Is Obama's defense of Israel too little, too late?

After years of frustrating Israel and its supporters, the U.S. president finally takes a firm stand — though his motives are suspect

David Frum

President Obama's speech to the U.N. General Assembly on Wednesday marked a real turning point in this administration.For the first time since he began campaigning for the presidency back in 2007, Obama spoke about Israel with sensitivity and understanding — "from the inside out," as the saying goes.

Until now, Obama has often spoken of Israel with sympathy, but rarely with understanding. The president's speech in Cairo in 2009 hit the nadir. In that speech, the president explained the founding of Israel as a reaction to the European Holocaust — thus negating 2,000 years of Jewish exile and a half century of pre-Holocaust Zionism. The president referenced the Muslim religious claim to Jerusalem and the legend of Muhammad's "night journey" to the sacred Temple Mount — without any mention of whose Temple it was that sacralized the Mount in the first place.

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