Obama v Netanyahu – the next round

Netanyahu knows that Obama’s top regional priority is preventing war with Iran. And that’s what gives Netanyahu his bargaining (one could say blackmail) power. It will enable him to say to Obama something very like following: “Mr. President, to assist you we will continue to refrain from taking military action against Iran, on our own if necessary, but in return you must not press me over the settlements.”

In effect both men will be buying time – for Obama to end the nuclear crisis with Iran by diplomatic and political means, for Netanyahu to continue the colonization of the West Bank without serious sanction.

The irony in all of this is that Netanyahu has no intention of attacking Iran. His threat to do so started out as a bluff – to get Palestine off the agenda and give him bargaining power with Obama. (Netanyahu’s strategy could be described as chutzpah at its most devilish).

Because war with Iran would have catastrophic consequences for the region and the world, the problem for Obama (as it would be for any American president) is that he can’t afford to call Netanyahu’s bluff.

So it looks as though Netanyahu has the winning hand, a situation that is unlikely to change unless Obama can solve the problem with Iran by diplomacy and politics. My own view is that he really wants to do so. If I was advising him, I would urge him to send something like the following message, in secret of course, to Iran’s leadership. “If we can reach an agreement on your nuclear program, I will have more freedom to use some leverage to require Israel to be serious about peace based on justice for the Palestinians and security for all.”

Rashid Khalidi ended his article with these words:

“For Mr. Obama, a decision is in order. He can reconcile the United States to continuing to uphold and bankroll an unjust status quo that it helped produce. Or he can begin to chart a new course based on recognition that the United States must forthrightly oppose the occupation and the settlements and support an inalienable Palestinian right to freedom, equality and statehood. There is no middle way.”

In principle I agree with Rashid. But even if Obama’s performance in Israel-Palestine in the coming days invites Arab and other Muslim derision and contempt (as it most likely will), I would argue for giving him a little more time to negotiate with Iran before writing him off as the president who completed America’s surrender to Zionism and did most to assist it to kill all hope for peace.

An agreement with Iran could be a real game-changer because it would leave Netanyahu without his best blackmail card.

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14 comments on this post.
  1. Rehmat:

    Well, according to American academic, Karl Herman, Israel’s new radical Jewish government may chose to assassinate Barack Obama and blame it on Iran – “to start more unlawful war”.


  2. ontogram:

    I think he should call the bluff: Israel will not initiate any attack that could require proportionate response by Iran. Israel simply cannot afford to let even a handful of missiles through its defenses and that is inevitable. Israel cannot absorb such impacts as can Iran. It is incommensurate with Iran in many ways. Small losses in Israel are huge as Israel claims to be a sanctuary for Jewish lives. Missiles falling on Tel Aviv will change Israeli politics and the settlement program dramatically. There is nothing for Israel to win in such a conflict and much to lose. It is stupid. If Israel unambiguously assaults Iran directly, the US need only hold back a day or two for reprisals to hit both Israel and the US and Obama would be in just such a mood to do so. Of course, Netanyahooyahoo knows all this and is just hoping the bluff is not called. The US could be forced into action but action can be minimal, confused, inadequate, wrong-headed, counter-productive and stupid. It could be too little too late. Yahoo is bluffing.

  3. Robyn:

    Why do people say the settlers would have to be removed before a Palestinian state could be established within the 1967 borders? Wouldn’t the settlers just find themselves living in Palestine from which they would be free to leave if they wanted to. Just the way the Palestinians woke up one day to find that they were living in Israel.

  4. Obama v Netanyahu – the next round – Alan Hart | Anas Ben Ahmed:

    [...] Obama v Netanyahu – the next round – Alan Hart. [...]

  5. maryam:

    Damn it, Alan, why do you still write the words “peace process” with any kind of sincerity? Haven’t you figured out yet that it’s all a scam and that “negotiations” will never bring about peace? In your own writing you acknowledge the fact that Netanyahu’s government is made up of pro-settlement thugs, so it’s obvious Israel is in its en game now. The only thing that will stop the complete destruction of Palestine is if the Palestinians themselves orchestrate an uprising, along with the other Arab states, and defeat the zionists.

    All along, the US has fostered and promoted the goals of zionism. It is no more interested in a peace settlement than Israel. It wants to see the complete erasure of the Palestinian people.

  6. Vera Gottlieb:

    Can’t help but be reminded of Hitler’s expansionary aim.

  7. Rolf Schmid:

    @Rehmat`s Response is THE perfect IDEA!!

  8. Rehmat:

    The Zionist regime is very very affraid of next round of deadly rockets from Gaza or Hizballah – as it so-called “Iron Drome” proved to be less than 5% efficient to intercept those rockets/missile in November 2012 war with Hamas – inspite of the Zionist propaganda lie of 80% efficiency.

    The Israeli claim was rejected by Dr. Theodore Postol, a physicist and missile technology expert at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology after the ceasefire brokered by Egyptian president Dr. Morsi for which Israeli president Shimon Peres called Morsi “a brother”.

    The rockets fired from Gaza are crude, slow and cost only a few hundered dollars as compared to $100,000 per antimissile battery the US had supplied to the Jewish army. “Israel has every reason to overexaggerate the efficiency of the Dome, just as we did with Patriots during Desert Storm (Iraq War),” says George Stejic, president of Tesla Laboratories Inc., which is investigating the effectiveness of the Iron Dome.

    In order to keep Israeli lies about the Iron Dome alive – the Zionist regime will display a battery of the anti-rocket Dome system at the Ben Gurion International airport where Barack Obama is scheduled to land on March 20 for the first time as President of United States.

    However, the Jewish lobby groups led by AIPAC have a bigger fish to fry. They’re telling the Pentagon to buy the product from Israel which was paid for by the US taxpayers in the firsy place. “Now that the Iron Dome has proven itself, Washington will have the ability to use it in its own defense efforts against short-range rocket threats in the Persian Gulf and South Korea“. You got to give credit to the AIPAC for its ability to kill the American geese a hundred ways!


  9. Nelson Wight:

    Alan, I respect and recognize your tempered judgment regarding your statements, since there are few who have experienced so much of the diplomacy in the Middle East area…may we all hope that someone in his advisory group isn’t also in bed with Zionist/AIPAC lunatics.

  10. Confoundmeonce:

    Alan, as you always Do…you bring out ‘food for thought’But as was just reiterated…. ( stop talkig ‘Peace Process’) We all know there is none and hasn`t ever been. And in this instance, it is Simply rhetoric that delays anything ever coming out of any ‘exchanges’ between the U.S. and Israhell that has Palestinian State even mentioned in them. These Zionist Think they have ‘the Bull by the horns’ and can THROW him at every turn…if they so choose ! And who Gave them…and allowed them to think This ? This Guvmt. of The U.S. that is Filled with and controlled by their zionist agents …( installed by our own ? Congress, no less ! ) Well, Enough is now Tooo Much. Time to take a stand ..and let that Yahoo know he is not in charge like he Wants us to believe. He is Just a puppet -off-spring of This ‘in-house congress.’ Time to Pull The Cord and Let’r Rip ” That State ? of israhell Could Never win a Fight anywhere without The backing of this USA…And We Have more to gain than to lose..by making it clear that ‘ No ! WE do not have your back, Israel ! YOU stir up Another ‘shooting war ‘ , it will be the end of you.’ B.Netty, you are a Blustering fool.

  11. Ronald Douglas Kennedy:

    “So it looks as though Netanyahu has the winning hand,”

    It’s long past time to pull American Dollars out of this fraudulent con game of lies. Till the Zio’s : declare there Nuclear weapons as required by American Law. Declare they have no “legal land right’s” other then those given to them in 1948 by the U. N. As they, signed and agreed to. That’s if even that Contract is still in force, as it has been grossly violated to date.

    If theirs not an equable Two State “signed” solution by the U.S. midterm election’s there needs to be language, that all funding to Israel will be canceled, with the Saving of these Billions of American Tax Dollars, going where it should have gone in the first place to American: Veterans who bled and died fighting these designed Zio Wars, and American Cities and States in helping, its Citizens in rebuilding at home first. Voting to spend these dollars on legal works at home.

    Also in turning our back on this gambling house of fraudsters’. Finally have Full Open Public hearing on the attack on our Flag in 1967 and the killing 34. Americans and wounding another 171 aboard the American Intelligence ship USS. LIBERTY.

  12. Rehmat:

    On March 15, Douglas Bloomfield, in The Jewish Week claimed that the real reason for Barack Obama’s visit to Israel was being overshadowed by the media which is putting to much emphasize on Obama-Netanyahu negotiation about Iranian nukes, the desired regime change in Syria and the new Jewish settlements. So what’s that the media doesn’t know but only Bloomfield knows?

    “Obama will be carrying a message to Muslims about the need to respect the religion of others,” claims Bloomfield.

    I wonder why Obama needs to repeat his message of tolerance for the Muslims which he stated in his speech at the UN General Assembly in September 2012.

    “The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam. Yet to be credible, those who condemn that slander must also condemn the hate we see when the image of Jesus Christ is desecrated, churches are destroyed, or the Holocaust is denied,” said Obama. Obviously, Obama did not recognizes Judaism but Holocaust among the other religions Muslims hate.

    Obama can be excused for not knowing that Jewish holy Talmud not only curses his Lord Christ and Holy Mary but also all the Christians. As to Bloomfield, he only needs to study Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, former chief rabbi of Israel and spiritual leader of Israel’s Shas party – who in his 2003 fatwa said that all Arabs (both Muslims and Christians) should be killed. Last year, the Jerusalem Post quoted Ovadia saying: “Non-Jews were born only to serve us. Without that, they have no place in the world-only to serve the People of Israel“.


  13. Michael:

    we should start treating the US and the zionist colony as one world-problem…..there is obviously little to separate the two with Obama in his present role……

  14. pabelmont:

    In 1948, Jews who lived in Palestine with the hope of creating a Jewish country there (many of them had such a hope, and many of them enforced Jewish action toward realizing the hope upon people who did not entertain this hope) — saw the necessity of removing most of the the existing non-Jewish population from what today is green-line Israel.

    About 750,000 people were removed by freely chosen Jewish action and were never allowed to return home.

    Today about 600,000 or 700,000 Jews live in the occupied territories of the West Bank and Golan Heights. Any sort of peace requires that they be removed.

    Note that the number of Israeli Jews who must be removed is about the same as the number of people that Jews removed in 1948. (Just saying.)

    Is N’yahu waiting until the number of settlers is THE SAME so that the removal of all the settlers will have a symbolic meaning (new Jewish refugees equal in numbers to the non-Jewish refugees), in each case the creation of refugees a direct result of deliberate and freely chosen Jewish actions?

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