“It’s Not Going to Happen.”
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In my lifetime I have never seen such a direct rebuke of an administration’s foreign policy, especially in a tete-a-tete confrontation. Negotiations with terrorists? Pre ’67 borders? Palestinian Right of Return within Israeli borders? “It’s not going to happen.”
There is a lesson here somewhere about power and negotiations. It is difficult to determine the calculus in making such a speech yesterday by President Obama. Whatever he was trying to achieve, it is now lost, gone. Perhaps his tactics were the correct ones for his objectives – yet to win it, Obama would have to have been personally more powerful and forceful an intellect. It certainly hasn’t proven to be the case. Prime Minister Netanyahu took the opportunity to unambiguously correct the record, publicly correct the President’s assumptions and set the borders as it were for future discussions. Breathtaking.
It is Obama who now has no legitimate room for manoeuvre. This is a huge embarrassment to American prestige. President Obama is once again the side-chair observer in a windbreaker, fresh off the golf links as major world events happen about him.