Benjamin Netanyahu and Barack Obama. (Photo: Reuters)
Resetting the relationship
Writing in Foreign Policy, Steven J. Rosen proposes four ways for President Obama to put his relationship with Prime Minister Netanyahu on an even keel.
If Obama decides to work with Netanyahu, instead of confronting him, the president might get some surprising results… It is time to recognize that Netanyahu is the Israeli people’s clear choice to lead their nation, and the president of the United States does better when it works with him than when it works against him.
Does Obama-Netanyahu relationship matter in 2012 election?
When it comes to casting their ballots, American Jewish voters are not really concerned with how well the president gets on with the prime minister, says Aamer Madhani in USA Today.
f Netanyahu were to push forward with a strike [on Iran] sooner than later and without a public blessing from Obama, Democrats argue that it wouldn’t necessarily effect Obama’s standing with Jewish voters, who have voted overwhelmingly Democratic in every election—with the exception of 1980—since 1972.
Obama Offers Israel a Path to Avoid an Iran War, but Will Netanyahu Buy Its Terms?
With Netanyahu and Obama prepare to meet for talks set to be dominated by Iran, Tony Karon writes in Time that there could be a face-saving way out for the increasingly bellicose Israeli prime minister.
By making breakout to weaponization the red line and backing it up with a military threat, Obama offers Netanyahu an opportunity - or a dilemma, depending on his real intentions. Drawing the red line at weaponization means Obama sees no need for military action against Iran on the basis of the current status quo. Instead, he sees sanctions as Iran’s price for failing to satisfy IAEA concerns, while the threat of military action deters it from breaking out to build weapons, and diplomacy is pursued to seek a formula that all sides can live with to strengthen guarantees against Iran’s building nuclear weapons.
Bearing Witness in Syria: A War Reporter’s Last Days
Tyler Hicks, the photographer who accompanied Anthony Shadid on his final trip to Syria, takes up the mantle of the late journalist and recounts their journey in a piece for the New York Times.
Most fighters we met had recently defected from the Syrian Army, some just days earlier. I was surprised by how open they were. Only rarely would one cover his face or ask that I not take a picture. Most proudly displayed their military ID cards, holding them up like trophies. They said they defected because they refused to obey orders to kill their own people. Anthony and I talked often about what would happen if this struggle did not go their way. As defectors, capture would mean certain death.
What about Palestine?
Money has rendered the Mideast peace process a non-critical issue in Egypt and even in the Palestinian territories themselves, writes Ahmad Nagi for the Egypt Independent.
It is becoming clear that the FJP does not have any clear stance on the Arab-Israeli conflict apart from its firm position on the necessity of American aid and thus it holds on to the Egyptian peace agreement with Israel. What is more distressing is that the flow of international aid is not only a priority for the FJP or Egyptian authorities in general, but to the Palestinian authorities themselves. In other words, one could argue that many parties, including the Palestinian authorities, are not invested in ending the conflict, since its continuation keeps the aid coming.