Last summer, June to be precise, President Obama gave an interview to Israel’s Channel 2 in which, among other things, he attempted to explain to Israelis his over the top temper tantrum over Prime Minister Netanyahu’s March speech to Congress. According to the Times of Israel report on the interview, Obama said, “If I turned up at the Knesset without checking with the prime minister first, or negotiated with Mr. [Isaac] Herzog [leader of the Israeli opposition], there would be certain protocols breached.”
I noted at the time that his analogy was inapposite. Then-Speaker of the House John Boehner, who invited Netanyahu to address Congress, was not just the leader of the “opposition,” but the leader of a branch of government that is equal to, not subservient to, the Presidency. Nevertheless, it was a candid statement about the way that the US conducts its foreign policy – the Obama administration would never seek to circumvent the democratically elected leader of an ally, right?
TEL AVIV – Israel’s Labor party voted Sunday in support of leader Isaac Herzog’s plan calling for an Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank, the Jerusalem Post reported. . . .
Herzog’s plan includes completing the security fence around settlement blocs. Settlers from isolated communities would be evacuated and absorbed into the settlement blocs. Arab neighborhoods in Jerusalem would be outside the fence. . . .
Herzog presented the plan in Rome to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, who expressed interest.
And last week, the Times of Israel reported on the same meeting,
Kerry expressed interest in the plan and said it contained elements similar to his own initiative of advancing security and cooperation in the Middle East, according to the statement.
When the Israeli Prime Minister accepts the invitation of the US Speaker of the House to address a coequal branch of government on matter vital to Israeli security, that is a “breach of protocol” worthy of a two-month long temper tantrum. Yet the US Secretary of State is happy to discuss another matter vital to Israeli security with the leader of a party that can’t get enough votes to advance its political platform within Israel.
Yet another example of the Obama administration’s hypocrisy.