If we take President Obama and Prime Minister Netanyahu at their word, the U.S. and Israel are aligned, despite the best efforts of whose who want to remove Obama from office so badly that they are willing to sacrifice the U.S.-Israel relationship on the altar of political expediency.
The threat of Iran obtaining a nuclear weapon is real -- the goal of preventing Iran from doing so is of utmost importance and the consequences of failure are dire. But the consequences of capricious war, of giving up on diplomatic solutions when not all have been exhausted, are equally grave.
Now, President Obama assures Israel he "has their back." Well, thanks to President Obama, Israel's back is to the wall. Hamas, Hezbollah, and some new regional players are also at Israel's back. It's getting a bit crowded back there.
Barack Obama has tried and largely failed to rein in Israel's aggression against the Palestinians while he has been in office. But the president is finding that Israel's belligerence toward Iran is a far more serious problem that may require a much firmer hand.
Yes, boycott the occupation -- the settlers, the politicians who support them, and the businesses that sustain them. But not Israel itself, unless you think that it is a society beyond redemption. It isn't -- no more than we are.
It will be impossible for us to control or insulate ourselves from events in the Middle East as long as we remain dependent on oil from the region and committed to honor our military defense of Israel.
It is curious that the most powerful man in the world representing the most powerful military in the world who accepted the Nobel Peace Prize defending "just" wars has "no say" over $4 billion annual military aid to Israel.
Even putting human rights concerns aside, questioning why American taxpayers should be spending over $3 billion annually in aid to Israel at a time of massive cutbacks at home doesn't seem unreasonable.
How dare these officials say such things about Israel? Maybe the answer is this simple: they dare because they care. And because they know that caring about Israel means speaking some hard truths -- not to hurt Israel but to save it.
In Silwan there is a fight over nationality, history and also religion. For the Palestinians, it is a Palestinian neighborhood, next to Al-Aqsa Mosque where thousands of Palestinians have been living for ages
This embarrassing leak was the result of the two media savvy leaders' failure to note that their microphones were still on. We can't demand their resignations, but we should not let this gaffe pass without probing into its deeper significance.
Israel's substantial contributions to U.S. interests are an underappreciated aspect of this relationship and deserve equal billing to shared values and historical responsibility as rationales for American support of Israel.