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White House: Israel’s All-or-Nothing Proposal on Iran Means War

By: JTA

Israel’s proposal that Iran totally dismantle its nuclear capacity in exchange for sanctions relief would likely lead to war, a top White House official said.

The official, in a conference call Wednesday with think tanks and advocacy groups sympathetic to the Obama administration’s Iran strategy, outlined the proposal that the major powers will put to Iran at a third round of negotiations in Geneva beginning Thursday.

JTA obtained a recording of the call on condition that it not name the participants or fully quote them.

A think tank participant on the call said Israel’s posture — demanding a total halt to enrichment and the dismantling of all of Iran’s centrifuges — was a path to war.

Agreeing that such reasoning was “sound,” the White House official said that given a choice between “total capitulation” and advancing toward a nuclear weapon, Iran would choose the weapon.

That posture would “close the door on diplomacy” and would “essentially lead to war,” the official said.

The official sounded notes of frustration with Israel’s pushback against the U.S. proposal for a “first step” deal that would exchange some sanctions relief for some rollback of Iran’s nuclear program, saying it would provide Israel with a six-month window to influence the shape of a final deal.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, backed by a number of U.S. lawmakers, wants Iran to totally dismantle its nuclear program and abide by United Nations Security Council resolutions and suspend all its uranium enrichment.

The proposed deal outlined by the official would suspend uranium enrichment for six months at 20 percent, implying that Iran would be able to continue enrichment at 3.5 percent to 5 percent; “address” Iran’s existing stockpiles of 20 percent- and 5 percent-enriched uranium; suspend the development of a heavy water reactor that could produce plutonium; and end the installation and construction of new centrifuges.

The official emphasized that the construction — not just the installation — of new centrifuges would be halted, countering arguments by opponents of an interim deal who say it would buy Iran time to advance its weapons program.

All of this would be verified by intrusive inspections, the official said.

In exchange, the Western powers would release a “fraction” of $100 billion in Iranian frozen funds and end “ancillary” sanctions — the official did not identify them — but keep in place sanctions on Iran’s energy and banking sectors.

The official said the administration was confident that a proposal by a group of Republican senators to attach an amendment adding intensified Iran sanctions to a must-pass defense-funding act would likely not reach the floor of the Democrat-led Senate.

The senators, led by Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), agree with Netanyahu’s assessment that intensified sanctions at this stage would extract from Iran an agreement to suspend enrichment and dismantle centrifuges.

The White House official said that intensified sanctions would likely not only drive Iran away from the talks but would collapse the international sanctions regime in place by alienating a number of countries now abiding by it.

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12 Responses to “White House: Israel’s All-or-Nothing Proposal on Iran Means War”

  1. US needs to stand with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on this issue. http://t.co/nAKt1n0HCD

  2. Israel's position means war? Obama's position means nuclear war!

  3. yes and anything less than the all or nothing proposal, puts israel at risk of destruction but who in this american administration really cares about that ? or is that the goal ?

  4. yes and anything less than the all or nothing proposal, puts israel at risk of destruction but who in this american administration really cares about that ? or is that the goal ?

  5. Israel cannot afford a nuclear Iran, it’s just that simple. It’s my opinion that it’s very likely too late, but if Israel has intelligence that shows that a strike could set Iran back then that’s what I would suspect we will see in the not too distant future. These talks that drag on and don’t actually stop Iran from making nukes are really only helping them to complete more of their work towards their likely goal. As I have pointed out, of course Israel is serious, they have no choice. What makes anyone think that Israel can just sit by and take this big of a chance? It seems insane to me, yet that’s what were witnessing. No one has good enough intelligence at this point to know that Iran will not be able to complete their weapons program, or know that they will not cheat on this deal, so in my humble opinion it has to be shut down. Other than that I’m afraid there is likely going to be a strike. Could we be witnessing an issue that could be the trigger to the Isaiah 17 war? My own leaders are having talks that would have been helpful about a year ago, but now I have to wonder if there is even enough time for the talks to conclude. Though a strike may start a regional war, possibly the war in Is 17; waiting for a nuclear war with multiple nuclear exchanges would be a much worse war, possibly global. In 2012 I wrote a booklet that talks about some of what the Bible says will happen in the end times as well as what will happen during the seven year tribulation and other soon to take place events. I don’t accept donations and it’s free. It’s about 6 or 7 pages, so it’s a short read. I encourage you to have a look: http://www.booksie.com/religion_and_spirituality/book/richard_b_barnes/after-the-rapture-whats-next

  6. Does the Whitehouse think Iran is going to pack nuclear bombs with marshmallows? Does he think a nuclear war means Iran will drop marshmallows while the Israelis drop chocolate bars, and with any luck, America will bring the graham-crackers, and after the bombs have all been dropped, we can all sit around the campfire eating smores? Whatever their reasoning, it can't be much less absurd than that.

  7. the farcical guy in the white house is a mendacious, dumb, dangerous lunatic. they laffed at hitler, too. that "funny little guy".

  8. There are only twoways: the US congress has to increase the sanctions to Iran or Israel has to hit Iran untill to topple this terror Ayatollah's regime and give relieve to the people of Iran, the Midle East and the world, it is very sad the "strong world power" is a "weack world power", Israel should look more to China, Japan, South Corea, Australia, New Zealand, Singapure, and India, notmore USA and EU.

  9. Liviu Blumenthal says:

    Starting with Bill Clinton, ALL American administrations have made poor decisions on the Iran strategy. Clinton did not even bother to look – GW Bush was more involved but not enough, and the current administration does not even know enough history and geography to grasp onto what's actually going on while being fooled and manipulated by Putin at every turn. The world's become much more dangerous since 2008 and will continue to deteriorate under the current policies of the US.

  10. Obama’s antagonism towards Israel is so deep seeded that he would rather side with one of the worlds worst regimes than side with Israel. If you noticed, a prerequisite to becoming appointed in Obama’s administration, is to have the same attitude about Israel as Obama does. All you have to do is use Kerry, Hagel, Powers, and Rice as examples. Obama and the international community willingness to give one of the world’s most illegitimate nations legitimacy, puts Israel and the rest of the world in great danger. How anyone could believe anything that the lunatics in Iran say is beyond me. Israel is justified in demanding the total dismantling of Iran’s nuclear program because that is the only way to ensure that Iran is not developing nuclear weapons. Of course, we wouldn’t be having these problems now if the American people didn’t compound their mistake by reelecting Obama. But, it is too late to change that now. Along with the failed healthcare bill, a seventeen trillion dollar deficit, high unemployment, the abuse of power, and a phony economic recovery, we will have to deal with the ramifications of Obama, long after he is out of office.

  11. Dan Silagi says:

    There is no place for compromise on the rights of Jews to worship, or not worship, as they wish anyplace in Israel, including the Kotel. Especially, the Kotel. Likewise, therei is no place for compromise on Iran persuing nuclear energy for the sake of building a bomb. None. If Iran enriches uranium to a point beyond where it's needed for a nuclear reactor to create electricity, such a facility needs to be blown to smithereens.

  12. War will be started by US as they want a place to send their weapons; but our Almighty God is stronger than any weapons on earth. He has promised to defend the Jewish people!

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