March 13, 2013

Mr. Obama Goes to Israel

Thomas Friedman, New York Times

AP Photo

In case you haven't heard, President Obama leaves for Israel next week. It is possible, though, that you haven't heard because it is hard for me to recall a less-anticipated trip to Israel by an American president. But there is a message in that empty bottle: Little is expected from this trip -- not only because little is possible, but because, from a narrow U.S. point of view, little is necessary. Quietly, with nobody announcing it, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has shifted from a necessity to a hobby for American diplomats. Like any hobby -- building model airplanes or knitting sweaters -- some days you work on it, some days you don't. It depends on your mood, but it doesn’t usually matter when that sweater gets finished. Obama worked on this hobby early in his first term....

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TAGGED: Barack Obama, Israel, Palestine, Middle East, West Bank, Palestinians, United States


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