The Obama Watch
Now there’s talk he’ll be the next UN Secretary-General — just what Israel needs to hear.
By Aaron Goldstein
When President Obama delivers his final State of the Union address on Tuesday night, there will be 374 days before his term comes to its merciful end.
But does Barack Obama strike you as the type who would be content to spend the rest of his days painting portraits and landscapes as George W. Bush has done?
Word has it is that Obama wants to be Secretary-General of the United Nations. Ban Ki-Moon’s term concludes at the end of 2016 and it just so happens that Obama is available. (It would be interesting if Obama resigned on New Year’s Day 2017 and let Joe Biden become President for the final 20 days of his term.)
For a citizen of the globe like Obama being President of the United States is an office too small for his lifestyle, ambitions, and ideology. Should Obama become UN Secretary-General, he could become President of the Whole World.
Think about it. I know you don’t want to think about it. But we must. Secretary-General Obama would still have a pen and a phone, could disrupt New York City traffic and travel all over the world and hear himself talk as he gives speeches about Islam’s contributions to the world, climate change, gun control, police brutality and income inequality, particularly in the country he led, while staying in the opulent hotels and eating in the swankiest restaurants. But the best part of the job is that Obama could continue to make life a living hell for Israel especially Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Despite Obama’s best efforts, when Netanyahu was re-elected last March he was guaranteed to outlast Obama in elected office. But if Obama becomes the leader of the organization that has done more than any other to delegitimize Israel, Bibi’s problems will have only just begun. Needless to say, Netanyahu is incensed at the idea. According to the Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Jarida, Bibi reportedly asked his top advisers, “Wasn’t eight years of having Obama in office enough?” From Bibi’s lips to God’s ear.
Bibi went on to say, “Eight years during which he ignored Israel? And now he wants to be in a position that is liable to cause us hardships in the international arena.” If anything, Netanyahu is understating his case. Obama hasn’t ignored Israel. Indeed, he and members of his administration have made an example of Israel time and again. It was just a few days ago that State Department spokesman John Kirby read Israel the riot act for 10 acres of land expansion in the West Bank. That’s right. Ten acres. The sad truth is that Israel will face greater consequences for those 10 acres than Iran will for launching a rocket with 1,500 feet of the USS Harry Truman in the Strait of Hormuz. While the Obama Administration won’t give an inch to Israel, it has given so many inches to Iran that it came within a mile of destroying one of our warships.
Netanyahu is reportedly trying to work with the Gulf Arab states (who are every bit as angered at Obama over the Iran nuclear deal) to thwart his candidacy. But Bibi has a steep road ahead of him. If Netanyahu could not stop the Iran nuclear deal with a friendly U.S. Congress, then how can he stop Obama’s bid to be Secretary General with a hostile UN General Assembly? As we found out with the Iran nuclear deal and with Obamacare, what Obama wants Obama gets.
Truth be told it probably doesn’t matter who succeeds Obama in the White House. While Hillary Clinton served as Obama’s Secretary of State, she was its “designated yeller” when it came to Netanyahu. Should Hillary be elected, I suspect she will not delegate this particular task. Although Donald Trump has had a friendly relationship with Bibi in the past (even recording a commercial for him in the 2013 Israeli elections), he recently blamed Israel for being unwilling to make peace with the Palestinians. This despite the fact that it was Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas who declared the Oslo Accords a dead letter during his speech to the UN General Assembly last September.
There is the possibility that Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio could become the Republican nominee. But if that comes to pass, does anyone think Trump won’t launch a third party run? Israel will be in a bad place with either Hillary or Trump in the White House. She will be in an even worse place if Obama is at the helm of the UN. To paraphrase Joe Egan and the late Gerry Rafferty of Stealers Wheel, Bibi will have a clown to the left of him, a joker to the right and be stuck in the middle with Obama.
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