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Gauging the U.S.-Israeli Fallout

March 18, 2010


While the Obama administration has rejected any notion of a U.S.-Israel crisis, the announcement of plans to build sixteen hundred new housing units in East Jerusalem during Vice President Joseph Biden's recent trip to Israel has stirred considerable debate about whether the announcement was a snub, whether the U.S. overreacted, and how to move forward.

The Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's snub of Biden has badly jeopardized nine months of U.S. effort trying to get Israeli-Palestinian talks back on track, writes Martin Indyk. Declaring an end to "all provocative acts" in Jerusalem is the one way to repair U.S.-Israel relations.

National Interest online: Israel's "slap" at Biden fits into a longstanding pattern of right-wing Israeli governments that have tried to undermine the diplomatic clout of the United States when it was time for negotiations, writes Amjad Atallah. David Rothkopf writes that the "crisis" between Israel and the United States is one the U.S. has manufactured, and signaling that the United States is tough on its friends is bad policy.

New York Times: Hamas, Hezbollah and Iran all have an agenda in the Israeli-Palestinian equation, writes Thomas Friedman. But it's the moderate agenda of Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad that Israelis and Palestinians both should be supporting.

Times of London: Netanyahu is weakening his country's position, writes Malcolm Rifkind, and what's needed is an anti-Netanyahu uprising.

The National: Michael Young argues that President Obama is jeopardizing U.S. leadership in the Middle East by failing to project U.S. power. "The U.S. seems awfully easy to thwart," he writes.

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