Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Sanctions on Israel?

An interesting idea floated by the CSM, taking a cue from former Congressman Paul Findley: economic sanctions on both Iran and Israel. Surely not too likely a prospect as far as Israel is concerned, and as Tony Karon noted recently in The National, sanctions against Iran - at a time when the US wants to encourage its people to rally against the current regime - might be counter-productive if they produced just the opposite result.

But let's not forget that Israel receives $3 billion in assistance from the US each year, without which it would be hurting badly. And the Netanyahu government's response to Obama in re settlement expansion or virtually any other issue has hardly been encouraging, or even minimally cooperative. (And pro-Israel groups continue to hammer Mary Robinson, to whom Obama has decided to award a Presidential Medal of Freedom.) Sanctions may be the kind of leverage Obama needs to make a dent in Netanyahu's resolve.

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