Michael Oren, Israel’s ambassador to the United States from 2009-13 as well as a noted historian and author, has joined the new Kulanu political party led by former Israeli communications minister Moshe Kahlon.
At a news conference in Tel Aviv, Kahlon said that the American-born Oren is the right man to fix both Israel’s image problem abroad and its frayed relationship with key allies like the U.S.
“Unfortunately, allies of Israel are distancing themselves and our relations aren’t what they were in the past,” Kahlon said, the Jerusalem Post reported. “Michael Oren is the right person to handle this responsibility. He proved that even when there are disagreements, he can maintain close ties. Michael is the best in his field.”
Oren is the author of several best-selling books, including “Power, Faith, and Fantasy” and “Six Days of War: June 1967 and the Making of the Modern Middle East.”
“Israel is at a critical junction,” Oren said. “I couldn’t look from the side and do nothing when Israel is under diplomatic attack.”
Recent polls project that Kahlon’s centrist Kulanu party will receive around 12 seats in next March’s Israeli Knesset elections. Kahlon might play the role of “kingmaker” in the formation of either a left-wing or right-wing governing coalition.