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On all fronts, President Barack Obamas policies in the Middle East are failing. So what is the president doing? Taking it out on Americas closest ally, Israel.
The administrations top priority in the region should be to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons. Thats clearly not happening.
Obamas second-biggest priority if not his first, given the presidents campaign pledges is to get U.S. troops out of Iraq.
That plan was going along nicely until Iraqs elections a tribute to Bush administration policy, but claimed as a success by Obama officials produced a political deadlock that may lead to violence and extend the U.S. troop presence.
And, third, Obama wants to be the president who finally produces a two-state peace between Israel and the Palestinians. But thats not happening, either, largely because of mistakes made by the administration itself.
(Afghanistan is South Asia, not in the Mideast, but the administrations courageous policy isnt going very well there, either, with Afghan President Hamid Karzai entertaining Irans Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, abetting rampant corruption and accusing the United States of trying to dominate his country.)
Obama gives every indication of believing the Arab narrative of what blocks Middle East peace namely, Israeli (not Palestinian) intransigence.
His animus isnt into Jimmy Carter territory yet Carter likens Israel to apartheid South Africa but Obama is given to outbursts of rage at Israeli provocations, but none to those committed on the Palestinian side.
Contrast the reaction of the administration to the March 11 dedication of a square in Ramallah, interim capital of the Palestinian Authority, honoring a terrorist with the Israeli announcement March 9 of construction of 1,600 new housing units in East Jerusalem.
The square in Ramallah now honors Dalal Mughrabi, leader of a Palestinian terror squad that killed 38 Israelis aboard a bus in 1978, 13 of them children.
When Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton addressed the American Israel Public Affairs Committee on March 22, she said that the dedication insults families on both sides of the conflict who have lost loved ones.
But she incorrectly blamed the action on a Hamas-controlled municipality, when it was not authorized by that terrorist group, but by Fatah, the party of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. She did not condemn him.
By contrast, on Obamas personal orders, the administration fired every verbal gun in its arsenal at Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over the Jerusalem announcement even though it knew he was blindsided and embarrassed by right-wingers in his own government.
It was, as the administration said, an insult to visiting Vice President Joseph Biden, who condemned it. That was a reasonable reaction.
But then, on Obamas orders, Clinton upbraided Netanyahu in a 45-minute phone call publicized by the administration, and her spokesman said that Netanyahu had drawn the entire U.S.-Israeli bilateral relationship into question.