Senator Says Obama’s ‘Open Hostility’ to Netanyahu Causing Democrats to Lose Trust in President

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sen-lindsey-graham1By C. Coffey

President Obama’s hostility towards Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is creating a backlash in congress among Democrats, Senator Lindsay Graham (R-SC) told The Washington Post in an interview published on Friday.

This backlash is beginning to damage the President’s agenda with respect to Iran and Israel, according to Graham. The deteriorating relationship also elicited a strong response this morning from Senator John McCain (R-AZ), a close Graham ally.

“It’s been unnerving seeing the president show his open hostility,” Graham told The Washington Post. “It’s immature and over the top and has made people suspicious…He makes it hard for Democrats to trust him.”

Sen. Graham’s comments came amidst escalating antipathy by the White House towards Prime Minister Netanyahu who scored a strong reelection victory on Tuesday.

After the Israeli Prime Minister backed away later in the week from his pre-election opposition to a two-state solution to the Israel-Palestinian peace process, the White House publicly rejected this olive branch, saying it was going to “re-evaluate” its thinking.  The White House is even considering an end to US opposition to a UN Security Council resolution supporting the creation of an independent Palestinian state, according to reports.

Obama’s hostility towards Netanyahu has reportedly become so personal, that he is also considering cutting all direct ties with the Israeli Prime Minister.

The increasing White House enmity towards the Israeli Prime Minister also resulted in an atypical statementfrom pro-Israel lobby AIPAC, which rebuked the President for rebuffing Netanyahu’s efforts to repair relations.

According to Graham, White House resentment towards Netanyahu is beginning to deliver very real political consequences for the President’s agenda. The South Carolina Republican is the cosponsor of legislationrequiring greater congressional review of any nuclear deal Obama strikes with Iran. Some Democrats are expected to sign onto the bill, and Graham told The Washington Post that he now has enough votes to override a veto of this bill.

Obama is even facing bipartisan pressure in the House of Representatives. Last week, a group of 360 Democrat and Republican House members prepared a letter to President Obama, reminding him that he cannot lift Iranian sanctions absent legislation from Congress.

Senator Graham even suggested to The Washington Post that UN funding might be on the table should the President attempt to bypass Congress:

Graham hinted at another avenue to stop the president from going to the United Nations in lieu of the Senate. In deliberate fashion he added, ‘As for using the U.N. to avoid coming to the Congress, well that will create a real crisis between Congress and the U.N.’ He notes that the United States pays for 22 percent of the U.N. budget and that the subcommittee he controls oversees State Department funding. Without directly threatening to cut off U.N. funding he says, ‘I am not going to ask American taxpayers to spend money on the U.N. that would [confirm a deal and undercut the Congress].” He added, ‘If the U.N. is used to going around Congress it would create a tremendous backlash.’

Senator McCain was more direct than his colleague Senator Graham about the deteriorating relationship between Obama and Netanyahu. “Get over your temper tantrum, Mr. President,” Sen. McCain said on CNNthis morning. “It’s time that we work together with our Israeli friends…the least of your problems is Bibi Netanyahu.”

Senators McCain and Graham are close political allies. McCain said last January  during an ABC/ESPN podcast that Graham was a “dark horse” in the 2016 presidential field, and the one best equipped to deal with issues of national security.

The Algemeiner Journal

{Matzav.com Newscenter}

3 COMMENTS

  1. I hope this report is true. Imagine an arab for prez at a time like this- oh wait- that’s what we have! The 2 state solution is good only if there are two willing participants. Only an arab would consider the pals’ effort as “willing.” I’m glad Congress is willing to call a spade a spade. Mr. Hussein Obama has overstepped his bounds when he supports evil disguised as “human rights.” He should take a listen to Marco Rubio and others for an enlightened understanding of the situation.

  2. why not print the actual full transcripts of what netanyahu and obama actually said?
    the article you publish is nonsensical propaganda.

    An example of actually informing readers would be to publish these relevant transcripts of what netanyahi and obama have said:
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/03/21/obama-huffpost-interview-transcript_n_6905450.html

    obama’s comments are in this interview, so you should pull the entire piece from the interview and publish it.

    Then you should publish all of Netanyahus comments on the subject from before the election.
    Here are what seems to be the fullest coverages of what Netanyahu said:
    Nertyanyahu: “I think that anyone who is going to establish a Palestinian state today and evacuate lands is giving attack grounds to the radical Islam against the state of Israel,” he said in a video interview published Monday on the NRG site. “Anyone who ignores this is sticking his head in the sand. The left does this time and time again,” Netanyahu said. “We are realistic and understand.”
    Asked specially if he meant a Palestinian state would not be established if he were reelected prime minister, he answered, “Indeed.”

    Then you can publish Netanyahus POST election comments that were given prior to Obama’s comments: Here’s one of the fullest Netanyahu responses to the matter with Andrea Mitchell of the Palestinian state issue:
    ANDREA MITCHELL: Prime Minister, congratulations on your victory.
    BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, PRIME MINISTER OF ISRAEL: Thank you.
    MITCHELL: But — there’s always a but — critics and analysts here and around the world are saying at what cost. Your hard turn right on the Palestinian issue, what you said about the Arab voters coming out in droves, they say are costing you, costing you support around the world.
    NETANYAHU: Well, neither one is — the premises in your question are wrong. I haven’t changed my policy. I never changed my speech in Bar Ilan University six years ago calling for a demilitarized Palestinian state that recognizes the Jewish state. What has changed is the reality. Abu Mazen, the Palestinian leader, refuses to recognize the Jewish state, has made a pact with Hamas that calls for destruction of Jewish state. And every territory that is vacated in the Middle East is taken up by Islamist forces.
    MITCHELL: But they are saying –
    NETANYAHU: We want that to change, so we can realize a vision of real, sustained real peace. And I don’t want a one-state solution. I want a sustainable, peaceful two-state solution, but for that circumstances have to change.
    MITCHELL: But you were reelected on a mandate, certainly Israeli voters, your supporters, believe you were reelected on a mandate against a two-state solution. That is the way the White House is interpreting. The White House says this is divisive, and it’s so divisive that now the administration is saying that they will not stop the U.N. from conferring statehood. They will not block — or at least they’re strongly considering not blocking a vote for statehood for Palestinians.
    NETANYAHU: Well, first of all, that state would become a terrorist state. Iran says that they will arm the West Bank the way they arm Gaza. We withdrew from Gaza. We got just a few months ago, not ancient history but a few months ago, thousands of rockets, Andrea, on our heads.
    MITCHELL: So what does that mean –
    NETANYAHU: We don’t want it to happen again. And I think the administration has said time and time again that the only way to achieve peace is a negotiated solution. You can’t impose peace. And in any case, if you want to get peace, you’ve got to get the Palestinian leadership to abandon their pact with Hamas and engage in genuine negotiations with Israel for an achievable peace.
    We also have to make sure that we don’t have ISIS coming into that territory. It’s only two dozen from our borders, thousands of miles away from yours.
    So we need the conditions of recognition of a Jewish state and real security in order to have a realistic two-state solution. And I was talking about what is achievable and what is not achievable. To make it achievable, then you have to have real negotiations with people who are committed to peace. We are. It’s time that we saw the pressure on the Palestinians to show that they are committed too.
    MITCHELL: Words have meaning. Tom Friedman wrote today, “They must have been doing high-fives in Tehran when they saw how low Bibi sank to win. What better way to isolate Israel globally and deflect attention from Iran’s behavior?”
    Joe Klein in “Time” magazine quoted bigotry. Jeffrey Goldberg said that it would be calamitous, the way you talked about Arab voters and the way you talked about not going for a Palestinian state.
    NETANYAHU: Well, I explained on the Palestinian state what it is we need. We need a demilitarized state that recognizes a Jewish state.
    MITCHELL: Can — telling your supporters –
    NETANYAHU: But an Arab vote is, I think, it’s very, very important. First of all, I’m very proud to be the prime minister of all of Israel’s citizens, Arabs and Jews alike.
    MITCHELL: That’s not the way it sounded on election day.
    NETANYAHU: Well, if you hear what I said, you might reconsider what you just said and what you quoted. I’m very proud of the fact that Israel is the one country in a very broad radius that — in which Arabs have free and fair elections. That’s sacrosanct. That will never change.
    MITCHELL: Critics and analysts here and around the world are saying at what cost. Your hard turn right on the Palestinian issue, what you said about the Arab voters coming out in droves, they say are costing you, costing you support around the world.
    NETANYAHU: Well, neither one is— the premises in your question are wrong. I haven’t changed my policy. I never changed my speech in Bar Ilan University six years ago calling for a demilitarized Palestinian state that recognizes the Jewish state. What has changed is the reality. Abu Mazen, the Palestinian leader, refuses to recognize the Jewish state, has made a pact with Hamas that calls for destruction of Jewish state. And every territory that is vacated in the Middle East is taken up by Islamist forces.
    ____________________________________

    if matzav isnt serious about accurately portraying a subject you choose to write about you ought not mislead the klal with poor coverage of the subject.

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