Playing hardball with Netanyahu?

Sherine Tadros; 26/3/10

When Binyamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister, arrived in Washington on an official visit and met with the US president, he received “the treatment reserved for the President of Equatorial Guinea”. Or so read the editorial pieces in some of Israel’s main newspapers. Israel feels humiliated after Netanyahu’s Washington adventure. They believe the Americans lured him in with a false sense of security, promises of solid (in fact “rock-solid”) bonds, messages communicated by top US officials that the crisis over illegal settlements in the West Bank is over – only for the Barack Obama himself to deliver the blow as soon as he got face time with the Israeli prime minister. And Netanyahu is bruised. Put aside the political jargon, there is no “golden way” forward. The US wants a stop to settlement building in East Jerusalem. But the Israelis will not comply – there are no compromises that can be made, only gestures to deflect attention away from the collision course the US and Israel are now on.

See: http://english.aljazeera.net/focus/2010/03/2010325113312763803.html; UN rights body censures Israel; http://english.aljazeera.net/news/europe/2010/03/2010324194843763504.html; Tel Aviv must compensate Gaza War victims: UN; http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article34912.ece; On the verge of historic change?; Rami G. Khouri; http://www.jordantimes.com/?news=25179; Putting Palestine before Israel; Jonathan Power; http://www.jordantimes.com/?news=25182; ‘No right to dictate his agenda’; Ahmad Y. Majdoubeh; http://www.jordantimes.com/?news=25180; Netanyahu and Obama are at a point of no return; Akiva Eldar; http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1159300.html; Netanyahu better shape up before U.S. tensions get worse; Yossi Verter; http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1159301.html; UN rights council resolution also suggests Red Cross probe into white phosphorus use; http://gulfnews.com/news/region/palestinian-territories/israel-should-pay-for-gaza-damage-1.603142;