Ruffled feathers in Cairo. Lieberman
Photo: Alex Kolomoisky

WikiLeaks: Avigdor Lieberman 'no bogeyman'

In leaked classified cable, former US ambassador to Israel describes newly appointed FM as staunch Jewish nationalist who doesn't trust Israel's Arabs

A classified document authored by a US official following the appointment of Yisrael Beiteinu chairman Avigdor Lieberman as Foreign Minister describes the Israeli official as a man who enjoys his political status and who strives to become prime minister.


Former American Ambassador to Israel, James Cunningham, wrote that the Moldovan-born politician is known for his controversial remarks and is responsible for his public image as a racist.


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Cunningham stated that Lieberman enraged not only his local constituency, but also stirred a diplomatic storm in Cairo after saying that if (now ousted) President Hosni Mubarak refuses to visit Israel, he can go to hell, adding that Israel can bomb Egypt's Aswan dam.


Under the title "not necessarily the bogeyman", Cunningham claims that many of the Israeli foreign minister's political nuances disappear within his bombastic rhetoric and that most of his comments are aimed at making headlines.

'Wants to become PM.' Lieberman (Photo: EPA)
'Wants to become PM.' Lieberman (Photo: EPA)


The former ambassador to Israel also noted that Washington is well aware that Lieberman is not the next Yossi Beilin, who he described as a peace supporter and the person behind the Geneva Initiative.


Unlike Beilin, Lieberman was described as a staunch Jewish nationalist who does not trust Israel's Arab neighbors as well as many of Israel's Arab citizens.


The former ambassador also commented on Lieberman's legal situation, saying that the Yisrael Beiteinu chairman used the legal proceedings against him to boost his political career by portraying himself as a victim who is being targeted by political opponents.


Cunningham concluded by saying that Lieberman is definitely "not the boss," despite his role as Israel's number one diplomat, and that he is not likely to be one of the main decision makers on issues relating to the United States, the Palestinians and Syria.




פרסום ראשון: 09.04.11, 00:14
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