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Why Does Mayor Pete Want Israel To Change Its Policies?

Jeff Katz
May 24, 2019 - 8:59 am

Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg told a gathering of liberal Jews Thursday that the United States should pressure Israel to change its policies.

Acccording to NBC News, Thursday evening “Buttigieg told a group of influential liberal Jewish leaders on Thursday that the United States should guide Israel’s government away from steps that he says are harmful to both the U.S. and Israel.”

The NBC report was not specific with what policies in particular Buttigieg was referring to and did not mention any major Jewish leaders among the crowd. The group seemingly consisted of a few minor figures, including a former Obama administration official.

NBC also reported that Buttigieg criticized the Trump administration’s decision to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, and to recognize Israeli sovereignty in the Golan Heights — both of which were received well by Israelis across the political landscape.

Buttigieg called these steps “a decision to intervene in Israeli domestic politics through American policy,” and said the decisions should only have been taken in the context of peace negotiations (despite the fact that Syria has refused to negotiate with Israel for decades and the Palestinians have also rejected peace negotiations for several years).

Buttigieg also reportedly said that the “White House … has welcomed in people who I think are nakedly anti-Semitic.” He reportedly did not name anyone specific.

Does Mayor Pete need to take a good look in the mirror?