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Brinksmanship Behind Obama’s Speech

From his fans at Tiger Beat the New York Times:

Obama and Netanyahu Are Facing a Turning Point

By HELENE COOPER
May 19, 2011

WASHINGTON — As Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel heads to the White House on Friday for the seventh meeting since President Obama took office, the two men are facing a turning point in a relationship that has never been warm.

By all accounts, they do not trust each other. President Obama has told aides and allies that he does not believe that Mr. Netanyahu will ever be willing to make the kind of big concessions that will lead to a peace deal.

For his part, Mr. Netanyahu has complained that Mr. Obama has pushed Israel too far — a point driven home during a furious phone call with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Thursday morning, just hours before Mr. Obama’s speech, during which the prime minister reacted angrily to the president’s plan to endorse Israel’s pre-1967 borders for a future Palestinian state.

Mr. Obama did not back down.

But some are reporting that this is what delayed the start of his speech yesterday. But how ‘gusty’ Mr. Obama is, not to "back down" when he has so much at stake here.

But the last-minute furor highlights the discord as they head into what one Israeli official described as a “train wreck” coming their way: a United Nations General Assembly vote on Palestinian statehood in September.

Mr. Netanyahu, his close associates say, desperately wants Mr. Obama to use the diplomatic muscle of the United States to protect Israel from the vote, not only by vetoing it in the Security Council, but also by leaning hard on America’s European allies to get them to reject it as well.

Mr. Obama has indicated that he will certainly do the first. But it remains unclear how far Mr. Obama can go to persuade Britain, France and other American allies to join the United States in rejecting the move, particularly as long as Mr. Netanyahu continues to resist endorsing the pre-1967 lines.

In other words, Mr. Obama is using the latest Palestinian propaganda ploy in the UN as leverage to try to force Israel into making more suicidal concessions.

From one of their first meetings, at the King David Hotel on July 23, 2008, when Mr. Obama, then the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, visited Israel, the two men have struck, at most, an intellectual bond. Mr. Netanyahu, as the leader of Israel’s conservative Likud Party, was far more comfortable with the Republican Party in the United States than with Mr. Obama, the son of a Muslim man from Kenya whose introduction to the Arab-Israeli conflict was initially framed by discussions with pro-Palestinian academics.

Details hitherto seldom mentioned by the New York Times or anyone else in the media.

“Their relationship is correct at best,” said Judith Kipper, director of Middle East programs at the Institute of World Affairs. Mr. Netanyahu “likes the status quo, and he particularly identifies with conservative Republicans.”

Which is to say, Mr. Netanyahu is fearful and backward and small minded.

Abraham H. Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League and a friend of Mr. Netanyahu’s, recalled that after the first meeting, Mr. Netanyahu walked out of the hotel and told him that he had been impressed with Mr. Obama’s intellect, and that the American presidency “was his to lose.”

And now Mr. Obama apparently thinks Israel is his to lose.

But things went downhill soon after Mr. Obama took office and, within months, called for a halt in Israeli settlement construction in the West Bank. Mr. Netanyahu refused, handing the president his first foreign policy humiliation when Mr. Obama had to abandon the demand in the face of Israel’s refusal to comply.

And, of course, Mr. Obama cannot be "humiliated" by being defied.

Compounding the problem, Mr. Netanyahu delivered a fiery speech to a pro-Israel lobbying group in Washington declaring that “Jerusalem isn’t a settlement, it’s our capital.” A furious White House promptly denied him all the trappings of a presidential meeting with Mr. Obama the next day, refusing to allow photographers to take pictures of the two men in the Oval Office, as is usually the case for meetings with foreign leaders.

They sure showed him. But, oddly enough, we don’t remember things being reported quite this way at the time.

Things got so bad, Mr. Foxman recalled, that Mr. Netanyahu “told me, ‘Abe, I need two hours just alone to talk to him.” Late last year, Mr. Netanyahu got his two hours at the White House with Mr. Obama, a meeting which, both American and Israeli officials say, helped clear the air. “The relationship now is very cordial,” a senior White House official said.

Sure it is.

But the easing of tensions ended this spring when, Israeli and American officials said, Mr. Netanyahu got wind of Mr. Obama’s plans to make a major address on the Middle East, and alerted Republican leaders that he would like to address a joint meeting of Congress. That move was widely interpreted as an attempt to get out in front of Mr. Obama, by presenting an Israeli peace proposal that, while short of what the Palestinians want, would box in the president. House Speaker John A. Boehner issued the invitation, for late May.

How nefarious of Mr. Netanyahu. How petty and spiteful of him – to try to protect the interests of his country.

So White House officials timed Mr. Obama’s speech on Thursday to make sure he went first

Administration officials said that they were determined not to allow Mr. Netanyahu to get out in front of Mr. Obama

What brinksmanship statesmanship. But, happily, everything worked out in the end.

This article was posted by Steve on Friday, May 20th, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

25 Responses to “Brinksmanship Behind Obama’s Speech”

  1. Liberals Demise says:

    What if Israel was to demand that the United States had to relinquish its’ territories back to the American Indians. Prior to 1786 when the Founding Fathers came from the original 13 Colonies.
    Ceding territories back to sworn enemies is suicidal and for the U.N. to overlord it is ludicrous
    For Obamao to say that he speaks for the American people is a bold faced “LIE”!!
    I challenge dingleBarry to walk among the Jewish people and spout his love for his fathers’ religion.
    I “Double Dog Dare” him!

    • Petronius says:

      Hey LD. Interesting idea.

      Or what if Israel were to demand that the United States had to relinquish the 13 Southern States back to the Confederate States of America?

      The Confederate States were at least a real country, if only for five years.

      Whereas historically Palestine has never been an independent country.

      And by the way, does America have any allies anymore?

    • Rusty Shackleford says:

      I “Double Dog Dare” him!

      Might I commit a slight breach of etiquette and go right for the throat?

      “I triple dog dare him!”

    • bobdog says:

      No! Not the Triple Dog Dare!

  2. preparing4theworst says:

    Hey Steve, In your second comment (I am sure it is a typo, but apt anyhow) gusty is how I would describe mr. obama also….meanwhile where can I send an e-mail in support of Mr. Netanyahu telling mr. obama to shove that particular moronic, shortsighted, agenda-driven geopolitical excuse of fecal matter idea up his liberal, A….genda? Oh, did I say that out loud??? oops…

  3. tranquil.night says:

    “Mr. Netanyahu ‘likes the status quo, and he particularly identifies with conservative Republicans.'”

    What a moronic, elementary school quote with no intellectual substance or point other than political. It sounds like a narcissitic bully complaining to the teacher that somehow the rest of the class is teamed up in a conspiracy to ignore and resist his threats.

    While Spike has been showing Bi-bi the soles of his shoes, everyone on the side of Freedom has been standing up for their friends unabashed: Palin, Rubio, West, Bachmann, Beck, Huckabee.

    So any child of 5 can observe the situation and recognize the schism. It also couldn’t be clearer who’s on/in the right, and who’s wrong.

  4. mr_bill says:

    Contrast nerobama’s spiteful pre-emption of Prime Minister Netanyahu with the invite extended to Mexico’s Calderon. Calderon was invited by nerobama to berate the US Congress on the harshness of US immigration policy, even though Mexico’s immigration laws are far more strict than those of the US. Apparently its acceptable for a foreign sovereign to berate the US, so long as nerobama agrees with the position, regardless of the impact on national security, public opinion, genocide, or the ability of a long-time US ally to continue to defend its sovereignty, people and borders.

    His every act seems to be a calculated affront to all that which is important to US interests and the interests of our allies. I can’t recall any of nerobama’s actions that were intended to uphold the best interest of this Nation. Let us not forget that it was nerobama’s call for Mubarak to be ousted that led, in part, to the interim leadership in Egypt to broker the Hamas-Fatah reconciliation, uniting two enemies of Israel.

    I welcome Prime Minister Netanyahu and I hope he gives nerobama a public history lesson in his address to Congress. A firm, burning, public rebuke is what nerobama needs. His open antagonism of our allies needs to be checked in a stern and public manner. Netanyahu has a great opportunity to stand up for his country and put a petty egoist in his proper place. nerobama will certainly react, his ridicuolous ego makes it imperative. This reaction will lay bare nerobama’s prejudice and make it impossible for even the most staunch nerobama supporter to deny that he is hostile toward Israel. Without the votes of those who support Israel, nerobama will have a much more dificult time carrying certain districts and states that he badly needs in order to win re-election. Seeking nerobama’s defeat in 2012 is not only in the best interest of the US, but also Israel. In the short-run Israel can preserve the status quo on its own, in the longer-term, Israel needs to support a US president that supports Israel. Israel’s survival through a lame-duck, second-term nerobama regime will be much more difficult and likely bloody.

  5. Mithrandir says:

    Tuesdays and Thursdays is on the White House calendar as Muslim Boot-Licking Days.–Everyone is encourage to bring their tongue scrapers on that day.

    Don’t worry! Israel will outlast this presidency, who didn’t make a gutsy call –he pulled a ‘Barry Switzer!’
    ~Didn’t draft any of the players on the roster.
    ~Didn’t pay any of the players.
    ~Didn’t design any offensive plays.
    ~OKed the offensive coordinators suggestions on the 1-yard line.

    Except, if Switzer was like “the one” he would have complained excessively,
    “Why are you trading Hershel Walker!?”
    “You shouldn’t draft Emmitt Smith, he is too small!”
    “Why did you go 1-15 your first year? –anyone could do better than that!”
    “Jimmy Johnson is the worst coach in NFL history! He should have won 5 Super Bowls!”

  6. proreason says:

    Spike isn’t crazy. He’s evil.

  7. canary says:

    PM Netanyahu responds to New York Times article.

    Prime Ministers Office

    PM Netanyahu Responds to PA Pres. Abbas’s Article in the New York Times

    17/05/2011

    (last part)
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu today said in response to Palestinian Authority President Mahmud Abbas’s article in the New York Times that, “This is a gross distortion of well-known and -documented historical facts. It was the Palestinians who rejected the partition plan for two states while the Jewish leadership accepted it. It was the armies of Arab countries – assisted by Palestinian forces – that attacked the Jewish state in order to destroy it. None of this is mentioned in the article. Moreover, one could conclude from the article that the Palestinian leadership views the establishment of a Palestinian state as a means to continue the conflict with Israel instead of ending it.”

    http://www.pmo.gov.il/PMOEng/Communication/Spokesman/2011/05/spoketguva170511.htm
    ——————————————————————————————————————————

    The Washington Times: Israel calls on Obama to stick to peace terms

    by Eli Lake 05/19/2011

    …“That is why Prime Minister Netanyahu expects to hear a reaffirmation from President Obama of U.S. commitments made to Israel in 2004, which were overwhelmingly supported by both Houses of Congress.”

    That border, also called the 1949 armistice line, separates the territory of the West Bank, Gaza and Golan that the Jewish state won in the 1967 war from the borders of Israel created after the 1948 war that established the state.

    Since the 1967 war, Israel has built settlements throughout the West Bank, but most of them are suburbs of Jerusalem, Israel’s capital. Palestinian negotiators in 2008 were prepared to allow the presence of many settlements within Israel’s final borders in exchange for swaps of land with Palestinian majorities inside the 1949 armistice lines, according to a negotiating record first disclosed this year by the Al-Jazeera news organization.

    The U.S. made a commitment on settlements in a 2004 letter from President Bush to Ariel Sharon, the Israeli prime minister at the time, who had proposed a unilateral dismantling of all settlements in Gaza and another four settlements in the West Bank.

    The statement from the Israeli prime minister’s office said Mr. Bush’s “commitments relate to Israel not having to withdraw to the 1967 lines which are both indefensible and which would leave major Israeli population centers in Judea and Samaria beyond those lines.”

    “This is the first time an American president in a high-profile, much-anticipated speech put out the concept of 1967 borders and mutually agreeable swaps without softening it for the Israelis with any kind of context,” said Mr. Miller, now at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. “This administration has not validated the Bush letters and apparently they will not.”

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/may/19/israel-calls-on-obama-to-stick-to-peace-terms/?page=all#pagebreak

    Hillary agreed with the Bush letter too.

    See also Letter from U.S. President George W. Bush to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, April 14, 2004 (defensibleborders.org)
    See also U.S. Senate and House of Representatives Approve Commitments to Israel in President Bush’s Letter of April 14, 2004 (defensibleborders.org)
    See also Defensible Borders for a Lasting Peace – Yuval Steinitz, Yaakov Amidror, Meir Rosenne and Dore Gold (Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)
    See also Israel’s Critical Security Needs for a Viable Peace Lt.-Gen. (ret.) Moshe Yaalon, Maj.-Gen. (res.) Uzi Dayan, Maj.-Gen. (res.) Aharon Ze’evi Farkash, Brig.-Gen. (res.) Udi Dekel, Maj.-Gen. (res.) Yaakov Amidror, Dr. Dore Gold and Dan Diker (Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)

  8. canary says:

    US & other Countries funding & donor money given to Palestine, is finding it’s way into hands of Palestine Terrorist prisoners.

    entire long report and records at link below
    ———————————————————————————–

    PMW: PA to pay salaries to all terrorists in Israeli prisons

    by Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik May 20 2011

    A law published in the official Palestinian Authority Registry last month grants all Palestinians and Israeli Arabs imprisoned in Israel for terror crimes a monthly salary from the PA. The Arabic word the PA uses for this payment is “ratib,” meaning “salary.” Palestinian Media Watch has reported numerous times on Palestinian Authority glorification of terrorists serving time in Israeli prisons. Following the signing of this new law, the PA is now paying a salary to these prisoners…

    In other words, all Palestinians in Israeli prisons for terror crimes officially join the PA payroll. According to the definition in the PA law, Palestinian car thieves in Israeli prisons will not receive a salary, but Hamas and Fatah terrorist murderers will.

    The PA also gives a salary to Israeli Arabs convicted of terror crimes against Israel – the country of which they are citizens. PA benefits to Israeli Arab terrorists, in fact, are greater than the ones extended to Palestinian terrorists.

    More than 6,000 Palestinian prisoners are currently serving time in Israeli prisons for terror-related offenses…. These three terrorists were recently called “heroic” by the official PA daily…

    The list is not exclusive as it relies solely on reports in the official PA daily….
    [http://www.eu-un.europa.eu/articles/en/article_11009_en.htm
    Accessed May 9, 2011]

    In November 2010, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced the transfer of an additional grant to the PA’s general budget:
    “After the transfer of the $150 million, the sum which the American administration will have transferred as direct budgetary aid to the PA for 2010 totals $225 million.”…

    Although the EU, US and other donors are not intentionally funding salaries for terrorists, their funding of other PA salaries and the budget makes money available in the general budget to pay terrorist salaries.

    This Palestinian Authority law was enacted before the recent Fatah-Hamas reconciliation agreement. It was published in the official PA Registry on April 13, 2011.

    The following is the report in the official PA daily calling prisoners “heroic”:..

    http://www.palwatch.org/main.aspx?fi=157&doc_id=5001

    Link above at end of article gives Palestines new regulations, payment guidelines per prisoner, donor charts, amounts donated by other countries that aid Palestine’s “On Birds’ Wings” Program.

  9. Liberals Demise says:

    Netanyahu gave the Boy Blunder a verbal spanking in the Oval Office and
    then proceeded to skool said turd in the art of “SCREW YOU”.

    O-U-T-S-T-A-N-D-I-N-G!!!!!!!
    dingleBarry got punked in his own “End Zone”!

    • preparing4theworst says:

      OUTSTANDING!!!!! I ask again, where can I send Mr. N an email of support…

  10. preparing4theworst says:

    Hey, I found it!!! web site- http://isrealemb.org , email- info@washington.mfa.gov.il, phone 1-202-364-5500

  11. preparing4theworst says:

    But they close at 3 pm on friday of course!) with no message service.

  12. proreason says:

    The leader of the free world and a smart-ass free-rider as young men.

    http://weaselzippers.us/2011/05/20/compare-and-contrast-friday/

    page down for the money pictures

  13. canary says:

    “Mr”. Obama’s dangerous brinkmanship is pushing for a proxy murder of Israel. He has made Israel target, and not just because of his religious views of daming Jews, nor his low polls in the muslim world.

    Israel left alone, will have more an more devastating attacks. Israel defending themselves or striking back is a darned if they do and darned if they don’t situation.

    Anti-Jewish & Israel, Mister Obama will gladly repeat his Libya bombing with NATO w/o Congress’s permission under the guise that the U.S. bombing Israel is for humanitarian reasons for the revolting terrorists who are only shooting rockets killing Israel children.

    The least is mister Obama has vbbf Iran’s Ahmadman and all Iran’s new friends foaming at the mouth to attack Israel. Tiny Israel, may be destroyed, or tiny Israel will destroy Iran, and the mister Obama game of bombing a country for humanitarian reasons goes into effect.

    Mister Obama’s brinkmanship is greater than that of Hitler.

  14. Curmudgeon says:

    Preparing4theworst. If you are so inclined, CUFI, or Christians United For Israel are putting together letters of support. Their site is http://www.cufi.org if you want to look into what they are doing.

  15. tranquil.night says:

    A characteristically spot on response from Andy McCarthy: http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/267796/borderline-treachery-andrew-c-mccarthy

    • tranquil.night says:

      There’s one explicitly sinister factor at work behind Spike’s call for the original borders: he’s now put the political onus of the outcome of the ‘Arab Spring’ wholly on Israel’s shoulders.

      So when Iran and the Brotherhood finish seizing the region, Israel is now squarely positioned as the cause for the collapse of the David Accord for refusing to negotiate on impossible terms. Thinking such a ridiculous policy shift would be in the interest of peace is like telling people you’re going to douse an out-of-control wildfire with the entirety of Middle Eastern oil reserves.

      We’ve known since the fall of Mubarak and the beginning of the Libyan KMA that this road ends in Jerusalem. It’s not like we enjoy being right on this stuff, either.

    • proreason says:

      Whatever he does, the VERY FIRST thing and ONLY thing Spike thinks about is who he will blame when whatever it is goes wrong.

    • canary says:

      Obama’s murder by proxy of Israel, and he blamed we “the people of the U.S.”

  16. wirenut says:

    Bring in the body language experts on this one. Just one look at this photo, sez it all!
    Mr. Netanyahu has said, What about my people, My country? And simple Barry looks like, What about my iPod.
    Mr. Netanyahu is made of Israel steel. Barry, the Sundressed Hoopskirt, is still riding girls bycicles with a helmet.
    Nuff, said.

    • canary says:

      wirenut, you should see the 20 minute interview Obama just did with England. Obama looked down at the floor to the left throughout the entire interview. Obama no doubt insisted on questions in advance.


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