K.S. Rajan (6 Oct 2011)
"BY BILL KOENIG on oct5"


 
 
Some in Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office are taking comments this week by U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta as a direct assault against the Israeli leader.
Upon arriving in Israel on Sunday, Panetta argued Israel carried a portion of the blame for its deteriorating relationship with Turkey and Egypt.
''There's not much question in my mind that they (Israel) maintain that [military] edge,'' he said. ''But the question you have to ask is: Is it enough to maintain a military edge if you're isolating yourself in the diplomatic arena?"
Continued Panetta: "In this dramatic time in the Middle East, when there have been so many changes, it's not a good situation for Israel to become increasingly isolated. And that's what's happening.''
Panetta made the remarks at a press conference. He was flanked by Israel's defense minister, Ehud Barak, who is also an opposition leader