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Obama, Netanyahu, & the UN after the election (summaries of 4 articles by Daily Alert)

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Mar. 19, 2015

  • U.S. to “Re-Evaluate” Mideast Peace Strategy – Carol E. Lee and Joshua Mitnick
    In the wake of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s reelection, the White House upended decades of U.S. policy on Wednesday when it left open the possibility that it might not use its veto in the UN Security Council to shield Israel from unfavorable resolutions, such as the creation of a Palestinian state, as aides to the president said he is rethinking U.S. strategy on the Middle East peace process.
    At the same time, some said Israel’s relations with the White House could be repaired. “The coals will cool off,” said Dore Gold, a longtime Netanyahu adviser. “The U.S. and Israel are fundamentally allies in the same war and will have to find a way to re-establish that kind of cooperative relationship.”  (Wall Street Journal)
  • Lawmakers Urge Obama to Mend Fences with Netanyahu
    Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle in Congress are urging President Obama to mend fences with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. “Now that he has been elected by the people in a free and fair election, the president should reach out to him. The president should say, ‘OK, there are too many issues that are important to us,'” said Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.). “Now that the election is over, continuing to mend tensions in the U.S.-Israel relationship needs to be a priority for everyone, regardless of political affiliation,” said Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), the top Democrat on the Intelligence Committee. (The Hill)
  • See also State Department Seeks to Lower the Temperature on Israel-U.S. Differences – Matt Spetalnick and Patricia Zengerle
    After a better-than-expected showing by the Israeli prime minister inTuesday’s election, efforts already were under way in Washington to lower the temperature. State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf told CNN, “What we’re focused on is the Israelis moving forward, forming a government, and we will work with whoever is prime minister to see if we can make progress in what is a very tough and difficult area to do so.”  (Reuters)
  • Israel Responds to UN Call for Peace Deal with Palestinians
    UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon responded to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s election victory with a call Wednesday for the new government to negotiate a final peace agreement that will create “a viable Palestinian state.”
    Israel’s UN Ambassador Ron Prosor responded: “The United Nations may disagree with the policies of the Israeli government, but there is one fact that can’t be disputed – that Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East….If the UN is so concerned about the future of the Palestinian people, it should be asking why President Abbas is in the tenth year of a five-year presidential term or why Hamas uses the Palestinian people as human shields.”  (AP)
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