Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Netanyahu Dissing Obama - with the GOP ready to back up the prime minister, not their president

More from the NY Times and the WaPo on the Israeli high-handed decision to build, as it turns out, not only more than 1000 new housing units in East Jerusalem (specifically, the Har Homa area, which was a major center of controversy several years ago), but also 800 in the West Bank settlement of Ariel, which juts way into the West Bank, like a dagger into the heart of any future Palestinian state.  In Indonesia today, Mr. Obama has voiced his frustration with Israel's decision, which he calls "unhelpful."  State Dept.'s P. J. Crowley has indicated the US "disappointment."

But, says Netanyahu, Israel has every right to build in Jerusalem, which, after all, as Israeli dictate has proclaimed and every Bible-toting Christian knows, that city is Israel's "eternal and indivisible capital" - it's hardly a  settlement.

According to international law, the strong consensus of legal experts, and the long-held policy of the State Dept (which refuses to re-locate the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem), Netanyahu and his allies are wrong.  Obama knows that.  Netanyahu knows that Obama knows that; and he also knows that the Republicans in Congress have his back, which accounts for (as Ron Kampeas puts it) Bibi's new "swagger."

And meanwhile, in the streets of Sanaa and Riyadh, Amman and Damascus, Cairo and Marrakesh . . . and Islamabad and Kabul, young men grow angrier . . .

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