Not really surprising, but there still are stupid supporters of Israel who believe that removing Jerusalem from the DNC platform was just a technical error.
The White House declined Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s request on Tuesday to meet U.S. President Barack Obama during a UN conference in New York at the end of the month.
An official in Jerusalem said that the prime minister’s office sent the White House a message stating that although Netanyahu will spend only two and a half days on U.S. soil, he is interested in meeting Obama and is willing to travel to the U.S. capital specifically for that purpose. The official added that the White House rejected the request and said that at this time Obama’s schedule does not allow for a meeting.
The White House’s response marks a new low in relations between Netanyahu and Obama, underscored by the fact that this is the first time Netanyahu will visit the U.S. as prime minister without meeting the president.
Just wait for that second term.
These billboards placed in South Florida by the Republican Jewish Coalition seem appropriate:
Update: Friend of the blog and soon to be contributor Joel Engel writes:
Reuters just reported that Obama has refused to meet with Benjamin Netanyahu during the Israeli prime minister’s upcoming visit. Our president clearly doesn’t like Netanyahu’s bellicose pleas for American assurances that Iran will not be allowed to complete its nuclear-annihilation mission. The AP even refers to Netanyahu’s utterances as “ratcheting up a public feud with the U.S.”
It seems increasingly apparent Obama does not understand that by not standing publicly behind Israel, he actually increases the possibility that (a) Israel will be forced to act by itself; (b) Iran will come believe that the only martial retaliation for launching a strike on Israel will come from Israel itself; or (c) both of those.
For Netanyahu, acting before November is likely to have unpredictable electoral consequences—possibly including an Obama landslide. This is an unintended consequence he must guard against for the same reason that acting after the election, if Obama wins, may be impossible tactically and militarily. Is it inconceivable that the U.S. would shoot down Israeli warplanes? No one knows. Which is the point.
For Obama, refusing to meet with Netanyahu now is a purely political calculation. Judging by the angry reaction of delegates at the Democratic National Convention when Jerusalem was corruptly re-inserted into the platform, any public reaffirmation of America’s commitment to Israel risks damaging Obama’s base. And in a contest between an existential threat to one of America’s closest allies and his reelection, it’s no contest at all.
WH confirms President Obama & PM Netanyahu will NOT meet in NY later this wk but they say it’s wrong to say POTUS “refused” a meeting
— Ed Henry (@edhenryTV) September 11, 2012