The Real Problem in U.S.–Israeli Relations – Spring 2012
Of all the foreign relationships of the United States, perhaps none is as closely watched and incessantly scrutinized as its relationship with Israel. Like a couple in counseling, U.S.–Israeli relations are the subject of endless analysis. Both supporters and critics are forever on the lookout for the slightest signs of tension or unease, with the former anguishing over them, and the latter celebrating. While there was little to pay attention to during the years of the Bush administration, given its tight and largely uncritical embrace of Israel, the tenure of the Obama administration has provided ample opportunities for U.S.–Israel watchers to speculate on the troubles between Washington and Benjamin Netanyahu’s government. By now, the nature of this debate is entirely predictable—on one side are those who decry President Obama’s alleged failure to resolutely support Israel, and on the other are those who defend the president’s pro-Israeli record.