David Margolick of Vanity Fair profiles the Israeli prime minister, meeting Netanyahu in Jerusalem – and hearing from his supporters and detractors too.
The Iranian threat has made Bibi even more politically formidable: a supreme leader in Tehran has helped create a semi-supreme leader in Jerusalem. Not that it has rescued him from his insatiable critics. “For some Israelis, Israel is confronting two main problems: one is Iran and the second is Bibi Netanyahu—and not necessarily in that order,” Gonen Ginat, of Israel Hayom, the free daily newspaper many believe Adelson essentially created for Netanyahu, told me. The paper’s very existence reflects Netanyahu’s conviction that, at their core, many problems, both his and Israel’s, are really matters of hasbara: Hebrew for public relations.
Whatever the outcome of the Egyptian presidential run-off, the new leader will see Israel’s unresolved conflict with the Palestinians as a reason to rethink its own treaty with the Jewish state, writes Akiva Eldar in the National Interest.
It will be difficult to cool further the diplomatic, cultural and economic relationship between the countries. Relations have been nearly frozen since Mubarak’s removal from office. A long-standing deal under which Israel was supplied with Egyptian natural gas is practically dead. The Israeli embassy in Cairo was ransacked by an angry mob last September. Israeli journalists are not allowed to visit Egypt, and very few businessmen dare to enter the country. On a different level, Egypt is leading the Arab diplomatic campaign calling on the international community to force Israel to sign the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
Haaretz: IDF holds simulation of outbreak of first Lebanon war
Times of Israel: ‘Death to Arabs’ scrawled on Neve Shalom cars
New York Times: Obstacles Mar Quest for Arab Dictators’ Assets
Washington Post: How to stop the Syria massacre
Wall Street Journal: Egyptians End Impasse on Who Will Draft Charter