Thursday, July 26, 2012

President Obama No Lover Of Israel

American-Israeli Relations


In an article in Foreign Policy, Aaron David Miller writes that Barack Obama has no real affection or attachment to Israel. This is not surprising to many conservatives who have been tracking President Obama's actions and policy decisions the last few years. It might come as a surprise, however, to some Jewish voters, steadfastly Democrat in their political choices.

Aaron David Miller writes:
I've watched a few presidents come and go on this issue, and Obama really is different. Unlike Clinton and George W. Bush, Obama isn't in love with the idea of Israel. As a result, he has a harder time making allowances for Israeli behavior he doesn't like. Obama relates to the Jewish state not on a values continuum but through a national security and interest filter.
It's true that the president doesn't emote on many policy issues, with the possible exception of health care. But on Israel, he just doesn't buy the "tiny state living on the knife's edge with the dark past" argument—or at least it doesn't come through in emotionally resonant terms. As the Washington Post's Scott Wilson reported, Obama doesn't believe the "no daylight" argument— that is, to get Israel to move, you need to make the Israelis feel that America will stand by it no matter what. Quite the opposite: Obama appears to believe that Israel needs to understand that if it doesn't move, the United States will be hard pressed to continue to give it complete support.
That the Obama Administration responds like this, considering Israel a lesser important nation than others— such as Saudi Arabia and Egypt—in the region, speaks not only of its poor understanding of Israel's role in the Middle East, but also of its strategic importance as a key defender of western liberal democratic values and ideals. To ignore this is to undermine the centrality of western values. Ignorance of both history and geopolitical realities, coupled with hubris, often lead to such political mistakes.

You can read the full article at [Foreign Policy]

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