A Daily Analysis
By Marc Schulman
October 20, 2009 - King of Saudia Arabia in Syria, FBI Arrest Accussed Spy For Israel
The Israeli government was going to meet today to discuss the possibility of establishing an independent Commission of Inquiry in response to the Goldstone report. While most observers, and it would seem most members of the Israeli cabinet have come to the conclusion there is no choice but to do so, the issue was not brought up for discussion, due to the total opposition by Defense Minister Barak. The Legal advisor to the government has made it clear that only the creation of an independent Committee of Inquiry will stop Israeli veterans from being brought up on charges.
The Goldstone Commission Report continued to have additional repercussions, as the visit of the French Minister of Foreign Affairs was cancelled, after Prime Minster Netnayahu’s office intimated it he would not have to time to meet with the French Minister (in response to France's choice of "Abstention", rather than voting "No" on the Goldstone Report at the UN Human Rights Commission.)
There was an interesting OP-Ed piece in today's NYT, authored by Robert Bernstein, Founder of the Human Rights Watch, called Rights Watchdog, Lost in the Mideast on the one sidedness of his old organization and others when it comes to Israel. Unfortunately, it seems, for half a century we have been crying that the world treats Israel unfairly, double standard etc. Well, the fact is, it does. Therefore, Israel needs to plan accordingly.
The King of Saudi Arabia is on a state visit to Damascus; a major accomplishment for Assad. A few days ago, the Prime Minister of Jordan paid Assad a visit as well. Assad has managed to reach out and improve his relations with all the Arab countries by Egypt. In the meantime, he has deepened his relations with Turkey. Observers believe Assad is hedging his bets in his relationship with Iran, trying to show he is not that tied to Iran. It is a difficult balancing act, but so far, Assad has been pulling it off.
Yesterday, the FBI arrested another potential Israeli spy. Setward Nozette, a former NASA scientist who had worked as a consultant for the Israel Aircraft Industry, was entrapped into agreeing to obtain information for Israel, by the FBI agents posing as Mossad agents. This continues a string of attempts by the FBI to find spies for Israel. I have always been against sting operations, even against common criminals, and so much so in a case like this. Nozette is accused of requesting 10K and an Israeli passport for his action,