Israel

Israeli Newspaper Publishes Alleged Transcript of Tense Phone Call Between Obama and Netanyahu; Doesn't Resemble Reality, NSC Tweets

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he's lost the gift of gab because you don't believe in it anymore, you monsters
White House

Channel 1 in Israel released a transcript in Hebrew it claimed was of a tense phone call between President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The Times of Israel provided an English translation:

Barack Obama: I demand that Israel agrees to an immediate, unilateral ceasefire and halt all offensive activities, in particular airstrikes.

Benjamin Netanyahu: And what will Israel receive in exchange for a ceasefire?

BO: I believe that Hamas will cease its rocket fire — silence will be met with silence.

BN: Hamas broke all five previous ceasefires. It's a terrorist organization dedicated to the destruction of Israel.

BO: I repeat and expect Israel to stop all its military activities unilaterally. The pictures of destruction in Gaza distance the world from Israel's position.

BN: Kerry's proposal was completely unrealistic and gives Hamas military and diplomatic advantages.

BO: Within a week of the end of Israel's military activities, Qatar and Turkey will begin negotiations with Hamas based on the 2012 understandings, including Israel's commitment to removing the siege and restrictions on Gaza.

BN: Qatar and Turkey are the biggest supporters of Hamas. It's impossible to rely on them to be fair mediators.

BO: I trust Qatar and Turkey. Israel is not in the position that it can choose its mediators.

BN: I protest because Hamas can continue to launch rockets and use tunnels for terror attacks –

BO: (interrupting Netanyahu) The ball's in Israel's court, and it must end all its military activities.

Neri Zilber, a journalist from the Washington Institute for Near East Studies, tweeted that the transcript came from an American source, meaning it was likely translated into Hebrew by Channel 1 and then back into English by the Times of Israel.

State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki said that, if true, the leak of the transcript represented "a severe violation of a private diplomatic discussion," while the Obama White House's National Security Council tweeted a few minutes ago that the transcript bears no "resemblance to reality" and that it was "shocking and disappointing someone would sink to misrepresenting" a private conversation by fabricating a transcript.

UPDATE: Despite the Israeli government also calling the transcript a fabrication, the Channel 1 reporter who broke the story insists it is authentic, came from a "senior American official," but says the transcript represented only portions of the conversation.

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  1. It doesn’t exactly read like a real, natural conversation. I’m going to go ahead and call BS without some really strong corroborating evidence.

    1. I echo that sentiment. I was just about to post that people don’t talk like that.

      1. Yeah, sounds too scripted to be true, I’m thinking bullshit as well.

      2. Well… if it’s gone English – Hebrew – English, it’s probably going to end up reading a bit stilted.

        1. That’s a good point, rts, but even accounting for “signal loss” in the translation, I don’t think people in a natural conversation jump from talking point to talking point like that.

          Again, this is just a gut reaction. Maybe politicians do talk like that when speaking to each other. They are a different breed after all.

          1. Agreed. It’s not just odd wording. The entire tone reminds me of the dialog you’d find in a crappy mid-90s video game.

            1. ALL YOUR GAZA ARE BELONG TO US

            2. Netanyahu to Obama: “Pwned, n00b.”

              1. +1 Railgun Ammo

          2. I’m leaning towards the “this can’t be real” side as well, just thought I’d throw that out there.

            (On the other hand, if it is faked, I’ve got to believe Mossad, or whoever did this, is better at this than what we’ve been presented here).

            1. I’ve got to believe Mossad, or whoever did this, is better at this than what we’ve been presented here

              Budget cuts?

            2. Mossad wants you to believe it wasn’t them.

        2. There’s ‘stilted’ and then there’s the actual substance of the statements, some of which are beyond-cartoonish fabrications.

          An American president… telling an Israeli leader, “hush up = i trust Qatar and Turkey to keep your best interests in mind”?

          Sorry, I’d accept that the Koch brothers drink the blood of orphan babies before i’d believe a American politician ever said *that*.

          1. Hey now, nobody ever proved those babies were orphans.

          2. The teleprompter does break…

        3. It didn’t go English-Hebrew-English, it went Doublespeak-Hebrew-English.

          For example, when it says “We demand…”, in Doublespeak that would be “It might be advantageous for both of us if you…”.

          It might also have been “We would be very pleased if you …”

      3. Ditto. And since our local linguist agrees, I think its clear.

        However, I could see the double translation, with some editing, come out that way.

      4. I was just about to post that people don’t talk like that.

        Real people don’t. Politicians? Hard to say.

    2. Agreed.

      the entire thing reads like a very bad paraphrase and distillation that is reworded to create the impression of ‘uppity and huffy american’ vs ‘logical and informed Israeli’

      Also, lines like “i trust Turkey” are clearly complete utter fabrications. Even Bo aint that dumb..

      1. ….are you sure? He’s pretty stupid.

        1. No. Not possible.

  2. “Barack Obama: I demand that…”

    while i have *no* doubt B.O. said something to this effect in some way, i seriously doubt that the word ‘demand’ ever passed his lips, given that this is close to #1 in the list of “things never to say in politics”

    1. It’s lacking the many ers and ahs and pointless circumlocutions we’ve come to expect from the World Greatest Speaker.

      1. Perhaps his diplomatic phone calls are teleprompted.

      2. That and the brevity give it away.

    2. It’d be like a red line in the sand.

    3. Politician-speak for “demand” is,

      ‘our position is that an end to hostilities provides the benefit of X to you, and additionally allows for Y to happen such that you in the end get what you want…albeit it will look like you’re giving something up when you’re really not…. ‘

      You never say what *you* want in politics. You tell the other guy why doing X is in their benefit. its called “SELLING”.

    4. Yeah, but #2 is don’t tell the other team “FU, I won, I got a mandate, so sit down and shut up” and we all know that happened.

    5. Does B. O. stand for Body Odor, or WUT!?!?!? We all KNOW what BO stands for… I rest my (brain)-case!!!!

  3. BO: I repeat and expect Israel to stop all its military activities unilaterally. The pictures of destruction in Gaza distance the world from Israel’s position.

    Obama’s a highhanded stupid twat, but even he wouldn’t phrase his stupid demands this highhandedly.

  4. This has to be BS. There was not a single instance of an “uh”, “let me be clear”, or “stinkburger.”

    1. Winner so far….

  5. On the third read-through, I can only say =

    This is “Worldnet Daily”/Newsmax-dumb

    I’d hope our Reason interns were at least wise enough to suggest that there exists the possibility that a news item is “total bullshit” before passing it on.

    1. For a bit of context, Like BBC 1, Israel’s Channel One is operated by the government. I believe this was a psyops intended, as you noted upthread, to justify Israel’s position by arguing against a strawman Obama.

      Problem is, people don’t like being lied to. So, if false, it’s going to blow up in Israel’s face. Should have just went with Bibi arguing with an empty chair.

      1. If that’s the case, isn’t that a farcically stupid plan on the Israeli gov’s part? They risk alienating their most powerful and important ally for…what exactly? A little more support from the Israeli populace that, as I understand, already supports them?

        1. paranoid android|7.29.14 @ 4:09PM|#

          If that’s the case, isn’t that a farcically stupid plan on the Israeli gov’s part?”

          Maybe.

          As I noted = imagine if Israeli intelligence spent their days reading WND/Newsmax, and thinking “this is how Americans all think! Feed them stuff like this.”?

      2. Hmmm. I doubt Israeli intelligence is so stupid as to produce this crap. It looks like someone wants it to look like an Israeli attack on Obama/Kerry. Therefore, it was created by State or CIA (probably State) and leaked to some dumbass at Channel One.

        1. So, it was a false-flag psyops.

          1. That’s an interesting theory. Question is, were we smart enough to do it?

            1. Are we smart enough? Obviously, no. Therefore, I’m wrong.

          2. They pulled a Serbian Jew Double-bluff!

  6. I dunno, given a few layers of lost in translation. Obama really is that kind shithead.

  7. This sounds like BS and I don’t think double-translation can account for it…I sure hope it’s BS. If it even approximately close to reality Israel should send the US ambassador home and never accept USG cash again.

    1. Did you write it? And were you masturbating while doing so? It sounds like a fantasy of yours (though without images of Muslims being nuked, of course)

      1. This doesn’t even make sense, in addition to being puerile.

        1. So what you’re saying is that it suits you pretty well, then. Or is there just not enough lens flare?

          1. I was referring to Bo’s comment which should be pretty obvious to someone who isn’t stupid ie not you.

            1. Yeah, I’m well aware. I said the traits you ascribed to it (nonsensical and puerile) suit you. Even your meager intellect should have been enough to understand that, but apparently not.

        2. It makes sense, the transcript sounds like how ultra-Likudians such as yourself see Obama dealing with Israel.

      2. Bo Cara Esq.|7.29.14 @ 4:35PM|#

        Did you write it? And were you masturbating while doing so? It sounds like a fantasy of yours (though without images of Muslims being nuked, of course)

        ————————————

        Bo Cara Esq.|7.27.14 @ 2:21PM|#

        I mean, show me an instance of me not respecting someone on this board (and don’t include ones where that person has started by cursing or insulting me). Show me.

        1. “and don’t include ones where that person has started by cursing or insulting me”

          You missed a few threads today I guess.

        2. Epic Bo Trolling, Gilmore.

          I will drink a really good beer tonight in your honor.

    2. In that case I hope it is reality I’d like to stop sending them money

  8. “This is United States calling, are we reaching…”

    *click*

    “See, he keeps hanging up. And it’s a man answering.”

    1. +1

    2. ^^_yes_^^

  9. Since I have never had a phone conversation with either one of them, I am not prepared to say this does or does not sound like them. Does it sound stilted? Sure. But that could be due to translation.

    I understand the concerns over this. But I don’t see how you can dismiss it out of hand either. It certainly fits with what you would expect such a conversation to be.

    1. “Does it sound stilted?”
      SOUND? stilted?
      No one is hearing this. We are all reading it after how many translations? This “sounds” different to everyone depending on what they want to “hear”.

      1. I am hearing it as I read it. Can you not vocalize something in your head?

        1. Sure I can. But is my imagined vocalization in any way matching the actual original vocalizations? No way to know.

          How many times on a text conversation have you assumed sarcasm that was in fact meant seriously? And that is without being translated to another language and back again.

  10. The Obama administration would not tell even a smidgen of a falsehood. If you like your invasion, you can keep it.

    1. *The Obama administration would not tell even a smidgen of a falsehood. If you like your invasion, you can keep it.*

      I know, right? And Obama would never treat an “ally” like complete and utter garbage, either!

      Also, he totally and for sure didn’t abandon Bibi in the White House a few years back while he went to eat a 3,000 calorie meal with his family.

  11. The brevity is what convinced me it was fake. Obama adds a couple layers of fatuousness to everything he says.

  12. I’m not sure I get why Beebs is being so pissy toward the Americans. What’s his leverage? Domestic US politics, which one might assume to be intractably pro-Israel? He’s sure doing his best to change that.

    1. LOL no he’s not.

  13. I don’t think this is real, but

    the transcript bears no “resemblance to reality

    Neither does anything else the man says.

  14. In all seriousness, when Hamas doesn’t agree to a ceasefire, that means what exactly? That they agree to keep having the shit beat out of them?

    They figure they’re got the cameras on the Israelis now, and they think that means Israel will lose in the court of world opinion?

    Meanwhile, other than to appease the United States, why would Israel want a ceasefire? If Hamas doesn’t want Israel to stop trying to beat the shit out of them, and Israel isn’t anywhere near done doing what they’ve set out to do, why would Israel agree to a ceasefire?

    In addition to everything else both sides think about us, they must think we’re unbelievably annoying. If this transcript is a complete fabrication, it rings true insofar as it captures Obama’s weird belief in his own messianic power.

    In his own mind, Obama is the way and the life. How frightening! If he could, I bet he’d grant all those displaced Palestinians asylum here in the U.S. The audacity of hope, indeed.

    1. OT: I saw your post on AM links about having trouble with Reason/Firefox. Not being pedantic but what kind of trouble, exactly? Trouble loading? Trouble following links?

      1. It crashes flash, every time.

        I get an error message asking me if it should shut flash down. Most of the time, if I say yes, it crashes flash, and I can go on–but trying to type, etc. is extremely slow.

        Sometimes it just hangs on the error message, and I just have to kill FireFox.

        I have the lastest plugins as of yesterday.

        I have no problems on any other site, and I don’t have problems on this site in Chrome. And the problem seems to have something to do with the autoplay ad on the front page.

        1. Yeah, I’ve seen the same thing. And it does seem to be connected to the Flash player since, once Flash crashes, it tends to be a little faster than before the crash. Flash doesn’t seem to be a problem on other websites for me.

          I’m using a Macbook and I also notice that the laptop runs really hot as the Flash player kicks in. I’ve opened up the Systems window and it does seem to be using a lot of memory.

          Unfortunately, I don’t have any answers. The only thing that makes me happy is that it seems to be a software problem rather than something with my computer.

          1. Yeah, I like Firefox because I have a plethora of little search engines I use for various things, and Firefox accommodates that really well.

            Sometimes you really want to use something other than Google, plus, you know, Borg and all that.

            I think it’s got something to do with the code on that one autoplay ad on the Hit & Run front page. That ad sucks. And it’s always starting and stopping again. It makes this noise blurp when the ad restarts, too.

            Maybe they should have another pledge drive and kill that one ad?

        2. I have that same problem with Chrome on all websites. I have tried every fix. I have disabled different versions of Flash and reloaded Chrome all to no avail.

          I had been giving thought to an alternate browser but now am confused.

    2. “Meanwhile, other than to appease the United States, why would Israel want a ceasefire?”

      Because continuing the war against Gaza is not accomplishing Israel’s goals: mainly splitting the Palestinian population and sullying Hamas’ image. These attacks tend to unify rather than divide. The stated goal of the attack on Gaza is to stop the rocket fire into Israel. This has also failed and rockets continue to be fired into Israel.

      Israel might want a ceasefire because the goals of their attack are not being fulfilled. Killing a few hundred women and children every other year or so will not bring peace.

      1. And firing rockets into Israel won’t bring peace either.

        Watch what happens when Hamas runs out of rockets.

        1. “And firing rockets into Israel won’t bring peace either.”

          It might help lift the siege. They will keep international attention focused on the conflict. The Palestinians won’t be able to inflict a military defeat on Israel.

  15. Unless the newspaper is designed to target millennial readers, I fail to see how this story matters.

    1. I think Obama’s support for Israel, or, rather, questions regarding that support, that’s a big deal in Israel, and it’s probably a big deal to the Democrats’ fundraising domestically, as well.

      When was the last time you saw a U.S. president in open opposition to Israel?

      …much less in regards to Israel’s dealing with a terrorist organization?

  16. The fact that Obama at no point in the conversation called BiBi a racist is pretty strong evidence this is fake.

  17. it’s funny if read in Mayor Quimby voice.

    this post paid for by Quimby for Mayor.

    Vote Quimby!

  18. Pfft, just have the NSA release the audio

  19. What WOULD the US do if more the 50% of its territory came under incessant rocket fire endangering its citizens,
    I’m all for nonaggression and minding my own but hey you lob a fucking rocket at me then I will retaliate,
    Israel is not in a position to be passive about this shit,

    1. “What WOULD the US do if more the 50% of its territory came under incessant rocket fire endangering its citizens.”

      Just take a look at what we did to Iraq after 9/11 and multiply that by some number.

      It might look at what we did to Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945.

      It’s ironic, too, because although my Arab and Muslim friends never really understood the point, I think the reason Israel restrains itself as much as it does is because of our relationship with the U.S.

      I don’t think Israel is aggressive towards the Palestinians because of America’s relationship with Israel; if it weren’t for the U.S., I think Israel would have taken the gloves off a long time ago.

      And, again, just for the record, I’m not saying this is the way things should be or that it’s right–but I think that’s the way it is.

      1. What did Hamas think would be the Israeli response when it kidnapped three young Israeli men and murdered them?

        It knew Israel would respond with overwhelming force, and it knew they knew that, by conducting all their military activities within the civilian population, many, many civilians would be killed.

        They not only were aware of this: they took adavantage of it, like they always do! Hamas knows they cannot militarily defeat Israel, so the next best option is to maximize the number of Palestinian civilian deaths as possible, blame it on Israel, and hopefully leverage the inevitable international outrage to get concessions from Israel.

        It’s realpolitik to Hamas.

          1. “Again, their intentions are printed in black and white. Why do we insist on this farce?”

            I’m the last person to throw around the race card, but I don’t know what else it could be.
            What other country in the world would be expected to just lay down and die?

          2. Likud Platform since 2006:

            “HE PLAN:

            The Immediate Phase:

            1. Talks on the establishment of a Palestinian State will cease effective immediately.

            2. Israel will declare its right to exist within its current borders, with no further surrender of territory.

            3. Israel will annex a designated part of Judea and Samaria.”

        1. “What did Hamas think would be the Israeli response when it kidnapped three young Israeli men and murdered them?”

          Hamas doesn’t do much thinking, but in this instance remember that after the murder of the teens allegedly by two Hamas members, Israel engaged in some pretty provocative responses that could not necessarily be predicted, and only after that did Hamas fire start firing rockets at Israel again.

          1. ” and only after that did Hamas fire start firing rockets at Israel again.”

            AGAIN ?

            You mean this isn’t the first time ?

  20. The transcript makes “Obama” sound forceful and decisive. That’s how I know it’s a fake.

  21. There is not a single “let me be clear” or “there are those who say” in this. Clearly not BO.

    1. Ok. Now I am completely persuaded that it’s fake … it has to be.

  22. Add me on to the skeptic list. That said, what in the conversation differs from the substance of what the U.S. proposed to Israel?

  23. BO: The ball’s in Israel’s court, and it must end all its military activities.

    BN: Okay, then, call them kinetic policing activities.

    1. Yes.

      It’s just a man made disaster !

      Or work place violence.

  24. the Obama White House’s National Security Council tweeted a few minutes ago that the transcript bears no “resemblance to reality” and that it was “shocking and disappointing someone would sink to misrepresenting” a private conversation by fabricating a transcript.

    YES! Just like the White House, I am shocked, SHOCKED that someone might misrepresent something in politics. This cannot stand!

    1. Their response sounds to me like a non-denial denial.

      They’re not saying the message is false. They’re saying it misrepresents the conversation.

      They’re not saying the conversation didn’t happen–they’re saying it doesn’t bear a resemblance to the reality.

  25. Barack Obama: Four!

    Benjamin Netanyahu: Huh?

    1. It’s FORE !

      not four

  26. Obama’s on the golf course playing his 84th round after being re-elected. This is obviously bullshit.

  27. The real question is: why is America wasting time and money on this conflict? Why don’t the Europeans fix this mess? They created it after all.

  28. Does anyone really believe that BHO went sentences, paragraphs even, without uttering “now let me be clear”?

  29. Yet further proof of Odildo’s terrorist ties. Utterly ANTI-AMERICAN in every sense of the phrase.

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