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If Netanyahu wants to investigate Iran leaks, he better start with his own office

A comment on my last post refers to the much-quoted Al Jarida story about Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s decision to order an internal security service investigation that would trace the source whose leaks to the Yedioth Ahronoth daily started the public debate regarding a possible attack on Iran. How a Kuwait-based paper got a world scoop from the Israeli PM office is a different (and very interesting) story, but I would like to make a couple of remarks on the issue itself:

First, Netanyahu is obviously playing a double game: he has been speaking of the need to deal with Iran since his return to the prime minister’s office, and occasionally, he and Defense Minister Ehud Barak make  mysterious public statements about the fact that “all options are on the table” and so on. So when Netanyahu is talking about a possible strike on Iran it’s okay, while people who oppose it should keep their mouth shut?

Second, people tend to forget that all items on this issue in the Israeli media pass through the military censor, who has the final say on every word. From my own experiences, I can say that the office of the censor is pretty active when it comes to future plans and specifically to the nuclear issue, so you can be sure that no secrets were revealed.

The problem for Netanyahu is not that people talk about Iran – but rather that they have their own opinions.

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    1. Henry Weinstein

      To Noam
      I’m aware there is a military censor in Israel, and what it means for journalists & bloggers.
      I know one or two things about the Iranian regime.
      Just a few hypothesis (I’m not at all an expert, could be a good point considering what I read in mainstream media…):
      One can be sure ‘Iran leaks’ have nothing in common with Wikileaks, i.e certified documents & plans. Looks like undercover warnings by well-informed persons who wished to delay & postpone an (imminent? Israeli only?) surprise-strike – or Israeli participation – on Iranian nuclear sites by bringing the topic in Israeli media sphere.
      Seems to me highly improbable that the Israeli government staged a media intox, and is presently playing poker-bluff with Iranian regime’s nerves AND with West’s nerves.
      In Iran the crumbling regime – the IRI at the top is in deep political crisis since several months: Supreme Leader Khamenei vs Ahmadinejad; and the West’s economic sanctions are working – tries to picture what the US and its allies are preparing, not particulary Israel.
      Moreover remember their Syrian ally is in big trouble.
      What is in store is not a full-scale war like in Irak or Afghanistan to invade a hostile regime, but a preemptive massive strike on Iranian nuclear sites: the last thing any power involved in this prospect needs is advertisement.
      Bin Laden didn’t see it coming, nor Pakistan.
      So the great unknown is what the Western powers’ leaders have in mind & store.
      They won’t tell us.
      If such a strike happens – after the next UN report on Iranian nuclear activities -, there will be no warning, no advertisement in Israeli media.
      What could happen is huge Western diplomatic & media pressure after next UN report on Iranian nuclear activities, the time world opinion notices the Iranian regime’s stubborness.
      Then, some day…

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