In what appears to be a new low point in the Washington-Jerusalem relations, US Secretary John Kerry took another swing at Prime Minister Netanyahu.
In the latest stage in the row between the White House and Jerusalem over Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s address to a special session of Congress on Iran’s nuclear program, scheduled for next week, US Secretary of State John Kerry publicly questioned the Israeli leader’s judgment and his ability to understand and formulate proper foreign policy.
“Let me say this. The prime minister, as you recall, was profoundly forward-leaning and outspoken about the importance of invading Iraq under George W. Bush, and we all know what happened with that decision,” Kerry told members of Congress during a briefing of the Foreign Affairs Committee on Capitol Hill on Wednesday.
“He may have a judgment that just may not be correct here and let’s just wait and hear what he says. I’m not going to pre-judge his statement any more than he should pre-judge this [Iran] agreement.”
US National Security Advisor Slams ‘Destructive’ Decisions
Kerry joined Susan Rice, the president’s national security adviser, in slamming Netanyahu’s stance on Iran and his pending Congress speech. In a TV interview on Tuesday, Rice said that Netanyahu was endangering the “fabric” of US-Israeli relations by insisting on addressing Congress over President Barack Obama’s objections.
She categorized Netanyahu’s and Boehner’s decisions as “not only unfortunate,” but “destructive” as well.
“[Support for Israel has] always been bipartisan,” she said. “We need to keep it that way. We want it that way. I think Israel wants it that way. The American people want it that way. And when it becomes injected or infused with politics, that’s a problem.”
Not only Israel, but a number of Western and Arab countries believe that Iran has been covertly violating the international Nuclear Proliferation Treaty, increasing its nuclear program in size and scope while experimenting with weapons techniques.
The UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) also expressed concerns in a secret report exposed last week regarding Iran’s evasiveness vis-a-vis its nuclear abilities and development. “Iran has not provided any explanations that enable the agency to clarify the outstanding practical measures,” the IAEA report states, referring to allegations of explosives tests and other activity indicating the development of nuclear bombs by Iran.
Nevertheless, the Obama administration seems to be adamant in finalizing a deal with Iran, possibly in an attempt to solidify their legacy, some pundits say.
By: Atara Beck, World Israel News Staff