President Obama says that he has an ‘unbreakable’ commitment to Israel’s security and that his goal is an end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Here is how he is going about it, in the words of Caroline Glick:
Obama’s new demands follow the months of American pressure that eventually coerced Netanyahu into announcing both his support for a Palestinian state and a 10-month ban on Jewish construction in Judea and Samaria. No previous Israeli government had ever been asked to make the latter concession.
Netanyahu was led to believe that in return for these concessions Obama would begin behaving like the credible mediator his predecessors were. But instead of acting like his predecessors, Obama has behaved like the Palestinians. Rather than reward Netanyahu for taking a risk for peace, Obama has, in the model of Yasser Arafat and Mahmoud Abbas, pocketed Netanyahu’s concessions and escalated his demands. This is not the behavior of a mediator. This is the behavior of an adversary.
With the US president treating Israel like an enemy, the Palestinians have no reason to agree to sit down and negotiate. Indeed, they have no choice but to declare war.
And so, in the wake of Obama’s onslaught on Israel’s right to Jerusalem, Palestinian incitement against Israel and Jews has risen to levels not seen since the outbreak of the last terror war in September 2000. And just as night follows day, that incitement has led to violence. This week’s Arab riots from Jerusalem to Jaffa, and the renewed rocket offensive from Gaza are directly related to Obama’s malicious attacks on Israel.
The logic is simple and obvious. Why should the Palestinians negotiate or compromise when they have the US in their corner, extracting concession after concession from Israel, and asking nothing of them?
Obama’s actions are having an effect precisely opposite to his stated goals, and this could have been — and was — predicted in advance.
One interpretation is that the American move in escalating demands indicates that the administration continues to think, against all reason, that it is Israel’s refusal to meet Palestinian conditions that prevents a settlement. If so, the policymakers are remarkably ignorant or stupid — and I don’t think this is the case.
An alternative is that there is a policy objective that requires the US to distance itself from Israel. I am guessing that Iran, Syria or both have promised that they will keep a lid on violence in Iraq, from which Obama has promised he will withdraw, in return for actions that will weaken Israel. Both of these countries have compelling reasons for their hostility: Iran understands that Israel is a danger to its nuclear program (which the US will not seriously challenge), and Syria, in addition to supporting its ally Iran, has interests in Lebanon which are threatened by Israel.
Most likely the next Mideastern war will be between Israel and Hizballah, proxy of Iran and supported directly by Syria. The proximate cause is yet to be determined, but the real reason will be Iran’s drive to get nuclear weapons.
If the latter explanation is true, then Glick is right and the US truly is behaving more like an enemy than an ally.