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September 19, 2014 / 24 Elul, 5774
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ALL'S WELL

Amid Fears of a Breakdown in Ties, Obama and Netanyahu Speak for an Hour on the Phone

Remember the Haaretz story that made every red blooded Jew irate, about how the White House declined the Prime Minister's request?
Bibi+Barak

Photo Credit: Photomontage by Yori Yanover

Benjamin Netanyahu’s relationship with President Obama has been strained, but they met on all but one of his visits to the U.S. since 2009. The one exception was in November, 2010, when the president was on a foreign visit when Netanyahu came to the U.S. Which is why the reported snub on Tuesday, together with Netanyahu’s doubling down on his demands for U.S. redlines on Iran, could create a real crisis between the two allies – certainly not a good thing less than 60 days before a tight presidential election.

By refusing a meeting with Netanyahu, the president was going alienate Jewish and other Israel-first voters. Republican candidate Mitt Romney has already said Obama was too hard on Israel and too soft on Iran.

So on Tuesday the White House denied reports of such a crisis, adding that Netanyahu and Obama have reaffirmed their mutual commitment to stopping Iran from going nuclear.

According to the released statement, the two leader spoke over the phone for an hour Tuesday night. They agreed to continue “close consultations going forward” on Iran’s nuclear plans.

Remember the Haaretz story that made every red blooded Jew irate, about how the White House declined the Prime Minister’s request on Tuesday to meet Obama during a U.N. conference in New York at the end of the month?

According to that story, White House National Security Council Spokesman Tommy Vietor said they won’t meet because of a scheduling conflict. “The President arrives in New York for the U.N. on Monday, September 24th and departs on Tuesday, September 25th. The Prime Minister doesn’t arrive in New York until later in the week. They’re simply not in the city at the same time.”

This was when Netanyahu doubled down on his Let’s Bomb Iran campaign, rebuking Obama and Secretary Clinton for refusing his call to set a clear “red line” for Iran’s nuclear program.

“The world tells Israel, ‘Wait, there’s still time.’ And I say, ‘Wait for what? Wait until when?’” Netanyahu said during a press conference with Bulgaria’s prime minister.

He added: “Those in the international community who refuse to put red lines before Iran don’t have a moral right to place a red light before Israel.”

Them’s fighting words, indeed.

So, in an unexpected, late-night announcement, the White House denied the reports that Obama had rejected Netanyahu’s request for a meeting – in Washington. According to White House spokesman Tommy Vietor, no such request was made—or rejected.

And the meeting in New York was just an honest scheduling thing, so, really, no crisis, honestly.

The State Dept. is also fast and furious at changing its official tune. You’ll recall that on Monday DOS spokeswoman Victoria Nuland announced that “it is not useful” to declare “red lines” as Netanyahu had suggested.

On Tuesday, Nuland said the Iranian situation is a matter of “intense discussion” with Israel.

You have to give it to Bibi non being as unabashed as he is at utilizing the political terrain, no holds barred (mixed metaphors, I know and apologize). While his supposed “master,” the U.S. government, is desperately shushing him about the Iranian threat, Bibi hollers his defiant message into a megaphone connected to Woodstock-size speakers. He is improving on Teddy Roosevelt’s favorite political slogan, making it: Speak loudly and carry a big stick.

And wave the stick on the White House lawn until they invite you in and pretend they weren’t snubbing you.

About the Author: Yori Yanover has been a working journalist since age 17, before he enlisted and worked for Ba'Machane Nachal. Since then he has worked for Israel Shelanu, the US supplement of Yedioth, JCN18.com, USAJewish.com, Lubavitch News Service, Arutz 7 (as DJ on the high seas), and the Grand Street News. He has published Dancing and Crying, a colorful and intimate portrait of the last two years in the life of the late Lubavitch Rebbe, (in Hebrew), and two fun books in English: The Cabalist's Daughter: A Novel of Practical Messianic Redemption, and How Would God REALLY Vote.


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11 Responses to “Amid Fears of a Breakdown in Ties, Obama and Netanyahu Speak for an Hour on the Phone”

  1. As soon as President Romney takes office Israel will again have an honored place. It will be helpful to everyone that loves Israel that Mitt and Bibi have been friends for decades.

  2. That mamzer SOB Obama is solid 100% BS, a con man, a liar, a Leftist moron Muslim Brotherhood stooge, anti-Israel, anti-American. The US will do absolutely nothing to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran. Israel is thrown under the bus while that miserable wretch in the White House apologizes to Islamists when they kill Americans, burn the American flag, & invade the US embassy.

  3. Israel is no one's water boy. They will act singlehandedly (with G-d's protection), if necessary. To rely on Ba'raq Obama, who is a pro Palestinian and anti Semite, is completely unnecessary. Mr Netanyahu answers only to Jews within Israel and around the world. He does not answer to an undercover honorary member of the Muslim Brotherhood.

  4. I love the prime minister of Israel, I think he is a great noble man, who cares deeply for Israel and its people. Obama is the very opposite to him, and I am sure any treaty he makes with Israel, he will renege on same.

  5. David Bonin says:

    I SUpported Obama all this time. Now I may not even vote. Obama is disappointming me . he refuses to meet with Netanyau and keeps quiet about jerusalem? I may not vote at all. and to think I contributed financially to hbis campaign.Wishg I had not

  6. You're doing the right thing, you're not the only one with buyer's remorse, that's for sure.

  7. Abraham Santiago says:

    Obama’s refusal to recognize and consider Iran as a credible threat to the US and the world is shocking. The Obama administration has done nothing to prevent Iranian Islamic Jihadist from infiltrating and establishing bases of operation in Latin America. Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad inroads into Latin America especially México, Venezuela, Cuba, Bolivia, Nicaragua and Ecuador prove the point that Iran will do everything it can to establish a beachhead in our region. The facts are clear, regarding Iran and her intentions and bill H.R. 3783 the Western Hemisphere Act of 2012 requires the State Department to compile a detailed report to congress about Iran’s activities in Latin America. Obama’s refusal to draw a line in the sand, clearly demonstrates his lack of courage in a time when courageous men are hard to find.
    This is why Prime Minister Netanyahu continues to warn and exhort president Obama of the threat Iran is not only to the stability of the Middle East but to the world. There is a parallel between Prime Minister Netanyahu and Don Isaac Abravanel the leading statesman of the Middle Ages who pleaded before King Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain to do the right thing, Abravanel words fell on deaf ears. Disaster is stalking the US and it is up to us as citizens to sway the public into a new paradigm shift of responsibility.
    Netanyahu says it best, “Those who refuse to draw red line to Iran don’t have the moral right to put a red line to Israel.”.

    Abraham Santiago

  8. Ed Karesky says:

    Don't bet your bank account on Romney. He waffles on everything and could well do so on Israel. Talk is very cheap. I don't trust either of these guys. Only a fool would do so.

  9. Only a fool? Special Ed Teacher? No wonder you follow the most incompetent, ineffective president since Carter and have nothing honest to say. You are insulting the CA taxpayer that you are gouging daily and the people of Israel by supporting Obama.

  10. Not voting IS a vote for Obama. Please reconsider.

  11. You are a blow-hard. Allow others to have their opinions that differ, without lambasting them with your verbal diarrhea.

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