Only the most obtuse observer would have been shocked to read that the Obama administration considers the Israeli prime minister to be “chickenshit.”
As Jeffrey Goldberg reports in The Atlantic, it’s just one more in a long list of invectives:
Over the years, Obama administration officials have described Netanyahu to me as recalcitrant, myopic, reactionary, obtuse, blustering, pompous, and “Aspergery.”
Of course, American Jews have not noticed. Since they happily voted Jeremiah Wright’s protégé into the White House, they have a vested interest in blinding themselves to the obvious.
The obvious, as Caroline Glick has been at pains to point out, is the Obama administration's deep-seated animus against Israel.
In Glick’s words:
Since he assumed office nearly six years ago, US President Barack Obama has been dogged by allegations of managerial incompetence. Obama, his critics allege, had no managerial experience before he was elected. His lack of such experience, they claim, is reflected in what they see as his incompetent handling of the challenges of the presidency.
In everything from dealing with the Congress, to reining in radical ideologues at the IRS, to handling the chaos at the Mexican border, to putting together coordinated strategies for dealing with everything from Ebola to Islamic State (IS), Obama’s critics claim that he is out of his league. That he is incompetent.
But if Israel’s experience with him is any guide, then his critics are the ones who are out to sea. Because at least in his handling of US relations with the Jewish state, Obama has exhibited a mastery of the tools of the executive branch unmatched by most of his predecessors….
At least as far as Israel is concerned, Obama’s mastery of the federal bureaucracy is complete. It is not incompetence that guides his policy. It is malicious intent toward the US’s closest ally in the Middle East.
The Obama administration has not insulted the leaders of Iran and North Korea, doubtless because it fears Iran and North Korea. It has never spoken ill of the leader of the Palestinian authority or the head of Hamas. The president himself always speaks reverentially about Rev. Farrakhan. Obama and his administration have reserved their opprobrium, insults and invective for one international leader, the prime minister of the Jewish state.
To most sensible observers, it looks like anti-Semitism. The rise of European anti-Semitism during the Obama years and the increasing anti-Semitism on American campuses must have some relationship to the president’s overt disdain for Benjamin Netanyahu.
Of course, calling Netanyahu “chickenshit’ is especially galling.
The man who has spent his presidency dismantling the American military should not call anyone chickenshit.
The man who surrendered Iraq and is in the process of surrendering Afghanistan should not call anyone chickenshit.
The president who cowers in the face of radical Islam should not call anyone chickenshit.
And the president who brags about how he pressured Netanyahu not to attack Iran’s nuclear installations should not call anyone chickenshit.
Fair enough, the words came from an unnamed administration official. We wait to see whether the president apologizes openly for the remarks and whether he fires the official who made them.
If he does not, we may assume that they came from him.
For now the administration’s overarching foreign policy goal in the Middle East has been détente with Iran. Obama wants to achieve relieve Iran of the burden of international sanctions. The fact that Iran violates human rights with impunity does not register with him. Obama seems to care more about ensuring that Iran’s nuclear program can continue unmolested.
As you would expect, the Obama people blame it all on the Jews:
Much of the anger felt by Obama administration officials is rooted in the Netanyahu government’s periodic explosions of anti-American condescension. The Israeli defense minister, Moshe Ya’alon, in particular, has publicly castigated the Obama administration as naive, or worse, on matters related to U.S. policy in the Middle East. Last week, senior officials including Kerry (who was labeled as “obsessive” and “messianic” by Ya’alon) and Susan Rice, the national security advisor, refused to meet with Ya’alon on his trip to Washington, and it’s hard to blame them.
This is administration spin. Keep in mind that at their first meeting in the White House Obama walked out on Netanyahu and left him alone while he, Obama, sat down to a family dinner—for ninety minutes.
Do you need a clearer sign of contempt?
And then, during the Gaza war, the administration (see Caroline Glick’s article, linked above) used a bureaucratic maneuver to block weapons shipments to Israel. And let’s not forget that the FAA stopped all flights into Tel Aviv.
And, of course, the administration has always insisted that the one true obstacle to peace in the Middle East is the Israeli settlement policy.
While Obama and Kerry were tormenting themselves over the Netanyahu government’s housing policy we lost Iraq, war raged in Syria, ISIS was rising, the Arab Spring was failing and Iran was proceeding to acquire the bomb.
Jews who voted for Obama should be ashamed. And they should send a message to the administration by voting against Democrats in Tuesday’s election.
While many American Jews believe that the Republican Party, with its evangelical Christian wing, is their true enemy, the only group that has wholeheartedly supported Israel of late has been the evangelical wing of the Republican Party.