It’s bad enough that Obama writes an op-ed in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz praising Abbas with hardly a mention of Netanyahu.
Now we have someone directly from the White House giving a speech in Israel, blasting Israel for their ‘occupation’ of Judea and Samaria (West Bank) and calling on them to sign a peace agreement “based on the 1967 lines with mutually agreed land swaps”.
He clearly put the onus on Israel and that’s where he aimed most of his criticism, revealing the anti-Israel bias that we’ve come to abhor from this White House:
TIMES OF ISRAEL – Israel’s ongoing occupation of the West Bank is wrong and leads to regional instability and dehumanization of Palestinians, a top American government official said Tuesday in Tel Aviv, hinting that the current Israeli government is not committed to peace.
In an unusually harsh major foreign policy address, Philip Gordon, a special assistant to US President Barack Obama and the White House coordinator for the Middle East, appealed to Israeli and Palestinian leaders to make the compromises needed to reach a permanent peace agreement. Jerusalem “should not take for granted the opportunity to negotiate” such a treaty with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who has proven to be a reliable partner, Gordon said.
“Israel confronts an undeniable reality: It cannot maintain military control of another people indefinitely. Doing so is not only wrong but a recipe for resentment and recurring instability,” Gordon said. “It will embolden extremists on both sides, tear at Israel’s democratic fabric and feed mutual dehumanization.”
Delivering the keynote address at the Haaretz newspaper’s Israel Conference on Peace, Gordon reiterated Obama’s position that a final-status agreement should be based on the 1967 lines with mutually agreed land swaps.
The administration is aware that Israel is facing threats on several fronts and Obama remains committed to Israel’s security, he said, speaking on the day that Israel launched Operation Protective Edge to counter rocket fire from the Hamas-run Gaza Strip. Indeed, mere hours before Gordon addressed the conference, hundreds of participants were forced to quickly evacuate the event hall and enter a safe room after an alert signaled a missile approaching Tel Aviv. After about 10 minutes, participants returned to the hall and the conference resumed.
“The United States will always have Israel’s back. That’s why we fight for it every day at the United Nations,” Gordon said. But as Israel’s greatest friend and strongest defender, Washington should be allowed to ask some fundamental questions, he added.
Specifically, Gordon went on: “How will Israel remain democratic and Jewish if it attempts to govern the millions of Palestinian Arabs who live in the West Bank? How will it have peace if it’s unwilling to delineate a border, end the occupation and allow for Palestinian sovereignty, security and dignity? How will we prevent other states from supporting Palestinian efforts in international bodies, if Israel is not seen as committed to peace?”