03/18/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Ha'aretz Columnist Asks Obama To Stop "Sucking Up To Israel"

The Israeli newspaper Ha'aretz, doesn't have some of the same editorial traditions of our own media, in which nationalist exceptionalism is not to be challenged under any circumstances. So, from time to time, you get pieces like Gideon Levy's opinion column, demanding that Barack Obama stop "sucking up to Israel."

Before no other country on the planet does the United States kneel and plead like this. In other trouble spots, America takes a different tone. It bombs in Afghanistan, invades Iraq and threatens sanctions against Iran and North Korea. Did anyone in Washington consider begging Saddam Hussein to withdraw from occupied territory in Kuwait?

But Israel the occupier, the stubborn contrarian that continues to mock America and the world by building settlements and abusing the Palestinians, receives different treatment. Another massage to the national ego in one video, more embarrassing praise in another.

Now is the time to say to the United States: Enough flattery. If you don't change the tone, nothing will change. As long as Israel feels the United States is in its pocket, and that America's automatic veto will save it from condemnations and sanctions, that it will receive massive aid unconditionally, and that it can continue waging punitive, lethal campaigns without a word from Washington, killing, destroying and imprisoning without the world's policeman making a sound, it will continue in its ways.

And, hey, good points and everything, but I think Mr. Levy might be losing sight of two things, here. First, the purity tests for Israeli support are much more treacherous and administered by much hollower clowns in America than are the ones you've got over there. And secondly, while it's true that our guy is still working out how to unlock the secret powers of the Nobel Peace Prize, maybe you should take stock of the situation and reflect that paving the way for Avigdor Lieberman's ascension to the role of Minister of Foreign Affairs isn't exactly meeting us halfway.

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