Restoring US Credibility Critical
Fortunately, Israeli officials and citizens have been well aware for several years that President Barack Obama is no friend of the Jewish state. They also understand that in less than three weeks, Obama will be out of the White House.
That will leave President-elect Donald Trump, the State Department and Congress with work to do in repairing our relationship with Israel — the only democracy in the Middle East and our staunchest ally.
Trump has made his intention clear. He has said he hopes to restore the U.S. friendship with Israel to the status it had prior to the Obama administration.
That will not be easy. Eight years of thinly disguised enmity have left deep scars. It is a measure of how deep the rift has become that a few years ago, Israeli officials did what was unthinkable for decades: They began attempting to craft a relationship with Russia.
On his way out the door, Obama rubbed salt in the wound. For decades, attempts in the United Nations to harm Israel have been blocked by a U.S. veto in the Security Council. But last month, a resolution condemning Tel Aviv passed that body by a 14-0 vote, with the U.S. abstaining.
It may be even worse than that. Israeli officials say they have evidence U.S. representatives at the U.N. encouraged other nations to pursue the resolution. That is worse than a slap in the face. It is a knife in the back.
Congress should investigate the Israeli contention. If it is true — and there are reasons to believe it is — Trump and the State Department owe Tel Aviv an apology as well as a pledge to refrain from such duplicity in the future.
It is not too much to say that the whole world is watching how Trump will handle the Israel problem. That nation is not the only one to have been let down by the Obama administration. Restoring U.S. credibility on the international stage will be difficult, but it is imperative.