U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says they’re close. Very close. To reaching an agreement. Six Western nations with Iran. Over Iran’s nuclear program. But there is skepticism, fear and distrust by the Israelis. So much so that there’s a massive effort to win some Democratic votes over to the Republican side. To insure that any measure blocking an agreement in Congress is veto-proof.
Trita Parsi, President of the National Iranian-Council says, thus far, there aren’t enough votes to override a presidential veto. But that could change during the prescribed review process.
“Who knows what will happen over the next 30 or 60 days,” he says.
President Obama says the chances of a nuclear agreement with Iran are at “less than 50-50,” even as he worked to reassure Senate Democrats that he won’t accept a bad deal.
The president sounded a fresh note of pessimism as the nuclear talks in Vienna missed yet another self-imposed deadline — and as his administration has sought to refute accusations that it is desperate for a deal. “He said the chances he thought were less than 50-50 at this point and that he wouldn’t agree to something he thought was weak or unenforceable,.” said Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) who was at the meeting where Obama expressed his doubts
By AMOS ERAN
Former ambassador and current MK Michael Oren (Kulanu) is publishing a book about his time representing Israel in Washington, full of details about crises in the relationship between the two countries. Oren wrote in the Wall Street Journal that President Barack Obama abandoned Israel, and violated two principles that have been the cornerstone of the special relationship between Israel and the United States. The first principle is that the two countries can disagree – just not out in the open. The second is that there must be no surprises. Oren claims that Obama violated the second principle during his meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in 2009, when he surprisingly demanded that Israel freeze settlement construction and endorse the two-state solution. Click here to read the commentary.
The past week has seen the latest episode in an unrelenting campaign to delegitimize President Barack Obama’s strong commitment to Israel. It’s time to set the record straight on a president who has stood with Israel in times of crisis and has strengthened the Jewish state’s security in concrete ways, ensuring it maintains a qualitative military edge.
From his campaign for office to his recent talk at Adas Israel, a synagogue in Washington, D.C., Obama has made it clear that his commitment to Israel is and always will be unshakable. “It would be a moral failing on my part if we did not stand up firmly, steadfastly not just on behalf of Israel’s right to exist, but its right to thrive and prosper,” he has said.
Obama’s actions prove his commitment. Click here to read the story.
It’s sounding more and more that even without a deal with Iran, or one that’s palatable to Israel and Saudi Arabia, sanctions may still go away. That’s the latest signal from President Obama. Who says the sanctions aren’t sustainable forever.
The international community doesn’t think Israel is serious about working for a two-state solution in the Middle East. So says President Obama, in an interview with Israel’s Channel 2.
Meanwhile the chief Palestinian negotiator says the Palestinian Authority will dissolve if there’s no peace agreement by the end of the year. He’s also saying that it’s unlikely there will be any talks, much less an agreement.
Contrary to the Obama administration’s claims that Iran has frozen its nuclear program, international inspectors discovered recently that the Islamic Republic’s stockpile of nuclear fuel has increased by about 20 percent over the course of the last 18 months, The New York Times is reporting on Tuesday.
It was a mixed message from President Obama as he addressed an influential synagogue in DC. The president saying the Palestinians have the right to their own state. And that he still supports a two-state solution. But also reiterating his support for Israel. Which he describes as “unshakable.” The speech at Adas Israel synagogue comes at a time when many Jews are questioning the president’s commitment to Israel.
J Street’s president is showing support for the speech.
“The president’s speech laid out beautifully how his progressive values grounded in shared American and Jewish values compel him to support Israel, to fiercely oppose anti-semitism, and also equally to support self-determination and statehood for Palestinians,” Jermey Ben-Ami says.
President Obama makes no public comments about Iran’s continuing statements seemingly designed to put preconditions on any agreement over its nuclear program. That’s of little concern to the president. Judging by his public pronouncements, Obama thinks the reelection of Benjamin Netanyahu, and some of the statements Netanyahu’s made, are more worthy of his attention.