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Sharon under Pressure, Builds Fresh Team: Picks Peres?

DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 24, 2004

Shimon Peres: New blood at 80

What was behind the sudden White House acceptance Monday, February 23, of Israels Europhile former prime minister and opposition Labor leader Shimon Peres for talks with secretary of state Colin Powell and national security adviser Condoleezza Rice? Why was Peres there and not senior prime ministerial adviser Dov Weisglass, on one of his regular White House jaunts for powwows with the US presidents top advisers?

And what brought the dovish Labor leader to the royal court in Amman two weeks ago to find out what message Abdullah II had for prime minister Ariel Sharon from his meeting with Syrian president Bashar Assad? Foreign minister Silvan Shalom should have undertaken that errand. He should also have been Sharons natural emissary to Ankara at around the same time for talks with Turkish foreign minister Abdullah Gul.

DEBKAfiles political sources in Jerusalem reveal that Peres undertook all three missions at Sharons behest.

The message he carried from the Jordanian king to the Israeli prime minister was this ….

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You will see Peres picture on the wall of the Israeli Supreme Court. Please read the article about the Israeli Supreme Court on this website to see why Sharon picked his opposition to go to Washington DC to represent him. (Mike Young)

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