Ira Stoll on How Netanyahu Is Like Obama


Credit: White House /

On the basis of two election-related maneuvers by Benjamin Netanyahu—a pre-election interview, since walked back, casting doubt on prospects for a Palestinian state, and an Election Day post on Facebook urging supporters to go vote because Arab turnout was high—President Obama has let it be known that the U.S.-Israel relationship is up for reevaluation.

Let's stipulate that neither the statehood statement nor the Facebook post was Prime Minister Netanyahu's finest hour or Israel's. But neither was Netanyahu the first politician to use, in the heat of a campaign, methods that in retrospect seem short of wholly admirable. For example, writes Ira Stoll, consider the less than admirable behavior of Barack Obama.