Skip to main content

Originally published in Tikkun Daily |

Last week, President Obama refused to rearrange his schedule in order to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, who will be in New York for the U.N. General Assembly in the coming days. And Obama stood defiant when Israeli officials publicly and loudly complained that Netanyahu would not be granted a private meeting with the Commander-in-Chief.

Predictably, Republicans have piled on, with Mitt Romney blasting Obama for not meeting Netanyahu.

With the criticism mounting, and with Netanyahu himself starring in a right-wing political ad in Florida, now is the time Jewish Democrats (even progressives) would typically fold. For when forced to choose between supporting Obama and caving to AIPAC, most leading Jewish Democrats have chosen the latter.

However, not this time. For in the current political environment, Obama's chutzpah is becoming contagious:

Top Jewish Democrats are standing squarely behind President Obama's decision not to meet with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and warning Israel to butt out of the U.S. presidential race.
Indeed, Jewish Democratic leaders are coming to the President's defense in ways that, at least in the contemporary world of Israeli-American politics, seems unprecedented.

Here's Henry Waxman:

''I don't think it's necessary for the president to rearrange his schedule,'' Rep. Henry Waxman (Calif.), the top Democrat on the powerful House Energy and Commerce Committee, told The Hill. ''I didn't think it was appropriate for the prime minister to publicly get into a dispute with the president of the United States, since we're both very closely working together to impose sanctions and to force Iran to stop its development of a nuclear weapon.''
And Barney Frank:
''Maybe Netanyahu's for [Republican candidate Mitt] Romney. And he's making a mistake if he is,'' Frank told The Hill when asked why he thought Israel had leaked the news of a perceived ''snub'' to the Reuters wire service.

''I think it was unwise for him to do as much,'' he said. ''I think they've pulled back a little bit.'

''I think Obama played it right,'' Frank added. ''The Israelis have to consider American public opinion; America's not ready to go to war until it's absolutely necessary.

Here's Eliot Engel, a leading Democrat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, dismissing Netanyahu's ploy:
''There are always things that are done on both sides – with us, with the Israelis – for domestic political consumption, for party-building,'' Engel told The Hill.
The tone coming from the other side of the aisle is markedly different, as Republicans seek to take advantage of Obama's strength by turning it on its head. To wit, here is the text of a letter signed by 128 House Republicans:
''We are astounded by your refusal to grant this request to one of our closest allies at such a critical time for that region...The rejection of this request represents disturbing treatment of a vital partner and illustrates a lack of regard for the indispensable relationship between the United States and Israel and the current dynamics in the region which are essential to our national security.''
Astounded! is the GOP's faux response.

Jewish Democrats, on the other hand?

Not so much. Not this time.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Sharoney, GainesT1958, Sylv, Sean Robertson, Chi, MadRuth, native, tikkun, mickT, wytcld, greenbird, jazzizbest, Jay C, mslat27, TX Unmuzzled, Matilda, MarkInSanFran, expatjourno, chipoliwog, alain2112, EricS, whenwego, Loquatrix, highacidity, mkfarkus, chimpy, pollbuster, Torta, fumie, Texknight, ammaloy, hopesprings, tidalwave1, Getreal1246, Nag, wdrath, Steven Payne, raster44, JayBat, zerelda, mungley, tomjones, Wife of Bath, xyz, rickeagle, eve, sebastianguy99, Armand451, Gowrie Gal, Brecht, bloomer 101, Tinfoil Hat, blueyedace2, LarisaW, SherwoodB, Lying eyes, kitchen sink think tank, ccasas, basquebob, Dobber, Gary Norton, boofdah, majcmb1, SaraBeth, Dr Squid, where4art, sofia, Overseas, markdd, spunhard, Blu Gal in DE, peacestpete, Alan Arizona, kathny, fhcec, xaxnar, Jim R, RJDixon74135, forbodyandmind, elliott, 417els, BlueInARedState, hungrycoyote, Russgirl, HoundDog, seefleur, kestrel9000, AoT, hideinplainsight, blueoasis, SherriG, StrayCat, real world chick, Preston S, el cid, ER Doc, middleagedhousewife, doingbusinessas, Stripe, Ian Reifowitz, Brunette, bstotts, markthshark, Quicklund, Nulwee, GoldnI, Red Sox, Tamar, john07801, camlbacker, gloriana, puakev, karmsy, edsbrooklyn, terabytes, dclawyer06, deepeco, heathlander, cyncynical, Bronx59, hopi13, Librarianmom, pioneer111, CT Hank, uciguy30, janatallow, homerun, Assaf, Empower Ink, adrianrf, HappyinNM, califdem, MikePhoenix, OleHippieChick, Youffraita, Involuntary Exile, elwior, Akonitum, Its any one guess, mikeconwell, beltane, Lujane, tofumagoo, royce, pamelabrown, Cassandra Waites, hwmnbn, smartdemmg, triplepoint, alnep, Gemina13, jalenth, luckylizard, JamieG from Md, Nica24, rhutcheson, shortgirl, JBL55, legendmn, MrsTarquinBiscuitbarrel, maggiejean, multilee, pileta, Rhysling, DontTaseMeBro, rsmpdx, aufklaerer, mjkellett, bobatkinson, ronnied, cantelow, shopkeeper, mkor7, aunt blabby, prgsvmama26, petral, elziax, zizi, MKSinSA, jomi, papahaha, MooseHB, Shelley99, sfarkash, BurningFeet, jan0080, Larsstephens, Lefty Ladig, Railfan, xsonogall, marabout40, flitedocnm, estreya, gramofsam1, piers, Crabby Abbey, alguien, gulfgal98, Mariken, DiegoUK, addisnana, rja, BlueFranco, kenwards, ericlewis0, Floande, eclecta, USHomeopath, science nerd, stevenaxelrod, Berliner2, no way lack of brain, Onomastic, Jane Lew, redlum jak, kerflooey, MidwestTreeHugger, NYGrandma, Quite Contrary, ozsea1, MaikeH, slowbutsure, sabo33, sostos, Buckeye Nation, vahana, AuroraDawn, Olympia, southernmapper, asterkitty, mikejay611, OhioNatureMom, Nicci August, lillyspad, California06, CoExistNow, Alice Olson, EquityRoy, molunkusmol, Haf2Read, marleycat, zukesgirl64, thomask, looking and listening, BarackStarObama, floridablue, LSmith, Grandma Susie, MarketFarces, Andrew F Cockburn, Friendlystranger, Hayate Yagami, jolux, jham710, DRo, CoyoteMarti, ParkRanger, Mathazar, Dream It Real, AnnetteK, Sister Inspired Revolver of Freedom, Pinto Pony, stormicats, tweeternik, Liberal Granny, KiB, RhodaA, Heart n Mind, Catskill Julie, isabelle hayes, StonyB, TheLizardKing, IndieGuy, NJMaverick, Trevin, tb92, S F Hippie, Deep Texan, rukidingme, congenitalefty, jan4insight, Arahahex, doroma, arizonablue, Diane Gee, Glen The Plumber, George3, fauve, Robynhood too, CalBearMom, Upie, Greenfinches, DamselleFly, remembrance, poopdogcomedy, broths, weck, mtnlvr1946, SheilaKinBrooklyn, paccoli, Icicle68, Smoh, Avilyn

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site