Obama ambassador denies Putin saved Israel from dangerous US resolution

There seems little doubt that President Barack Obama had planned on putting forward a resolution which the Netanyahu administration strongly opposed.

By David Isaac, World Israel News

The Obama administration’s Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro denied on Wednesday that Russian President Vladimir Putin blocked an anti-Israel resolution from being passed by the UN Security Council.

In comments to The Jerusalem Post, Shapiro said, “I don’t know anything about promises Putin might have made, and I certainly wouldn’t trust him…The idea that Israel had to be rescued by a Russian veto is false.

“There was no second resolution planned, and the first wasn’t our initiative,” Shapiro said. “The Israeli administration knew that at the time,” he added.

According to a story published in Israel Hayom on Monday, Putin agreed to help Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who asked him to veto a UN Security Council resolution that would hurt Israel.

The resolution allegedly would have compelled Israel to surrender significant territory and called for the establishment of a Palestinian state based on the 1948 borders.

When Obama heard that Putin planned to veto, he decided not to go forward with the resolution, given that it wouldn’t pass, according to the report.

Russia denies that Putin blocked the resolution. Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova called it “disinformation.”

However, there seems little doubt that President Barack Obama had planned on putting forward a resolution which the Netanyahu administration strongly opposed.

David Ze’ev Jablinowitz, who was a reporter for Israel Radio in 2016, told World Israel News that Obama told him as much. The resolution Obama wanted was meant to create a framework for a final-status agreement between Israeli and Palestinians, Jablinowitz says.

“The impression I got from him was that he wanted to show he was a friend of Israel but [the resolution] was all about Netanyahu and the right-wing,” Jablinowitz told The Jerusalem Post.

However, Jablinowitz cautioned Obama in the call that Israelis, no matter their political stripe, do not like having foreign institutions dictate to them what to do. He advised him to reach out to Knesset parties to gauge their reaction. Later, an Obama aide got back to Jablinowitz and told him that he had been right – no one, including the far-left Meretz party, liked the idea of a UN resolution.

“What I liked about what I did was that I felt as though I was educating POTUS that Israelis of various ideological stripes are wary of the UN and would prefer to resolve our issues by ourselves, in this case with the Palestinians, and perhaps with let’s say some U.S. assistance, but not through the Security Council,” Jablinowitz told WIN.

JPost speculates that it is possible that Jablinowitz himself played a role in Obama’s decision to pull the resolution.