Usually the White House runs these “The Israelis are evil bastards” stories through the New York Times. This time it decided to run the story through the Wall Street Journal.
There are lots of anonymous quotes about how awful Israel is, but no one actually willing to go on the record which tells you that…
1. Obama Inc are cowards
2. The reporter is making things up
Today, many administration officials say the Gaza conflict—the third between Israel and Hamas in under six years—has persuaded them that Mr. Netanyahu and his national security team are both reckless and untrustworthy.
The focus of “Israel Outflanks White House in Pressing Gaza Strategy” is the claim that Netanyahu is somehow using Congress and the Pentagon to “outflank” Obama… even though Obama controls the Pentagon and Congress can’t do anything on foreign policy without Obama’s approval.
Jeff Dunetz disproves the opening thesis of the article that Israel somehow illegitimately extracted US weapons from the Pentagon, but even the actual article walks back that same claim several times, stating that “the military-to-military side was operating normally.”
But the thesis is spin to justify Obama’s blocking of these military-to-military weapons transfers. By spinning it as a reaction to Israeli wrongdoing, it puts the onus on Israel instead of Obama.
The White House and State Department have sought to regain greater control over US-Israeli policy. Instead of being handled as a military-to-military matter, each case is now subject to review.
The Pentagon’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency, or DSCA, was about to release an initial batch of the Hellfires, according to Israeli and congressional officials.
It was immediately put on hold by the Pentagon, and top officials at the White House instructed the DSCA, the U.S. military’s European Command and other agencies to consult with policy makers at the White House and the State Department before approving any additional requests.
A senior Obama administration official said the weapons transfers shouldn’t have been a routine “check-the-box approval” process, given the context. The official said the decision to scrutinize future transfers at the highest levels amounted to the United States saying ‘The buck stops here. Wait a second…It’s not OK anymore.’
Except it’s not the United States saying it. It’s Obama saying it. And the bottom line is that Obama Inc. is now making it clear that it will use weapons transfers to blackmail Israel and that it’s blaming Israel for this policy.
The Times of Israel reports confirmation of suspensions.
A senior Israeli official confirmed to Israeli media that the US had suspended a shipment of Hellfire missiles to Israel amid worsening ties over fighting in Gaza
The decision to hold off on the transfer was most likely on grounds of increased diplomatic tension, the official said, corroborating a Wall Street Journal report earlier in the day that claimed the White House and State Department had been angered by a transfer of arms to Israel and had ordered greater oversight into future sales.
David Horovitz at the Times of Israel comments further.
After the abandonment of Israel by the UK, with its promise to limit arms sales to Israel if Hamas restarts its attacks on our civilians, we now learn that the US is already restricting arms sales to Israel, having halted a planned supply of the Hellfire precision missiles that enable Israel to strike at the rocket launchers set up by Hamas in the heart of Gaza’s residential areas.
It is frankly astounding to the overwhelming majority of Israelis that Israel is being blamed for and pressured to end a war it manifestly sought to avoid — against a terrorist-government sworn to its destruction that repeatedly breaches the ceasefire efforts Israel consistently accepts.