Benjamin Netanyahu came to the U.S. to challenge what he called a “charm offensive” by Iran. The Israeli prime minister hasn’t found it easy getting his counterattack to resonate in a country preoccupied by domestic concerns and wary of foreign involvement.
For more than 15 years and more than any other world leader, Benjamin Netanyahu demanded sanctions against Iran to stop it from getting nuclear weapons. Now, as the sanctions are credited with weakening the Iranian economy enough to prompt a thaw between the U.S. and the Islamic nation, the Israeli prime minister is among the skeptics who remain unconvinced that anything significant has changed.
Mideast peace has long been the Everest of diplomatic mountains, and those who’ve tried to scale it have generally followed the same route: small steps by each side to give both the confidence to take bolder ones.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said that reaching “reasonable compromises” between Israelis and Palestinians in peace talks that open today will be difficult, while “the consequences of not trying could be worse.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said their countries will continue to “work closely in the coming days” to break the impasse in Middle East peace talks.
President Barack Obama clashed so often and so publicly with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during the first 16 months of his tenure that one Israeli newspaper reported Netanyahu believed Obama wanted a confrontation to improve U.S. ties to the Arab world.
Israeli and Palestinian leaders will resume efforts to defuse a dispute over settlement building today in Jerusalem after talks in Egypt overseen by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton showed little sign of resolving the issue.