WASHINGTON: Israel secured supplies of ammunition from the Pentagon last month without the approval of the White House or the State Department, The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday. President Barack Obama’s administration, caught off guard as it tried to restrain Israel’s campaign in Gaza, has since tightened controls on arms shipments to Israel, the newspaper said, quoting US and Israeli officials. The newspaper said Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had a particularly tense phone call on Wednesday and that the Israeli leader wanted US security assurances in return for a long-term deal with Hamas. But the newspaper said Netanyahu had essentially “pushed the administration aside,” reducing US officials to bystanders instead of their usual role as mediators. State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf disputed the article.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 15th,2014.