Obama and Netanyahu Discuss Israeli Counterterrorism Measures
by JIM KOURI, CPP
August 16, 2011
President Barack Obama and Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday spoke in order to "consult on regional issues and efforts to achieve Middle East peace," according to a the White House press statement.
The White House also claims that Netanyahu expressed appreciation for U.S. support for Israel's security, in particular the Iron Dome short-range rocket and mortar defense system built to protect the Jewish State from Palestinian attacks.
The Iron Dome, which was built to intercept incoming rockets, successfully neutralized eight short-range rockets fired by Islamic terrorists into Israel during the "Arab Spring" escalation of violence by Hamas at the Israeli-Gaza border last April.
The White House press statement gave few details regarding the Obama-Netanyahu conversation except to say both leaders agreed to continue to work closely together to address common security concerns.
However, some observers believe Obama's reaching out to the Israeli leader is part of the President's routine of political evasion. For example, political strategist Mike Baker claims that when trouble begins to overwhelm the White House overseas, the President and his administration attempt a full-court press to visibly tackle domestic problems. When things get tough domestically, Obama attempts to sway attention to his foreign agenda.
"It's not hard to identify Obama's 'wag the dog' tactics. In fact, it's almost predictable that during a week in which the U.S. is smacked with a credit rating downgrade and Wall Street is experiencing difficulties, Obama's White House will release statements regarding foreign affairs, especially one designed to make Obama look presidential while at the same time panders to the Jewish American vote," said Baker.
Meanwhile, Senior Hamas figures used various opportunities and forums to restate the movement's rigid, extremist fundamental position regarding the conflict with Israel. For example, Ismail Haniya, head of the de-facto Hamas administration in the Gaza Strip, welcoming a delegation from Malaysia, emphasized Hamas' adherence to its principles, especially its refusal to cede one inch of the territory of "Palestine" and its insistence on the "right of return" of six million Palestinian refugees from outside Palestine.
Usama Hamdan, responsible for Hamas' international relations, gave a speech in support of the "option of resistance" (i.e., terrorism) at the recent conference in Cairo, in which he said that "[t]he conflict will never come to an end until Israel comes to an end," adding that "Regarding what some have demanded of us, to recognize the enemy, that matter is behind us. We then clearly said that we will never recognize Israel, and today I say more than that: Israel completely doesn't exist in our political or intellectual dictionary."
FamilySecurityMatters.org Contributing Editor Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and is a columnist for The Examiner (examiner.com) and New Media Alliance (thenma.org). In addition, he's a blogger for the Cheyenne, Wyoming Fox News KGAB (www.kgab.com). Jim Kouri also serves as political advisor for Emmy and Golden Globe actor Michael Moriarty.