This is the kind of stuff that makes you really wonder what our president's secret or unspoken intentions are with our friend Israel.
JERUSALEM – Unlike the Bush administration, the staff of President Obama is not coordinating its policy on Iran or the greater Middle East with Israel and has not been informing the Jewish state of its plans or recent diplomatic developments in area, according to sources in Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office.
The silence extends to U.S. talks with the Palestinians, the sources said.
"Our intention and our hope as we go to Washington is to establish close intimate cooperative relationships on these sensitive matters," a top Netanyahu official told WND yesterday.
The official was speaking about Netanyahu's May 18th visit to the White House.
According to other sources in the prime minister's office, Israel has been obtaining the vast majority of its information regarding U.S. plans and advances for the Middle East from third parties, mostly European diplomats.
This is in stark contrast to Bush's eight-year presidency, during which the White House and State Department routinely briefed Israeli counterparts on Middle East affairs to the extent that the majority of official U.S. and Israeli statements on various policy issues were heavily coordinated.
A recent example of the Obama administration leaving Israel in the dark was information received by Jerusalem officials of a U.S. deadline of October for Iran to show progress in talks over their nuclear program. That deadline was apparently set by Obama's Middle East envoy Dennis Ross.
The information of the deadline - first reported by Haaretz yesterday and confirmed by WND - was discovered in Jerusalem not via U.S. sources but from third party European diplomats who were briefed on the matter.
"Right now there is next to no communication coming to us from the White House," said a source in Netanyahu's office.
The source warned against interpreting the matter as evidencing an anti-Israel bias from the Obama administration.
"Look, there is a new administration in the U.S. and a new one here (in Israel)," the source said. "There hasn't been so much time yet to establish channels."
Still, the source noted the extent of the blackout on information from the U.S. was "not usual practice."