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Photo: Ronen Zvulun/AFP/Getty Images

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has decided to move all security cabinet meetings from the prime minister's office to a high-tech underground secure bunker in Jerusalem which hosts the national crisis management center, Israeli officials tell me.

Why it matters: The decision comes as the threat of escalation with Iran is growing. The cold war between Israel and Iran turned hot in the last three months amid the struggle for influence in Syria. Israel increased its airstrikes against Iranian and pro-Iranian forces in Syria as part of an attempt to block and roll back Iranian military entrenchment in the war-torn country.

The Israeli officials said two recent security cabinet meetings were held in the secure bunker and, according to the schedules of several ministers, the next four security cabinet meetings are also set to take place in the sensitive facility.

  • Several cabinet members told me Netanyahu moved the security cabinet meetings to the underground bunker because of the fear of leaks from sensitive discussions on Syria and Iran. Staffers of cabinet ministers can't enter the facility and the ministers can't use their phones in the bunker.
  • Another reason is the fear of espionage by foreign intelligence services, as much harder to gather intelligence on meetings in the underground bunker.

Go deeper

California governor declares drought emergency in most counties

A sign in April on the outskirts of Buttonwillow in California's Kern County, one of the top agriculture producing counties in the San Joaquin Valley, after historically low winter rainfall. Photo: Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) extended a drought emergency declaration to cover 41 of the state's 58 counties on Monday.

Why it matters: Most of California and the American West are experiencing an "extreme" or "exceptional" drought, per the U.S. Drought Monitor. Newsom and other officials are concerned California could experience a repeat of the catastrophic 2020 wildfire season.

3 hours ago - World

Jerusalem crisis escalates after Hamas and Israel trade rocket fire

Israeli air strikes in the southern Gaza Strip on May 10. Photo: Said Khatib/AFP via Getty Images

Nine children were among 20 Palestinians killed in Israeli airstrikes after Hamas fired dozens of rockets at Jerusalem for the first time since 2014 Monday, per AP and Reuters.

The big picture: The rockets come after escalating violence in Jerusalem has injured 250 Palestinians and several Israeli police officers during protests over the planned evictions of Palestinian families from their homes that began Friday.

Pelosi's Republican playbook

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

As Republicans fight among themselves, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is showing the myriad ways she deals with the GOP herself.

Between the lines: We've seen Pelosi cut opponents off at the knees, like she did with President Trump, or pretend to forget their names, as she did to Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.). Now she's feeding oppo research against her House counterpart, Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), so others can use the same harsh rhetoric to frame the Republicans as the party of dysfunction.