Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to publicly harden his line against Iran during a meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama in Washington on March 5, according to a senior Israeli official.
Israel wants Obama to make further-reaching declarations than the vague assertion that “all options are on the table,” the official said. In particular, Netanyahu wants Obama to state unequivocally that the United States is preparing for a military operation in the event that Iran crosses certain “red lines,” said the official; Israel feels this will increase pressure on Iran by making clear that there exists a real U.S. threat.
Officials in both Jerusalem and Washington acknowledge a serious lack of trust between Israel and the United States with regard to the issue of a possible strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities.
A senior U.S. official who is involved in preparing Netanyahu’s visit to the United States – and who asked to remain anonymous – said intensive preparations are underway to guarantee the success of the meeting between Netanyahu and Obama and to bridge this lack of trust.