U.S. and Israel Are Still Best Friends?
It's true that the Israeli-Palestinian peace process appears dead in the water. No matter how much Barack Obama might have wanted that prize, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has
rebuffed him at every turn. The president appears to have taken it on the chin, offering more than the usual support for Israel and in return getting kloom (as they say in Hebrew). Nothing at all.
However, the operative word here is "appears." In foreign affairs what you see -- a show carefully scripted for political purposes -- often bears little relation to what you actually get.
While the Obama administration has acceded to the imagery of knee-jerk support for whatever Israel does, no matter how outrageous, behind the scenes its policies are beginning to look far less
predictable. In fact, unlikely as it may seem, a showdown could be brewing between the two countries. If so, the outcome will depend on a complicated interplay between private diplomacy and public theater.
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