Israel was undertaking an “appropriate and legitimate effort” to defend itself but the consequences were of deep concern, Kerry said. President Obama made it clear: “Israel has a right to defend itself.”
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration pushed back strongly at a torrent of Israeli criticism over Secretary of State John Kerry’s latest bid to secure a cease-fire with Hamas, accusing some in Israel of launching a “misinformation campaign” against the top American diplomat.
“It’s simply not the way partners and allies treat each other,” State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said.
Her comments were echoed by the White House, where National Security Adviser Susan Rice said the U.S. was “dismayed” by mischaracterizations of Kerry’s efforts. Israeli media reports have cast Kerry as seeking a cease-fire that is more favorable to Hamas and being dismissive of key Israeli concerns.
Kerry himself, in a speech to the Center for American Progress, noted the criticism but did not give ground.
“Make no mistake, when the people of Israel are rushing to bomb shelters, when innocent Israeli and Palestinian teenagers are abducted and murdered, when hundreds of innocent civilians have lost their lives, I will and we will make no apologies for our engagement,” he said.
The coordinated pushback in Washington came amid growing U.S. frustration with Israel as Palestinian civilian casualties mount amid a sustained Israeli air and ground war in the Gaza Strip.
JERUSALEM (Times of Israel July 28, 2014 – While US says document conveyed to cabinet on Friday was just a draft, didn’t require a vote, and didn’t help Hamas, sources tell ToI that ministers were asked to vote and did so 8-0 to reject a proposal that gave Hamas specific gains.
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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R), Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon (C), and IDF Chief of Staff, Benny Gantz seen during a meeting at the Kirya military headquarters in Tel Aviv on July 26, 2014. (Photo credit: Ariel Hermoni/Ministry of Defense/Flash90)
Amid strains between Israel and the US over diplomatic moves to resolve the conflict with Hamas, Israeli official sources on Monday flatly rejected a series of American assertions Sunday about Secretary of State John Kerry’s ceasefire efforts.
In a briefing late Sunday, a senior American official told Israeli journalists that the document conveyed by Kerry to the Israeli leadership on Friday was not a ceasefire proposal but rather “a draft… that emerged from discussions between a number of parties.” The official, who asked not be named, added that the document “was provided for comment and input, not for rejection or acceptance,” that it was “fully consistent with the Egyptian proposal,” and that it did not aim to satisfy Hamas demands. The official also castigated parts of the Israeli media for misreporting Kerry’s work, mischaracterizing his strategy and motivations, and launching gratuitous attacks on him, including accusations of betrayal.
12:23 P.M. Knesset members from Likud and Habayit Hayehudi issued a warning against U.S. President Barack Obama’s demand for an immediate cease-fire. (Jonathan Lis)
(JPost) – Public opinion in Israel is solidly against ending Operation Protective Edge in the Gaza Strip, according to a poll released Sunday.
The poll was conducted by pollster Mina Tzemach among 504 respondents, a representative sample of the Jewish Israeli adult population. It was sponsored by strategist Roni Rimon, who once worked with Likud and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, but who insisted he took it at his own initiative.
Just so we keep the facts straight, the Israeli cabinet broke off peade talks with Fatah predident Abbas last April and the Israel population loves Bibi Netanyahu for it …
(Times of Israel) – The cabinet’s unanimous decision to halt peace talks with the Palestinians drew support from hawkish politicians on Thursday evening, while left-wing MKs denounced the move for being “hypocritical” and “cowardly.”
Israel announced the suspension of peace negotiations with the Palestinian Authority in the wake of Wednesday’s announcement of a unity agreement between rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas.
Following Thursday’s ministerial meeting, Economics and Trade Minister Naftali Bennett called the decision “balanced and correct.”
“I back the prime minister who took care to protect the correct interests of Israeli national honor and security for the citizens of Israel,” he said. “There is no negotiating with murderers.”
Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon (Likud) echoed Bennett’s remarks, saying that just as every Western country with “national honor” boycotted terrorists, so too Israel maintained that terror must be fought, not negotiated with.