In a major effort to win back pro-Israel voters, Barack Obama went before AIPAC’s 2012 policy conference and reassured the audience that he “has Israel’s back.” He got a big round of applause, and more than a few in the audience breathed a sigh of relief that the president was once again in Israel’s camp, especially on the dangerous question of Iran. But at the presser he gave at noon on Tuesday, it became clear that that was then, this is now. Apparently, having Israel’s back “isn’t a military doctrine.” It isn’t… anything. Talks with Iran are the way forward. Sanctions are biting. Talk of war is dangerous. There are costs.
Let’s face facts: Barack Obama doesn’t have Israel’s back. He’s down with his own rockin’ foreign policy. He’s not interested enough in Israel to visit once as president. He’s not worried enough about U.S. interests to resource the forces needed in the region. He’s pretty sure that talks will lead somewhere. Oh, and by the way, he’s also pretty uninterested in that whole fight for democracy thing in Syria or Iran. That’s the kind of “unilateralism” he can’t support. Or something.
And another thing: Barack Obama thinks everyone who listens to him is a fool. How otherwise can he give one speech on Sunday and another on Tuesday? How can he suggest that “got your back” means “we have historically cooperated with Israel”… “just like with a host of other countries” when he clearly intended his AIPAC audience to believe something else?
Lessons learned: 1) Hope Obama doesn’t have your back. 2) Listen to the press conferences, not the speeches. Only the former show us the real man behind the words.