Obama, worse than Bush?

Glenn Kessler of the Washington Post has a revealing article today that shows how, despite some rhetorical changes, the Obama administration has strengthened the U.S.-Israel relationship to an “unprecedented” level.  How’s that for some hope and change?  The article focuses on military and security cooperation, but it is not as if Obama really challenged Israel on settlement-building or the illegal blockade of Gaza.

An excerpt:

While public attention has focused on the fierce diplomatic disputes between Israel and the United States over settlement expansion in Palestinian territories, security and military ties between the two nations have grown ever closer during the Obama administration.

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates, who has worked decades in Washington, “believes we are cooperating on military-to-military relations in an unprecedented manner,” Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell said.

Military relations were very close during the Bush administration, but “in many ways the cooperation has been extended and perhaps enhanced in different areas” during the Obama administration, a senior Israeli official acknowledged.

Elliott Abrams, a former senior Bush administration official and a frequent critic of the Obama administration’s policy toward Israel, gives the White House high marks for its handling of the security relationship, saying it is “very smart” to insulate it from the diplomatic turmoil.

“It is the sounds of silence,” he said. “I do not hear from Israeli officials and officers any griping, and that is in a context when there has been a lot of griping in the past year about everything else.”

When Elliott Abrams cheers you on, you know that the neo-cons and war-hawks are happy.

The Kessler article shows how the overblown hysteria coming from neo-conservatives about Obama’s policy on Israel is quite misplaced.  Oh, how I wish they were right!

2 responses to “Obama, worse than Bush?

  1. As an israeli,I’m quite happy with Kessler’s article. I would like to skip evaluations whether president Obama’s “a change we need” new approach has anything to do with new elections for senate and congress, recognition of very bad start with Israel and Natanyahu or may be dramatic popularity descent as a result of decision making, including on Israel. I would like to come to the main issue: Why all the presidents, including Obama , failed in ending this 100 years conflict.
    I understand and appreciate president Obama’s efforts but I think that he, as well as all past presidents, misunderstood the deep roots of this conflict and beeing a person who have experienced in his childhood close relations with the islamic world must know that gestures, as shown in Cairo, Ankara and Riad have no meaning for palestinians and arabs
    since their expectations are clearly defined: If you are not with us then you are against us.
    The truth is that the US and Israel have so many unbreakable ties which are significant only within countries that share the same values such as democracy, power of justice, right of citizens for free opinion expression and above all high rate of sympathy and destiny sharing between the people of both countries.
    Those ties , together with known and unknown cooperation in many fields such as military, intelligence , science and technology makes this bond unbreakable and strong enough to deal with trials to undermine those ties.

  2. An interesting comment that the United States and Israel share values such as demcracy, justice, the right of expression then sympathy and destiny are added to that tiny meaningless list from POLYFAIR.
    They share the same passion to control the whole Middle East by any and all means available.

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