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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
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US President Barack Obama
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NYT: Netanyahu isolating Israel
Editorial accuses Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of embarrassing US President Obama with help of Republicans, against Israel's interests and torpedoing peace effort
Netanyahu embarrassing Obama? - In its editorial section on Thursday the New York Times accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of torpedoing the peace effort by isolating Israel. The paper is adamantly against the image of US President Barack Obama as hostile towards Israel and mentions Obama's unwavering support for Israel on security issues.

 

"His (Obama) support for Israel has never wavered. But we fear that Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister, will read the election as yet another reason to ignore the president’s advice and refuse to make any compromises with the Palestinians, no matter how essential for Israel’s own security."

 

The backdrop for the harsh article is Wednesday's report on Republican Bob Turner's victory over Democrat David Weprin.

 

The selection of a republican representative for a position in what is considered a democrat stronghold was made possible thanks to the change in voting patterns of New York's large orthodox Jewish community. A change seen by many as vengeance against Obama and his allegedly hostile attitude towards Israel.

 

As the paper sums it up: "Mr. Netanyahu should be worried that his country is more isolated now than when he took office. That isolation will deepen so long as negotiations remain stalemated. No vote in New York City makes that any less true — or any less dangerous for Israel."

 

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The editorial does criticize Obama, saying he has "not handled the Israeli-Palestinian issue adroitly. Palestinians certainly waited too long to begin negotiations, and Arab leaders failed to offer initiatives that might give Israel confidence that a serious deal was possible."

 

Yet the piece is most critical of Netanyahu for being "the most intractable" over "building settlements and blaming his inability to be more forthcoming on his conservative coalition".

Obama and Netanyahu (Photo: Reuters)
Obama and Netanyahu (Photo: Reuters)
 

The New York Times goes even further and accuses Netanyahu of seeking to embarrass Obama, "egged on by Congressional Republicans".

 

The paper then defines Netanyahu's actions as "astonishing behavior for so close an ally that does not serve his own country’s interest".

 

President Obama is defended again and again in the article with the newspaper stating: "Mr. Obama has repeatedly affirmed support for Israel and backed it up with action. He has had far more success than President George W. Bush in rallying tough sanctions on Iran.

 

"Security cooperation is strong, including accelerated development and funding for an Israeli missile defense system.

 

"The administration pressured Egypt last weekend to protect Israel’s diplomats in Cairo, and it negotiated an agreement to ease tensions with Turkey over the Gaza aid flotilla, until Israel pulled out of the deal," the paper claims.

 

 

 

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