I had another fascinating conversation with a liberal who offered this take on the situation with Israel:
Because everyone hates Israel, it’s a brilliant strategy for Obama to attack it to raise his standing in the world. Israel wants this too. I bet you $100 that we’ll learn that this whole ‘fight” was carefully scripted to improve Obama’s and Israel’s standing.
And no, I’m not exaggerating. It’s not quite verbatim, because I didn’t take notes during the conversation, but it’s close.
I think Barry Rubin and Bruce Kesler offer slightly more sophisticated analyses of what’s going on. First, with regard to my liberal friend’s world view, here’s Barry Rubin analyzing the New York Times’ approach to Israel and the Middle East.
And now to what the U.S. is doing. Barry Rubin suggests that the U.S. has declared diplomatic war against Israel. So no, this isn’t some diplomatic theater in which Israel allows herself to be beaten black and blue in order to placate her and America’s common enemy. Instead, America, through the Obama administration, is becoming one of Israel’s enemies. And Bruce Kesler suggests a “secret plan” (not so secret, as more and more people are thinking it), that sees America forcing Israel to bomb Iran — at which point you can be sure that B. Hussein O. will abandon Israel to the world’s wolves, thereby, in one fell swoop, having rid himself of two problems. Nobody ever said Machiavelli was principled.
UPDATE: Jennifer Rubin, with some help from William Kristol, has the perfect response to the fatuity emanating from the liberal (and often Jewish) Left:
As Bill Kristol explains, the Obami’s anti-Israel bent is no accident but part of his larger approach, which seeks realignment in Middle East policy as Obama becomes not the leader of a single nation or even of the alliance of democracies but the wise mediator for all humanity:
And there’s no better way to be a leader of humanity than to show disapproval of the Jewish state. Sure, Obama’s turn against Israel will make it less likely that Palestinians will negotiate seriously with her. Sure, it will embolden radical Arabs and Muslims against those who would like their nations to take a different, more responsible, course. Sure, it’s a distraction from the real challenge of Iran. But the turn against Israel is ultimately a key part of what Obamaism is all about. That’s why there’s been so little attempt by the administration to reassure friends of Israel that Obama has been acting more in sorrow than in anger. Obama’s proud of his anger at the stiff-necked Jewish state. It puts him in sync with the rest of the world.
In this, we see the intersection of Obama’s multilateralism, his aversion to American exceptionalism, his fetish with his own international popularity, his obsession with engaging despots, his disinterest in promoting human rights, and his hostility toward the Jewish state. They are interlocking pieces in the greater Obama vision — each reenforces the other and makes more precarious the security of not only Israel but also the United States. Obama may suppose he is making America more popular or reducing conflict with rogue states, but instead, he is fueling the ambitions of aggressive despots and frittering away America’s moral standing. We are abetting an international free-for-all as the world’s bullies look for openings to assert themselves and to show just how dangerous it is to be a small democratic ally of the U.S.