Something’s afoot…

Stratfor reports that ‘Israel approached the United States with new requests for security-related purchases, including Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) bombs for the Israeli air force, as well as a significant expansion of the emergency stores held by the U.S. Army in Israel, Haaretz reported June 8. Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak and director-general of the Defense Ministry Udi Shani made the requests during conversations with senior administration and Congressional officials in Washington. Israel also seeks to increase the amount of gear held by the U.S. Army in its emergency stores in Israel, from $800 million to $1.2 billion.’

In other news, Putin has just announced that the Blue Stream II natural gas pipeline might end in Turkey rather than continue to Israel, while As-Safir accuses Israel of preparing to steal gas from fields in Lebanon’s and Cyprus’s territorial waters (links not to Safir but to English-language report in Israeli newspaper). Meanwhile, both the Iranian Red Crescent and the Lebanese are preparing to send new aid ships to Gaza, while an Israeli general reacted to suggestions by Erdogan that he might personally sail to Gaza by stating that Israel would interpret this as an act of war and kill Erdogan. In Lebanon, Munir al-Maqdah, the military commander of Fatah in Lebanon and founder of the Al Aqsa Martyr Brigades (see here for my interview with him in 2007) ‘told Agence France-Presse in a telephone interview that the Palestinian civil society and Palestinian factions in Lebanon were mulling the possibility of setting up what he called “Return Fleet” to occupied territories. “The idea of the Return Fleet to Palestine is to organize marches to penetrate the border, not only from the Lebanese side, but also from Jordan, West Bank territories and Gaza as well as all the Arab borders with Palestine,” Maqdah explained.’

These are interesting times indeed…

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