It's the Talk of the Town: Remnick on Israeli Obama-bashing

New Yorker editor David Remnick put his finger on an important aspect of the current U.S.-Israel relationship, overlooked by most observers, that contributes to the current tensions between the two governments. In his Comment piece in the magazine’s current issue, Remnick writes that for all the pride Israeli leaders take in their grasp of American politics, “some right-wing members of the Israeli political élite, along with some ordinary Israelis, often seem to derive their most acute sense of Barack Obama from Fox News and the creepier nooks of the blogosphere.” The cartoon image many Israelis have of the president laid some of the groundwork for the blowup, he writes.

He might have thrown in the recent editorial in the Shas party organ Day to Day (see my post, below) in which Obama was brandede an “Islamic extremist.”

There’s more to be said about this. Netanyahu’s misreading of Obama is of a piece with a longstanding tendency among Israeli elites, Likudniks and Laborites alike, to rely on the hard-line wing of America’s pro-Israel community for their intelligence on American political thinking. It’s just one more bit of havoc wrought by the neocon stream of American Judaism.

Watch for more such mischief-making as the AIPAC policy conference unfolds in Washington this week.

Written by

J.J. Goldberg

J.J. Goldberg

Jonathan Jeremy “J.J.” Goldberg is editor-at-large of the Forward, where he served as editor in chief for seven years (2000-2007).

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