Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Deception Is Binyamin Netanyahu's Modus Operandi

Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Deception Is Binyamin Netanyahu's Modus Operandi

Article excerpt

Deception Is Binyamin Netanyahu's Modus Operandi

Perhaps it's naïiveté, but I still have faith in President Lincoln's claim that you can fool all the people some of the tune, some of the people all of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all of the tune. Could it be then that Israel's Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu has proven Lincoln wrong?

Not a week passes without the Israeli press disclosing new evidence of the prime minister's deceit and duplicity. Upon his return from Wye Mills, Netanyahu notified the public that his was a better agreement than the one initiated by the late Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. Rabin, Bibi said, "promised the Palestinians 92 percent of the West Bank; I gave them much less."

How did Bibi come up with 92 percent? According to the former head of the Mossad (Israel's intelligence service), this figure is a chimera of the prime minister's imagination. Leah Rabin agrees. During a protest commemorating the third anniversary of her husband's assassination, she proclaimed that Bibi is a liar who is cynically exploiting the fact that Rabin can no longer reply.

A few days later when the Wye memorandum was finally distributed among cabinet and Knesset members, it became clear that there were substantial differences between the Hebrew version and the authentic English agreement. Bibi, it turns out, had his assistant, Danny Naveh, add numerous clauses to the Hebrew document. Since most Israelis read English, and read it fairly well, this machination was also detected.

Netanyahu's deception is not confined to issues relating to the Palestinian question. A number of months ago he appeared on TV and stated that Israel must continue to develop its high-tech industry by encouraging the use of personal computers in every household. Thus, the prime minister continued, "I have decided to repeal all computer taxes. …

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