Powered by WebAds

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Digging in for the long haul?

They're digging in at the trenches. President Obama and his advisers are on one side (Hat Tip: Memeorandum). Prime Minister Netanyahu and an overwhelming majority of Israeli Jews (who are holding him there) are on the other side.

President Obama let slip on Tuesday that his administration is now trying to 'balance' its 'friendship' with Israel and its 'other priorities.' This is from the first link above.
When Mr. Obama declared that resolving the long-running Middle East dispute was a “vital national security interest of the United States,” he was highlighting a change that has resulted from a lengthy debate among his top officials over how best to balance support for Israel against other American interests.

This shift, described by administration officials who did not want to be quoted by name when discussing internal discussions, is driving the White House’s urgency to help broker a Middle East peace deal. It increases the likelihood that Mr. Obama, frustrated by the inability of the Israelis and the Palestinians to come to terms, will offer his own proposed parameters for an eventual Palestinian state.

Mr. Obama said conflicts like the one in the Middle East ended up “costing us significantly in terms of both blood and treasure” — drawing an explicit link between the Israeli-Palestinian strife and the safety of American soldiers as they battle Islamic extremism and terrorism in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere.

Mr. Obama’s words reverberated through diplomatic circles in large part because they echoed those of Gen. David H. Petraeus, the military commander overseeing America’s wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In recent Congressional testimony, the general said that the lack of progress in the Middle East created a hostile environment for the United States. He has denied reports that he was suggesting that soldiers were being put in harm’s way by American support for Israel.

But the impasse in negotiations “does create an environment,” he said Tuesday in a speech in Washington. “It does contribute, if you will, to the overall environment within which we operate.”
Petraeus continues to be used and abused. And note that he doesn't blame Israel for the impasse in negotiations.

But on Wednesday Alejandro Wolff, the U.S. Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN, followed up with a lengthy diatribe about how the current situation - mostly in effect for 43 years - is 'unsustainable.'

Meanwhile, a new survey that came out on Wednesday shows that the vast majority of Israeli Jews don't believe that the current situation is 'unsustainable' or at least are not willing to take President Obama's prescription for curing it.
Telephone poll of a representative sample of 503 adult Israeli Jews, by Maagar Mohot Survey Institute (headed by Professor Yitzchak Katz) carried out 11-12 April 2010. Poll commissioned by Independent Media Review & Analysis (IMRA).

Survey error of +/- 4.5 percentage points.

#1 In your opinion, should Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu agree to the demand of President Obama, according to which Israel should freeze construction in Jerusalem for an unlimited period of time?

Yes 19% No 70% Don’t know/other replies 11%

#2 How would you describe the physical situation existing today in Jerusalem?

31% There is separation between western Jerusalem that is composed of Jewish
neighborhoods and eastern Jerusalem that is composed of Arab neighborhoods.

52% Jerusalem is a mosaic of Jewish and Arab neighborhood that are located
very close to each other.

17% Don’t know/other replies

#3 One of the proposals for a peace arrangement is the proposal to divide Jerusalem between Jewish neighborhood under Israeli sovereignty, Palestinian neighborhoods under the sovereignty of a Palestinian state and the Old City under international administration. Would this arrangement bring peace for generations or ongoing conflict?

Peace for generations 13% Ongoing conflict 69% Don’t know/other replies 18%

#4 Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu argues that Israeli must make sure that in any arrangement with the Palestinians Israel controls the Jordan Valley in order to prevent the transfer of rockets and missiles to the Palestinians in the West Bank. The Palestinians also demand control of the Jordan Valley and part of the Dead Sea. Should Israel insist that Israel control this area in any arrangement with the Palestinians?

Yes 79% No 9% Don’t know/other replies 12%

#5 There are those who claim that if the United States guarantees that the Palestinian State will not be armed that Israel can be certain that the Palestinian State really won’t arm itself with weapons. Do you agree with this claim?

Yes 12% No 80% Don’t know/other replies 8%

#6 There are those who claim that Israel can forego territories that today are considered critical for its security if Israel signs a peace pact with the United States. Do you agree?

Yes 22% No 69% Don’t know/other replies 9%

#7 According to various reports, President Obama will try to impose an arrangement on the sides according to which, among other things, Israel does not control the Jordan Valley and Jerusalem is divided. Do you want President Obama to impose his plan on the parties?

Yes 8% No 83% Don’t know/other replies 9%

#8 Is it proper for Israelis who support arrangements with the Palestinians that do not agree with Binyamin Netanyahu’s position to encourage President Obama to impose their positions on the parties?

Proper 16% Improper 68% Don’t know/other replies 16%
That's pretty clear, isn't it?

This much seems certain: If Netanyahu stands up to Obama, Israeli Jews will support him. Most of us are not buying what our own media are trying to feed us.


At 8:44 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Israel is just going to have hold its ground and say "no". The status quo will last for a very long time and Israelis prefer a low level conflict with Jerusalem to a fake peace deal without it.

The Obambi think they haven't pushed Israel hard enough to make more concessions but they won't get anywhere with more pressure.


Post a Comment

<< Home