From The New York Post:

Just six months into the new administration, however, it is becoming increasingly clear that those who harbored suspicions about Obama’s approach to the Middle East had good reason to be worried. A confluence of factors — including his administration’s undue pressure on Israel, a conciliatory approach to authoritarian Muslim regimes, and the baseless linkage of the failed “peace process” to the curtailment of the Iranian nuclear program — point to what could become “the greatest disagreement between the two countries in the history of their relationship,” as Middle East expert Robert Satloff recently told Newsweek.

This dramatic shift in American policy began several months ago when the administration signaled that it would make the cessation of Israeli settlement activity in the West Bank the centerpiece of its policy to revamp the region. And that approach, mostly hinted at through anonymous leaks, became as good as official when Obama delivered his vaunted address to the Muslim world in Cairo earlier this month. In that speech, Israel (and, specifically, its policy of settlement construction) was the only state to merit specific criticism from the president of the United States. Among all the degradations and injustices in the Middle East, from the abhorrent treatment of women in nations like Saudi Arabia, to Syrian-backed assassinations of pro-sovereignty politicians in Lebanon, to the arrest and imprisonment of gay men in Egypt, the leader of the free world singled out America’s one, reliable democratic ally in the region for rebuke.

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About the author


James Kirchick is a fellow with the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and a contributing editor for The New Republic.


  • I guess continuing to provide $2.5 billion per year in military aid – roughly $7 million PER DAY for FY 2009 – doesn’t entitle us or our chief executive to make any suggestions regarding Israel policy?

  • 1. As I’ve said before – take the money. Don’t want it.

    2. American aid allows weapons to be tested before purchased by the U.S. military, boosts the American weapons industry, helps develop weapons by ISRAELIS – funded by the U.S. – that the U.S. would otherwise not get for free. Just a few things the U.S. gets in return for their aid. Anything more is an infringement on sovereignty and extremely unwelcome.

  • The US also give $2 billion a yer to Egypt. Ever hear the Obamamessiah saying jack shit to Mubarak about what a despotic, oppressive shithole Egypt is?

    No, that would be, you know, trying to force our views on a valuable ally! Forcefully exporting American values was Bush’s thing. The new America of Hopenachange doesn’t allow that.

    Except when it comes to the Jews, of course.

  • I kinda enjoy the Shop-rite cornflakes (never got used to the Telma flakes) when I’m doing miluim, but I know it’s really to keep American jobs, and less to support Israel. Israel would have hundreds of Lavi fighters by now, if it weren’t for lame promises. Hopefully, Netanyahu’s back is really strong now. Obama will go the way of the Carter and Bibi knows this.

  • I never really liked the Telma cornflakes, either – too sweet. And people add sugar to them, too.

  • Everything will work out in the end.

    Trust me. Thirty years in Israel with one crisis after another and the end coming ever other day…things will work out in the end.

  • We’ll see if the unfolding, catastrophic meltdown of Obama’s Iran policy will keep him from trading pressure on Israel for concessions on Iran’s nukes.

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