Obama, Netanyahu to meet after failure of ‘Arab Spring’

Neil Munro White House Correspondent
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President Barack Obama will meet with Israel’s prime minister Sept. 30 in the White House, officials said Tuesday.

Obama will discuss Israel’s “final status negotiations with Palestinians,” as well as developments in Syria and other countries with Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu, White House spokesman Jay Carney said.

The meeting likely will be strained because post-2009 developments have validated opposition from Netanyahu to Obama’s Middle East policies, which have spurred the growth of the Jew-hating Muslim Brotherhood Islamist party in Libya, Egypt and Syria ahead of the so-called “Arab Spring.”

The conflict spilled into the open when Netanyahu visited with Obama at the White House in March 2012. Photographers captured Obama scowling at Netanyahu as he was explaining Israel’s perspective to the attending media.

Obama’s decision to support the Brotherhood has contributed to deep political conflict in Egypt. In June, Egypt’s military overthrew the elected Brotherhood-backed government, symbolically ending the Arab Spring.

Since the coup, much of Egypt’s urban and non-Islamist media and leadership have repeatedly denounced Obama for Brotherhood support, though the administration claims it supports the democratic wishes of the people.

The Brotherhood tried to establish a theocracy that would enforce an apartheid-like inferior status on women and Christians.

Following Obama’s support for the 2010 Libyan rebellion that overthrew the country’s dictator, Libya’s new government is too weak to suppress the country’s numerous Islamist militias.

In Syria, Obama has tried to back the Brotherhood-linked rebels, but some of those rebels have refused to distance themselves from arriving al-Qaida jihadis.

Also, Obama has clashed with the Israeli government while pushing it to make early concessions to the anti-Israel governments alongside Israel, including those in the West Bank zone of the Jordan, and in the Gaza Strip between Israel and Egypt.

Obama’s demand for concessions even prior to a final treaty was rebuffed by Israel’s leaders, who say they can’t cede ground critical for Israel’s self-defense until the Arab communities are willing to publicly declare that Israel has aright to exist.

So far, no Arab leader has publicly urged Arab military forces to enforce an Arab-Israeli peace treaty by suppressing radical anti-Jewish groups, such as the Brotherhood or the al-Qaida.

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