AIPAC comes out swinging against Obama administration 

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee has come out swinging against the Obama administration. AIPAC may be inflential in Washington, but the group generally prefers to work behind the scenes. The fact that they've resorted to issuing statements as blunt as this press release must mean that they are completely exasperated with the Obama administration's Israel policy:

AIPAC CALLS RECENT STATEMENTS BY THE U.S. GOVERNMENT “A MATTER OF SERIOUS CONCERN”            

URGES OBAMA ADMINISTRATION TO WORK TO IMMEDIATELY DEFUSE THE TENSION WITH ISRAEL

The Obama Administration’s recent statements regarding the U.S. relationship with Israel are a matter of serious concern. AIPAC calls on the Administration to take immediate steps to defuse the tension with the Jewish State.

Israel is America’s closest ally in the Middle East. The foundation of the U.S-Israel relationship is rooted in America’s fundamental strategic interest, shared democratic values, and a long-time commitment to peace in the region. Those strategic interests, which we share with Israel, extend to every facet of American life and our relationship with the Jewish State, which enjoys vast bipartisan support in Congress and among the American people.

The Administration should make a conscious effort to move away from public demands and unilateral deadlines directed at Israel, with whom the United States shares basic, fundamental, and strategic interests.

The escalated rhetoric of recent days only serves as a distraction from the substantive work that needs to be done with regard to the urgent issue of Iran’s rapid pursuit of nuclear weapons, and the pursuit of peace between Israel and all her Arab neighbors.

We strongly urge the Administration to work closely and privately with our partner Israel, in a manner befitting strategic allies, to address any issues between the two governments.

As Vice President Biden said last week in Israel, “The cornerstone of the relationship is our absolute, total, unvarnished commitment to Israel’s security. Bibi, you heard me say before, progress occurs in the Middle East when everyone knows there is simply no space between the United States and Israel. There is no space between the United States and Israel when it comes to Israel’s security.”

Obama's more liberal base may think that if the administration is irritating AIPAC then they're on target, but I doubt the perception the Obama administration isn't being supportive of Israel will sit well with most of the country. And alienating AIPAC certainly won't help you get reelected.

UPDATE: I see Jennifer Rubin at Commentary is thinking along similar lines.

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Mark Hemingway

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