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June 20, 2014

In-Depth Issues:

Israeli Official Names Hamas Leader Abroad as Suspect Behind Kidnappings - Avi Issacharoff (Times of Israel)
    A Hamas leader currently living in Turkey is believed to be behind the kidnapping of the three Israeli teenagers in the West Bank last week, an Israeli security official said Thursday.
    Saleh al-Arouri - a former West Bank resident deported after serving a prison sentence in Israel, who is now a leading figure in Hamas overseas operations - is thought to have been a key figure for years in attempts to initiate terror attacks in the West Bank, funding and arranging the training of terror cells.
    "I have no doubt that al-Arouri was connected to the act," the official said.
    There is an increasing belief in the Israeli security services that the kidnapping was directed by Hamas' overseas hierarchy. Al-Arouri is answerable to Hamas' political bureau chief Khaled Mashaal.
    "For Hamas, there is one explicit instruction, and that is to continue to kidnap Israelis."

    See also Hamas Chief May Have Given Green Light for Kidnappings - Spencer Ho (Times of Israel)
    "The speech by political chief Khaled Mashaal in Doha [Qatar] last month might have been a signal to Hamas in Hebron to carry out kidnapping operations of Israeli citizens," a senior defense official said Wednesday.
    In his May 20 Nakba Day speech, Mashaal said he was aware of the hardships of Palestinian inmates in Israeli jails. Then he said that Hamas' military wing would "provide a response."

Unlikely Allies Aid Militants in Iraq - Matt Bradley and Bill Spindle (Wall Street Journal)
    Radical Sunni fighters in northern Iraq are being aided by local tribes who reject the Islamists' extreme ideology but sympathize with their goal of ousting the Shiite-led government in Baghdad.
    This alliance helps explain how several hundred ISIS insurgents have handily defeated a far larger, better-equipped Iraqi army and come to control about a third of Iraqi territory.
    "This is a revolution against the unfairness and marginalization of the past 11 years" by the government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, said Sheikh Khamis Al Dulaimi, a tribal leader in the Anbar Military Council of Tribal Revolutionaries, a group that has led protests against Maliki for the past year and a half.

Questioning Iran's Nuclear Program Lands Professor 18-Month Sentence - Michelle Moghtader (Reuters)
    Iran has sentenced Sadegh Zibakalam, a political science professor at the University of Tehran, to 18 months in prison for "spreading propaganda against the Islamic Republic" after he questioned the utility of its nuclear program.

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Palestinian Children Celebrate the Kidnapping of Other Children - Ilya Meyer (Times of Israel)
    Hamas is holding three Jewish teens whose sole crime is that they are Jewish.
    Palestinian Arab society has so brainwashed its own children that they celebrate the kidnapping of other children.
    What peace can there be with a society whose future leaders are today being taught that kidnapping children is a cause for celebration?

French Jews Leave for Israel in Increasing Numbers (AP)
    More than 5,000 French Jews are on track to leave for Israel this year, the most since after the Six-Day War in 1967.
    France has the world's third-largest Jewish population after Israel and the U.S. - about 500,000.
    French Jews "are finding themselves between the extreme right of Europe and the radical Islam of Europe," said Ariel Kandel, who runs the Jewish Agency for Israel in Paris.

Anti-Semites Rock Colleges - Molly Wharton (National Review)
    Members of a pro-Palestine student organization are trying to stifle pro-Israel views and terrorize Jewish students across the nation.
    A slew of anti-Semitic online postings by Vassar College's chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine have brought the group under investigation by school administrators.
    SJP began in 2001 at the University of California, Berkeley. Its founder, UC Berkeley lecturer Hatem Bazian, is a West Bank–born Palestinian who earlier headed Berkeley's Muslim Student Association, which the Muslim Brotherhood had helped to establish.

Israel Military Industries Unveils Self-Defending Armored Troop Transport - Barbara Opall-Rome (Defense News)
    Israel Military Industries (IMI) has concluded initial prototype testing of the armored CombatGuard, built to deploy up to six infantrymen while the Bright Arrow active protection system (APS) independently defends against anti-tank missiles and rocket-propelled grenades.
    The APS system embodies central, hard-learned lessons from Israel's 2006 Lebanon War, said Brig.-Gen. (res.) Alon Fridman, manager of IMI's Infantry and Special Forces Directorate.
    Israeli forces in the 34-day war against Hizbullah suffered significant setbacks due to poor maneuvering capabilities in the face of anti-tank missiles and other threats.
    The system's multi-layered countermeasures include neutralizing threats through electro-optical jamming, deflecting them by smoke or destroying them by firing hard-kill projectiles.

Technion's NaNose Catches Lung Cancer 90 Percent of the Time - David Shamah (Times of Israel)
    A cancer-detection technology that "sniffs out" malignant tumors is set to be commercialized, after a study showed that a device based on the Technion-developed "NaNose" system successfully detected lung cancer in patients with up to 90% accuracy.
    By detecting the special "odor" emitted by cancer cells, the NaNose system can detect the presence of both benign and malignant tumors much more quickly, efficiently and cheaply, said Dr. Hossam Haick of the Technion, who helped develop the technology.
    Lung cancer diagnoses require invasive procedures such as bronchoscopies, computer-guided biopsies or surgery.
    The NaNose-based breathalyzer, on the other hand, doesn't require anything more than a patient's breathing into the device in order to come up with an initial diagnosis.

U.S. Tourists Flocking to Israel in Record-Breaking Numbers - Nelson Alcantara (ETN Travel News)
    32% more Americans arrived in Israel in May 2014 than in May 2013, Haim Gutin, Consul and Israel Tourism Commissioner, North and South America, has said.
    Overall, American tourism to Israel is up 14% for the five-month period, January-May.

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News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:
  • ISIS Storms Saddam-Era Chemical Weapons Complex in Iraq - Damien McElroy
    ISIS, the jihadist group bringing terror to Iraq, overran the al-Muthanna Saddam Hussein-era chemical weapons complex 60 miles north of Baghdad on Thursday, gaining access to disused stores of hundreds of tons of potentially deadly poisons including mustard gas and sarin.
        Hamish de Bretton-Gordon, a former commander of Britain's chemical weapons regiment, said that al-Muthanna has large stores of weaponized and bulk mustard gas and sarin, most of which has been put beyond ready use in concrete stores. "There are materials on site that could be used in an improvised explosive device," he told the Telegraph. "We have seen that ISIS has used chemicals in explosions in Iraq before and has carried out experiments in Syria."
        Jen Psaki, the State Department spokeswoman, said. "We do not believe that the complex contains CW materials of military value and it would be very difficult, if not impossible, to safely move the materials."  (Telegraph-UK)
  • Obama: Iran Could Play Constructive Role in Iraq
    President Barack Obama says Iran can play a constructive role in Iraq if it sends a message that Iraq's government must be inclusive and respect the interests of Sunnis and Kurds. He says that's the same message the U.S. is sending. But Obama says if Iran comes into the conflict solely as an armed force backing the Shiite-led government, its involvement would probably worsen the situation. (AP-ABC News)
        See also Kerry: U.S. May Share Information with Iran over Iraq, Not Cooperate
    Secretary of State John Kerry was interviewed on NBC's Today Show on June 18.
    Q: You've mentioned that the U.S. is open, at least, to possibly working with Iran as you deal with this situation with ISIS in northern Iraq.
    Kerry: "What I said is we are interested in communicating with Iran to make clear that the Iranians know what we're thinking and we know what they're thinking, and that there's a sharing of information so people aren't making mistakes."  (U.S. State Department)
  • Israeli Rescue Operation Morphs into Strategic "Cleansing" of Hamas in West Bank - Barbara Opall-Rome
    Launched in response to the June 12 kidnapping of three Israeli teens in the West Bank, Operation Brother's Keeper has morphed into a mission of "cleansing the stables" of the Hamas threat, a top IDF officer told reporters. Israel is targeting "all levels of Hamas, from tactical operatives to its institutions all the way up to its strategic leadership," Lt. Col. Peter Lerner said Wednesday. He said Israel is "confident" Hamas is responsible for the attack.
        Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon said Israel wouldn't relent until it "puts its hands on the kidnappers" and returns the missing teens. But in parallel, Ya'alon said Israel aims to damage Hamas' infrastructure in the West Bank.
        Gerald Steinberg, professor of international relations at Israel's Bar-Ilan University, noted it's been 12 years since the IDF's last major ground operation in the West Bank. During that time, Hamas has been able to solidify its standing among the Palestinian population. "Israel has a long list of suspects, and this operation allows the IDF to conduct a very detailed sweep of operatives, weaponry, tunnels and other things that can sow instability," Steinberg said. "When Israeli security forces conclude their mission, it will be tremendously more difficult for Hamas to take control of the West Bank through elections or violence, as they did in Gaza back in 2007."  (Defense News)
        See also Israel Bans UK-Based Muslim Charity Accused of Funding Hamas - Dan Williams
    Israel on Thursday banned the British-based charity Islamic Relief Worldwide (IRW) from operating in the West Bank, accusing it of being a source of funding for the Islamist Palestinian Hamas movement. "The IRW is one of the sources of Hamas' funding," he said. "We do not intend to allow it to function and abet terrorist activity against Israel." Hamas is designated a terrorist group by Israel, the U.S. and EU. (Reuters)
News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:
  • IDF Presses Operation Against Hamas
    The IDF arrested 25 suspected Hamas operatives overnight Thursday in the West Bank as part of the ongoing Operation Brother's Keeper to return three kidnapped Israeli students. Palestinians held in the ongoing sweep now number 330, 240 of whom are associated with Hamas. (Times of Israel)
  • Netanyahu Reconfirms: Teens Were Kidnapped by Hamas
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Thursday: "We're doing everything in our power to bring back our three kidnapped teenagers. They were kidnapped by Hamas. We had no doubt of that. It's absolutely certain. Hamas repeatedly has called for the kidnap and murder of Israeli citizens. It is an organization that is designated as a terror organization by many countries, and it is a terror organization that is committed to Israel's destruction."
        "I expect President Abbas to dissolve the union with this murderous terrorist organization. I think that's important for our common future."  (Prime Minister's Office)
        See also Released Palestinian Prisoners Back in Prison to Complete Their Sentences - Herb Keinon
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Thursday that the IDF has returned to prison more than 50 Palestinians who were released in the prisoner swap for Gilad Shalit in 2011. The released prisoners who are now expected to serve the remainder of their commuted sentences include four terrorists who were serving multiple life sentences, 13 who were serving life sentences, two serving sentences of more than 30 years, 17 serving between 20 to 30 years, and 5 serving up to 20 years. (Jerusalem Post)
  • Israel: "Test for Abbas Is His Actions, Not His Words" - Daniel Siryoti, Shlomo Cesana and Edna Adato
    In Saudi Arabia on Wednesday, PA President Mahmoud Abbas condemned last Thursday's kidnapping of three Israeli teens near Hebron. The Israeli Prime Minister's Office responded to Abbas' statements with skepticism. "Abbas' words will be measured by the Palestinian Authority's efforts to bring the kidnapped teens home safely. And the real test is calling off the unity deal with Hamas," a PMO official said. Israeli officials believe Abbas' speech was the result of U.S. pressure. (Israel Hayom)
        See also Hamas Slams Abbas Support for Israel Security Coordination (AFP)
  • War on Hamas Influences Abbas - Dan Margalit
    Hamas has been the driving force behind the Palestinian prisoners' hunger strike, which will likely achieve exactly the opposite of its intended result: The Hamas prisoners are going to face much harsher conditions and they will be joined by newcomers, prisoners re-arrested after being released as part of the Shalit deal.
        Abbas would have not come out against the abduction operation on Wednesday, had it not been for the IDF attacks on Hamas strongholds in Judea and Samaria. On top of that, he realized that the Palestinian street did not view the massive Israeli response as a positive development, and was concerned over the potential unraveling of the delicate relations with Israel. (Israel Hayom)
  • Five Hamas Terrorists Die as Gaza Tunnel Collapses - Saud Abu Ramadan
    Five members of Hamas' Qassam Brigades were killed in a tunnel collapse east of Gaza City, a Gaza security official confirmed Thursday. The official said the tunnel had been bombarded on Monday night by Israeli jets and badly damaged. It caved in when the five went inside. (DPA-Ha'aretz)
Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis (Best of U.S., UK, and Israel):


  • It's Time to Demilitarize the West Bank and Gaza - Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird
    Last Thursday, three boys were on their way home to their families after school. They never made it, and they haven't been seen since. This kidnapping was a particularly shocking act, but it is just the latest in Hamas' campaign of terror against the Jewish State of Israel.
        The next day, two rockets were fired at Israel from Gaza - adding to the 160 mortar and rocket attacks since the launch of the peace process just last summer. Most of these have exploded in an area of southern Israel no bigger than the Greater Toronto Area. It is tragic that such acts seem to have become routine enough to not be paid much notice by the wider world. We should never allow terrorist acts to become background noise.
        Unfortunately, nothing we have seen from Hamas since the new government emerged gives us any hope that they will willingly, permanently cede real control, or abandon their ideological commitment to the destruction of Israel.
        The Abbas government has three heady challenges. First, complete the disarmament of Hamas and other Palestinian terrorist groups operating in Gaza, including the Iranian proxy Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Second, there must be a complete cessation of the production and smuggling of weapons and materials that enable terrorist groups to both acquire and make rockets.
        Third, the Palestinian Authority's security apparatus must assume immediate and total control of Gaza and the Rafah border crossing. There is no place for militias, private armies or alternative security forces.
        It is not too early for the new Palestinian administration to show that it is serious about sustaining its commitment to peace. They can start with returning these boys to their families. (Globe and Mail-Canada)
  • Israel's Search for Kidnapped Teens: What Is Known So Far - Christa Case Bryant
    Israeli yeshiva students Eyal Yifrach (19), Gilad Shaar (16), and Naftali Frenkel (16) were heading home from school on June 16. They were last seen at a hitchhiking post at the Alon Shvut junction near their school in the West Bank, located about halfway between Jerusalem and Hebron. At 10:25 p.m., one of the teens called the police, whispering, "We've been kidnapped." The last signal from the cellphone used to call the police came about 11:30 p.m. in the area of Hebron. (Christian Science Monitor)
  • A Nightmare Come True - Editorial
    Having a child snatched off the street is a common parental fear. In the case of three Israeli teens who disappeared late last week after hitchhiking home in the West Bank, such a nightmare has come true. The kidnapping galvanized Israelis and has touched Jews in the U.S. as well, leading to prayer meetings and vigils. At the end of the day, kidnapping children is beyond the pale of any movement or government. That fact needs to be acknowledged by all. (Washington Jewish Week)
        See also Jewish Groups United by Prayers for 3 Kidnapped Youths - Benjamin Mueller (New York Times)
        See also Bring Back Our Boys - Editorial (Canadian Jewish News)

  • Iraq

  • Petraeus: U.S. Must Not Become the Shia Militia's Air Force - Nico Hines
    David Petraeus, the former commander of coalition forces in Iraq, issued a stark warning to those advocating U.S. military intervention against ISIS militias bearing down on Baghdad. He said it was only wise to offer military support if the political conditions were exactly right in Iraq, a scenario that is virtually impossible to imagine in the near-future, and that there was a great risk that the U.S. would be seen as picking sides in a religious battle that has been waged for generations. "This cannot be the United States being the air force for Shia militias, or a Shia on Sunni Arab fight," he said. (Daily Beast)
        See also Playing Iraq's Game of Thrones - Michael P. Noonan
    Either Maliki must make an inclusive Iraqi government or else the fissiparous tendencies of Iraq must give way to a three-state solution and the extremism of ISIL must be dealt with through local parties. The writer is director of research at the Foreign Policy Research Institute and a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom. (U.S. News)
  • Gen. Michael Hayden: "The State of Iraq As We Know It Is Gone" -
    "The state of Iraq as we know it is gone, and it's not going to be reconstituted," former CIA director Gen. Michael Hayden said Wednesday. "We've got three successor states there now," Hayden added. "As much as we might look for opportunities to keep Iraq together, we need to be prepared for the reality that it's not going to stay together."
        "We should snuggle up comfortable with the Kurds in Kurdistan, who have always been pro-American and actually have a functioning society and state right now." He called Nouri al-Maliki's surviving state "Shiastan."
        "Then we've got Sunnistan, and that's the state under the control of ISIS right now, and frankly, we've got to treat that as if it were a safe haven for terrorists and begin to think about it the way we had thought about Waziristan for the last decade-plus."  (Newsmax)
  • Why the Iraqi Army Collapsed - Salman Masalha
    It should come as no surprise that the Iraqi army collapsed, as less than a decade ago the large Iraqi army folded rather quickly with the American invasion. The Iraqi army, neither the old one ruled by Saddam nor the new U.S.-trained one, could never be called "the army of the Iraqi people" because there's no such thing as the Iraqi people. The entire region is comprised of artificial states that have never managed to create cross-tribal or cross-ethnic national unity. (Ha'aretz)
  • Iranian Proxies Step Up Their Role in Iraq - Phillip Smyth
    Well before Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki publicly called for the establishment of popular militias in response to the latest jihadist offensives in Mosul, Iran's proxies - including Kataib Hizbullah (KH) and Asaib Ahl al-Haqq (AAH) - had already redeployed some of their forces fighting in Syria back to Iraq. These proxy groups are working closely with the Iraqi army and Internal Security Forces (ISF).
        As early as January, fighters from AAH and the Iranian-guided Rapid Reaction Force (RRF) announced that they had sent forces back to Iraq from Syria. Given the difficult security situation it faces, the Iraqi government is likely to become more reliant on these Iranian proxies. The writer is a researcher specializing in Shiite Islamist groups at the University of Maryland's Laboratory for Computational Cultural Dynamics. (Washington Institute for Near East Policy)

  • Iran

  • ISIS: Iran's Instrument for Regional Hegemony? - Pinhas Inbari
    Immediately after ISIS emerged in Syria, sources in the Syrian opposition said, "We are familiar with the commanders of ISIS. Once they belonged to Assad's intelligence, and now they are operating on his behalf under the name of ISIS."
        Why would Shiite Iran support a Sunni jihadist organization like ISIS? Iran wants to be certain that a strong Iraqi state does not emerge again along its western border.
        The notion that Shiite Iran would help Sunni jihadists was not farfetched, even if it seemed to defy the conventional wisdom in Western capitals. It is unreasonable to expect Iran to fight ISIS. If Iran does so, it would be turning against a movement that has been a useful surrogate for Tehran's interests. The writer is a veteran Arab affairs correspondent and an analyst for the Jerusalem Center. (Institute for Contemporary Affairs-Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)
  • It Is Not in Western Interests to Strengthen Iran - Toby Greene interviews Brig. Gen. (res.) Michael Herzog
    Some people are of the opinion that the only way to stop ISIS after their capture of Mosul is to garner the support of Iran. However, I would warn against the thought that "my enemy's enemy is my friend." I do not think Iran offers a better vision for a unified, inclusive Iraq. It offers a vision of Shia Islamism, which is also a challenge to Western values and policies. It is not in Western interests to strengthen Iran's position in the region. We need to be very careful about turning to Iran to provide a solution and I would look elsewhere.
        The economic pressure on Iran is still there. People who thought that the sanctions regime would collapse as a result of the interim agreement were proven wrong. That said, I think the pressure eased somewhat and the Iranian economy is better than it was six to nine months ago. Iran has a budgetary surplus. So while the economic situation pressurizes them, it is not to the extent where they are on their knees and need a deal urgently. I am not sure the Iranians are more eager for a deal than the West right now.
        The Israelis are concerned that there may be a bad deal given what they think is insufficient Western resolve. There is also concern lest the interim agreement turns into a permanent or semi-permanent situation if the interim agreement is extended now, and then again in January. In such a situation, on the one hand, Iran's core capabilities are not rolled back significantly, since everything they gave in the interim agreement is reversible. On the other hand, Iran is not under the same economic pressure as before the interim deal. Gen. Herzog has held senior positions in the office of Israel's minister of defense. (BICOM)
  • The Iranian Strategy: Interminable Negotiations - Ben Cohen interviews Michael Doran
    Michael Doran, a senior fellow at the Saban Center for Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institution, said: "I think our administration has come to the conclusion that Iran is a tired power, that it pays lip service to its revolutionary goals, that those are not the real drivers of its policy on the ground. And I think that's a mistake." The extent of the mistake can be seen in the negotiations with Iran over its nuclear program. "If the Iranians decide they want to cut a deal, then we'll have a deal, but all of the initiative is really on their side."
        "It's unlikely to be a deal that would satisfy the United States. Because in order to get such a deal, the Iranian regime has to be placed before an either/or decision. It has to be faced with a decision of continuing the nuclear program and suffering devastating economic sanctions or worse, or coming to an enduring agreement. And the Obama Administration has very consciously avoided placing Iran before that kind of stark decision."
        As a result, Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has "a third option, and that's continuous negotiations." "The interim deal is for six months and can be rolled over by mutual consent for another six months and another six months, they will work to string this along for as long as possible."
        "I think a small amount of enrichment, with a very vigorous inspections regime, is something that we could live with. But in order to get that, we have to be very tough negotiators. They traded temporary and reversible concessions to us for final status concessions from us. The Obama Administration gave them something permanent, this recognition of what the Iranians call their 'right to enrich,' in return for concessions which they can reverse in a day."  (Fathom-BICOM)

  • Syria

  • Iran Plans Militia Force for Syrian Golan to Operate Against Israel - Tony Badran
    According to Dr. Shimon Shapira, a retired brigadier general in the IDF, Tehran's strategy is to set up a Hizbullah structure in Syria, establishing a sectarian militia, backed by imported Shiite groups, that would be integrated with the Syrian regime's army. Iranian assets in Lebanon and Iraq currently maintain a synergy with so-called state institutions. Should the Syrian regime reestablish control over the border region with Israel, it will bring with it this Iranian force, which, Shapira says, "will operate from the Golan" against Israel.
        The actual choice at this time in southern Syria is between the rebel conglomerate of local rebels and the Sunni jihadist Jabhat al-Nusra, and Iran's militia force setting up shop in the Golan. The writer is a research fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. (Now Lebanon)
        See also Iran Launches "Hizbullah Syria" to Open a New Front Against Israel on the Golan Heights - Lt. Col. (ret.) Michael Segall and Brig.-Gen. (ret.) Dr. Shimon Shapira (ICA-Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)
  • The Effects of Iraq Fighting on ISIS in Syria - Jeffrey White
    In the near term, ISIS' image as an irresistible force will be enhanced by its campaign in Iraq. Yet the Iraq campaign is believed to have diverted half or more of the group's roughly 10,000 members in Syria.
        ISIS may be compelled to commit even more forces to Iraq, weakening its military position in Syria. The large amount of Iraqi territory over which the group has gained at least nominal control might also require additional forces from Syria, both to resist government countermeasures and help control the areas. The writer is a defense fellow at The Washington Institute and a former senior defense intelligence officer. (Washington Institute for Near East Policy)

Centrifuges Are Key to an Iran Nuclear Deal - David E. Sanger (New York Times)

  • Wendy R. Sherman, the undersecretary of state for political affairs, put together what she calls the Rubik's cube of a deal that would guarantee Iran would not have the technology and fuel on hand to race for a bomb. Or, that if that race began - a "breakout" in the nuclear world - the U.S., Israel, and the Sunni Arab states that deeply fear a nuclear Iran would have a year or more to react, diplomatically or militarily.
  • The Iranians have come up with a formula for dealing with their heavy water reactor in Arak that should sharply limit the amount of plutonium it produces. But the plant would remain open, a face-saving step. There are also reports of an emerging solution for Iran's deepest, hardest-to-bomb site, called Fordo. It would be converted from an enrichment plant to some kind of "research facility."
  • That leaves the hardest problem: How many centrifuges would Iran be permitted to keep? Just as the Americans talk about reducing their number to just a few thousand, the Iranians propose expanding the numbers by tens of thousands. (There are 19,000 installed today, but only about half are running.)
  • "There's no splitting the difference here," said Robert J. Einhorn, who was on the American negotiating team until last year. "If the Iranians keep taking the view that they must have the capacity to fuel power reactors, they are not going to even get in the ballpark of the numbers the U.S. is talking about." Even if all these issues are resolved, Mr. Obama would still have to sell any agreement to a suspicious Congress, Israel, and deeply worried Arab allies.
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