Rahm Emanuel has been serious trouble from the start. Although adored by his hometown Jewish community, and of strongly Zionist lineage, he seems to be working overtime to dispell any potential rumors of dual loyalty.
As Obama’s right-hand man, the White House Chief of Staff is arguably the second most powerful in America. It is no secret that the U.S. enjoys an enormous amount of power in Israel, for which it continues to pay in the form of large annual bribes.
It is also no secret that Emanuel dislikes Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and would prefer to deal with a left-wing government in Israel. Rumors over personal disagreements between the two have been surfacing for some time, leading some to question whether Obama would even Netanyahu if the Israeli premier visited Washington (that specific rumor was dispelled, when they actually did meet). On the other hand, today, Obama surprised Defense Minister, and Labor Party chairman, Ehud Barak, at a meeting with National Security Advisor Jim Jones.
Just last month Emanuel tried to push his way further into Israeli affairs by promoting a link between Iranian threat and the “Palestinian issue” saying movement on Iran “depended on the ability to make progress on the Palestinian front.” The picture becomes clearer when one taking into consideration the American administration’s anger at Avigdor Lieberman’s statement that Israel is not obligated to follow a non-agreement, all the while declining to even state its position on a binding commitment to Israel.
Meddling in internal affairs on any level is bad enough, but there are now rumors of deliberate intransigence on the part of Rahm Emanuel, with the intent of preventing cooperation between Obama and Netanyahu. If this is indeed intended to cause Netanyahu’s government to fail, then Emanuel is not only representing a White House whose attitude towards Israel is questionable, but a clearly negative influence in his own right.
To paraphrase Lord Palmerston, states do not have friends, but only interests. It appears the United States is behaving in light of its interests, without considering any so-called “friends.” Israel, on the other hand, seems to still be operating under the misconception that is such a thing as a U.S.-Israel friendship.