Did Obama 'sell out' Israel?

Critics attack the White House for offering to support a U.N. Security Council condemnation of Israeli settlements

President Obama with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu: Are relations growing more strained?
(Image credit: Getty)

The U.S. is in a diplomatic bind, as the United Nations Security Council on Friday considers a proposal to condemn Israel for building settlements on Palestinian territory. The Obama administration angered Israel and its supporters by telling Arab governments that it would back a statement saying it "does not accept the legitimacy" of new settlements. That's a watered-down version of a tougher U.N. resolution calling the West Bank settlements "illegal" — a harsh rebuke the U.S. might veto. Is President Obama betraying Israel, or trying to break the impasse on Mideast peace?

Obama is selling out Israel: The Middle East is in turmoil, says Bryan Preston at Pajamas Media, and Israel needs our support now more than ever. Obama's groveling to Israel's enemies is nothing short of a "sellout," and it sends the wrong message at precisely the wrong time. It gives all our allies, not just Israel, "very good reasons to be nervous about our resolve."

"It begins: U.S. sells out Israel on settlements at U.N."

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Israel has itself to blame for this mess: Israel has no business building settlements on Palestinian land, says the Booman Tribune. That's the official policy at the U.N., and in Washington. The "immoral and politically unsustainable" annexation of Palestinian turf is turning Israel into a pariah. They can "blame Obama for that, but it's their own fault."

"Israel's position is slipping fast"

Obama is redefining U.S. support for Israel: This "U.N. mess" is "a waste of a controversy," says Ben Smith at Politico, because the Palestinians rejected Obama's compromise. But the "broad public discomfort" expressed by Republicans and Democrats alike shows how far the Obama administration has "broken with the standard American pro-Israel line." With the "deep freeze in relations between Israel and Obama, and fears of what might happen in Egypt," it's easy to understand the "deep discomfort in pro-Israel circles."

"Criticism on Israel move builds on Hill"

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