What else would have expected Obama to do? He already backed the horrendous UN resolution that forced Israel into this position. He can’t publicly reverse himself so quickly even though Israel is ignoring the resolution. Obama has heightened tensions and like a person who loses at blackjack and then goes right back to the ATM, he instructs John Kerry to make it worse by personally singling out the Israel Prime Minister. They reminded me of the biggest bully in the marching band. (they’re completely weak when compared to a real tough guy and they’re dressed funny.)
NYTimes – Secretary of State John Kerry accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel on Wednesday of thwarting peace in the Middle East, speaking with a clarity and harshness almost never heard from American diplomats when discussing one of their closest and strongest allies.
With only 23 days left in his four-year turn as secretary of state, during which he made the search for peace in the Middle East one of his driving missions, Mr. Kerry said the Israeli government was undermining any hope of a two-state solution to its decades-long conflict with the Palestinians.
The American vote last week in the United Nations allowing the condemnation of Israel for settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, he added, was driven by a desire to save Israel from “the most extreme elements” in its own government.
“The status quo is leading toward one state and perpetual occupation,” Mr. Kerry said, his voice animated.
His speech was a powerful admonition after years of tension and frustration, with the Obama administration giving public voice to its long-held concern that Israel was headed off a cliff toward international isolation and was condemning itself to a future of low-level, perpetual warfare with the Palestinians.
Reaction was immediate and harsh, not only from Mr. Netanyahu, but also from Senators John McCain, Republican of Arizona, and Chuck Schumer, Democrat of New York. President-elect Donald J. Trump did not even wait for Mr. Kerry to speak before condemning the secretary of state.
The United States and Israel are in the middle of a breach rarely seen since President Harry S. Truman recognized the fragile Israeli state in May 1948. In a direct response to Mr. Netanyahu’s barb over the weekend that “friends don’t take friends to the Security Council” — a reference to the Obama administration’s decision to abstain from the resolution condemning the building of new settlements in disputed territory — Mr. Kerry said the United States acted out of a deeper understanding of the meaning of its alliance.
“Some seem to believe that the U.S. friendship means the U.S. must accept any policy, regardless of our own interests, our own positions, our own words, our own principles — even after urging again and again that the policy must change,” he said. “Friends need to tell each other the hard truths, and friendships require mutual respect.”
Toward the end of his 70-minute speech in the State Department’s auditorium, Mr. Kerry acknowledged that Mr. Trump may well abandon the major principles that the United States has used for decades of Middle East negotiations, including the two-state solution that both Republicans and Democrats support. Mr. Trump is nominating a new American ambassador, David M. Friedman, who has broken with even the pretense of supporting a two-state negotiated agreement and has helped fund some of the settlements Mr. Kerry denounced.
On vacation in Palm Beach, Fla., Mr. Trump posted two Twitter messages rejecting the speech before it was delivered. “We cannot continue to let Israel be treated with such total disdain and disrespect,” he wrote on Wednesday morning. After assailing the nuclear deal in Iran and last week’s vote at the Security Council, he said, “Stay strong Israel, January 20th is fast approaching!”
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