Obama: “Defending” Jews means criticizing “occupier” Israel
“The rights I insist upon and fight for for all people in the United States compels me to look out for the rights of the Jewish people, and the rights of the Jewish people lead me to think about the child in Ramallah who feels trapped,” Obama said Friday, addressing the Adas Israel congregation in Washington D.C. “That’s what Jewish values teach me.”
Obama and his officials are making clear they will not back down from making public criticism of Israel when they feel it is warranted. He made a similar pledge this week to The Atlantic journalist Jeffrey Goldberg, who is an Adas congregant.
Tensions between Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu intensified in March, when Netanyahu spoke to Congress and slammed Obama’s Iran policies in a speech that was organized with the congressional Republican leadership and without consultation with the White House.