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The UN resolution on the settlements--vote Friday

"The Security Council is expected to vote Friday on the draft. Should the vote take place, it will be the first time the United States has used its veto power since Barack Obama assumed the presidency."The Obama administration is exerting great effort to get the Palestinians to withdraw the proposal. Several days ago U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had a phone conversation with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in an attempt to sway him, and the U.S. ambassador to the UN, Susan Rice, met Tuesday with ambassadors of several Arab countries, emphasizing that the U.S. has an interest in a compromise that will make a veto superfluous."The draft uses the relatively moderate language that the "Quartet" of Middle East peace negotiators - the United States, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations - have used in previous statements on settlements." From Ha'aretzUPDATE: "U.S. is the only Security Council member that opposes the resolution; though its wording does not conflict with Washington's stance on settlements it fears that if the resolution passes it will be an obstacle to renewal of peace talks." Really? An obstacle? Again our friends at Ha'aretz tell us what the MSM in the U.S. overlooks.MORE: "The Obama administration is clearly desperate to avoid vetoing the United Nations Security Council Resolution condemning illegal Israel settlements. And it's not hard to see why." MJ Rosenberg fingers the politics.AND MORE: Bipartisanship!!! Cantor and Hoyer agree: "House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) are pressing forward with their effort to urge President Obama to veto a resolution at the U.N. Security Council that would declare any post-1967 Israeli settlements, including East Jerusalem, illegal." HT: MJ RosenbergAND FINALLY: "UNITED NATIONS The United States used its veto on Friday afternoon to block a Security Council resolution declaring Israel's settlement construction in the West Bank illegal. The other 14 members of the council voted in favor of the resolution." Here.

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"Compromise"?Would not the Palestinians consider this a new word in the ongoing controversy???How can Obama and Clinton not hold their heads down in shame?Long past time to tell Netanyahu, "Get lost!"

With all of the sturm und drang in the Middle East these days, this may not be a "prudent" move on the part of the US.What we sow we will indeed reap!

This, of course, shows the immense power of the Jewish vote in the US. George Herbert Walker Bush was one of the few presidents who did not shirk from confronting Israel. The sorry thing is that the problems that the US have with the Arab and Muslim world are related to Israel. This is not a good thing for the Jewish people.

As protests are now being squashed regularly throughout the middle est. I guiess we'll stick with the despots and the Netanyahu bloc of Israel while we say we're all for peace there.Oy!

Will somebody explain to me in terms of realpolitik why israel is so important to American interests in the Middle East? OK, so we need the Arab and Iranian oil, and we nee to protect access to it. But what does Israel have to do with that? Now we have important technology factories there, but that's something new. And who has been so daring as to put a factory there if there is a constant threat of war?

The vote yesterday was trying to have it both ways -Israel is our sworn friend partner but their settlement policy is awful even if we veto the resolution.I repeat:OY!

We just keep on a' diggin' our hole deeper in the Middle East.The White House is its own worst enemy!

This was among my e-mails this morning...some Israelis think we're wrong to veto the resolution."The US Has Vetoed - The US is an Accomplice to the Settlement Crime! We Will Not Be Silent !"Tonight at 19:00: Demonstration in front of the US embassy in Tel Aviv, Hayarkon 71 street, Te"l Aviv."We will protest against the American vetoing of the UN Security Council resolution on the Israeli settlements in the occupied territories."Info: 054-4740825, 052-3338475, 050-6994468"The demonstration is organized by activists from various groups."Please Circulate !"

http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/opinion/2011/02/201121814292835839.... media 'fears' the new Egypt Israel's media presents Egyptian democracy as a threat, with one commentator lamenting the end of colonialism. Neve Gordon Last Modified: 21 Feb 2011 16:04 GMT

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About the Author

Margaret O'Brien Steinfels, a former editor of Commonweal, writes frequently in these pages and blogs at dotCommonweal.