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AIPAC chief: Obama should not be even-handed toward Israel and Palestinians

Day after U.S. president clarifies vision of Palestinian state within 1967 borders, director of pro-Israel lobby urges Jerusalem and Washington to avoid any public display of diplomatic crisis, as it would likely be exploited by Israel's enemies.

by Natasha Mozgovaya and Haaretz Service

May 23, 2011 | 12:20 pm

AIPAC Executive Director Howard Kohr said Monday that U.S. President Barack Obama should not take an even-handed approach to the Middle East conflict, as it puts Israel at a disadvantage.

“Part of being an honest broker is being honest,” Kohr said in an address to AIPAC, a day after Obama spoke to the pro-Israel lobby and clarified his remarks regarding his vision for a Palestinian state based on the 1967 borders, adding “that honesty “should not be confused with even-handedness.”

“In a world which is demonstrably on the side of the Palestinians and Arabs - where Israel stands virtually alone - the United States has a special role to play,” said the AIPAC director. “When the United States is even-handed, Israel is automatically at a disadvantage, tilting the diplomatic playing field overwhelmingly toward the Palestinians and Arabs.”

Read more at Haaretz.com.

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