When a staunch critic of Barack Obama and long-time contributor and supporter of Benjamin Netanyahu tells the Israeli prime minister he a bigger part of the problem than the solution in the search for Mideast peace, it's important.
World Jewish Congress President Ronald Lauder said his old pal should be more concerned about Israel's national interests than his own political fortunes, according to Ha'aretz . In a speech to a conference of Jewish parliamentarians in Jerusalem, the cosmetics heir said it is time for Israel to produce a serious peace plan if it expects to regain international support and block the Palestinian bid for UN recognition of its unilateral statehood declaration.
Make no mistake, Lauder is not about to take back his harsh criticism of President Obama in letters and newspaper ads, but he's telling his friend Bibi to wake up and smell the falafel. Quit coming up with conditions to avoid negotiations, Lauder said. Here's how Ha'aretz summarized his advice: "the only way Israel can escape its international isolation is to agree to begin negotiations without preconditions."
-- Douglas Bloomfield
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