Are U.S.-Israeli Relations Headed for a Train Wreck?
Posted by avideditor on November 22, 2010
As Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu heads to Washington this weekend to address the annual conference of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, relations between the U.S. and Israel appear to be headed for a train wreck. Indeed, Michael Oren, the Israeli ambassador to the U.S., told Israeli diplomats in a conference call over the weekend that U.S.-Israel relations face their worst crisis in more than three decades.
Here’s what happened and why.
During Vice President Joe Biden’s trip to Jerusalem last week to show American support for Israel, some lower-level officials in the Israeli bureaucracy decided it would be a good time to announce the construction of 1,600 new homes in a Jewish neighborhood of East Jerusalem. The Palestinian Authority immediately went ballistic, calling the announcement a threat to peace. The vice president was deeply offended and told Netanyahu that the timing of the announcement made the Israelis appear to be trying to sabotage the beginning of new peace talks with the Palestinians.