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Netanyahu's Ultimatum Misreads US Attitudes

Al-Monitor's Barbara Slavin writes that by trying to push the US government to agree to “red lines” for Iran, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is alienating US officials and many other Americans. Netanyahu should not overplay his hand and let his fear of Iran drag the US into a third war in the region in a decade.
U.S. President Barack Obama delivers a statement alongside Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, following the death of the U.S. Ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens, and others, from the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, September 12, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed  (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS DISASTER)

Two news stories in the headlines Wednesday point to a dangerous and growing gap between the leaders of the US and Israel in analyzing the changing realities of the region and how to deal with them.

While Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was issuing what sounded like an ultimatum to US President Barack Obama on Iran — demanding that the US openly announce its “red lines” for Iranian nuclear development — young Islamic fundamentalists apparently enraged by a racist American movie about the Prophet Mohammed attacked US diplomatic outposts in Egypt and Libya, killing US Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens and three other Americans.

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