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May 19, 2009
Obama holds the cards in talks with Israel’s Netanyahu

President Barack Obama talks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday. Photo: White House

Popular democracy and a will for peace weigh heavily in the relations between the leaders of Israel and the United States. As it happens, Barack Obama, the new U.S. president, is a very popular leader whose appeal extends beyond U.S. borders — even to Israel. And the prime minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, is the head of a fragile coalition where he must pay lip service to the cause of promoting a secure and just peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

Netanyahu has opposed a two-state solution in the Middle East and when he took office this spring said a Palestinian solution was secondary to his focus on Iran. “The biggest danger to humanity, and to our state Israel, stems from the possibility that a radical regime will get nuclear weapons, or a nuclear weapon will be armed by a radical regime.” 

Yesterday, President Obama set the order of business squarely with a resumption of Palestinian talks. The goal, Obama said, is a separate Palestinian state.

Netanyahu may not like it, but he may not have a choice. Obama has chosen the path of diplomacy, reaching out to Iran, and waiting for the result of elections in that country next month before taking his additional steps toward dialogue.

Since Netanyahu took power in March, speculation has centered on whether and when he might set a deadline and use Israeli air strikes in an attempt to cripple Iran’s nuclear capacity. There are precedents — Israel bombed Syrian nuclear facilities in 2007 and Iraq’s Osiris nuclear facility in 1981.

Israel’s Haaretz newspaper reported that top U.S. officials warned Netanyahu before his visit to Washington “that Israel not surprise the U.S. with an Israeli military operation against Iran.”

It’s not difficult to imagine what would be happening now if a Republican president were in the White House and if Netanyahu had a stronger hold on Israel’s Knesset. The policy is clearly spelled out in a guest opinion column in the Washington Post.

John P. Hannah, who was former Vice President Dick Cheney’s national security adviser, clearly sides with Netanyahu. “Successful denuclearization of hostile states is most likely to occur as a result of regime change, coercive diplomacy or military action, not U.S. pledges of mutual respect.”

Regime change was the order of the day for Hannah in the run up to the Iraq War. He and I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby were key in gathering the thin and fake information on Iraq’s non-existent nuclear program prior to the war.

Cheney and Hannah argue that the United States and the world were safer under the neoconservative policy that held sway during the Bush administration — strongly aligned with Netanyahu and his allies in Israel. At the same time, he implies that U.S. policy in the Middle East under Bush was successful.

He writes: “…given the history of tyrannical Middle Eastern regimes seeking nuclear arms, we must also acknowledge that the Obama strategy reflects the triumph of hope over experience.”

– Peter Eisner

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Comments

8 comments

#8

President Obama should have gotten on his knees in appreciation for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu even coming to the US. We are very fortunate that Benjamin Netanyahu even speaks to President Obama after some of the attitudes and comment Obama has made. Treating Benjamin Netanyahu so shabby is typical of how unlike all our other previous intelligent and respected presidents. Obama is makiung history allright. History which will become very obvious when our Lord returns to earth and then Obamas’ kee will bow before a great Jewish person, the one and only great Son of God, Jesus Christ. The bible tells us on that great day, every knee will bow because it is evident Jesus is present and no one can deny HIm. for some it will be too late. God’s word tells us that the ones who support his people and his homeland will be in their favor and those who do not will suffer.

#7

There is what we hear…
and then there is what is truly heard…
which might be like a choice
being split into two
Peremtory Factors in which one choice
seems like the other but does not produce the same results…
because the Geometrical Elements
are mutually exclusive
or by Pure Essence…
are entirely different.

One might look then into a Theoretical Mirror
and begin to wish that one could see the True Face of the Whole…

but only if the Mirror of Thought being used by the Observing Mind is able to detach from an unnecessary adhesiveness to any untried or unknown Preconceived Theory and is not showing only a kind of Mental Allowance for a (only hypothetically present) Imaginary Image which no True Mirror could reciprocate by any Truthful Effect…but the Reflection of one’s own Mind by which one may view the full and/or partial qualities of the Proportions of the Internal Mirror though not in its Complete Entirety unless the Mirror in its Entirety is being used with fullest possible Awareness even by attempt as if it had been already broken into Segments for Concious Understanding…
into Parts of a Whole from which renewed Thinking may derive…
or been divided into Quadrants evenly At Will and by the choice hard to make…
or into a more random:
Million Pieces Of Seemingly Viable Illusions about the Ongoing Processes of the Events of the Whole of the Current World Scenario betokening all of those pieces of things which remain in remnants as those military shatterings which may prove sharp to the theological-politcal touch and ever in need of delicate handling when picking up the prevailing opinions of the Many and the Few which are ever sparkling enticingly like Wishfulfilling Jewels those crystals scattered upon an imaginary floor of but one Level of Conciousness which may provide enduring security in its Limited Quadrant…if the Correct Awareness is produced multilaterally and at multilevel stages.

#6

LOWER CASE I AGREE WITH YOU NOT TO CAUSE TO OTHERS PAIN BUT WHEN YOU ARE ATTACKED AND KILLED FOR YEARS AT THE WHIMS OF ENTITY BECAUSE WE ARE TOO JEWISH, WE ARE COMMUNISTS, WE ARE CAPITALISTS OR SIMPLY BECAUSE WE BUILD A COUNTRY OF OUR OWN. ARE WE SUPPOSE TO SIT AS WE DID FOR MANY YEARS AND CENTURIES AND WAIT TO BE DESTROY? OUR GOVERNMENT WAS RESTRAINED BY THE EU, USA, THE UN NOT TO RESPOND TO HAMAS ATTACKS ON OUR CIVILIANS WHO WERE TERRORIZED AND KILLED THAT WAS RIGHT? WHEN OR IF YOUR COUNTRY IS ATTACKED DO YOU EXPECT YOUR GOVERNMENT TO PROTECT YOU OR GIVE THE OTHER TIME TO CONTINUE? AND NO LOWER CASE WE DID NOT DISPLACED ANYBODY WHEN WE CREATED OUR STATE NUMEROUS JEWS WERE LIVING THERE FOR CENTURIES AND THE ARAB POPULATION LEFT UNDER THEIR LEADERS ORDERS SO THEY COULD DESTROY THE JEWS AND YOU CAN STILL FIND THE NEWSPAPERS OF THAT TIME ASSERTING TO THIS FACT. AND YES WE WERE DISPLACED NOT ONLY FROM EUROPE BUT FROM THE ARAB COUNTRIES WHO MADE OUR LIVES SO BAD THAT WE HAD TO LEAVE WITHOUT OUR PROPRIETIES AND WITHOUT COMPENSATION. MAKE RIGHT IS MAKING RIGHT. AND LOWER CASE LISTEN TO WHAT IS SPEW IN AL JEZEERA AND ALL ARAB COUNTRIES THEY DO NOT WANT TO RECOGNIZE ISRAEL EVEN IF WE MAKE A THIRD PALESTINIAN STATE UNTIL WE WILL GIVE THEM MORE AND MORE. YES LIKE YOU I WILL FIGHT FOR MY COUNTRY AND LOWER CASE IF THIS IS NOT RIGHT SO BE IT.
ONE MORE THING WHY DO YOU THINK THE KURDS ARE FIGHTING THE TURKISH ARMY? WHY THE BASQUE ARE FIGHTING THE SPANISH?

#5

Capital letters do not man a wrong a right. Capital letters does not make immorality become morality. Morality #1: We should live in such a way as to cause the least amount of pain and suffering to other living beings. The Kurds and Basque have been on the land a long time. They are not displacing Turks, Iraqis, Iranians or Spaniards.

We should stop fooling ourselves into believing that there and be moral justice in the Middle East. People there speak in the Capital Letters of their firm beliefs. It is an absurd situation that only the collective humanity can solve. Unless, of course, it all goes up in smoke before sanity and compassion comes to the “holy’” land.

#4

THE PRESSURE ON ISRAEL TO DESTROY SETTLEMENTS IS TO MY VIEW HIGHLY IMMORAL AND RACIST. THE INTERNATIONAL HUCOMMUNITY FORBIDE ANY ENTITY TO REMOVE A SECTION OF POPULATION TO CREATE FACTS ON THE GROUND FOR ANOTHER ENTITY HOWEVER WHEN IT COME TO ISRAEL THE SAME COMMUNITY DO FIND NORMAL AND MORAL TO REMOVE JEWS TO PLACE ARABS IN THOSE TOWNS. WHEN MR. OBAMA AND THE REST OF THE WORLD TELL ISRAEL TO STOP EXPENSION OF SETTLEMENTS THEY TELL ACTUALLY THE YOUNG PEOPLE OF ISRAEL NOT TO BRING TO THIS WORLD MORE CHILDREN OR TO THE ONE WHO WANT TO MARRY AND LIVE NEAR THEIR FAMILY NOT TO GET MARRY AND THAT THEY HAVE NOT GOD GIVEN RIGHT TO LIVE WHERE THEY WANT.

IN THIS WORLD, THERE FEW PEOPLE WHO ARE FIGHTING TO GET AT LEAST ONE COUNTRY LIKE THE KURDS OR THE BASQUES BUT IT IS ONLY ASKED FROM ISRAEL TO CUT ITSELF TO BUILD A THIRD PALESTINIAN STATE AND WE ALL KNOW WHAT HAPPEN IN THE STATE OF GAZA. IN CASE YOU FORGOT HISTORY IN 1947,2 STATES WHERE FORMED ONE FOR THE ARABS NAMELY JORDAN AND ONE FOR THE JEWS: ISRAEL. SO YES IT IS VERY IMMORAL AND RACIST TO WANT ANOTHER PALESTINIAN STATE ON ISRAEL LAND.

#3

Obama holds nothing, except 1st place winner in the latest American political version of American Idol, the US presidential election. Since when is popularity indicative of anything significant in a persons’ character?

Personally, I’ve heard enough about the popularity of Barack Obama; I believe it probably has something to do with the mainstream media’s fascination with the shallow entertainment industry and their desire to please all of the people all of the time.
Why can’t we just all get along…….?

Popularity has nothing to do with wisdom or character: Jesus, the Jew who divided history, was so unpopular that the establishment of his time crucified him.

On the other hand, some of the biggest scoundrels, crooks, criminals and dictators in history were some of the most popular: look at the Wall Street and Washington, DC crowds that got us into this current economic mess that’s spread around the world: extremely well liked and popular, good resumes, best educations, GQ good looks, look good on paper and in person, well spoken and can smooze with the best, but lacking in character or moral clarity. Popular, yes; right, no.

Bibi Netanyahu, on the other hand is unpopular because he takes a stand on divisive issues and is not afraid to go up against the mainstream……..give me that kind of leader any day.

Netanyahu understands the history of that region and the religious differences and realizes, as Britain’s Chamberlain did not, that you cannot negotiate with tyrants and countries who want to see you and your country wiped off the map. He realizes that this conflict is religious, not political, and negotiating from a secular/political perspective has not & will not work.

If Obama thinks his charming personality is going to influence the people in that part of the world, he’s in for a rude awakening. He’s not dealing with uninformed Americans in this United States of Entertainment, but with people whose very existence is at stake and his popularity will only be used against him.

#2

Peter – could you please email me? My address is crr03@maine.rr.com. Thanks.

#1

‘Talking?’ Those of us who follow history have to wonder if it’s more a matter of “who” is giving “who” orders for the next round of SOCIALIST-CREATED ‘crises upon crises’ …

The media here in the US has already decided “what a big deal this is for all of us” while the working taxpayer wonders “when Nuclear War …”

The Akurians.

Peter Eisner is an editorial consultant with Worldfocus and a 30-year veteran of international news. He has been an editor and foreign correspondent at The Washington Post, Newsday and The Associated Press. He co-authored “The Italian Letter,” which details fraudulent intelligence leading up to the Iraq War. He was founder and president of Newscom, an international online news service, and speaks Spanish and Portuguese.

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