Israeli Parties Reorient
Themselves Ahead of Next Election
The current political situation in Israel is “uncharted territory” and may lead to an election that could reorient the Israeli electorate as various parties across the political spectrum debate mergers, this reporter explained in an interview on Israel’s i24NEWS.
I posited that the ultra-Orthodox parties would be highly motivated to vote in an upcoming election, while rightwing parties that didn’t cross the electoral threshold in last April’s election are likely to unite, thus ensuring a stronger rightwing bloc by passing the minimum tally to enter the Knesset. The parties that failed to cross the threshold last time were led by Naftali Bennet and Moshe Feiglin respectively.
Addressing the ramifications of former Prime Minister Ehud Barak announcing a new leftwing party to contend in the next election, this reporter stated: “The question more to me is whether he is going to divide the Blue and White vote. And then whether at the end of the day voters on Blue and White are going to be a little less motivated to come out at all.… A lot of Israelis might just be angry at the overall situation and stay home. But the rightwing might not. The leftwing might not. It’s unpredictable.”
I contended that there is a strong likelihood of a merger between the leftist Labor and Meretz parties, both of which fared poorly last April. And said Meretz may attempt to shift its tactics to focus more on social issues instead of the unpopular so-called two-state solution.
Unpredictable events in the Middle East could impact the vote in unforeseeable ways, I added. “So much can happen between now and the election on so many levels. With Iran. Is there going to be a confrontation in the Middle East? If there is, that within itself could change things probably more in the favor of Bibi (Netanyahu).”
Clapper Admits that Obama’s
Intervention in Libya Has Emboldened Iran
James Clapper, who served as director of national intelligence for Barack Obama, has been making the rounds in the news media downplaying the prospect of President Donald Trump achieving a breakthrough in nuclear talks with North Korea.
Clapper left out how in his own recently published book, he admitted the Obama administration’s military campaign that brought about the downfall of Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi likely served as a lesson for Iran and North Korea not to give up their own nuclear programs. Gaddafi in 2003 voluntarily agreed to give up his decades-old nuclear weapons program and opened the country to nuclear inspectors.
“I personally don’t believe the North Koreans have long term any intent to denuclearize,” Clapper said on CNN when asked about Trump’s meeting with Kim Jong-un. “Why should they? It’s their ticket to survival, and they’re just not going to do that.”
Clapper made similar remarks to NPR: “Demanding that the North Koreans give up what they consider is fundamental to their national survival has not proven real profitable, if you will, for this administration or previous administrations. So perhaps another approach might be in order.”
In his book, Facts and Fears: Hard Truths from a Life in Intelligence, Clapper explains the Obama administration’s actions to depose Gaddafi as part of the so-called Arab Spring and despite his disarmament may have hardened the positions of Iran and North Korea, making those countries less likely to agree to nuclear disarmament.
Clapper wrote: “Gaddafi pleaded for the United States and then NATO to stop the attacks, citing his cooperation with weapons inspectors, his voluntary disarmament of his nuclear program, and his restraint from using chemical weapons in his current civil struggle. It was far too late, and no one in the West paid attention. However, I believe North Korea and Iran took careful note of what happens when you give up your nuclear program, and Bashar al-Assad in Syria saw what happens to dictators who show restraint.”
FBI Mum on CrowdStrike Reports
The FBI would not provide a comment when asked by this reporter whether it saw the un-redacted sections of three reports from the private firm CrowdStrike that served as a basis for the Obama-era intelligence agencies’ conclusion that Russian agents hacked the servers of the Democratic National Committee.
Last week, this column and my reporting at Breitbart documented that, according to a U.S. government filing, the Obama-era intelligence community relied on three redacted CrowdStrike reports marked as drafts to reach the Russia hack conclusion.
The U.S. government further admitted in the same lawsuit that it does not possess the un-redacted CrowdStrike reports about what allegedly happened to the DNC servers and that it relied upon DNC lawyers to generally characterize what was in the redacted sections.
The DNC refused to allow the FBI to access its server to verify the allegation that Russia carried out a hack during the 2016 presidential campaign. Instead, the DNC reached an arrangement with the FBI in which a third party company, CrowdStrike, conducted forensics on the server and shared details with the FBI.
As this reporter previously documented, CrowdStrike was financed to the tune of $100 million via a funding drive by Google Capital.
Google Capital, which now goes by the name of CapitalG, is an arm of Alphabet Inc., Google’s parent company. Eric Schmidt, the chairman of Alphabet, has been a staunch and active supporter of Hillary Clinton and is a longtime donor to the Democratic Party.