy.

The report stresses concerns in both Washington and Jerusalem about the instability of the Palestinian Authority – currently led by the widely unpopular Mahmoud Abbas – and the possibility of a new intifada.

The Palestinian public in the PA-administered territories appears to favor Hamas, the terrorist organization that rules Gaza, over the PA. Representatives from Hamas won a plurality of seats on Birzeit University’s student council, in a clear example of the terror group’s growing popularity among Palestinians living in Judea and Samaria.

Bar is expected to meet with senior CIA and White House officials, sources told Axios.

National Security Advisor Tzachi Hanegbi and Minister for Strategic Affairs Ron Dermer are also in Washington, where they met on Thursday with White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan.

According to a White House briefing, Sullivan hosted the Israeli officials “to discuss a broad range of global and regional issues of mutual concern.

“Following up on the March U.S.-Israel Strategic Consultative Group, they continued discussions on enhanced coordination to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon, and ways to counter threats from Iran and its proxies.

“Mr. Sullivan reaffirmed the Administration’s goal of further enhancing Israel’s security and economic integration throughout the Middle East.  Mr. Sullivan also stressed the need to take additional steps to improve the lives of Palestinians, critical to realizing a more peaceful, prosperous, and integrated region.

“Finally, Mr. Sullivan discussed our shared concern with Russia’s deepening military relationship with Iran, and the importance of supporting Ukraine in the defense of its territory and citizenry, including from Iranian drones,” the readout said.

Reports suggest disagreement between Israel and the US administration and that Israel is concerned about the possibility of a revived Iran nuclear deal.

“I have heard all of the reports about Iran. I have a sharp and clear message for both Iran and the international community: Israel will do whatever it needs to do to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated Thursday evening.