Open Zion

09.12.12

Bibi: You've Got Mail

After a relentless campaign by Benjamin Netanyahu to push the U.S. to take a more aggressive posture against Iran, the U.S. administration and its allies are finally pushing back. This afternoon, Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) cited her pro-Israel credentials, and laid into the right-wing Israeli leader in a letter addressed to his office.

I am stunned by the remarks that you made this week regarding U.S. support for Israel. Are you suggesting that the United States is not Israel’s closest ally and does not stand by Israel? Are you saying that Israel, under President Obama, has not received more in annual security assistance from the United States than at any time in its history, including for the Iron Dome Missile Defense System.

As other Israelis have said, it appears that you have injected politics into one of the most profound security challenges of our time—Iran’s illicit pursuit of nuclear weapons.

The "other Israelis" include opposition leader Shaul Mofaz, who said last month, "Mr. Prime Minister, you want a crude, rude, unprecedented, reckless, and risky intervention in the US elections."

When Mofaz echoed those sentiments this week, New Yorker editor David Remnick cited him in a blistering post on the venerable magazine's website:

Now Netanyahu seems determined, more than ever, to alienate the President of the United States and, as an ally of Mitt Romney’s campaign, to make himself a factor in the 2012 election—one no less pivotal than the most super Super PAC. “Who are you trying to replace?” the opposition leader, Shaul Mofaz, asked of Netanyahu in the Knesset on Wednesday. “The Administration in Washington or that in Tehran?”

So Obama's allies are finally rallying to his side, and that of the American people, who overwhelmingly oppose war with Iran. The question is: What took them so long?