Barack Obama’s Israel trip: Benjamin Netanyahu will learn that he can insult the president and fail to advance the peace process and still land a presidential visit from the White House. – Slate Magazine.
The author makes some fair points, and I have never been a huge cheerleader for either Mr. Netanyahu or Mr. Obama.
Nonetheless, Ms. Zacharia overlooks an important political truth. I suspect Obama is not going to Israel to praise Bibi, but to give heart to the growing and increasingly viable moderate middle in Israeli politics.
The government just formed in Jerusalem is perhaps one of the most interesting, intelligent, and hopeful administrations that Israel has seen in a decade or more. It finds itself less under the sway of nationalist fundamentalists and more under those who seek practical, intelligent ways forward.
Israel cannot slam the door on peace, nor can it continue to hive off large chunks of its real estate without concessions in return. The new administration collectively gets that. If Obama does not step in to show support now, he is by lack of action giving aid and comfort to extremists on both ends of the spectrum and on both sides of the Jewish-Arab divide.
It is disappointing that a former Jersualem bureau chief of the Washington Post completely misses this point.
- Obama and Netanyahu Have Reached Detente in Time for Israel Visit – The Daily Beast (warsclerotic.wordpress.com)
- In Israel, Obama’s Blunders Precede Him (conservativeread.com)