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April 16th, 2010
06:00 PM ET

How should the U.S. change its Israel policy?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Both sides insist the bond is unshakable... but it's pretty hard to ignore the rising tensions between the U.S. and Israel these days.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with VP Joe Biden in March. Netanyahu met with Pres. Obama later that day.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with VP Joe Biden in March. Netanyahu met with Pres. Obama later that day.

Now Pres. Obama is signaling a shift in American policy in the Middle East... by declaring that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a "vital national security interest of the United States."

He's drawing a direct link here between what's happening in Israel and the safety of U.S. troops fighting Islamic extremists in the region.

The New York Times reports the president's shift in tone reflects a debate within the administration over how to "best balance support for Israel against other American interests."

It's no secret that the administration has been frustrated with a lack of progress in peace talks; and that they were not happy with Israel's recent snub of announcing a massive new Jewish housing project while Vice President Biden was in Israel.

That was reportedly followed by a tense meeting between the president and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Washington.

Israel's right-wing government is concerned that the U.S. will try to push through a peace deal on its own, meaning they'd have to give up things they don't want to; and that the Palestinians might declare statehood unilaterally as early as next year.

To that end - Israel has spent much of the last week highlighting threats it faces in the region... from a potentially nuclear-armed Iran to charges that Syria is providing weapons to Hezbollah guerillas in Lebanon.

Syria says it's not true.

Here’s my question to you: How should the U.S. change its policy toward Israel?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Richard in Kansas writes:
It would be nice if we would stop kissing their butts and remind them that America can exist just fine without Israel, but Israel cannot exist without America. Consider that the next time you think of slapping us in the face when we come to help you make peace with your neighbors.

Nancy in Tennessee writes:
The U.S. could change its policy toward Israel best by staying out of their business. The Palestinians have long been encroaching on a land that belongs to this Jewish nation. We could take some lessons from Israel as thousands of Mexicans flood our borders and call U.S. soil their home illegally.

Nick writes:
I say it's time to abandon Israel completely. No more free Abrams tanks, no more military budget expenditures on defense technology and no more American lives spent to defend a people who consistently inspire the hatred of their neighbors through deviant actions. Time's up. Let's move on.

Annie in Atlanta writes:
We need to back them up. They're surrounded by people who hate them. However, I just have one question: With the way Jewish people were treated, as a whole, in the past, how can they justify the way they treat the Palestinians?

Michael writes:
Other than federal politicians, average Americans have no idea why the U.S. caters to an obviously oppressive country. Peace needs to be achieved between Israel and Palestine, and the U.S. needs to adjust its stance on Israel in any way that will make this happen. The U.S. has stood too silent for too long. When you are as close as the U.S. and Israel say they are, then the relationship can stand some tough love.

Chris in Philadelphia writes:
Israel is an ally and always will be but they can't be given carte blanche to do whatever they want. You want to live peacefully with neighbors, you may have to sacrifice something. Like settlements. If you lived among alligators, would you regularly poke them in the eye and expect everything to go your way?


Filed under: Israel
soundoff (210 Responses)
  1. Russ in PA

    It should conduct the same foreign policy as for all other countries: end the subsidies, end the foreign aid, and promote trade. Otherwise leave them alone...

    April 16, 2010 at 1:47 pm |
  2. Tyrone

    To me Israel always capitalizes off of empathy connected with the Holocaust. That time has passed, they are a rich developed nation and still get the largest welfare check from America in that region. Yes they are an ally but they never comply with our requests for the peace process, yet we still protect them. It's like scolding a child while he is still sticking his tongue out at you. We really need to be more stern with them and possibly hold back Military aide until they comply with no building on disputed land. Especially since 99.9% of the terrorist issues we have come from our unwavering support of Israel!

    April 16, 2010 at 1:47 pm |
  3. Wayne from Belleville, Ontario, Canada

    Jack do you really want an honest answer?

    If the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion is indeed a fraud, non the less it reads like an indictment.

    Perhaps the USA should stop the Zionists from using the Holocaust, and the inaccurate term anti-semitism, as a means of stifling opposition. Certainly when you consider the main executioner of the Katyn Massacre, one Vasili Blokhin was a Russian Jew, who personally during his "career" was responsible for tens of thousands of murders, they (the Jews), are not without considerable guilt in momentus crimes against humanity. As a side, why wasn't Blokhin tried at Nuremburg as well?

    I personally am not a racist, but find the current climate in the Western world to be reprehensible when it comes to the State of Israel, right from its creation by means of the Balfour agreement.

    April 16, 2010 at 1:54 pm |
  4. CraigC

    If the United States were surrounded by a group of other countries intent on our destruction, we might have a different attitude toward Israel. When we were faced with disaster (911) we took aggressive action and most of our politicians, including many liberal democrats supported that action. Israel has been overtly threatened throughout it's existence yet the same nations that supported its creation have turned their backs on Israel when it became time to take a stand. Unfortunately it looks like the United States under Democratic leadership, is also turning into turncoats with the rest of the world suggesting that when it comes time to display character, we are lacking!

    Israel is the only country in the Middle East that has been a constant friend of the United States, but the Obama administration, as it does frequently, is speaking out of both sides of it's mouth with a lot of words that make it sound like we are friends of Israel but inaction that suggests otherwise. The Obama administration makes a lot of noises about "re-gaining" the respect of the world – but nobody respects a turncoat!

    April 16, 2010 at 1:55 pm |
  5. Elwood Ahlsted

    Please add a little clarity to this statement???What is our full policy?? Oz from St.Louis

    April 16, 2010 at 2:02 pm |
  6. Michael Alexandria, VA

    Yes. It shold insist that Israel either cut the Palestinians and Arabs in N. Israel loose and allow a redrawing of the boundaries of the region (with the West, the North, Lebanon, Syria and Jordan reconstituting a Hashemite Kingdom in Damascus). It should also promise to annex all lands not turned over and reconstitute as a secular state (even if it holds every square inch). If it keeps the North, it should grant a right of return to the Roma people, who research shows were the 10 tribes taken by the Assyrians, who later migrated to India and then to Europe. We accepted Jesus when India was catechized by the Apostles, but we are still sons of Israel. Not only is the north ours by right, but the Palestinians there are likely our brothers.

    April 16, 2010 at 2:02 pm |
  7. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    Tell them anything they want to do about that pesky Iran problem is OK with us.

    April 16, 2010 at 2:04 pm |
  8. Michael G Tampa, FL

    Well Jack, I'm glad you asked.
    First of all, this long term subsidy of Israel to the tune of a billion dollars a year or whatever the amount must end.
    When they keep taking our money and won't make the real efforts for
    a permanent peace with Palestinians and others, it's just wrong on so many levels.
    Do we have a military base there ?
    Do they have oil ?
    So, we need to treat them the same way we treat any other country and stop enabling them to be the regional problem to long term peace that they clearly continue to show themselves to be.
    The UN needs to right the wrong that occured in 1947 when Israel was "given" the land they now occupy.
    The Palestinians have a right to that country and that land just as much if not more than the Jewish people.
    It makes me sick to see the Jewish people treat Palestinians almost as badly as the Jewish people were treated during the Holocaust.
    Yeah, I can say Warsaw Ghetto and Gaza Strip in the same sentence.
    Shame on the Israeli's for being the hypocrits that they are.
    I say let them all kill each other and let God sort them out.
    That's what they all want to do anyway don't they ?

    Michael G
    Tampa, FL

    April 16, 2010 at 2:09 pm |
  9. Danielle Perlin

    In the New York Times on April 14, Ronald S. Lauder, the president of the World Jewish Congress asked in an open letter to President Obama, "Why does the thrust of this administration’s Middle East rhetoric seem to blame Israel for the lack of movement on peace talks?” Although I do not agree with all current policies Netanyahu has placed on settlements, I do believe that in order to achieve real peace, Israel is not the only player. The problem is the leadership in the Palestinian Territories and in the Gaza strip. In the West Bank, there are children television programs that further emphasize the idea that it is not only okay to kill Israelis, but it is good to kill them. In Gaza, Hamas' charter does not recognize the State of Israel. Just a week or two ago, the PA wanted to name a central square in Ramallah for a female suicide bomber who killed over 35 Israelis. But with international pressure, the naming did not go through. Perhaps there should be more international pressure from the United States to push leadership for Palestinians to a. recognize Israel and b. educate children in the West Bank more objectively. America pressuring Israel to have "peace talks" with the PA does not do any good in furthering a peace movement if there is a continuing mentality among groups in Gaza and the West Bank to promote suicide bombings in Israel.

    April 16, 2010 at 2:13 pm |
  10. Gerry Erman

    This is our only real ally in the middle east. We owe the Israelis as much support as we can muster. Were going to need them soon in stopping Iran's progress in developing a nuclear weapon. Secretary Clinton and President Obama need to dramatically revise their middle east objectives. Like it or not we will not see a Palistinian state. That said and as farfetched as this sounds there is a better possibility of a Palistanian and Jewish state . It may sound bizarre but its better than what they have now and all factions would be represented.

    Gerry
    Ash Fork, Az

    April 16, 2010 at 2:13 pm |
  11. DJ from Fort Walton Beach, Florida

    Not send them anything while we have problems over here. They've shown that they can take care of themselves...well I say let them...

    April 16, 2010 at 2:18 pm |
  12. sam

    It shouldn't, in the sense that we should continue to be friends but feel free to exercise and receive negative criticisim from each other.Friends remain friends even when they disagee.

    April 16, 2010 at 2:28 pm |
  13. Susan in Toledo, Ohio

    We might distance ourselves a little so we are less likely to get dragged into the war they start by bombing Iran. Our plate is pretty full right now.

    April 16, 2010 at 2:29 pm |
  14. John from Alabama

    Jack: Israel is an ally of the United States, who spies on us, and disrupts the peace process. We should use our diplomacy to start the peace process and recommend the Israelis stop building settlements in West Jerusalem. It will not stop building them no matter what we say to the Israelis. To get their attention we need to sell the Palestines weapons and tanks. The Israelis will listen to us. The Isrealis will still built settlements. Oh, well.

    April 16, 2010 at 2:31 pm |
  15. Edwin A Hoffman

    Cedar City, Utah

    In the past our special relationship with Israel allow us to stop them firing on Iraq when being hit with scuds during the 1st gulf war.

    If we do not re-start treating them as a ally, could we do the same now?

    If Syria or Iran fire a scud at Israel, what will stop them firing back with much better and more powerful weapons. One scud with a biological or chemical warhead could result in a nuclear exchange.

    Israel could simply ignore us if we asked then for restraint, because we have shown them we do not value their presence anymore.

    April 16, 2010 at 2:36 pm |
  16. martin wolk

    greenwich, ct (Israel)

    April 16, 2010 at 2:37 pm |
  17. Al F. San Marcos CA.

    It is a bad, complicated situation, but if there were terrorists in Mexico lobbing missiles over the border into San Diego what do you think the U.S. response would be? And if Israel told us to make peace with the terrorists that were doing it, maybe give Texas and New Mexico back to Mexico, after all we took those territories away from their rightful owners, what would the U.S. say to that?

    Until the terrorism that has been killing Israeli citizens since the founding of Israel stops they have a right to defend themselves.

    April 16, 2010 at 2:38 pm |
  18. Gilbert West

    Hello Jack,

    The time has come for Israel to grow up and stand on its own two feet. As children we experience a number of things, some of which are not very pleasant... school yard bullies and beligerents, for example. At some point we mature, however, and learn to navigate a variety of situations. Israel, it seems, lacks the capacity to learn and to grow. Israel wants to be the bully, and they want the USA to back them, no matter what. The time for this blind allegiance to the whims of Israel is over. The USA needs to cut the umbilical chord and let Israel find its way. Sink or swim. For the past 5,900+ years Israel has been a problem. I don't think of God when I look toward Israel. Quite the contrary. I see a trouble-maker hell bent on having its way

    April 16, 2010 at 2:42 pm |
  19. martin wolk

    Greenwich, ct (Israel)
    Pres Obama has to make 2 phone calls. One to Abbas and one to Bibi . I want you "guys" to come to Camp David and we will start peace talks. This will only be an informal get together with a few of members of your government. This will not result in a peace treaty but it will start negotiations. After the meeting and you start real negotiations in your countries, I will then visit the West Bank and Jerusalem. Now let's get started talking to each other and COME HERE WITHIN THE NEXT MONTH.. It is that simple.

    April 16, 2010 at 2:44 pm |
  20. Kevin,FL

    By not interferring WHATSOEVER in Isreali business . If they want to usurp the WEST BANK so what ? Our problem is we are constantly trying to play Big Brother to the World , and not cleaning up our own backyard.

    April 16, 2010 at 2:46 pm |
  21. Jack in Virginia

    Yes, we should push for Israel's immediate membership in NATO. They are on the front lines in the war on terrorism, having fought radical Islamists for decades. We need their fighting skills, their intelligence assets and, when things go really brown, their (undeclared) nukes. They have a great deal more to contributeto NATO than does, say, Slovakia or Albania.

    April 16, 2010 at 2:47 pm |
  22. Kevin,FL

    When the U.S. becomes a World Leader and Economically viable again ..........we can talk , but untill then while we are on the express train to Hell ............keep quiet!

    April 16, 2010 at 2:48 pm |
  23. pat in michigan

    take crude oil out of the equation and the rest will take care of itself. We have been manipulated by the middle east for 60 plus years . war after war,threat after threat.
    What do they have that is so important. Religious zealots? Oil? we can fix that problem right here in ten years time.But we wont!

    April 16, 2010 at 2:50 pm |
  24. Don (Ottawa)

    First of all we have to clarify what it means when we say that Israel is our strongest ally in the region. If that means in terms of the amount of money we give them to wage war and create unrest, it's correct. However, if it is in terms of diplomacy and as a partner for facilitating peace in a troubled region, we definately need to re-evaluate our policy. Any new policy should be serious about the peace efforts. For starters no more funding for the Isreali military, removal of all settlements in disputed territory, removal of all nuclear weapons and the recognition of a Palistinian state alongside Israel. The questions we must answer are: as an ally has Israel made us safer, have they advanced our interests in the region, have they been fair with their Palestinian adversaries, and have they taken steps to reduce tensions which threaten the supply of oil to the outside world. Remember, Al Quida's sole reason for bringing us down is our support of Israel. It's time for a serious change in policy.

    April 16, 2010 at 2:56 pm |
  25. Adam Meyer

    Time to cut them loose, It is very clear Israel is unwilling to listen to the international community and halt its arrogant land grab. Most of the world is against them, why do we seem to have this unwavering support for them? Oh ya the country is run by lobbists!

    April 16, 2010 at 2:56 pm |
  26. Dr. H

    The US needs to grow some testicles and be honest and fair-minded with Israel and the American people. Politicians in the US, including the President and many in congress are afraid to speak the truth about the many wrongs done by Israel in fear of being called an Anti-Semite, as they are called whenever they object to any policies regarding that country. America backs Israel at any cost and also gives them money, which could be used here for tax paying citizens and to help reduce our deficit. We were terrorized on 9/11 and other occasions for supporting them. No one except Mel Gibson was honest enough to say the truth out-loud and I don't have to say what happened to his career- it tanked.

    April 16, 2010 at 3:00 pm |
  27. Joe CE

    A STEP BY STEP APPROACH WILL NEVER WORK BECAUSE OF EXTREMEISTS ON BOTH SIDES. The US should offer a peace plan – definitely NOT incremebtal which includes a guarantee of US support plan for Isreal if the are attacked. If the plan is not accepted, we should disengage from middle east [politics. If Isreal refuses to accecpt such a plan, we should withdraw any guarantees. If the plan is acepted, the US should be willing to place an armored division and anti-missle batteries in Isreal for at leqast 10 years.

    April 16, 2010 at 3:02 pm |
  28. Dr. H

    It should require of Israel to conform to the Nuclear ambitions that it wants to set for others in that region. The former Prime Minister of Israel admitted that they have Nuclear weapons. Also they refuse to sign a treaty that would require them to rid themselves of any such weapons but yet they don't want Iran or others to have it. America has to be fair and stand up to israel in public and on an international level such as the UN and not side with them at any cost. These scared ass politicians are afraid of losing by the jewish vote.

    April 16, 2010 at 3:10 pm |
  29. Jimbo Of Chicago

    The policy should be for us to protect Isreal. It is imperative that we show the world we stand by a friend in need.

    April 16, 2010 at 3:15 pm |
  30. david doherty

    Jack the US will never change it's policy with Israel as long as the money keeps making it's loop! You know the loop, we spend billions on Israel and they turn around and spend billions for US. favors. It's kind of like laudrying money on an industial scale!

    Dave from NH.

    April 16, 2010 at 3:18 pm |
  31. perry jones

    yes they should we should let them make the desions they need to with out the US getting the way

    perry jones

    April 16, 2010 at 3:18 pm |
  32. Paul Austin, Texas

    Just stop special deals under the table and tell them to get real about wanting peace.

    April 16, 2010 at 3:20 pm |
  33. Adam Simi Valley, CA

    The only thing worse than being our enemy is being our friend. We need to stand with the Israeli's instead of carving up their country and trying to appease the Palestinians. We need to treat them with respect and stop trying to curry favors with their and our enemies. Joe Biden needs to remember his earlier speeches about recognizing an undivided Israel and stop acting insulted and slighted when Israeli's build houses on their own, unoccupied, undisputed land. Hillary Clinton needs to start railing against Iran, N Korea and the suicide bombing Palestinians rather than shrieking at the Israeli PM. Israel is our only friend over there and we need to stop trying to negotiate with people who will never be satisfied short of total global domination. We need to stop selling out our friends to make our enemies happy.

    April 16, 2010 at 3:23 pm |
  34. Richard, in Kansas

    It would be nice if we would stop kissing their butts and remind them that America can exist just fine without Isreal, But Isreal cannot exist without America. Consider that the next time you think of slapping us in the face when we come to help you make peace with your neighbors.

    April 16, 2010 at 3:24 pm |
  35. Luke...Knoxville Tennessee

    1) Let's start by treating Israel the way we treat the other countries who don't co-operate with nuclear weapons inspectors..cut off their money and cut off their weapons.
    2) Also why not insist that the Mossad turn over their hit team to the Dubai goverment to face murder and terrorism charges.
    3) Let's investigate how much political inflluence is openly paid for with the members of Congress and then let's cut it off at the knees.

    April 16, 2010 at 3:30 pm |
  36. Dennis North Carolina

    we need to change our policy with Israel totally because we can not babysit them forever.

    April 16, 2010 at 3:31 pm |
  37. Gary H. Boyd

    I didn't know we had a policy toward Israel Jack. Where'd you get that idea? The fella at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue seems to make things up as he goes along - working both sides of the street at the same time and getting nowhere. Clearly a forthright statement of support for Israel is needed but I seriously doubt we'll get one from Obama.

    Gary in Scottsdale, Arizona

    April 16, 2010 at 4:36 pm |
  38. The Broker.

    "I don't think anybody in the world knows what your true policy with Israel is? Not even Israel under Barack Obama's agenda towards the Arabs in your country and the middle east. "

    April 16, 2010 at 4:36 pm |
  39. Jim

    Jack,

    We should continue to protect Israel's existence whenever it is threatened, and we should continue to clearly voice our opposition whenever the Israeli government does something we disagree with, including supporting sanctions against them if necessary.

    Jim
    Reno, Nevada

    April 16, 2010 at 4:37 pm |
  40. pete

    Quit letting Isreal decide what it will be.

    April 16, 2010 at 4:37 pm |
  41. Nick

    Israel has become the epitome and perhaps the definition of "pork-barrel spending." Endless grants (under the name "loan", although loans are technically supposed to be paid back... right?), military and political support have resulted in the hatred of not only the Arab world, but a tarnishing of our image as a super-power. We have prosecuted war against the Iraqis, Afghans and now the Iranians in the name of Israel.

    How should our policy change? I say it's time to abandon Israel completely. No more free Abrams tanks, no more military budget expenditures on defense technology and no more American lives spent to defend a people who consistently inspire the hatred of their neighbors through deviant actions. Time's up. Let's move on.

    April 16, 2010 at 4:39 pm |
  42. Lance, Ridgecrest, Ca

    Jack, I'm not sure which policy you are talking about, the Obama policy or the policy prior to Obama. The Obama policy is a mistake which will alienate Israel eventually, and make mid-eastern peace absolutely impossible. Policy prior to Obama was founded firmly on the premise that as long as Hamas/Hezzbolah ruled the Palistinian "state", which they still do, there could be no peace until they acknowledged Israel's right to exist. That has NOT happened, and Obama is not helping.

    April 16, 2010 at 4:40 pm |
  43. Richard McKinney, Texas

    Israel has a Jewish population of 5,634,300 people. America has a Jewish population of 6,444,000. There is no doubt that America is joined at the hip with Israel. The key thing to remember though is that we are two separate countries with unique problems and unique heritages and no mater how joined we are at the hip we have no business trying to make decisions for the other. Israel is our ally and we need to keep that in mind. They are our strongest ally in the middle east where we have soldiers fighting 2 wars with no end in sight. The enemy would love to see Israel stumble and fall. It would be a victory against the United States and we need to insure that we do not do anything that might bring that about politically.

    April 16, 2010 at 4:42 pm |
  44. Joe CE

    The incredible letters of support for Isreal from the Senate & House indicates the difficulty with solving the problem. Too much politics and too little moral value. Isreal announced a new settlrment in a disputed area the day the Vice President arrived top try and help solve the problem – this was stupid and provactive by Isreal – they deserved a severe rebuke. The problem will never be sovled in increnmentalism. Too many extremists on both sides who are dedicated to preventuing a soultion. THe US should should propose a final solution, inclding guaranteeing Isreal – if this is not accepted, we might as well disengage entirely..

    April 16, 2010 at 4:44 pm |
  45. Simon/Orlando

    Israel is the only normal country in the arabian peninsula and they are surrounded by a bunch of lunatics bent on destroying them. Back them 100% on whatever they feel they need to do to survive.

    April 16, 2010 at 4:47 pm |
  46. Keith - Twinsburg, Ohio

    Israel has been fighting Muslims longer than our country has been existance. The last I knew, we were fighting the same enemy.

    We can't seem to communicate to the rest of the world just who our allies are and who our enemies are.... Maybe they keep changing sides on a list in the White House.

    The U.S. has liberated many countries, but soon there will be no allies left to come to our aid. Before we know it, we will run out of allies.

    April 16, 2010 at 4:51 pm |
  47. k

    It is time this coutnry stops butting her head into everyone else's business. We are not perfect and do not have the right to dictate what other countries do. Nation building is NOT accomplished with war.

    April 16, 2010 at 4:54 pm |
  48. Ray in Nashville

    Jack, Isael is in a tough position and we all know it, but they have been acting like the Nazi's they so rightly hate, punishing the whole of the Palistinian population for the acts of a few terrorists. The U.S. under the Bush administration turned a blind eye to the Israeli actions, but we have to put a stop to them. It's time we halt all aid to Israel until that government begins to act more humane again.

    April 16, 2010 at 4:55 pm |
  49. Mark

    Lets see. Israel is the only true democracy in the middle east. They also don't want to kill us.

    Should we get a new president? Yes

    April 16, 2010 at 4:57 pm |
  50. Loren

    The problem's in the Middle East related to Israel are all the result of the attempts to curry favor with the other peoples of the Middle East who refuse to recognize the legitimacy of the State of Israel. By continuing to try to appease the Palestinians and their supporters, we give them cause to continue their campaign against the people and the State of Israel. This appeasement reflect an appalling ignorance of history and lack of morals.

    The Palestinians abandoned their homes in Israel based on the provocation and promises of the leaders of the countries surrounding Israel. The Palestinians should be looking for recompense from those countries and not Israel, because it is those countries that are responsible for the current situation of the Palestinian people. The only solution is for those countries to assume the responsibility for the Palestinian people by accepting them into their countries as citizens and for the Palestinian people to recognize and accept that they made poor choices and to accept the consequences. The Israeli people have a right to the State of Israel and the Palestinian people for their foolishness and religious animosity need to move on.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:01 pm |
  51. Greg, Ontario

    The countries on the allied side of WW2 made Isreal possible. They gave it life and made it happen. Like a parent we need to let Isreal stand alone and make it's own decisions and accept the consequences that go along with them. If we were to stand back and say "go ahead" we could look the Arab nations in the eye and say " Tell Isreal about it. Don't complain to me." That would force these countries to actually start talking to one another instead of at one another through the news media. Isreal has developed an arrogance that I find repulsive. How many times have we heard about them using thier friends/allies passports in acts espionage. Who needs friends like that?

    April 16, 2010 at 5:01 pm |
  52. Matt

    Jack,
    Commerce with all, alliances with none. Our alliance with Israel has brought more bloodshed to our doorstep than had we kept to ourselves. Bin Laden even cited it for one of the reasons for 9/11. His goal was to pull the U.S. into the same, never-ending battle that Israel is in with the rest of the predominately-Muslim Middle East, in hopes of eventually ruining us. Thanks to Bush and Obama, he's been very successful. We have spent trillions of dollars on a war, fighting two countries not behind the attacks. And now Israel taunts its neighbors, knowing that the U.S. will back it no matter how ridiculous, or how financially weak we are. The terrorists are winning. Want to (methaphorically) kill two birds with one stone? What would Iran be upset with us for if we ended our Israeli alliance, and stopped all sanctions on all countries? And as for Lebanon, Muslims, Christians and Jews have been living together for many years in that country. The Hezbollah has been quoted as being supportive of the people who live in that country–they just don't like Israel because they lob bombs at them all the time. And thus, they don't like us because we back Israel no matter what. Time to let Israel stand on their own.
    Thanks,
    Matt, TX

    April 16, 2010 at 5:03 pm |
  53. Jerry Jacksonville, Fl.

    I have in my sixty nine years never saw anything that Israel has done for the United States, it is sort of like being the bride and never getting kissed. The United States spends and gives Israel billions of dollars each year for what, we should treat them no differently than we would Mexico and Canada. Hell at least some people get dope from Mexico. All we get from Israel is a big pain the the butt.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:05 pm |
  54. Randy from Salt Lake City

    Jack, this is all smoke and mirrors. Israel's colony, the US, will do whatever it's told to do. Plain and simple. Don't believe me? Just ask your buddy, Wolf.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:06 pm |
  55. Pat Stamm

    Hi: Leave the middle east completely!!!!!!None of them can be trusted to do the right thing!!!!!!!!

    April 16, 2010 at 5:09 pm |
  56. Kevin in Austin

    What do the tea baggers think? That is the real question..

    April 16, 2010 at 5:10 pm |
  57. Kyle, Irvine, CA

    Jack,
    It's got to be hard to support Israel when just about every other country in the Middle East wants to drop a "big one" in Jerusalem. Israel has every right to defend itself against Iran and everyone else who wants Israel wiped off the face of the Earth. The U.S message should be that we recognize Israel's sovereignty as an independent country and we will give our full support as long Israel moves towards peace. If Israel feels threatened by Iran and decides to take military action, don't be surprised if the U.S doesn't join them. Were fighting two wars already.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:12 pm |
  58. Chris in Philadelphia

    Israel is an ally and always will be but they can't be given carte blanche to do whatever they want. You want to live peacefully with neighbors you may have to sacrifice something. Like settlements. If you lived among alligators, would you regularly poke them in the eye an expect everything to go your way?

    April 16, 2010 at 5:12 pm |
  59. honestjohn in Vermont

    I don't see any reason for us not to help Israel. On all sides they are surrounded by people who only want them dead so they can take the land. Any idea of a real peace deal is nothing but a pipe dream since there are far too many terrorists who make their living fanning the flames of violence against Israel. If peace were to break out, they suffer a loss of status and be out of a well paying job.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:12 pm |
  60. Alex in Gig Harbor

    President Obama is right. The Arabs have hated us for supporting Israel long before they resented our troops stationed in Saudi Arabia. Israelis killing Arabs with weapons provided by America only adds to the bitterness. We just need to balance that view with the fact that the previous president invaded two Muslim countries and initially called it a crusade.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:12 pm |
  61. gerry luimes

    You'd better ask that question to Hussain,the king of Jordan who has declared that a war between Hizbollah and Israel is iminent.These people know their territory!.And when this happens you can bet your sweet bippy that the USA is going to be deeply involved.Would you like that? I'd say: Nobody would.So let's be careful; No talk about a
    "timid" president.This situation demands the utmost deplomatic and patient approach.The search for a solution has gone on for many
    years............
    gerry at edmonton.can

    April 16, 2010 at 5:14 pm |
  62. Ralph Spyer

    The Jewish Lobbyist have money and power.just by asking should we change our policy you will be called a antisemite. We give Israel more forgin aid then any country in the world.Why? Their military trains with our. They have nuclear weapons but their lobbyist wnat us to go to war against Iran because they are trying to get nuclear weapons.Americans died in world war 2 also .

    April 16, 2010 at 5:15 pm |
  63. Greg M.

    Jack,
    We should probably take a neutral stand and let them fight their own wars.
    Greg M. Largo,FL

    April 16, 2010 at 5:20 pm |
  64. Myrtle, the bay

    Jack, The conflict can be solved simply by separating God from Money.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:20 pm |
  65. Luis Teixeira

    we have to remember that palestina give part of ground for start the nation of israel, since then this country are growing echa time more, even they claim jerusalem, and we saw on TV all the time asking for money for take more judes and build setlements out of the country, every body nows that and also that take advantage of their relation with united states for complet their mission, so yes...we have to leaved alone.....we have more importants challenge to take care....and with that we are going to save alot of money, from take care so big burden....

    April 16, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
  66. JC

    We should understand that Isreal is blocking any peace agreement with Palestine because they feel that they are entitled to all of Palestine. It's Isreal's and America's fault that extremists gain support in Palestine because the people are desparate and sick of being treated as second class humans. That's also the reason the US is a target of middle eastern terrorism.

    The US should form a coalition to begin sanctions on Isreal until they pull out of all occupied territory in the gaza strip, the west bank, and east Jerusalem. An international peace keeping force should be inserted to give the Palestinians a chance to form their own country. Isreal should have no right to put checkpoints to divide the people in the new country of Palestine.

    Of course AIPAC won't like this so instead our government will keep giving Isreal money and insist that they enjoy special status as an important ally to the US.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
  67. Jeff in Minnesota

    Israel is not always right nor are the Palestinians always the bad guy. Everyone in the world has had a hand in creating the situation in the Middle East whether you want to go back to the apportioning of the Middle East after WWI or you want to go back further to the Crusades. The US has also done itself no favors by skewing our foreign policies to favor Israel such that we cannot be trusted by anyone else in the region. Until we start to treat all parties equally and get Israel to understand that they need to be much more open to the changes needed to bring peace, we should just walk away and let them fix their own problems.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  68. IKHAN san jose ca

    HI JACK

    its absolutely essential that israel palestinian conflict is resolved justly & quickly>its both in our geopolitical interests
    this is also linked directly to our aims in iraq & afghanistan & safety of our troops deployed there>
    to this end we have to change our stance & policy towards the state of israel which shaped mostly by pressures exerted by their lobbies here like AIPAC> & those on the Hill & Washington who owe their allegiance to israel>
    no more aid or special treatment for them unless they conform to our foreign policy goals> stop building illegal settlements in occupied territories< become a signatory to NPT< be atrue partner with us to achieve peace in that region & forego the role of a bully
    we also have to stop listening to israel solely for our policy towards iran which is confrontational & may lead to another war against the advice of our military commanders>

    April 16, 2010 at 5:27 pm |
  69. Sue From Idaho

    It needs to tell Israel that discretion is the better part of valor. You reap what you sow.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:27 pm |
  70. Tim

    How is this even a question? How to "best balance support for Israel against other American interests."?!? Isn't it time someone (anyone) in our own government put the interests of America before the interests of some other country? Stop funding Israel until New Orleans has been rebuilt, and there are no more hungry men, women, or children in our own country. I can't imagine anyone putting their neighbors well-being ahead of their own children's. Maybe the biggest change we can make is to apply some common sense.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:28 pm |
  71. Ever; Brooklyn NY

    For the love of God GET TOUGHER ON ISRAEL!!

    As much as I despise hatred coming from either side; have Americans ever stop and thought as to WHY terrorists and much of the Muslim world has an unfavorable view of America?

    It might have something to do with our constant supply of arms to Israel and the fact that we've pretty much refused to see the other sides viewpoint of the issue. As soon as ANYONE in Congress criticizes Israel, the media shines on the Congressman like a laser and compares him to Hitler.

    Fun fact; Pretty much every 'solution' struck between the Israelis and Palestinians was always run through the Israeli government (to see if they approved of the conditions)-never the Palestinian side.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:30 pm |
  72. Luwanna Guysville Ohio

    Simple, ask them if they would like to continue to receive funding from the U.S., if not, fine cut them off and let them fend for themselves. We could use that money for ourselves right now.

    Luwanna Guysville Ohio

    April 16, 2010 at 5:31 pm |
  73. Ari Nir

    Dear Sir,

    In 1990 Bernard Lewis wrote in his work "The Rage of Islam" -.There is no less than a clash of civilizations – that perhaps irrational but surely historic reaction of an ancient rival against our Judeo-Christian heritage"

    Prof. Samuel Huntington wrote – "A more immediate & dangerous challenge exists in the United States".

    How should the U.S. change its Israel policy in order to satisfies the militant Islam which declares a war to the Western Civilization?

    And why Israel must except the American dictate when all of us remember what President Benes told his fellow Czechoslovaks regarding the Munich Agreements-This case is unique in history: our friends and allies have imposed on us such terms as are usually dictated to a defeated enemy.

    Do you really believe that Israel will take a risk to repeat Holocaust?
    Do you understand that Israel will use all means, I repeat, all means to defend itself?
    Do you remember what Golda Meir told to prthe only first line of your deference. You are the next.esident Nixon – do push us too much?
    And, finally, do you honestly believe that by sacrificing Israel the USA and already impotent Europe will make peace with Islam?

    Sir, this is a war between the West Civilization & Islam, and Israel is the only first line of your deference. You are the next.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:34 pm |
  74. Remo, from beautiful downtown Pflugervile Texas

    Oh the irony! Israelis came ashore and told the Palestinians to move aside we're settling here. Never mind you had this property for generations. Move elsewhere. Didn't we do that to the indians on our soil. Now the Israelis are upset someone is telling them something different than they want to hear. Why don't we do something novel, stop meddling. Stop funding. Stop interferring. Let's let them all work it out. We as a country need to stop trying to be some wierd self propagating police force. Those folks over there are adults let them scratch out some deal, but with out any involvement or money to either sides from us.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:35 pm |
  75. Paulette in Dallas,PA

    I agree with Obama on this one. Israel is getting a bit obnoxious with its' pushiness and taking for granted our certain backing no matter what they do. They need to be put in their place and maybe called before the UN and made to make peace with the Palestinians.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:36 pm |
  76. Charles Hamm

    By shutting up Vice President Biden's mouth.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:36 pm |
  77. jean2009

    Building more settlements needs to cease. Israel would not face as many threats if they would stop their ever expanding land grabs. If Israel doesn't want to give some for peace, then why should we waste our time defending their interest, at the cost of the lives of our troops.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:37 pm |
  78. Allen from Minnesota

    We should treat them the same way we treat any small nation with respect and dignity. However we should also treat them the same as we would treat any small nation with help if its needed in time of disaster and disdain in time of stupid moves. Just because the middle east
    including Israel is the home of the Christian religion doesn't mean we have to coddle or caress their egos why is it we allow genocide to take place in African nations yet we coddle middle eastern nations who have done their share of transgressions.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:37 pm |
  79. Joe

    Jack,

    The US government owes nothing to Israel. If it were not for these agenda driven agendas of all religions the world might be OK! Is Religion evil or good?
    Joe, Binghamton, NY

    April 16, 2010 at 5:38 pm |
  80. Ari Nir

    Dear Sir,

    In 1990 Bernard Lewis wrote in his work "The Rage of Islam" -.There is no less than a clash of civilizations – that perhaps irrational but surely historic reaction of an ancient rival against our Judeo-Christian heritage"
    Prof. Samuel Huntington wrote – "A more immediate & dangerous challenge exists in the United States".
    How should the U.S. change its Israel policy in order to satisfies the militant Islam which declared a war to the Western Civilization?
    And why Israel must except the American dictate when all of us remember what President Benes told his fellow Czechoslovaks regarding the Munich Agreements-This case is unique in history: our friends and allies have imposed on us such terms as are usually dictated to a defeated enemy.
    Do you really believe that Israel will take a risk to repeat Holocaust?
    Do you understand that Israel will use all means, I repeat, all means to defend itself?
    Do you remember what Golda Meir told to president Nixon – do push us too much?
    And, finally, do you honestly believe that by sacrificing Israel the USA and already impotent Europe will make peace with Islam?
    Sir, this is a war between the West Civilization & Islam, and Israel is the only first line of your defense. You are the next.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:39 pm |
  81. William Courtland

    Israel is wrong. It is wrong in every method in which it exists: for every reason.

    David build a temple to the Arch of the Covenant: where is that arch: without it the temple is nothing.

    All those who were Hebrew were misslead over the Jordon by forces of the occult and sorcery and thus entered into the first holocaust; lead by those who abandoned Moses. Moses Stayed in the true home of the Hebrew: in the Sinai: and the rest who crossed have been subject to the reprocussions of that choice.

    By the word of God: thou shall not kill: yet to murder for the promise land: they were meant to pass the herds and eventually marry these people of Cann as they forged a greater culture and expanded not with force but with Godly Civilization and its culture.

    America should assist those honest to Judaism to cross back to the Sinai and find peace high in its steppes... Herding cattle to Afghanistan and back so to continue on to Algeria or pass high into Europe: eventually to the colosseum which would be fixed to become a new Slaughter house for real rodeo champions.

    Israel is just a point of conflict: which started when the Hebrew themselves defiled the exodus and fled from the chosen of God: this just after Urim and Thurim as the two lords of Moses: died.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:41 pm |
  82. Semo Rantamaki

    Yes, the US should change its policy. Let's see. Israel has crushed the Palestinians, invaded Lebanon (1983), occupied Lebanon, bombed Lebanon recently (killing over a thousand Lebanese), blockaded Gaza, then bombed Gaza last year killing around 1400 Palestinians (hasn't let much supplies in since then, let alone letting them rebuild. A few months ago, Former President Carter said that Gazans were being treated like animals). All this to cover up the original injustice to carve up a territory, where the majority of the pouplation (about 2/3) in 1948 did not want the Palestinian territory divided.
    And the US should ignore all that ?

    April 16, 2010 at 5:41 pm |
  83. Jim in Alabama

    I think we need to let Israel know that we are not going to support them indefinately as long as they continue to expand their settlements in the region. Those actions are keeping the region in turmoil and serve to destabilize the entire region. Moreover, peace efforts are useless as long as this continues. Finally, let Israel take out Iran since they represent a greater threat to them than to this country. We are already hated enough in t he Arab would for supporting Israel in whatever they want to do, right or wrong.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:42 pm |
  84. Darren - Detroit

    Quit selling them nukes and let them work on their own peace plan.

    April 16, 2010 at 5:43 pm |
  85. Randy Willen

    Jack, the US should. Israel has been creating refugees since its takeover of British mandated Palestine. Like the refugees in Lebanon, Syria and other places who have deeds to their houses in Israel, but can never go back. CNN interviewed a few of them some time ago... Israel keeps talking about who lived there 2,000 or more years ago and tries to dig up artifacts. Who lived there until recently (say for the recent 1000 years) ? No, they start the demographic history 2000 years ago. Erase the demographic history, say from 1000 AD to 1945. Then start after that. Talk about revisionist history..

    April 16, 2010 at 5:45 pm |
  86. William Courtland

    The Holocaust was led by those who needed to erase the truth of sorcery: the occult was the Vryl and they won WW1 and WW2: the occult never being thwarted: not even when America attempted to list all the communers of that occult in the late fourties(this just creating a cold war with mis-representation): the occult eventually even forced the Jewish into this dead-end solution of want for a adulterers kingdom: instead of choosing that one of Moses: as even in Israel the grass is still greener...: yet with faith water flows up from the ground: a mass aquifer...

    April 16, 2010 at 5:45 pm |
  87. Steven Foyer

    Yes.....Recent actions by Israel do not help their case. Britain recently expelled an Israeli diplomat for the Dubai assassination (British passports were used by the hit team). Israeli police/military killed 3 Palestinian youths 2 weeks ago. The Goldstone report shows Israel committed war crimes in Gaza where they killed around 1400 Palestinians. Gaza is still under blockade. Israel routinely demolishes Palestinian housing in Arab East Jerusalem, evicts Palestinians and builds housing complexes there. It denies water supplies to Arabs in the Negev desert.
    Should the US turn a blind eye towards these ?

    April 16, 2010 at 5:50 pm |
  88. michaeljwjr

    Other than federal politicians average Americans have no idea why the United States caters to an obviously oppressive country. Peace needs to be achieved between Israel and Palestine, and the United States needs to adjust it's stance on Israel in any way that will make this happen.
    The United States has stood too silent for too long. When you are as close as the United States and Israel say they are, then the relationship can stand some tough love.l

    April 16, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  89. Jack

    Im glad to see some sort of change in US policy towards this issue, its been wholeheartedly supporting Israel even as it commits war crimes and continues to occupy and steal Palestinian lands. Obama is doing the right thing applying pressure, because it seems Israel does not really want peace.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  90. Stephanie from Davie, FL

    When a country's leadership is so greedy that it prefers to sacrifice it's people in order to keep all of its demands, there is no way to win with them. We need to abandon Israel like they abandon peace and rationality.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  91. Bob Henry Canada

    Stop allowing the Israel tail to wag the American dog.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  92. sarah

    The US should stop paying Israel the 3 billion dollars it gives them every year from our tax money.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  93. Stephanie in Charlottesville VA

    Unfortunately, we are going to have to get tough with Israel and insist that they allow Palestinians their own territory. And must stop building in these areas unless invited by the residents. It just has to be done.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  94. Sarah

    If Israel would accommodate a Palestinian state, there would be peace in the Middle East. They could have done it a long time ago and they should have. They take billions of U.S. dollars and thumb their noses at us. We should cut off the money.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  95. David Shannahoff-Khalsa

    Simple. Cut Israel off financially until they evacuate the settlements and abide by international law.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  96. Ali Bashir

    america needs to support isreal for obama"s sake

    April 16, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  97. Porter Speakman Jr

    It's not a matter of changing our policy, it's about standing by it. The settlements are illegal and it has been the policy of every US Administration that Israel should stop building in the occupied territories. What we need to change, is continuing to turn a blind eye to these illegal actions. Maybe what should change is our military aid (billions a year) until Israel changes it's policies on the ground and adheres to International law. It's not complicated.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  98. cameron

    its time for big brother to let the little brother go. isreal is a military powerhouse in the middle east and has plenty of cash and intellect to be on its own. America needs to worry about America and American safety. If that means no more one sided bias towards isreal then its what has to be done.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  99. Brian

    I think we should permanently reduce the amount of US aid to Israel by the value of each and every new settlement built in the West Bank. The announcement by Israel while VP Biden was visiting was a slap in the face!

    April 16, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  100. randy

    The US should stop all aid of all sorts, until Israel abides by the 1942 peace accord. That means they should get the heck out of the west bank. Israel is a troublemaker, just the brat our mothers told us to avoid.
    How many millions did we spend protecting settlements in Gaza?

    April 16, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  101. James

    Jack, thank you for having the courage to pose this question when most in our media won't dare touch such. The US has to threaten to cut off the three billion plus going to Israel each year, but AIPAC will never allow that to happen in the Congress. So Obama is stuck and will more than likely cave in an election year. AIPAC is also pushing hard for US attack Iran as well. Our economy will go off the cliff when the oil soars to 300 dollars a barrel or higher after that happens. Let's hope it doesn't, but I am not holding my breath either..

    April 16, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  102. Isabel from Ann Arbor, Michigan

    Look, Jack, Israel is the only thing keeping the Middle East from being overtaken completely by Arab/Islamist extremists. The U.S. should take a better look at the history of Israel and the Palestinians and do whatever it can to support the State of Israel. If the Palestinians can cobble together a government which actually taps its Arabic brothers for financial as well as fanatical religious support, great! The problem is not Israel, it's the abandonment of the Palestinian people by their own people in the oil-wealthy arab world. Get real – who else but the Israelis can execute a covert op such as the Dubai assassination without the possibility of getting caught. If we really want to catch Osama Bin Laden, we probably ought to learn from the Mossad.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  103. GS

    The current Israeli government's actions have alienated almost all of her friends in the world. Our unwavering support, for what amounts to an apartheid state, has helped fuel anger and hatred towards America. It is time for our politicians to have the guts to put our interest ahead of Israel's.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  104. sarah

    The US should stop paying Israel the 3 billion dollars it gives them every year from our tax money! Kent, OH

    April 16, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  105. Karen

    If it a choice between US soldiers, and Isreal - I choose our US Soldiers!

    April 16, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  106. philip

    the US needs to reign in all sides of the conflict in an equally harsh manner. Embers from that conflict tend to float over and burn NATO troops in the middle east, as well as civilians here. Aside from the possibility of it impacting us here, the entire area could be sunk under the sea for all that I care otherwise.

    If the US does not manage the conflict and force both sides into compromises they can live with, but do not necessarily like, then the problem will never be solved. That is until everyone is armed with nukes, then someone does something stupid and it ends badly for everyone involved.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  107. Willie (NYC)

    Jack,

    In the interest of justice, regardless of the cost, we need to stand by our standard principals of equitable treatment. Essential to all is the curbing of the inherent passion by many to see a "winner" and a "loser." Israel, the Palestinians and the U.S. need to do a lot of introspection in order to forge a sensible solution. One thing is for sure, the "old" visceral response to the long-standing issue is not acceptable any longer. If Obama get's something done by way of a two-state solution, I care not if he is a one-term President. Like I said, justice regardless the cost is the approach that's needed if anything meaningful is to be done. Our sister (Israel) will always be our sister, but while defending her, we also need to call her out on her flaws...It's time for change.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  108. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    One of the problem Jack is the kind of comment heard out there such as palestinians are not people that are at the same level of israelis people! Sorry Jack, but until we in the U.S. start looking at all people as being human beings we will not move the peace forward but we will keep going backward! The change here is for politicians to start seeing people living side by side instead of just being politicians with their specific politics. To get a peace accord politicians have to go beyond themselves and be there for all people because at the end of the day we are all the same : we are all human beings wanting to live a life of decency and dignity!

    April 16, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  109. Dan in AZ

    Jack,
    Wouldn't it be great if our foreign policy was based on peaceful interests instead of archaic religious books?

    April 16, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  110. Ali Bashir

    get tough with em

    April 16, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  111. John Murdoch

    It is without a doubt evident that President Obama is moving towards a controversial standing when it comes to Israel. One fact that people do not seem to understand is that Israel needs us more than we need them. It has been long overdue that our government shows Israel, that if they wish to continue to deserve our friendship they need to start making evident changes towards peace with the Palestinians.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  112. Tim in Texas

    Easy, we need to stop thinking that everything that Israel does is "right". What has Israel done for us? By the way, it was not Obama who first said that settling the situation between Israel and the Palestinians is vital to our national security – it was Petraeus. Why do those on the right always say we should listen to our Generals, and then when our Generals say something they disagree with, they don't want to listen to the Generals any more?

    April 16, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  113. L A Worthington

    The U.S. must cut off all fundingof the Israeli war maching – cut off all aid to Israel that goes to weapons.

    The United States needs to finally act responsibily towards the Palestinian diaspora and require Isreal to allow Palestininans full Israeli citizenship or rrequire Israel to return the West Bank and Gaza so that Palestiniansd can again have their Palestinian state.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  114. Matt

    We send Isreal millions of US dollars in aid and supply, so its no surprise that the rest of the world thinks that the United States is always siding with Isreal over any other country. But Isreal does not seem to think so, with the money we send them they do what is right for them and dont care wether it would hurt the US or not. I say cut all ties with Isreal and make the ties stronger with Turkey.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  115. John

    Simple. Close the checkbook. Continue to support them politically and through our treaty obligations, but give then ZERO dollars in aid. They don't need our money anyway, but if they want it, they need to be more responsive to US interests.
    Secondly, In Israel there is robust debate about the nation and its policies. Here, if one is not Jewish and sometimes even if you are, one is instantly attaacked as an anti-semite for even questioning Israeli policies toward Palestinians. Open the dialogue and shut the checkbook.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  116. Michael

    A more common sense policy towards Israel is long overdue. George Bush seemingly deliberately ignored the careful diplomacy the Clinton administration had crafted towards the peace process. Bush's administration seemed to just allow anything Israel wanted to do to be alright. They made no attempt. Some of us in USA (not just me) believe the seeming hopelessness of the situation regarding the treatment of Israel and the USA towards Arabs may have led to young men willing to commit suicide as they crashed into buildings in the USA.

    I have great empathy for the plight of the Israelis in an admittedly difficult situation, but the price of losing the view of the USA during the Bush administration as an "honest broker" has put my life and that of my family in direct jeopardy.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  117. Barbara

    I am glad President Obama is changing the narrative on the Israeli/Palestinian problem. We need to be more evenhanded in our approach to the two sides. Marching in lockstep with Israel is doing nothing to advance peace.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  118. Duber

    Jack,
    Israel needs to be accountable to international laws and human rights standards. The time is now to get on the right side of history and stop letting Israel run roughshod over Palestinians. Violence will subside. You cannot continously take land and not expect consequences. I really can not believe the U.S.A. has allowed, indeed funded such behavior.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  119. David P Vernon

    Tucson, AZ – Israel fancies itself as standing entirely on its own – no nation on earth has supported them every time, every year, since their founding in 1948 according to UN resolution but in warfare nonetheless. About 40% of the Israeli electorate are "conservatives" – their covert attitude is basically, "screw the Arabs." It is a fact that overt pressure on Israelis and overt pressure on Arabs is ALWAYS counterproductive – they must resist the appearance of being compelled in order to retain the support of their followings. The result is that there is very little that the United States can do to alter the situation for the better, and the more activist our posture the less effective our policy will be. Giving Bibi Netanyahu a public smack in the face back for his public smack in the face to the Obama Administration is perfectly normal, represents no policy change, and will have little or no long term effect. Progress will be made in private, or not at all.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  120. floss from Philly

    Jack maybe Isreal should realize who their only ally "in the world is and they shouldn't disrespect our leaders, maybe we should cut off all aid, ask for our weapons and bombs back and see how well they do with their neighbors. They agreed to stop settlements in return for God knows what and now they are re-negging.

    Let them fend for themselves

    April 16, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  121. Mary Neal

    Why does the US keep supporting Isreal even when they do not obey the UN instructions? We need to get tougher with Isreal and not keep supporting their ignoring the UN sanctions.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  122. John Cogan

    The US should freeze and/or cut off all financial aid to Israel until such times as they have made peace with the Arabs. A recent video reporting Israeli bulldozers crushing an American girl together with their refusal to join the nuclear proliferation talks is ample evidence of their intractable position and their wanton disregard for life.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  123. D. Siegfried

    If Obama treats our closest ally the way he is treating Israel, what hope is there for the rest of us? I have never been so afraid to live in the USA and I've lived here all my life – many years and haven't seen anything like what's going on here now. VERY SCARY! Makes you wonder what he's really up to.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  124. Robert Read

    Jack, The Regime in Washington should stop all funding and weapons to Israel until they agree to a Peace In The Holy Land. Remember the custer bombsin South Lebanon were American-Made and shipped from America. The customer bombs are still on the ground and causing death and injury. We need peace in theHoly Land. I have apropsal for PeaceIn The Holy Land andneither side wouldlikeit but we must start somewhere.

    Thank You

    April 16, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  125. Jeremy D from Michigan

    The U.S. should remember that there aren't Jewish suicide bombers.

    Israel and the US have been allies for a long time. If we turn our backs on them right now, it will be a poor example to other potential allies. Allies and friends can disagree – but respectfully.

    Thanks for reading my comment on the air yesterday Jack. I was beginning to question if you even read these.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  126. ben jackson

    The U.S. has had Isreals back for decades, and Isreal has done so much to undermine our mid-east policies.
    I think we should back off from helping Isreal at all costs, and require that they show real initiative in trying to solve the problems in the middle east.
    Something must be done to assist those who have live in detention camps for so long.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  127. Herman G. Morgan III

    We need to make it clear to Israel, that IF, they want our continued support and protection, they need to make some Real efforts, such as stopping construction in East Jerusalem, recognizing the Abbas government, and help the Palestinians with educational progress, jobs and small-business programs, and some viable economic engines that will come "on-line" quickly.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  128. joshu

    Israel has to end the apartheid of Palestine. I was there and saw the suffering of the Palestinian people. Everyone has the right to live free and prosper not fenced out and deprived of a better future.

    America has to step up and say enough is enough. Change your ways Israel or we're changing our policy. Freedom and justice for all.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  129. D.W.

    Israelis don’t want peace, they want land. Palestinians don’t want peace, they want land too. Americans are too religiously blind to recognize the danger. We should drop both sides and let the Israelis and the Palestinians settle this for themselves. When the dust settles American can go in with our lead lined suits and try to clean up the mess.

    Austin, TX

    April 16, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  130. Aaron Smith

    Jack,
    I've been a long time supporter of Israel, but have always believed the Palestinians need a homeland. While we can never forget the horrors of the Holocaust, we must also understand the abject circumstances of the people who have been displaced in the Middle East – the Palestinians.

    It seems the Israelis will never make peace and give the Palestinians a homeland. The U.S. should force the issue. It's time for an independent Palestine and for a shared city of Jerusalem, a city that has religious importance for Arabs, Jews, and Christians.

    East Lansing, Michigan

    April 16, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  131. Mallochio

    The USA should cut all ties with Israel. My tax dollars should not be used to support folks that are trying to build a Jewish only state of terror.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  132. Dave

    Don't change a thing – the U.S. is finally getting it right. Israel's military occupation of neighboring lands for security reasons is justifiable self-defense. Israel's building of permanent settlements in occupied territory is illegal, unethical, and de-facto apartheid. Israel had the moral high ground once but has given it away.
    Dave
    Scottsdale, AZ

    April 16, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  133. Mel - Rancho Mirage, California

    J ack, all sides need to understand that the radical Islamists breathe on the Israeli- Palestenian conflict. If there is peace in Palestine the radical Islam's funding will dry out. Even long time U.S and American ally Turkey has been pointing this out in very strong words that upset the Israelis. But this is the truth. Israel needs to get serious about peace and start being just and fair. Otherwise I am afraid this problem will never end.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  134. Thomas

    The United States should formalize it's relationship with Isreal by signing a mutual defense treaty, or by inviting Isreal to join NATO. The relationship should not change with each administration. The alliance should be celebrated, and cherished, just like the special relationship the United States has with the United Kingdom.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  135. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    I see no reason why Israel should accept any change in policy by the U.S. Israel and it's people appear to be doing just fine without us, they aren't trying to destroy their government. I'm sure what Israel sees what's going on in our country has a great impact on our relationships with Israel.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  136. Adam

    Many people around the world hates US and others who supports Israel. WHY? Because, Israel killed and still killing many civilians and invaded Palestine. What is there to support? In the meantime billions of dollars goes to Israel, troops gets killed everyday, and El-Qiada uses Israels regional policy as recruitment tool. Wake up America ! Terorists did not attack us because of our burgers and french fries.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  137. Mack

    Jack

    The fact is settlements on occupied territory are ILLEGAL! They will argue, we need the land around each settlement to farm, we need the lands to build roads connecting the settlements. How can a Palestinian state exist when within a spider web of another countries border. The USA must acknowledge these sneaky tactics and make sure Israel stops them. Stop giving them aid, they still get billions of aid every year even though they are a developed nation with the strongest nation in the middle east.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  138. AFK

    Israel is no better than Iran in terms of their disregard to human rights and nuclear nonproliferation treaty, and their linkages to global terror (i.e. remember Dubai assassination). It is time for us to distant our self from double standards politics and to stand tough against Israeli policies that deteriorate our stature in the world… Israel should know it is time of peace not apartheid.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  139. Stephen Lucas

    Jack, Policy toward Israel? Our policy is just do there dirty work for them, like the puppets we are. The biggest threat to peace in the Middle East is Israel. We as a nation should cease all ties with Israel.
    We should stop the flow of American tax payers money to a nation of criminals. We then can sit back and watch as Israel has to fight their own fight. If it came right down to it Israel would nuke us off the planet, along with everyone else that crosses them. Israel is the bad guys here Jack, don't you see that?

    April 16, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  140. Matt Hanooti

    Regardless of how much important is our relationship with Israel, American lives are much more important. Our government should look first and foremost to our national interest in the region. Our utmost national interest is to have a peace in the Middle East where Israel will abide by the international law and the UN resolutions to end the occupation of Palestine and the Golan Heights. This will allow much more respect and appreciation not only by the Arab and Muslim world to the United States, but will defeat the ideology of radicalism and extermism.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  141. John Kelley

    The United States foreign polcy should be conducted to protect American national security interests. If Israel interests coincide with ours then there is no problem. We provide over 4 billion dollars of aid to Israel. We do not expect Israel to be a satellie of American national interests. We should expect, however, an effort to work with the United States to achieve a permanent peace between Israel and the Palestinians. Every time, Israel is involved in actions that expands Israel's territorial borders, or is quick to use force, or want to use force to take out the Iranian nuclear plants, our troops in the Middle East are in danger. Our interests are in danger. There was no better time than now to come to a settlement with the Palestinians, but with Netanyaho as Prime Minister, that is not possible. The tragedy was the death of Rabin and Netanyaho was one of those who excited the extreme Israeli right wing that struck Rabin down.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  142. Bowman

    Yes. Israel should not be given carte blanch, which is what they have been getting for a long time. Their inaction has direct consequences to the USA and more importantly our soldiers. If we could get a peace deal done it would have a positive effect on how Muslims view Americans around the World. We send billions of dollars and military technology their way each year to help prop Israel up in a sea of Muslim states it's time we started attaching some strings. It's time we stopped letting both sides sit on their hands.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  143. mike-sey

    Its time to stop empathizing with every threat, real and imagined, that Israel claims to have detected. stop subsidizing the Israeli military and slap an embargo on Americans' financial support for and freeze the US assets of Israeli Settler organanizations. Emphasize that the US stands for the security of all nations in the area and reserves the right to protect ANY nation from attack by another.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  144. Robert from Copenhagen, Denmark

    The problem for the US is not the relationship to the Israeli government. The problem is that the United States is run by a elitist Jewish mafia. Dealing with that problem first would automatically solve the issue at hand..

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  145. Paul

    Don't change it. For the first time we are being fair to both sides. We have favored and supported israel for years. It's about time that israel is also held accountable for its actions as well as the palastinians.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  146. Teresa

    Jack,

    As a religious comment, the Bible has one foreign policy with respect to Israel and that is that we should support her. The Bible also says that we should obey man's law, as well as God's law.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  147. Lorrie Hall

    Because of Israel's cruelty to Palestinians–continuous settlement building, demolishing their homes and not letting them rebuild, preventing women in labor from passage at checkpoints, preventing Palestinians from work and schools at checkpoints, not letting goods get to market, taking their land, uprooting and stealing their olive trees, poisoning their wells, burning their crops, stealing or killing their sheep, arresting and torturing unarmed peaceful protesters–we shouldn't give one more penny to Israel.

    Why should be give Israel $3 billion a year so it can do exactly what we don't want it to? Israel does not hold our values and does things to Palestinians that not even the cruelest dictatorships do to their people.

    Lorrie
    Duxbury, MA

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  148. Doris Lauter

    We should change our policies to just quit giving our taxpayers money to Israel. They should be able to make it on their own. Maybe we are paying for their housing and all building there, which is causing the problems.
    Doris
    Ojai, California

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  149. Marsha Newman

    Those who think our country needs to drop any support to Israel because they have supposedly instigated the terror in the Middle East region need to read the history of Israel during WWII until today. Because they are surrounded on every side by militant muslims who have had one goal in mind, first WITH Hitler and now, to "drive the Jews into the sea" this country needs to stand with them as a people pressed on every side. They have always been our allies. If we plan on crippling them in any way I want to know so I can get the heck out of the way when God strangles this country for doing it.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  150. Mack, Atlanta, Georgia

    Jack

    The fact is settlements on occupied territory are ILLEGAL! They will argue, we need the land around each settlement to farm, we need the lands to build roads connecting the settlements. How can a Palestinian state exist when within a spider web of another countries border. The USA must acknowledge these sneaky tactics and make sure Israel stops them. Stop giving them aid, they still get billions of aid every year even though they are a developed nation with the strongest nation in the middle east!

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  151. Richard Van De Water

    Withdraw all financial aid to the Israelis ($3 billion/year) as well as the Palestinians (don't know how much), until they come to an agreement.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  152. Ed in Tucson

    Complete 180. Partner with more Arab countries to de-nuke Iran,and extremist groups in the region,then put more pressure on Isreal to agree to a real peace process and get them to quit building settlements in Palastine.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  153. Alphaberd

    A long chain of presidents who preceded President Obama vowed to bring peace to the Middle East. None were willing to do what it takes to get the job done. There will be no peace without justice and Obama is seeking justice. Israel's long term security rests on coming to terms with their neighbors. Their expansionist policies are in direct opposition to that vital need as well as being in direct contravention of International Law. Obama is the only president who was willing to stand up to the government of Israel and truly seek a long-term solution.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  154. greg lancaster,tx

    The United States should stop all military and financial aid to Israel immediately. We should demand that Israel sign the nuclear nonproliferation treaty and get rid of its nuclear arms.
    We have to tell Israel that the western powers who back the founding of the nation of Israel so that it could become an cruel, arrogant and expansionist power. If anyone knew that Israel would become what it has no one would have ever agreed to the 1948 partition.
    Israel must be forced to withdraw from occupied territory and return to pre 1967 borders. In addition they must pay Palestinians fair market value for all land they have seized. Furthermore the Palestinians they have pushed out must be either allowed to return or paid reparations.

    Most importantly we must realize that Israel is a foreign country an looks only after its own interests. It doesn't care at all about American interests. Our interest is to deal fairly and evenhanded with all nations. Only then can we repair our relationships with the rest of the middle east. Our interests are mostly polar opposites of Israel's.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  155. Sharon E Murphy

    Derail Israel. period, end of story.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  156. Carol

    I've never understood why our government green lights everything Israel does. We need to get tougher with them about resolving the Palestinian isue. Our government's favoritism toward Israel makes it impossible for the Muslim world to see the U.S. as a fair and impartial facilitator. We need to use our influence over Israel to force them to the peace table.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  157. Abdul Waheed

    Jews have a right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness (regardless of whether it's a part of their constiution or not) just like anyone else, both individually and nationally. However, instead of adopting a live and let live attitude, they seem to be saying to Palestenians "you live only if we live the way we want to". Prior to the state of Isreal there's no history of Judeo-Muslim conflict. Infact, there are examples in history where Muslims fought for the rights of the Jews. The Isreal government's policies towards Palestineans are upsetting and offensive to more than a billion Muslims world-wide. So does it make sense for US, the world wide champion of democracy and human rights, to keep offending over a billion Muslims for the policies of the Israel government? Do we only care about the human rights of our friends or do we care about the rights of humans?

    April 16, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  158. Robert

    The USA needs to cut this drain of a country off it's Dole. How long is long enough to be on the forien aid dole? How's 60yrs! The Israeli lobby has to be put in it's place.We are the one's with the money and arms involved. We are the super power who has been spilling blood in the region so this separatist state can exist. Enough! Peace now or war for ever. Just do the latter with out american welfare.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  159. david

    Jack, am christian and proud to know Jesus, Israel is our religion land, but if comes to the politics why CNN does not comment on Israel assault using fake England passport and every one knows that Israel ambassador to British got kicked out.
    I think Obama he is not stupid to loose friendship with British covering Israel Disaster to the foreign countries.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  160. Lanny Rubin

    Israel, aside from oil and terrorists, provides the world with a moral compass, innovative high tech, medical, scientific, and agricultural breakthroughs. It is a true democracy that respects the rights off all others accept those that which to attack and destroy it. The Obama administration is making a grave mistake that it will have to pay heavily for a long time when the Arab States screw the U.S yet again after the U.S allows Israel to loose its country. Blaming Israel is a grave mistake for the safety and security of America. Lanny Rubin, Florida

    April 16, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  161. John

    Enough is enough. US has been Israel's big brother for too long. I believe everyone is entiled to peace. Therefore, US has to relook at it's policy toward Israel. Be firm....

    April 16, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  162. Joe Yosri

    For the first time ever, I see US vital interest conflict with our support for Israel. The concept of bilateral talks is baseless when one part is a lion and the other is a lamb. It's time to draw the line and implement the peace plan propsed by King Abdullah of Saudi and floated by Tom Friedman of the New York Times. It's simple: return all land occupied in 1967 for sustainable peace.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  163. Richard

    The United Nations Security Council, on Nov. 22, 1967 unanimously passed resolution 242. The United States should reaffirm its unwavering support of this resolution that called for a return to the pre-1967 borders between Israel and its Arab neighbors. Do this and you'll see virtually all terrorist threats melt away like magic. We all know it won't happen. The Zionists rule Washington from within.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  164. Karen

    If it is a choice between our U.S soldiers, and Israel - I choose our US soldiers!!

    April 16, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  165. Holger Jensen

    The U.S. should start treating Israel like any other country, acting as a true honest broker in peace negotiations rather than a biased broker favoring one side over the other. That means ending U.S. military and economic aid (israel is the smallest country and largest recipient of U.S. aid). It should should demand an end to what every other country in the world agrees is an illegal occupation of Arab land. And it should impress upon Netanyahu the need to heed the wishes of his own majority. According to the latest Pew poll, two-thirds of Israeli citizens want their government to abandon settlements in the West Bank to make peace with the Palestinians.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  166. Chip

    I would like to see the US stop giving the 2.7 billion dollars we give to Israel annually, and instead give it to our inner city schools or our citizens who can't afford health care here at home. Let the Israelis take care of themselves.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  167. Mary Hamilton

    Jack: We are allies to Israel. They are our brothers and sisters. We must support them and stand with them not against them. I am sickened by Mr. O's policy and rudeness to their government officials. That was an ignorant move on the part of our President. Israel has suffered enough and needs our support. We will also hurt out strategic positioning if we alienate this vital and good people of the middle-east. President Obama owes all of Israel a great big appology. That was awful and embarrassing to all Ameicans. It is just another proof the President does not have a good foreign policy profile and doesn't know what he is doing. Iran and Palestine are in cohoots! Think!– for God's Sake. Michigan

    April 16, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  168. Mary Halley

    I have yet to see my comments aired. Where Israel is concerned, our government should insist on "land for peace". There will be no peace until the Palestinians have their own land. ALSO, we wouldn't have this issue if Israel had abided by the 1948 Accords that afforded them statehood. They had to get grabby and annex the Golan Heights and the West Bank during the Six Day War in 1967-68? and our soldiers helped them do it. Is it any wonder that the Arab nations dislike & distrust us? They (the Palestinians) had been crying out peacefully since 1948 that they were being treated unfairly. 1967 or 68 just made it worse. It amazes me that it took until 2001 with 911 for us to finally sit up and take notice.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  169. concened american

    It is absolutely crucial for the United States to change its stance on the Israeli policy. For many years, Israel has violated countless of international laws while putting American interests at risk. Every human deserves a descent life, including the Palestinians.. Enough with the collective punishment the Gazans endure. The time is now for peace in the middle east. Israel has refused The Saudi peace initiative, which calls for true peace in the region..

    April 16, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  170. Billmart

    Big part in the fact that our image in the world is on the floor, is precisely due to our immoral support for Israel. Nuclear weapons, occupation, invasion, appartheid, discrimination, human rights violations, etc. etc. are only a small group of terms surrounding the state of Israel along with our support. In the other hand, we ask from the surrounding arab countries to behave totally different, such posture leave us in the empty and naked before the whole world.
    Not all of us in America are neither fanatic religious, nor catholics or Christians . . . are we all as Americans, really wiling to fight and die for Israel ??? . . . that, I don't think so.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  171. Betsy Rentz, Bryn Mawr, PA

    Regarding U.S. policy towards Israel: The real threat to U.S. security and our troops in the region is the nuclear threat of Iran. The building of housing units in an already established Jewish neighborhood in Jerusalem, the Israeli capital is an excuse and distraction from the real problem. Obama doesn't have the guts to confront the real problems that prevent peace. Let's talk about real threats in the region: Syria's selling scud rockets to Hezbollah, which was against the U.N. resolution after the Lebanese war; Afganistan's Prime Minister Karazai threatening to join the Taliban, Iranian acquisition of nuclear weaponry; Fatah dedicating a a public square in Ramallh to honor a terrorist who killed Israeli's and one American back in the 70;s, the same week Biden was there. Those are the real threats. Not housing units. But did Obama virulently castigate publicly those above mentioned countries, who are not even our strongest allies in the region as is Israel? What's wrong with this picture. It's disgustingly discouraging.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  172. James

    America needs to take a hard stand with Israel. Israel is obviously the aggressor towards the Palestinians and promoting the unstable environment in the area. When America does this the Muslim Community will surely take notice which will result in everything positive.
    America should stop all funding to Israel and also no more weapons.
    Cortland, New York

    April 16, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  173. Martin Hill

    The US should be even-handed with Israel and the Palestinians. If we give Israel $1Billion in foreign aid, we should give the same amount to the Palestinians, so they can build an infrastructure: housing, food, jobs, utilities, etc. We should also require Israel to treat Palestinians the same way they treat their own people, and end decades of oppression.
    We have an obligation to protect Israel against aggression from countries like Iran, but that also requires that Israel stops aggression against the Palestinians, and the same obligation applies to Palestinian armed groups. If the Palestinians have something to lose, then it will be in their interest to settle down, form their own state, and live like other countries.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  174. amanda hamilton

    we are all so sympathetic to the past suffering of the jews,however,recently the suffering of the palestinians is too often ignored.Forced out of their homes,cannot drive on some roads,little access to even water that israel controls,cannot get to work–the list goes on.Any other country acting like that would be called a bully ,no human rights for the minority.

    How can israel be a democracy when the Arab citizens cannot vote–?/

    April 16, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  175. caril

    It's about time someone tells the Israelis to be serious/ responsible negotiators. We've been cohersed to waste lives and money fighting their potential enemies. and we politicians such as Joe Lieberman advocating just that all along the ways. Sometimes I wonder is he serving the U.S. or his Jewish heritage?

    Caril from West Palm Beach, FL.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  176. Frank Pisani

    I believe that the USA over the years has not been fair negotiating between Israel and the Palestinians. If at this time the US does not stop the Israelis to expand their borders, in the future Palestine will be a US enemy.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  177. Alphaberd

    In response to the question of Israel being the only democracy:
    While it is certainly true that Israel's democratic structures are considerably more advanced than those of its neighbors, Israel fails on many counts. Discriminatory laws and bureaucratic practices in Israel bar Arabs in Israel from many privileges, especially owning land. Other systems tie certain opportunities to service in the army, from which most Arab Israelis are barred. There is a huge gap in municipal services between Jewish and non-Jewish areas in Israel. So-called "unrecognized villages", which are Arab towns that are not recognized by Israel as organized municipalities, receive virtually no services and are often subject to demolition or confiscation. Arabs families are routinely denied building permits and have their homes demolished if they build or add on to them without such permits. And all of this only deals with the situation for Arabs within the pre-1967 borders. Palestinians under Israeli occupation enjoy no civil or human rights, except those that depend on the whim of the commanders or soldiers in charge. Israel has legalized practices that are considered abusive in its interrogation procedures, detains Palestinians without charge for extensive periods, imposes unilateral and deadly curfews, and denies freedom of travel. By international human rights standards, these are not the hallmarks of a highly functioning democracy. Problems of democracy, as Edward Said often pointed out, are quite severe in the Arab world, but that does not excuse the shortcomings Israel has in its own right. There is much to be proud of in Israeli democracy, but there is also much to be very concerned about.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  178. Fred Alletto

    Jack,
    The Obama Administration will get no where with Netanyahu. It's time to slowly cut ties with Isreal and let them deal with a Palenstinian state with no support from the U.S , financial or militarily. It's time to cut the umbilical cord.

    Fred
    Griswold CT

    April 16, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  179. ttcom

    Israeli need to get real. I guess Isreali never the wrong. Give the Palestinians there lands, so that they can form a nation. If the act up after forming a nation, then defend yourself.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  180. Frieda

    It is time that the U.S. considers its own interest and not let the Israeli right-wing religious extremists define the agenda, at the expense of American soldiers' lives. Our soldiers should not need to die for Israeli interests unnecessarily. Security for Israel, yes. Getting all they want, NO.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  181. Homeless D in Atlanta

    I wonder if it would not be a good thing if we had fewer "interests" in that area of the world. I mean, we should have a GLOBAL interest in seeing that no one builds a bomb and tries too destroy the entire world. But maybe we are too far inserted in the interior workings of foreign countries.

    I think we can be friends and allies of the Israelis, without being too assertive. After all, it is their country.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  182. Arnold Greissle

    The measure most likely to bring about peace between Israelis and Palestinians:

    NO MORE MONEY FOR ISRAEL TILL PEACE IS SIGNED

    NOT ANOTHER DIME

    NO MORE MONEY FOR THE PALESTINIANS TILL PEACE IS SIGNED

    NOT ANOTHER DIME

    REALLY: NOT ANOTHER DIME

    April 16, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  183. S Miller

    I think that our unquestioning support of Israel has hurt our country 's credibility in the world and endangers us at home and abroad.

    Martinsville VA

    April 16, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  184. Clara Bernal McBride

    Israel has not taking serious the commitment for peace in the Middle East. It is time that we put pressure on Israel.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  185. neil

    jack, it is very unfortunate that major hypocrisy reigns everywhere and it is displayed as liberal and advanced thinking. america's interests and those of israel, are identical! unfortunately this president has different ideas which he did not disclose as a candidate. understand this! even if the president will bow lower to the saudi king or enforce a sharia law in the us to appease the arab world...guess what? it will not happen. to blame israel for being hated by the arab world is deceitful. but guess what? it is not the first time that the jewish people have been blamed for all the ills of the world...

    April 16, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  186. P.J.

    I don't see any problems developing between Israel and U.S. We've been their allies and mediators always, between them and the Arab world. We've never been their enemy. The only enemy Israel has always had, has been the Palestine nation and that nation has always instigated many moves in order to attract the other Arab nations. The USA is not Israel's enemy! If there is one, is Pres. Obama who has been so controversial since he became President. He is Muslim and sides more towards the Arab nations, and shields his true feeling towards Israel.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  187. Peter

    It is long past time for the USA to change their attitude towards Israel.
    The policy that you now have of condoning everything that Israel does in their conflict with other nations is wrong and it has caused Israel to be more aggressive to the point that whatever they do is OK with the USA government. Many other countries are friends with Israel but they don't ship them cluster bombs and fire bombs to quell the frontier skirmishes.
    The USA should immediately stop all shipments of weapons and military equipment to Israel, because the world sees that it is an American helicopter that is shooting women and children, American bombs destroying peoples homes

    April 16, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  188. Mike in Indiana

    How can they claim to be our ally when they didn't fight with us in Afghanistan, Iraq, Bosnia, Iraq '91, Vietnam or Korea? They are an albatross except the albatross still tells us what to do. Basically the "special relationship" is that we give them money and they tell us when to fight their battles. Great deal for us.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  189. frank in valparaiso indiana

    Islam needs a Reformation and come into the 21st Century.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  190. Tony

    Israel is the U.S. number one problem. They should be cut loose and sing or swim on their own. Oh yeah....they should be subject to the exact same policy concerning nukes as being forced on Iran.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  191. Carol

    Isreal has been and remains the only democracy and steadfast friend of the United States. Regarding the "Palestinean" problem, the surrounding 21 Arab nations could have and should have absorbed the refugees (who voluntarily left Isreal at its inception). Every other civilized nation has reached out and helped refugees. Only the Arab nations kept this population cornered and suffering and have used them as a political tool to garner sympathy for their continuing expressed desire to wipe Isreal from the face of the earth. President Obama sounds very much like Chamberlain. Giving the Nazis Czech. did not stop them from wanting all of Europe and giving the Arabs Israel will not stop the Arabs. We are all infidels in their opinion and the militant Moslems have all the power and consider us their enemies.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  192. Roberta

    I thought Vice President Biden should have cancelled this meetings in Isreal and flown directly home. We should take all the money we funnel to Isreal ie: arms and aid and redirect it to our econemy. Maybe then they will come to the peace table and allow the Palistinian people their own state. Isreal keeps taking and taking and no one has the courage to say enough already. Because of the horriable treatment of the Jews by Nazi Germany people are sympathic and rightly so, but enough is enough.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  193. M Kay

    Put it in its place. Don't listen to its clever manuplative arm twisting. This argument that Israel is the only true democracy in the M. E. is hogwash and useless misleading talk. It means nothing, this so called democracy in the midst of the so called barbaric arabs has been more trouble to US than help.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  194. Bennett Epstein

    It's a loaded question, Jack. The question should be "should Obama change U.S. policy toward Israel." That said, it appears that after reassuring Jewish voters during the campaign that he would not change U.S. support for Israel, our only true ally in the Middle East, he now appear ready to throw Israel under the bus and pander to the Muslim world. He ignores Palestinian incitement, does nothing about Iranian threats of annihilation, and wants to get cozy with Syria. I was no fan of George Bush, but at least he knew who our friends are.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  195. Ekat B.

    Jack, I can't tell you how angry I am over our moral and monetary support of Israel.

    First of all, it is a rogue state, spawned by Great Britain which encouraged the brutal humiliation and displacement of untold thousands of Palestinians.

    It is also a dangerous nuclear state, that bullies and threatens its neighbors, completely ignoring their legitimate rights.

    Many people are ignorant of the difference between an anti-Zionist and and an anti-Semite, and Israel seems to encourage and abuse this confusion.

    As far as nation-status is concerned, we should be negating the legitimacy of Israel, not Palestine, and the sooner we break ties with Israel, the safer the world will be.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:33 pm |
  196. Allen in Hartwell GA

    April 16th, 2010 5:56 pm ET
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    I think it's time for us to back off. Israel doesn't want us to tell them what to do, and we feel that if we're going to prop them up we deserve the right to tell them how to act. It's a no-win situation for both, and if we give them a little breathing room (i.e., no interference and no funds) something will sort out that will be better.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:33 pm |
  197. Dr. Edward Beck, Past President, Scholars for Peace in the Middle East

    Dear Jack,

    The fact of the matter is that policy towards Israel is changing as a result of misguided colleagues from the Jewish establishment who confuse their comfort and security in the United States thinking that the same exists in Israel which is continually under genocidal threat from many of her Arab neighbors, including the Palestinians. With all due respect to them, to you and the administration, the administration needs a new policy with Israel's neighbors and that is, "Normalize Relations and Negotiate! Recognize and Reconciliate!" You'd be surprised how willing Israelis would be to hear it rather than ranting inciting genocidal tyrants and having to deal with ongoing showering of katusha rockets, suicide bomers and others seeking to "drive Israel into the sea." Israels pray for peace. Her neighbors pray for no Israel and it appears that those of Obama's advisors who are in that camp have his ear, making Israel seem more intransigent, when in fact, it is becoming increasingly more vulnerable to being sold out and betrayed by it's long trusted ally. The change in policy needs to be with the Arab League, not with Israel.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  198. Ricardo D. Flores

    Most Americans do not know the current foreign policy mutually agreed by the two countries (Israel and U.S.), therefore, how can most Americans make an intelligent decision of whether it supports the foreign policy involving Israel? I fear that most bias or one-sided question polls or surveys tend to create more animosity against a country. Give specifics of the current foreign policy applicable to the current event and explain detail circumstances, hopefully, the American people will participate with a stronger stand on the given issue that can be taken seriously by the American general public that views your network.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  199. TAREQ

    The Isreali economy is not a healthy one and our country should stop bankroll isreal

    April 16, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  200. JERRY-NEW YORK

    JACK , We should stop the 3 billion aid immediately , stop all the sales of super weapons and stop building the wall , paid by us AMERICANS , How about getting out a map of the world , circa 1940 , showing , PHONECIA , , ASSYIRIA , EGYPT , ETC..OK , WHERE IS ISRAEL ??

    April 16, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  201. Mack, Atlanta, Georgia

    The USA denounces countries that do not follow UN resolutions, yet most if not all UN resolutions that have been issued to Israel have not been complied with. This double standard must end. The UN should be allowed to inspect all Israeli nuclear facilities. If they have nukes how can we argue that their adversaries aren't allowed to have nukes? The whole point of nukes they say is to deter the other from attacking you. This way Israel has no deterrence but others are. This doesn't make sense.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  202. Mara V

    I think we need to stop making excuses and get tough with Israel they don't respect us. Nor do they appreciate all the times we've sided with them in the past. How long are we going to turn a blind eye to the abuses they visit upon their neighbors. That reason alone is why we were attacked in 9/11. I personally saw it coming a mile away.I had no idea what was going to happen but I knew something was going to happen. I knew it was only a matter of time before some crazy held us accountable for allowing them to continue to kill innocent people and steal land .I don't care what religion you are I don't care if you have been persecuted in the past.all i know is today is today and two wrongs never make a right. Gandhi said it best " an eye for an eye shall leave us both blind."

    April 16, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  203. steve- virginia beach

    The former country of Palestine is now within the borders of Jordan, thanks to the British and U.N. goofballs after the breakup of the Ottoman Empire. We should put it in their laps where the issue belongs and tell them to sort it out. In the meanwhile, Israel knows what to do when terrorists fire rockets at them and target them with suicide bombings.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  204. Hal in Georgia

    I admire Israel, but I have to ask why they are such good allies? Is it simply because they 'like' us – I'd like us, too, for over $2 billion in aid annually? Where have they fought alongside or supported American troops, as other allies have? Do they realize that every time they build a settlement in occupied land that it just supports our enemies, who then attack Americans (9/11) and American troops around the world since are their ally. When talking about building more settlements, Israel (and the American people) need to remember that they putting American lies at risk as well. If Israel is truly our friend and ally (after all, alliances go both ways), it needs to pull out all stops to resolve the Palestinian homeland question, including stopping settlements and giving back occupied land.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:36 pm |
  205. Doc

    Don't forget that the Israelis were there from before the time of Christ. The name "Palestine" was inventer by the Romans to hopefully make the world forget that Israel existed.
    We should stand behind democracies, Israel is the main one in the region.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:36 pm |
  206. Daryl

    We should withdraw funds from Israel until they actually make an effort to be active participants in the peace process. We've been financing their defense since World War II but the world has changed. Do we have bases in Israel? If not, what are they doing for us? Attacks on Israel from Palestine and the fact that there are multiple groups claiming leadership are also a hindrance. Do we fund Palestine? I doubt it. We will never be seen as impartial peace brokers unless there is a level playing field. How would we feel if a group of other countries divided up some of ours, and proceeded to make it impossible for us to gain employment, have access to food or education and punctuated this shabby treatment with intervals of bombing our communities? Also the Palestinians must realize that suicide and cross- border attacks have done nothing to help create more international support for their side. It's tricky business. Personally, I'd be very interested to know exactly what Israel does to assist any country other than their own. I don't believe that the relationship that the US has with Israel is of an equal nature but perhaps that's because I have not sufficiently educated myself on the matter. Daryl

    April 16, 2010 at 6:36 pm |
  207. Bosko

    Israel went from being the vanquished to the bully. Why should we worry what Israel wants all the time. Wasn't Israeli intelligence what we relied on to go to war with Iraq? It is about time we think of our interest and that is stabilization in the region.
    Maybe if we help the other side there may be less instabillity.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:36 pm |
  208. Neil in New York

    Yes jack we should. The president needs to show that the US is still a friend of Israel. Obama needs to be the consonance builder that he has proven he is on issues like Iran. We must not become to confrontional to Israel because we depend on each other for security of our citizens. Israel provids us with valuable inteligence about terrorist groups in the middle east and they depend on us for arms. If we over step and anger Israeli we could lose that vital intel, not to mention that the high tech arms that we have given to Israel might be sold to china. Which was the case of the phaysed radar array for our patriot missile systems. Israel's freindship should be of the upmost importance to every American.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:37 pm |
  209. Bert

    I fully support Isreal as a friend and partner of the US. But we must be fair and not go along with them and dismiss others in the region. If there is another to way peace without Isreal's full agreement, we should proceed with the others in the region. Our country's challenge with doing anything in that region that seems to go against Isreal is that a large number of our leaders and citizens fear heavenly consequences of opposing our Isreali friends due to a grave misunderstanding of our Christian Bible, that it teaches that physical/literal Isreal is the apple of God's eye . It saddens me to see us put all our eggs in one basket based on a complete misreading of Scripture.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:37 pm |
  210. Doug, Silver City, NM

    If the Israelis do not shortly move to accept a peace agreement with the those who want peace, the US should begin to withdraw support from them.

    A 2 State solution and a Jerusalem with equal access for all is an acceptable solution to those who would see this conflict end. If the Israelis want to continue with the insane status quo then the cost in blood ant treasure to fall to them.

    April 16, 2010 at 6:37 pm |