Israel delivers ultimatum to Barack Obama on Iran’s nuclear plans

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Last year Iran test-fired surface-to-surface missiles capable of reaching Israel Photo: EPA

At Monday’s meeting between Benjamin Netanyahu and Barack Obama the Israeli prime minister will deliver a stark warning, reports Adrian Blomfield in Jerusalem

By Adrian Blomfield, in Jerusalem

8:31PM GMT 03 Mar 2012

Their relationship, almost from the outset, has been frostier than not, a mutual antipathy palpable in many of their previous encounters.

Two years ago, Barack Obama reportedly left Benjamin Netanyahu to kick his heels in a White House anteroom, a snub delivered to show the president’s irritation over Israel’s settlement policy in the West Bank. In May, the Israeli prime minister struck back, publicly scolding his purse-lipped host for the borders he proposed of a future Palestinian state.

When the two men meet in Washington on Monday, Mr Obama will find his guest once more at his most combative. But this time, perhaps…

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Israel’s worst frenemy

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by Michael Goodwin

Woe is me. President Obama claims he is the best friend Israel ever had in the White House, yet doesn’t get any respect. This is no Rodney Dangerfield act. He is deadly serious.

“Every single commitment I have made to the state of Israel and its security, I have kept,” he told The Atlantic magazine. “Why is it that despite me never failing to support Israel on every single problem that they’ve had over the last three years, that there are still questions about that?”

The question deserves an honest answer, though the truth is not likely to cut through the fog of presidential self-pity. A man who compares himself to Lincoln, Gandhi, King, Mandela and FDR isn’t the sort to welcome disagreement.

And that is the heart of his problem. Obama is certain he knows what’s good for Israel. Given his record and the…

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Worst oil crisis could lie just ahead

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David Uren, Senior Economics Correspondent
From: The Australian
March 05, 2012 12:00AM

THE threat of an Israeli attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities has pushed world oil prices up by 15 per cent in the past month and raised fears that the fissile geopolitics of the Middle East might once again spell global economic havoc.

Israel believes Iran’s nuclear program is approaching a point of no return beyond which it would be impossible to prevent it developing nuclear weapons.

US President Barack Obama is expected to press Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to defer action in talks in Washington today, to give time for sanctions to have full effect.

Facing an election in November and enjoying the first rays of economic sunshine since the 2008 global financial crisis, Obama does not need a Middle East war and soaring oil prices.

However, there is a strong push in Israel for military…

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