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  • February 8, 2013

    Obama’s visit to Israel – continuity or change?  

    Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger, “Second Thought”
    “Israel Hayom”, February 8, 2013,

    President Obama’s March 2013 visit to the Middle East, including Israel, could signal a significant policy-change from his June 2009 visit, which excluded Israel.  On the other hand, the introduction of the John Kerry (State Department) – Chuck Hagel (Pentagon) – John Brennan (CIA) team of “Palestine Firsters”may suggest that the March visit could merely be a tactical-change in pursuit of the same policy.

    The 2009 visit was driven by an assumption that a newly-elected charismatic US President could turnaround the US economy and reform US healthcare, while simultaneously implementing UN-like multilateralism, lowering the US unilateral profile, transforming the world from confrontation to engagement, mollifying the Muslim World, coax Iran into abandoning its megalomaniac aspirations and resolve the Arab-Israeli conflict.  The 2009 visit reflected a worldview focusing on the Palestinian issue as the, supposed, core cause of Middle East turbulence, the crown jewel of Islamic policy-making, an essential link in forging an anti-Iran Arab coalition and the crux of the Arab-Israeli conflict.  Israel was perceived as a secondary ally, at best, and a burden, at worst.
    (Read more…)

    Posted by Ted Belman @ 8:05 pm ET | Plink | Trackback | 14 Comments » | 1,665 views

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