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« Reply #1425 on: May 07, 2011, 03:01:16 PM »

This is now an unlocked topic and anyone can reply.
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« Reply #1426 on: May 10, 2011, 09:47:19 AM »

Obama Pushing for Immigration Overhaul in El Paso

AP

WASHINGTON -- President Obama is making his first trip as president to the U.S.-Mexico border, using the setting to sharpen his call for a remake of the nation's immigration laws and try to cast the GOP as the obstacle standing in its way.

The president's speech in El Paso, Texas, on Tuesday, and his visit to a border crossing there, are the latest high-profile immigration events by Obama, who has also hosted meetings at the White House recently with Latino lawmakers, movie stars and others.

It all comes despite an unfavorable climate on Capitol Hill, where Republicans who control the House have shown no interest in legislation that offers a pathway to citizenship for the nation's 11 million illegal immigrants.

That's led to criticism that Obama's efforts are little more than politics in pursuit of the ever-growing Hispanic electorate ahead of the 2012 election. White House officials dispute that. They acknowledge the difficulties in getting a bill but say it's likelier to happen if the president creates public support for immigration legislation, leading to pressure on Republican lawmakers.

"We already know from the first two years, the last Congress, that there was political opposition to comprehensive immigration reform, including from some places where there used to be political support," said presidential spokesman Jay Carney. "We are endeavoring to change that dynamic by rallying public support, by raising public awareness about the need for comprehensive immigration reform."

At the same time, the strategy allows Obama to highlight that Republicans are standing in the way of an immigration bill -- shifting responsibility away from himself at a time when many Latino activists say he never made good on his campaign promise of prioritizing immigration legislation early on.

Obama's spotty immigration record in the eyes of Latino voters makes it all the more politically imperative for him to shore up their support with his re-election campaign approaching.

"What's different from 2008 is that there are more Hispanics and more millennials in the electorate overall. Latinos are even a bigger share than they were in 2008," said Simon Rosenberg, a former Clinton White House strategist who follows immigration policy as head of the left-of-center NDN think tank. "Millennials" is a term for people born after 1980.

More Latinos than ever voted in the 2010 midterm elections, according to the Pew Hispanic Center, accounting for almost 7 percent of those voting. Still, turnout among Hispanic voters is far lower than among other groups, giving Obama a reason to want to try to motivate them. He's picked hostile political territory to make his pitch, visiting a state he lost by more than 10 percentage points in 2008. But the trip does have one overtly political upside: Obama plans a side trip to the relatively liberal bastion of Austin to raise money for the Democratic National Committee at two fundraisers Tuesday night.

At the same time, Obama is pitching his immigration argument to the larger public, and he's refining it in a way that goes to Americans' pocketbook concerns. White House officials say Obama will emphasize the economic value of reforming immigration laws, noting that immigrants account for a substantial share of business start-ups and patent applications, among other things -- activities that create jobs for everyone.

It's a different approach than talking about immigration as a security issue or a moral one, and also provides a counter to the Republican argument that illegal immigrants drain U.S. resources.

The president will also argue that his administration has made great strides on border security. Administration officials boast of increasing the number of agents on the border, seizing more contraband and nearing completion of a border fence, and say they plan to extend the deployment of National Guard troops Obama sent to the border. To Republicans who say that immigration overhaul legislation shouldn't happen until the border is secure, the White House now says it's as secure as it's ever been and the conversation on legislation needs to happen.

Republicans aren't buying it.

"It seems President Obama has once again put on his campaigner-in-chief hat. The president's push to legalize millions of illegal immigrants is purely political," said Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. "And even though administration officials like to pretend the border is secure, the reality is that it isn't."

Brendan Buck, spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, said that House Republicans had no plans to take up immigration legislation and argued that if Obama were serious about immigration reform he would have reached out to Boehner on the issue, which Buck said he hasn't.

The White House says Obama will push Tuesday for legislation and release a blueprint on his approach to reform, but without setting out any timeline. Indeed, getting immigration reform done any time soon is not realistic. Obama wasn't even able to get legislation through Congress last year that would have provided a route to legal status for college students and others who were brought to the country as children. The so-called DREAM Act passed the House, then controlled by Democrats, but was blocked by Senate Republicans.

The Senate is now even more heavily Republican, and Republicans control the House. That means immigration reform can't happen unless they cooperate.

But for Obama, if the public's aware of that, it's a political win -- even if Republicans don't budge.

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« Reply #1427 on: May 13, 2011, 08:58:35 AM »

Obama banking on homosexuals' money
onenewsnow.com

While some disappointed wealthy campaign supporters may have distanced themselves from Barack Obama as he seeks reelection, it's apparent the financial backing of homosexual activists will play a major role in the president's shot at a second term.

Politico reports that Obama's reelection campaign is banking on homosexual donors to make up for the cash it is losing from other groups of wealthy supporters that have "alienated" themselves out of disappointment in what has happened during Obama's first term.

Homosexual donors, however, are reportedly pleased by Obama's effort in getting the ban on homosexuals in the military overturned during last year's lame-duck session. They are also satisfied that the Obama Justice Department, at the president's direction, has refused to defend the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). While both of those moves understandably upset most conservative and Christian voters, they seem to have re-ignited the president's homosexual and pro-homosexual backers who voiced disappointment during Obama's first year in office.

Gary Bauer, chairman of American Values, says it is outrageous that President Obama is depending on radical homosexual activists to fund his 2012 reelection effort. He says the president has severe problems right now.

"He got a lot of support, believe it or not, from Wall Street the last time. They're still reeling now from what the president has done in regulating them," Bauer explains. "There's great discouragement and anger [as well] in the Jewish community about the reality that he's undermined Israel.

 "So he's looking for money elsewhere, which I think does show how vulnerable he is," the former presidential candidate continues. "But it also shows how radical he is because he's gone to the radical gay rights movement, whose agenda is way out of step with the American people."

The American Values chairman adds that he is skeptical about the claim that the Obama campaign is prepared to raise $1 billion for the president's reelection effort.

 The Politico report, however, suggests that the leadership of Obama's campaign fundraising appears to be designed to take advantage of the renewed enthusiasm among the homosexual community. It notes that while Obama's finance committee in 2008 included just one "gay" man, now there are 15 -- and it identifies the finance director, Rufus Gifford, as having been a "top California gay fundraiser"; and both Democratic National Committee treasurer Andrew Tobias and the White House social secretary Jeremy Bernard (Gifford's former "partner") as "gay."

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« Reply #1428 on: May 13, 2011, 09:04:01 AM »

Obama adviser compared U.S. Christians to al-Qaida
WND.com

JERUSALEM – President Obama's faith adviser, Eboo Patel, compared al-Qaida to what he called Christian "totalitarians" in the U.S. and Jewish "totalitarians" in Israel, WND has learned.

In February 2010, Obama named Patel to his Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

Patel, a Muslim activist from Chicago, is the founder and executive director of Chicago-based Interfaith Youth Core, which says it promotes pluralism by teaming people of different faiths on service projects.

Find out what Islam has planned for you: Get "Muslim Mafia: Inside the Secret Underworld That's Conspiring to Islamize America."

In an October 2009 article in a Newtopia Magazine, a liberal cultural publication, Obama's faith adviser made the controversial comparison. The article was adapted from the text of a speech given by Patel to the Interfaith Education for a Global Society Conference in New York City in January 2002.

Stated Patel: "The problem is that we live in a time when the Muslim totalitarians are dominating. Why? Because they are building powerful institutions that propagate their interpretation of Islam – just as the Christian totalitarians in America have powerful institutions; and the Jewish totalitarians in Israel have powerful institutions; and the Hindu totalitarians in India have powerful institutions.

"What do I mean by institutions?" asked Patel. "Lobbying groups that pass policies, political organizations that get people elected, television and radio and magazines and publishing houses which articulate ideas, schools and universities, youth organizations and women's groups, bodies which raise and distribute money."

Patel then stated, "Al-Qaida is a network of institutions. Schools and mosques which teach 8-year-olds a certain ideology; organizations which lead them to Afghanistan; training camps which make them soldiers; manuals which offer advice on the prayers to whisper while engaging in violence. The religious identity – which is to say, the ways of being, believing and belonging in relation with the transcendent – of too many young Muslims is being shaped by these institutions."

Patel explained his reference to Christian "totalitarianism" stems from a piece by New York Times Foreign Affairs columnist Thomas Friedman who wrote that World War III will be fought against "religious totalitarianism."

"Religious totalitarianism is not just the belief that one religion is right," added Patel, "but also that there is only one correct interpretation of that religion and everyone should practice it or else."

Patel failed to explain that so-called Muslim totalitarians, like al-Qaida, use terrorism to spread their belief system.

American freedom, equality are just 'myths'

The Obama faith adviser recently has made other controversial remarks.

WND reported last week Patel blasted what he called the "myths" of America – describing them as beliefs that the country is "a land of freedom and equality and justice."

Patel explained how he used the "faith-based movement" to channel his rage at America "in a direction far more compassionate and far more merciful."

Patel further implied that had he grown up in the 1960s, he may have joined the Weather Underground terrorist group led by William Ayers.

Like Obama, Patel is deeply tied to Ayers.

In a 2007 interview with NPR to promote a book he wrote that year, Patel was asked about his "affinity" toward the radicalism of Ayers, as described in the book.

Patel replied that his own life story "is much closer to Bill Ayers," explaining he "grew up in the same hometown" that Ayers did.

Continued Patel: "I was kind of taught the same myths about America, a land of freedom and equality and justice, et cetera, et cetera."

"And then, when I got to college, I saw people eating out of garbage cans for dinner, and I saw Vietnam vets drinking mouthwash for the alcohol, and I thought to myself, this is not the myth that I grew up with. And, in a way, I was so, I think, immature at that time politically, that all I could do was rage."

Patel explained how he used religion to channel his rage toward America.

"And it was a faith-based movement that came into my life that kind of directed that rage in a direction far more compassionate and far more merciful."

Obama's faith adviser went on to say how he may have joined Ayers' terrorist group if he was around as an activist in the 1960s.

"One of the things that I write about in this book is, you know, had it been one of the people involved in the Weather Underground, who were sitting at my kitchen table when I was 18 years old and raging, my life could have been very different," he said.

"That I really thank God that it was a set of people who came into my life with a very clear vision of justice. But a sense of justice emanating from Divine Mercy."

Patel has a much deeper relationship with Ayers than he admitted in the NPR interview.

In 2005, he co-authored a book with Ayers' adopted son, Chesa Boudin.

The book, "Letters from Young Activists: Today's Rebels Speak Out," was co-written by several young radicals, including Ismail Khalidi, the son of Columbia University Professor Rashid Khalidi.

WND was first to report on Obama's close relationship with Khalidi, who has been tied to the Palestinian Liberation Organization and who has described Israel as a "racist" state with an "apartheid" system.

The preface of Patel's 2005 book, meanwhile, was written by Ayers' wife, Weather Underground co-founder Bernardine Dohrn.

Dohrn describes the book as "a clarion call of hope, defiance, critical analysis, humor, irony, and self-conscious insistence that the queer, the Palestinian, the immigrant, the privileged, the children of prisoners and hip-hopsters have arrived."

The back cover of the book boasts an endorsement from Mumia Abu-Jamal, the convicted cop-killer and former member of the Black Panther Party.

On the acknowledgments page, Patel and co-authors thank Ayers himself for "guidance" and "encouragement."

Hamas co-conspirator

Patel is part of the official speaker's bureau of the Islamic Society of North America, an unindicted co-conspirator in a scheme to raise money for Hamas.

From his own comments, Patel apparently is a member of ISNA. Upon the August 2007 election of the group's president, Ingrid Mattson, Patel told USA Today, "I'm proud to have her elected as my president."

Patel also served last year on a panel at ISNA's annual convention in Washington.

He has written columns for the Washington Post and Huffington Post that promote ISNA events.

Ground Zero mosque

Patel is also tied to Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, the controversial Islamic leader behind the proposed $100 million, 13-story Islamic cultural center and mosque two blocks from the site of the 9/11 attacks.

Rauf wrote the afterword to Patel's 2006 book, "Building the Interfaith Youth Movement: Beyond Dialogue to Action."

Patel is listed as one of 15 "Muslim Leaders of Tomorrow" on the website for the American Society for Muslim Advancement, which is led by Rauf.

In Patel's 2007 book, "Saving Each Other, Saving Ourselves," he recounts discussing with Rauf the future of Islam in the U.S.

Rauf "understood the vision immediately and suggested that I visit him and his wife, Daisy Khan, at their home the following evening," Patel recalled.

Khan founded the society with her husband and has aided him in his plans for the mosque near Ground Zero.

"The living room of their apartment on the Upper West Side was set up like a mosque, with prayer rugs stretched from wall to wall," wrote Patel in his book.

Continued Patel: "I arrived at dusk, prayed the maghrib prayer with Daisy and Imam Feisal and then talked with them about how America, with its unique combination of religious devotion and religious diversity, was the ideal place for a renewal of Islam.

"In the 20th century, Catholicism and Judaism underwent profound transformations in America," Patel observed. "I think, this century, in America, Islam will do the same."

'Critical mass' of Muslims in U.S.

"Islam is a religion that has always been revitalized by its migration," Patel wrote. "America is a nation that has been constantly rejuvenated by immigrants. There is now a critical mass of Muslims in America."

Patel last March wrote a Huffington Post piece referring to Obama's former "green jobs" czar Van Jones as a "faith hero."

"In my last post on Van, I called him an American patriot," wrote Patel. "That is high praise in my book. But watching Van's speech at the NAACP, I have another title for him, one that I reserve for the true giants of history. Van Jones is a faith hero."

Jones resigned in September after it was exposed he founded a communist revolutionary organization and signed a statement that accused the Bush administration of possible involvement in the Sept. 11 attacks. Jones also called for "resistance" against the U.S.

Jones previously stated his advocacy for green jobs was part of a broader movement to destroy the U.S. capitalist system.

WND reported that one day after the Sept. 11 attacks, Jones led a vigil that expressed solidarity with Arab and Muslim Americans as well as with what he called the victims of "U.S. imperialism" around the world.
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« Reply #1429 on: May 14, 2011, 02:49:52 PM »

President Bush's Speech Upon the Capture of Saddam Hussein vs. Bin Laden

Commenter "Crusty" had a good idea. He went back and looked at George W. Bush's speech after the capture of Saddam Hussein in order to compare it with Obama's self-aggrandizing "I was practically there, man" speech last Sunday. You know, the one where he used the word "I" like a carpenter uses tenpenny nails. Victor Davis Hanson pulled all the first person references:

 Obama:
“Tonight, I can report . . . And so shortly after taking office, I directed Leon Panetta . . . I was briefed on a possible lead to bin Laden . . . I met repeatedly with my national security team . . . I determined that we had enough intelligence to take action. . . . Today, at my direction . . . I’ve made clear . . . Over the years, I’ve repeatedly made clear . . . Tonight, I called President Zardari . . . and my team has also spoken. . .These efforts weigh on me every time I, as Commander-in-Chief . . . Finally, let me say to the families . .. . I know that it has, at times, frayed. . . ..”

Compare that with the speech given by George W. Bush on December 14, 2003:

Bush:
 Good afternoon. Yesterday, December the 13th, at around 8:30 p.m. Baghdad time, United States military forces captured Saddam Hussein alive. He was found near a farmhouse outside the city of Tikrit, in a swift raid conducted without casualties. And now the former dictator of Iraq will face the justice he denied to millions. The capture of this man was crucial to the rise of a free Iraq. It marks the end of the road for him, and for all who bullied and killed in his name. For the Baathist holdouts largely responsible for the current violence, there will be no return to the corrupt power and privilege they once held. For the vast majority of Iraqi citizens who wish to live as free men and women, this event brings further assurance that the torture chambers and the secret police are gone forever.  And this afternoon, I have a message for the Iraqi people: You will not have to fear the rule of Saddam Hussein ever again. All Iraqis who take the side of freedom have taken the winning side. The goals of our coalition are the same as your goals -- sovereignty for your country, dignity for your great culture, and for every Iraqi citizen, the opportunity for a better life. In the history of Iraq, a dark and painful era is over. A hopeful day has arrived. All Iraqis can now come together and reject violence and build a new Iraq.
The success of yesterday's mission is a tribute to our men and women now serving in Iraq. The operation was based on the superb work of intelligence analysts who found the dictator's footprints in a vast country. The operation was carried out with skill and precision by a brave fighting force. Our servicemen and women and our coalition allies have faced many dangers in the hunt for members of the fallen regime, and in their effort to bring hope and freedom to the Iraqi people. Their work continues, and so do the risks. Today, on behalf of the nation, I thank the members of our Armed Forces and I congratulate 'em.
I also have a message for all Americans: The capture of Saddam Hussein does not mean the end of violence in Iraq. We still face terrorists who would rather go on killing the innocent than accept the rise of liberty in the heart of the Middle East. Such men are a direct threat to the American people, and they will be defeated.
We've come to this moment through patience and resolve and focused action. And that is our strategy moving forward. The war on terror is a different kind of war, waged capture by capture, cell by cell, and victory by victory. Our security is assured by our perseverance and by our sure belief in the success of liberty. And the United States of America will not relent until this war is won.
May God bless the people of Iraq, and may God bless America.
Thank you.

President Bush's speech is completely outwardly directed. He speaks of the momentous occasion and gives all credit to the military and the intelligence community. There is no attempt to highlight his part in the story. Quite a contrast.


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« Reply #1430 on: May 14, 2011, 02:55:33 PM »

President's pro-Islam course not altered
onenewsnow.com


Though President Obama is accepting accolades for ordering the killing of Osama bin Laden, a bestselling author and critic of Islam doesn't think that dispels his perceived favor toward Islam.
 
Just days following the death of Osama bin Laden, President Barack Obama placed a wreath at the outdoor memorial where the World Trade Center once stood, before meeting privately with about 60 relatives of those killed on September 11, 2001.

 On the way to ground zero, the president visited firefighters and police officers who responded to the terror attacks. And without mentioning bin Laden by name, Obama told the firefighters that he hopes the military's success brings them "some comfort." He also thanked them for their daily work and told them their president has "got your back."

But many critics think Obama is trying to use bin Laden's demise as a way to prop up his credibility in the foreign policy arena.

"He's certainly going to try," notes Jihad Watch director Robert Spencer. "He's already taken credit for it, even though a series of revelations [has] come out now that indicates that he was quite reluctant to do it and that it was other people on his team, notably Leon Panetta, who were ultimately responsible for it. Nonetheless, he's been taking credit for it and [will] continue to do so."

And the critic of Islam says Obama's decision to take down bin Laden does not erase the perception that he favors Islam. "It doesn't change the fact that all his foreign policy has been oriented in the direction of Islamic supremacism, allowing for this kind of advance of Islamic law and Islamic prerogatives," Spencer contends.

However, he points out that though Obama may have Islamic leanings, that does not mean he favors terrorism, as he may oppose it as a matter of principle.



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« Reply #1431 on: May 21, 2011, 09:50:13 AM »

Radical Shift In Policy As US Abandons Israel
foxnews.com


When reached via cell phone immediately after President Obama’s speech urging a Palestinian state based on 1967 borders, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's spokesman Mark Regev sounded as though he had been slapped in the face.

Netanyahu swiftly rejected Obama's call for Israel to pull back to the borders that existed before the 1967 Six-Day War. Roughly translated from Hebrew, a statement from the Prime Minister’s office said that they appreciated Obama's commitment to peace, but called the pullback to the 1967 borders "indefensible," and said that the Palestinians were less than an honest partner in the peace process.

While the idea of using the 1967 borders as a starting point to negotiate land swaps for a final peace deal is not new, hearing an American president use those words sent chills through the Netanyahu government, which is loathe to even think the words “'67 borders.”

Every Israeli television channel carried the speech live and commentators did not have to wait for a formal reaction to the speech to comment that Netanyahu and his right-wing coalition government would feel both blindsided and abandoned by a U.S. administration that has never been viewed as a friend.

Speaking with Fox News immediately after the speech, former Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Dore Gold called the speech a “a radical shift in U.S. policy.”

While the current focus is on 1967 borders, Obama did follow that up with “land swaps,” which is diplomatic speak for allowing Israel to hold on to certain settlement blocks that have been built in the West Bank, while trading out other land.

President Obama said he thought both sides should wait to decide on the issue of dividing Jerusalem as a capital city and how to deal with Palestinian refugees.

The timing of the speech is also of serious consequence as Netanyahu and his advisers had only a couple of hours to formulate a reaction before leaving for the United States, and a planned meeting with Obama and speech to a joint session of Congress.

The president’s speech acknowledged the fact it will be difficult for Israel to negotiate with the new Palestinian Unity government that includes Hamas, which has thus far refused to recognize the Jewish state’s right to exist.

The timing of Obama’s speech sets up a weekend of huge news for the Middle East.

It would be hard to imagine that this does much to thaw the rather frigid relationship that exists between Obama and Netanyahu; and it could make for an interesting meeting when the two sit down privately at the White House on Friday.

Sunday the president will speak to the politically powerful American Israel Public Affairs Committee, or AIPAC, at the lobbying group’s annual meeting.

In perhaps a foreshadowing of what was to come, AIPAC’s president sent out an email to members and conference attendees reminding them to treat speakers (aka the president) with respect.

On Tuesday Netanyahu will speak to a joint session of Congress.

Last year, when Obama publicly embarrassed Netanyahu by not posing for pictures with him during a visit and then pushed hard to restart peace talks, Israel supporters in both the House and Senate wrote a letter supporting Israel to the President.

Fortunately for Netanyahu, he will have more than an hour to formulate his speech to Congress, which, if it reads anything like Thursday night’s response, will be a clear rejection of the president's plan.
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« Reply #1432 on: May 21, 2011, 12:49:20 PM »

Radical Shift In Policy As US Abandons Israel

obama is going against a wall on this. He does not have full support of Congress nor of the People of the U.S. There is going to be some big problems ahead if he keeps pushing this stance.
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« Reply #1433 on: May 21, 2011, 04:01:25 PM »

Bluntly, Obama made a fool of himself. What he said is NOT going to happen, and Obama forgot that Israel is a sovereign country that does NOT take orders from Washington D.C. The situation from our leadership was close to idiotic and an embarrassment to our country.
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« Reply #1434 on: May 22, 2011, 09:15:25 AM »

Obama is a fool and an embarrassment!  I refuse to call him "President".  Never have and never will.  I have a huge hope that Herman Cain can and will go the distance.  For all of those that voted for Obama just because he is black, and I know a few personally, it will give them a much alternative even if they vote for him on that reason alone without knowing or understanding the issues.
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« Reply #1435 on: May 22, 2011, 02:43:33 PM »

Obama: 1967 Lines With 'Swaps' Means Different Israeli Border Than in 1967
Foxnews.com

WASHINGTON -- Claiming his remarks earlier this week on borders for Israel and a future Palestinian state had been misrepresented, President Obama said Sunday that "1967 lines with mutually agreed swaps" means the two sides will "negotiate a border that is different than the one that existed on June 4, 1967."

In remarks Sunday to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the president tried to explain his earlier position to a warm but occasionally tentative crowd by saying that his speech Thursday at the State Department didn't offer anything new or provocative in the way of peace negotiations.

"There was nothing particularly original in my proposal; this basic framework for negotiations has long been the basis for discussions among the parties, including previous U.S. administrations," he said

"What I did on Thursday was to say publicly what has long been acknowledged privately," he added, saying his remarks were no different than a "well-known formula" that has been worked on for a generation.

"It allows the parties themselves to account for the changes that have taken place over the last 44 years, including the new demographic realities on the ground and the needs of both sides. The ultimate goal is two states for two peoples. Israel as a Jewish state and the homeland for the Jewish people, and the state of Palestine as the homeland for the Palestinian people; each state enjoying self-determination, mutual recognition, and peace," he said.

Since Thursday, tensions between the U.S. and Israel have been sharper than ever. The remarks -- in which the president said he wants Israel and the Palestinians to negotiate a land deal that starts with the 1967 borders -- received considerable criticism, including a public dressing down by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

"It's not going to happen," Netanyahu said Friday. "Everybody knows it's not going to happen."

But on Saturday, Netanyahu, who will address the pro-Israel lobby on Monday and Congress on Tuesday, played down any rift.

"The disagreements have been blown way out of proportion," he told The Associated Press on Saturday. "It's true we have some differences of opinion, but these are among friends."

Obama received a strong welcome at the conference, earning a standing ovation when he arrived and when he finished his remarks. He also earned considerable applause for several other pledges, including when he said the U.S.-Israel bond is unshakeable.

"Even while we may sometimes disagree, as friends sometime will, the bonds between the United States and Israel are unbreakable, and the commitment of the United States to the security of Israel is ironclad.

"We have a strong commitment to its survival as a secure homeland for the Jewish people," he added.

Obama named several areas where the U.S. and Israel agree, including preventing Iran from gaining nuclear weapons, developing weapons system to give Israel a military edge and vetoing U.N. resolutions designed to undermine the isolated nation's security.

"No vote at the United Nations will ever create an independent Palestinian state. And the United States will stand up against efforts to single Israel out at the U.N. or in any international forum," he said.

"The core issues can only be negotiated in direct talks between the parties," he said.

But the room was considerably quieter when he began to address the comments he made a few days ago, and the president acknowledged that "some of you will disagree with this assessment."

The president's remarks last Thursday stunned many in the foreign relations community who saw them as a distinct shift in U.S. policy toward backing the Palestinian position in the Mideast peace process.

Talks Friday with Netanyahu were chilly, and Israel supporters slammed the president for calling for borders that would jeopardize Israel's very existence.

"I think the president made a mistake, and he's been sort of trying to backtrack since then, as well he should," Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., told "Fox News Sunday" before the president spoke.

Noting that it's not up to the U.S. to decide what's best for Israel, McConnell added,  "The maxim that the parties to the conflict need to be the parties to the settlement still holds." 

The nation of Israel, created in 1948, expanded in 1967 after it was collectively attacked by its three Arab neighbors, Syria, Egypt and Jordan. Israel repelled the attack in six days and captured the West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem. It has since abandoned Gaza, which is now run by Hamas, a U.S.-designated terrorist group.

Hamas, which calls for the destruction of Israel in its charter, has recently formed a unity government with Fatah, the Palestinian party that operates Palestinian territories in the West Bank.

That in itself has stalled the peace process, which has been stuck over the central questions of what the borders of a future Palestinian state will be, whether to divide Jerusalem to give East Jerusalem as a capital for the Palestinians and whether to allow millions of Palestinians who left the country to return to Israeli land.

The president said no country should be expected to recognize a government that calls for its destruction, and he called on Hamas to "accept the basic responsibilities of peace, including recognizing Israel's right to exist, rejecting violence and adhering to all existing agreements."

But Marc Thiessen, a former adviser to President George W. Bush, said Obama's exclusion of the latter two issues while calling for narrowing Israel's borders puts Israel in a precarious position.

"By leaving that out while calling for the 1967 borders, he essentially tried to take away the Israelis negotiating card while leaving the Palestinians theirs," he said. "If 7 million Palestinians return to Israel, it will end Israel as we know it."

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HisDaughter
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« Reply #1436 on: May 22, 2011, 02:44:44 PM »

That's like saying, "I was just kidding".
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« Reply #1437 on: May 22, 2011, 06:04:48 PM »

That's like saying, "I was just kidding".

UM? - It wasn't funny. Obama doesn't do well as a clown.
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« Reply #1438 on: May 22, 2011, 08:07:30 PM »

UM? - It wasn't funny. Obama doesn't do well as a clown.

Unless it's a clown on one of those horror shows.
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« Reply #1439 on: May 22, 2011, 11:21:50 PM »

Unless it's a clown on one of those horror shows.


Yes, that would be more likely, and lots of bad stuff would happen in the show.
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