“Let's get this straight for all Democrats across America: The President does not like the Prime Minister of the State of Israel. That is a fact that you cannot deny,” New York State Assemblyman Dov Hikind told Fox News in a recently televised interview that has shocked his fellow Democrats around the United States.
Hikind's blunt warning to Jewish voters came just prior to the first scheduled debate between President Barack Obama and GOP presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney.
"The fact is that Prime Minister Netanyahu, head of the only democracy in the Middle East, he was elected by the people,” Hikind pointed out. “But [President Barack] Obama has had a problem with him for years,” he underscored.
The fact that Israel's survival is being threatened by Iran, whose President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has openly declared that he intends to “wipe the Zionist State off the map,” should have been enough to motivate Obama to meet with Netanyahu at his request, Hikind contended, when the Israeli leader came to the U.S. to speak at the United Nations General Assembly. Obama refused to meet with Netanyahu on the sidelines on the UNGA gathering, as he did with other heads of state, opting instead for a talk show and then returning to the campaign trail.
His contention that he had no time to meet in New York led Israeli officials to suggest a meeting in Washington D.C. instead, with Netanyahu offering to fly to the White House for a quick round of talks. The American president refused that proposal as well -- but the ensuing negative publicity that resulted prompted him to at least make a call to Jerusalem.
But Obama's hour-long phone call with Netanyahu, held in lieu of a meeting, did not assuage Hikind's concerns in the slightest, he said. "Absolutely not. The bottom line is, I do not trust the president of the United States with regard to the security of the State of Israel,” Hikind said.
Jerusalem – a fundamental issue – was taken out of the platform of the Democratic party” at the recent national convention, he noted. “My fellow Democrats chant overwhelmingly when they try to reintroduce Jerusalem; They said, 'No!'" Hikind told the interview, outraged.
"I would ask the Democratic Party to listen to the majority of the Democrats who don't want Jerusalem in the platform. Something is wrong in my party when an issue as fundamental as Jerusalem …" Hikind paused, "but we don't get it … something is wrong … this is our one ally in the Middle East.”