As if we needed the Democrats to become even more hysterical over Israel.
Soon after the U.S. and other major powers entered negotiations last year to curtail Iran’s nuclear program, senior White House officials learned Israel was spying on the closed-door talks.
The spying operation was part of a broader campaign by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government to penetrate the negotiations and then help build a case against the emerging terms of the deal, current and former U.S. officials said. In addition to eavesdropping, Israel acquired information from confidential U.S. briefings, informants and diplomatic contacts in Europe, the officials said.
The espionage didn’t upset the White House as much as Israel’s sharing of inside information with U.S. lawmakers and others to drain support from a high-stakes deal intended to limit Iran’s nuclear program, current and former officials said.
“It is one thing for the U.S. and Israel to spy on each other. It is another thing for Israel to steal U.S. secrets and play them back to U.S. legislators to undermine U.S. diplomacy,” said a senior U.S. official briefed on the matter.
Yeah, how dare they inform Obama’s mortal enemies of his plans. Imagine actually letting the majority party in this country what’s going on.
— Susan (@shoshido) March 24, 2015
For what it’s worth, Israel denies the story.
A senior Israeli official told the BBC that the claims, reported in the Wall Street Journal, were “utterly false”.
The Journal said the White House had been particularly angered that Israel allegedly sought to share confidential details with US lawmakers and others.
Many Republicans in Congress are opposed to a deal with Iran.
Earlier this month, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the US Congress that a deal being discussed could “pave Iran’s path to the bomb”.
The US, UK, France, Germany, Russia and China are seeking to reach agreement to curtail Iran’s nuclear programme in exchange for sanctions relief.
They fear Iran wants to build a nuclear bomb – something Iran denies, insisting it is merely exercising its right to peaceful nuclear power.
WSJ story stresses: admin not mad at Israel for spying on talks. Admin mad at Israel for sharing its info w US Congress.
— David Frum (@davidfrum) March 24, 2015
I wonder if we’re going to see a follow up on this in a day or two where we learn “spying” means talking with France.
— John Sexton (@verumserum) March 24, 2015
Now this could be a radical solution.
One possible solution would be for US negotiators to provide info to Congress before Israel does. RE https://t.co/kD85l7kjz5
— Brian Faughnan (@BrianFaughnan) March 24, 2015