United States President Obama denied betraying the State of Israel when he chose not to veto the recent United Nations Security Council resolution deeming Israel’s presence in the West Bank and Jerusalem as illegal.
During an interview to air in Israeli media Thursday, Obama claimed that he did not betray Israel and even claimed that Israel’s reactions and are not based in fact. The reporter asked him about what Prime Minister Netanyahu referred to as a “shameless, anti-Israel ploy” and whether he could understand the sense of betrayal.
“That kind of hyperbole, those kinds of statements don’t have a basis in fact,” Obama said. “They may work well with respect to deflecting attention from the problem of settlements. They may play well with Bibi’s [Netanyahu] political base, as well as the Republican base here in the United States, but they don’t match up with the facts.”
The reporter asked President Obama whether his aides advised him against supporting the resolution so close to his last days in office.
“The fact of the matter is that I’m president until January 20, and I have an obligation to do what I think is right.”
When asked whether there are “any more surprises up your sleeve? Or can the Prime Minister sleep well until January 20,” in reference to the Paris Middle East Conference scheduled for next week, Obama said, “Well, I think there’s an interesting question as to whether he’ll sleep better after January 20,” referring to President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration.
Reports released Tuesday from a draft document from the Paris Peace Conference scheduled for Sunday claim that participating states will officially request that Israel and the Palestinian Authority renew their commitment to a two-state solution. States will reportedly call for a “genuine commitment to the two-state solution and refrain from unilateral steps that prejudge the outcome of final-status negotiations, in order to rebuild trust and create a path back to meaningful direct negotiations.”
Prime Minister Netanyahu has been active in taking diplomatic steps in response to international bodies and states anti-Israel agenda. Israel has continuously refused to participate in the conference as it will only enter direct negotiations with the Palestinians with no preconditions. He warned that the Paris conference “is a futile conference, but there are signs that they will try to take decisions reached there and have them become another decision at the UN Security Council. We are entering a big diplomatic effort in order to succeed in avoiding this.”
Over 70 states are expected to participate in the conference Sunday.
Amir Tsarfati, a Jewish Christian, is the founder and president of Behold Israel, a news site to correct the scarcity in trustworthy reportage on issues and events impacting Israel, and to resolve the uncertainty about who or what to believe.