February 20th, 2012
White House National Security Adviser Tom Donilon faced an acrimonious Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu in two hours of stormy conversation in Jerusalem Sunday, Feb. 19, according to updates reaching senior US sources in Washington. The main bones of contention were Iran’s continuing enrichment of uranium and its ongoing relocation of production to underground sites.
Israeli officials declined to give out any information on the conversation. Some even refused to confirm it took place.
According to DEBKAfile’s sources, Netanyahu accused the Obama administration of drawing Iran into resuming nuclear negotiations with world powers by an assurance that Tehran would be allowed to continue enriching uranium in any quantity, provided it promised not to build an Iranian nuclear weapon.
The prime minister charged that this permit contravened US administration guarantees to Israel on the nuclear issue and, moreover left Tehran free to upgrade its current 20 percent enrichment level to 90 percent weapons grade. This Israel cannot tolerate, said Netanyahu, so leaving its military option on the ready.
He warned the US National Security Adviser that no evidence whatsoever confirms Washington’s claim that Tehran intends suspending enrichment and other nuclear advances when negotiations begin.