Netanyahu campaign video boasts of ‘lecturing’ Obama in the Oval Office
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Netanyahu campaign video boasts of ‘lecturing’ Obama in the Oval Office

Clip slammed by the dovish lobby group J Street, which accuses the PM of harming what support remains in Democratic party for his government

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US President Barack Obama meet at the White House, May 2011. (photo credit: Avi Ohayon/Government Press Office/Flash90)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US President Barack Obama meet at the White House, May 2011. (photo credit: Avi Ohayon/Government Press Office/Flash90)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu published an election campaign video Thursday showing a contentious meeting he had with former US president Barack Obama and touted his defiance versus the American leader.

The video clip, which was taken from the PBS documentary “Netanyahu at War,” shows footage from the May 2011 Oval Office meeting between Obama and Netanyahu, with the narrator saying the prime minister “lectured” the US president on the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

During the Oval Office meeting, in front of the media, Netanyahu spoke directly to Obama about the complex status of Jerusalem and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Commentators in the PBS documentary were shown describing Netanyahu’s behavior toward Obama as “outrageous” and “humiliating” for the US president. Relations between Netanyahu and Obama were known to be strained throughout the overlap between their terms in office.

Netanyahu shared the video on his personal Twitter feed.

The dovish lobby group J Street condemned the clip, saying Netanyahu should show gratitude for everything the Obama administration did for Israel.

“Netanyahu apparently decided to destroy the remaining support his government has in the Democratic Party. Instead of thanking President Obama for signing the largest ever [military] aid package for Israel, Netanyahu takes prides in the lack of respect he showed Obama,” Yael Patir, the head of J Street Israel, said in a statement.

“This video is unnecessary and even more severely is devastating to bipartisan American support for Israel,” added Patir, whose group was a vocal supporter of the Obama administration.

Another video tweeted Thursday by Netanyahu showed a segment from a Fox News broadcast in which anchor Sean Hannity is seen describing Netanyahu as “a Churchillian figure.”

The slogan for the video is “Netanyahu, a strong right.”

One of the main planks of Netanyahu and his ruling Likud party’s campaign ahead of the April 9 elections has been the boosting of his credibility as right-wing and “strong,” while depicting key rival Benny Gantz and his Blue and White party as left-wing and “weak.”

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