Thursday, March 18, 2010

Does the White House consider Israel a threat?

FROM: RJC Legislative Affairs Committee
SUBJECT: Congress Must Reject Obama's Threats to Unravel U.S.-Israel Alliance

The latest news reports make it clear that the Obama administration's campaign of criticism against Israel threatens to do irreparable damage to relations with our valued ally.

* The Washington Post reports that

In an effort to get peace talks back on track, the Obama administration is pressing Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to reverse last week's approval of 1,600 housing units in a disputed area of Jerusalem, make a substantial gesture toward the Palestinians, and publicly declare that all of the "core issues" in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, including the status of Jerusalem, be included in upcoming talks, U.S. officials said.

*The New York Times tells us that the administration is looking to "turn the tables" on Israel's leaders, language more suited to dealings with an enemy than with an ally. The Times' reporting suggests that after a failed, months-long effort to entice the Palestinians into direct negotiations with Israel, the administration now wants Israel to accept the Palestinians' preferred framework - one in which our diplomats would negotiate for them.

*And at the, Jeffrey Goldberg reports that Obama's ultimate aim is to destroy Israel's current government in hopes that the current governing coalition would be replaced by a more pliant one.

What happened to the promise made back in the 2008 campaign that during an Obama presidency, "the United States will stand shoulder to shoulder with Israel"?

Fortunately, more and more members of Congress are protesting what House Republican Whip Eric Cantor aptly describes as an "opportunistic move by an administration that wants to impose its view... onto our ally."

At first, most of those speaking up were Republicans. But now more Democrats have begun to break with the administration.

At this point, Obama and his lieutenants are isolated. Yet they show no signs of admitting their error.

We need to encourage more members of Congress to speak up, so that the administration will stand down.

Please take a moment to call or email your Congressman and two U.S. Senators. Urge them to speak out against the Obama administration's pressure campaign against Israel.

*Information about how to contact your Congressman can be found at (you will be directed to a site where you can identify who your Representative is and send him or her an email) -- or by calling 202-224-3121.

* Information about how to contact your U.S. Senators can be found at -- or by calling 202-224-3121.

Key points to emphasize:

* It is outrageous that the Obama administration is attacking an ally even as it coddles hostile nations like Iran and Syria.

* The cause of peace is set back when Israel's foes are led to believe that significant diplomatic gains can be achieved through American pressure - and without reciprocal concessions.

* The Obama administration's obsession with the peace process - even when the Palestinians demonstrate by their actions that they are not ready to make peace - has become a distraction from the effort to curb Iran's nuclear ambitions.

Thank you for weighing in on this urgent and timely matter. This is the moment when we need to raise our voices!

1 comment:

Danny Mittleman said...

Thanks for the post. I went online, found my Congressman's address, and this is what I sent him:
Dear Congressman Quigley,

As you know there has been much written and said the past few weeks regarding President Obama's criticism of the Israeli government's stance toward building 1600 new settlements in East Jerusalem.

In looking at your website, I see general pragmatic policy language about Israel, but nothing (other than the word "pragmatism") that would suggest your position about US policy on this matter.

I am writing to you to encourage you to strongly back the White House in its attempts to bring both Israel and the Palestinian community to the bargaining table.

I find the recent essays by Tom Friedman in the NY Times

Joe Klein on the Time Magazine blog

and Laura Rozen at Politico

all to be highly informative and thoughtful in their backing of the President. If you haven't read these essays, I encourage you to do so.

In addition, do note that (to the best of my knowledge) all of these authors are Jewish. That is important as some in the Jewish community may represent to you that the community's sentiment is against the President. That representation would not be true. The Jewish community is, at best, split on this issue. The community is solidly behind achieving what is best for Middle East peace and the security of Israel, but of at least two minds about the best path to get there.

Thank you for your time.

Daniel Mittleman