(Guardian) — Barack Obama will seek a joint Middle East agreement with David Cameron, insisting that a Palestinian state should be based on pre-1967 borders — a proposal rejected by Israel’s prime minister as “unrealistic” and “indefensible”.
The issue will be raised in private talks between the two men during the state visit by Obama and his wife to London, only the third by a US president in 100 years. Afghanistan, Libya, relations with Pakistan and the global economy — as well as the vacancy for the top job at the IMF — will also make up the agenda.
Despite the outright rejection by the Israeli premier, Binyamin Netanyahu, of a Palestinian state based on the borders that existed before the Six Day War, when Israel captured and occupied the West Bank and Gaza, Obama has already secured the political backing of the United Nations, European Union and Russia who, with America, are collectively known as the “quartet”.
Signalling his determination to keep up pressure on Israel, Obama will be looking to enlist the public support of the UK prime minister. The aim is, in large part, to persuade the Palestinian leadership not to go to the UN in September seeking symbolic backing for an independent state.
The coming meeting between the two men follows evidence of a hardening of criticism of Israel by London. On the eve of the Obamas’ arrival, Middle East minister Alistair Burt accused Israel of “unhelpful and destabilising activity” in announcing the building of 1,500 new settlement units in East Jerusalem ahead of a speech by the president on the Middle East on Friday.
He is actively seeking to pressure Israel into withdraw to borders that are indefensible. Borders that will offer much greater opportunities for Israel’s enemies to launch greater attacks upon it. He demands greater concessions from Israel, a nation that seeks only peace, and to be let alone. And who does he demand these concessions be made to? Terrorists that have been trying to destroy Israel for decades upon decades now. TERRORISTS! Terrorists that butcher innocent Israeli civilians at every opportunity!
I am sorry folks, but I can see nothing in all of this but a desire by our president to destroy Israel. Nothing but the betrayal of an old friend. Nothing but a president that apparently seeks to throw Israel to the wolves. And no, it is not only Conservatives who are outraged at the president’s course of action
Some prominent Jewish Americans are rethinking their support for President Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election bid after he effectively called on Israel to give back territory it has occupied since 1967 to Palestinians.
The backlash after Obama’s keynote speech on the Middle East has Democratic Party operatives scrambling to mollify the Jewish community as the president prepares to seek a second term in the White House.
“He has in effect sought to reduce Israel’s negotiation power and I condemn him for that,” former New York Mayor Ed Koch told Reuters. .
“I believed that then-Senator Obama would be as good as John McCain based on his statements at the time and based on his support of Israel. It turns out I was wrong,” he said.
Exit polls from the 2008 election showed 78 percent of Jewish voters chose Obama over his Republican rival Senator McCain.
“I have spoken to a lot of people in the last couple of days — former supporters — who are very upset and feel alienated,” billionaire real estate developer and publisher Mortimer Zuckerman said.
“He’ll get less political support, fewer activists for his campaign, and I am sure that will extend to financial support as well.”
Zuckerman backed Obama during his 2008 presidential run and the newspaper he owns, the New York Daily News, endorsed the president.
Rep. Steve Rothman (D-N.J.) delivered a similar message, arguing that reverting the borders would only embolden Hamas to launch more attacks.
“A two-state solution agreed upon by the Israelis and Palestinians should be negotiated through direct talks,” Rothman said Friday in a statement, “but it is important to remember that a full return to the 1967 borders will be indefensible for Israel and that talking with terrorists who want to destroy Israel is a non-starter.”
Rep. Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) echoed that sentiment, saying the 1967 borders “were simply not defensible, and Israel must not be made to return to them.”
“The President is correct that land swaps built into a peace agreement could make Israel’s borders safe and secure, but make no mistake about it – such territorial adjustments would be very significant so that Israel would no longer be 9 miles wide at its narrowest point.”
And the “International Community” is not all in agreement either
(Globe and Mail) — The Harper government is refusing to join the United States in calling for a return to 1967 borders as a starting point for Mideast peace, a position that has drawn sharp criticism from Canada’s staunch ally Israel.
At a briefing ahead of the upcoming G8 summit in France, federal officials said the basis for the negotiations must be mutually agreed upon.
Israel quickly rejected U.S. President Barack Obama’s proposal for the talks to be guided by the 1967 borders, with mutually agreed land swaps.
“What the government of Canada supports is basically a two-state solution that is negotiated,” a senior federal official said. “If it’s border, if it’s others issues, it has to be negotiated, it cannot be unilateral action.”
Pressed by reporters, federal officials said both the Israelis and the Palestinians have to decide on their bottom lines, which the Israelis have said will not include a return to the 1967 border.
So, what else is there left for us to assume. AGAIN, just like with our economy, we are confronted with this question. Is Obama really this stupid, or does he realize what he is doing? Alan Dershowitz has a definite opinion
No fucking clue indeed Mr. President!