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Tags: yairlapid | dc | israel | intelligence | nucleardeal

Israel Intel Chief Heads to D.C. as PM Lapid, Biden Haven't Spoken in Weeks

yair lapid aipac addresses conference

Yair Lapid addresses the AIPAC Conference in Washington, D.C., on March 4, 2012. (Laurence Agron/Dreamstime.com)

By    |   Sunday, 28 August 2022 11:18 AM EDT

While Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid has reportedly been frustrated with an inability to get President Joe Biden on the phone, Israel's intelligence chief is headed to Washington this week to discuss Biden's designs on a new nuclear deal with Iran.

Mossad chief David Barnea, who is hawkish against Iran becoming a nuclear power, will meet with the Senate and House intelligence committees, according to The Jerusalem Post.

The Post noted the reported tension between Barnea and Lapid was mere "conjecture" by reporters and the two leaders spoke twice over the weekend.

But Lapid has not spoken with Biden or Secretary of State Antony Blinken for weeks, and the White House has said Biden's recent vacation was a reason for that, according to the Post.

A diplomatic source added the lack of Lapid-Biden contact is not Biden "trying to avoid speaking" as he seeks to engage Iran on a new nuclear deal that former President Donald Trump decertified during the previous administration.

Lapid echoed the U.S. call for a "longer and stronger" nuclear deal with Iran on Sunday, with the caveat "a bad deal is worse than no deal."

"Such an agreement can only be reached with a credible military threat, so the Iranians see they will have to pay a heavy price for their recalcitrance," Lapid said, the Post reported.

Barnea has publicly opposed a new deal, but both he and Lapid have reportedly ironed out perceptions of differences on Israel's position, with a senior official telling reporters that "there were differences in style and they were fixed."

"We want there to be an open discussion on such an open topic, but in the end all the senior factors, the prime minister, defense minister, IDF chief of staff and heads of Shin Bet and Mossad think it's bad," the source added to the Post. "But every time we enter a room, we want a discussion and to hear a range of opinions."

Barnea will brief Congress on the Israel position on the Biden's possible nuclear deal — now in line with all, according to the report.

"We say to the Americans, we will not get in line with you," a source told the Post. "We think the agreement is bad, and we'll say it. We will describe our stance to anyone who will listen."

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GlobalTalk
While Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid has reportedly been frustrated with an inability to get President Joe Biden on the phone, Israel's intelligence chief is headed to Washington this week to discuss Biden's designs on a new nuclear deal with Iran.
yairlapid, dc, israel, intelligence, nucleardeal
384
2022-18-28
Sunday, 28 August 2022 11:18 AM
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