Netanyahu on election eve: Approves 1,200 new settlement homes while promising Israel won’t wait for US to attack Iran

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Benjamin Netanyahu (Photo: Platon)

Looks like Benjamin Netanyahu has been reading Nate Silver and is getting ready for life in with a second Obama administration. Netanyahu is making headlines from a bellicose interview he gave with Israeli television reiterating that Israel will attack Iran with or without American support.

From the New York Times:

“When David Ben-Gurion declared the foundation of the state of Israel, was it done with American approval?” Mr. Netanyahu asked in an interview broadcast on Israel’s Channel 2 on Monday night. “When Levi Eshkol was forced to act in order to loosen the siege before 1967, was it done with the Americans’ support?

“If someone sits here as the prime minister of Israel and he can’t take action on matters that are cardinal to the existence of this country, its future and its security, and he is totally dependent on receiving approval from others, then he is not worthy of leading,” Mr. Netanyahu added. “I can make these decisions.”

The same news program that featured the interview with Netanyahu also reported that Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak ordered the Israeli military to “prepare for an imminent attack on the Iranian nuclear program” in 2010, but were rebuffed by the Israeli military and intelligence establishment who saw the two as over stepping their bounds and attempting to “steal a war.”

Meanwhile, perhaps taking advantage of the world’s eyes being focused on Dixville Notch, the Israeli government announced it is moving forward with construction on 1,200 new settlement homes in East Jerusalem and Ariel.

From the Associated Press:

The government announced late Monday that it was accepting bids from contractors to build the homes in two Jewish enclaves in east Jerusalem, Ramot and Pisgat Zeev. It also reopened bidding for 72 homes in Ariel, deep inside the West Bank.

Anti-settlement watchdog Peace Now accused the government of issuing the tenders when the world’s attention is on the American presidential election. The projects were all originally announced months ago.

Daniel Seidemann posted a map of the building tenders on Twitter:

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(h/t Ira Glunts)

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