Netanyahu, '07: 'I'll Join Olmert if Israel Stops Not Attacking Iran'


 July 20, 2007, the day before the anniversary of the Second Lebanon War.  If we are to trust the Israeli WikiLeaks collection (much virtue in 'if'*), the US State Department recieved word, in a  "confidential" (that is, not even "secret") telegram from  Marc J. Sievers, political counselor at the US Embassy, Tel Aviv, that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was willing to join with Ehud Olmert, head of the Kadima party in 2007 --  that is, if Israel would finally attack Iran. Two days beforehand, Amir Peretz, Defense Minister and the head of Labor, resigned. The telegram discussed the establishment of a national unity government, in which the Likud Party would join Kadima, with Olmert as prime minister. 

This was not the first time Netanyahu expressed willingness to make such a deal, either:
One of Netanyahu's advisers, whose name was not revealed in the message, spoke with American officials on the matter. "The adviser commented that the possibility of a national unity government, bruited in the press, is a possibility, but only if Olmert initiated such a move in order to galvanize Israel for action against Iran. He said that in such a scenario, Netanyahu would probably accept an offer of the Foreign Ministry," wrote Sievers.

This was the second time Netanyahu expressed willingness to support the prime minister if he initiated an attack against Iran. In the summer of 2005, Netanyahu resigned as finance minister in Ariel Sharon's cabinet over the Gaza disengagement plan. In December that year, Sharon left the Likud and founded Kadima. At the time, Netanyahu told Sharon he would "support him if he acted against Iran before the elections," reported Aluf Benn in Haaretz two years ago.



* "Your 'if' is the only peacemaker; much virtue in 'if" - Shakespeare, As You Like It, V, iv.







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