The Obama administration appears to be moving toward a shift in its relations with a foreign ally, and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has nothing to say. White House officials have been suggesting the United States may not continue support Israel from charges and attacks by international bodies like the United Nations. Over the years, the U.S. frequently used its U.N. security-council veto to block resolutions that targeted the Jewish state.
In the aftermath of Benjamin Netanyahu's inconvenient (to Barack Obama) victory in the Israeli election, it looks like the administration is heading towards exacting revenge. The administration's threat is that under President Obama the United States will "join the jackals"—the permanent, global, virulently anti-Israel caucus at the United Nations. The phrase comes from the late Daniel Patrick Moynihan, who knew a thing or two about Israel-hatred at the U.N.
Former Texas governor Rick Perry said he was "alarmed" by reports the Obama administration is considering not supporting the state of Israel at the United Nations. Perry, who may run for president in 2016, said he urged Obama to "turn away from such a path."
Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal responded to a report that the Obama administration may consider changing the United States's longstanding position of defending Israel within the United Nations against criticism of that country's settlements.
On CNN this morning, White House aide David Simas avoided congratulating Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on the Israeli elections. Instead, he would only congratulate the Israeli people on having an election.
Elections have grown increasingly contentious in countries across the globe. This makes sense; governments have become immensely powerful in the face of growing challenges, governments control a much greater share of the economy, and the benefits of dispensing government largesse are increasing exponentially. More recently, thanks to the “innovations” of James Carville and his ilk, campaigns have become ever more bitter and negative.
Eight days after a meeting on a potential free trade agreement between the United States and the European Union last month, two congressmen introduced a bill to influence the process and help prevent economic discrimination against Israel. Called the “U.S.-Israel Trade and Commercial Enhancement Act” the bill is an effort to counter the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions Movement (BDS), which is lamentably popular in Europe.
On the day that Benjamin “Bibi” Netanyahu was leaving for the United States to give what the Washington Post called “the most important speech of his life,” my grandchildren were watching Big Hero 6. When I heard the smallest of the animated characters say, “We didn’t set out to be super-heroes, but sometimes life doesn’t go the way you planned,” it sounded like the tagline for Bibi’s launch as hero of the free world.
Tel Aviv It’s a Tuesday night three weeks before election day, and Naftali Bennett, the head of one of Israel’s oldest religious parties, is speaking in English to 1,000 mostly young, secular Israelis. For Bennett, 42, an ambitious, talented, American-style politician seeking to catapult his Jewish Home faction to third place among Israel’s parties, this isn’t all that surprising.