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Report: White House Still Concerned Over Bayit Yehudi's Strength

U.S. Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro met with Bayit Yehudi chairman Naftali Bennett, amid "concerns" over the party's strength
By David Lev
First Publish: 1/17/2013, 9:29 AM

Dan Shapiro
Dan Shapiro
Israel news photo: Flash 90

U.S. Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro on Wednesday met with Bayit Yehudi chairman Naftali Bennett. A report on Channel Ten Thursday morning said that Shapiro invited Bennett to his home for a meeting.

According to the report, Bennett told Shapiro that there was “no chance” that a government that Binyamin Netanyahu forms after the election would agree to major withdrawals from Judea and Samaria to satisfy Palestinian Authority demands. “There is no chance that a government formed by Netanyahu would accept any agreement with the Palestinians,” due to their ongoing refusal to make any compromises.

The meeting came amid reports that the White House,  is "concerned" over the strengthening of Bayit Yehudi. Officials believe that a strong Bayit Yehudi in the government would make it that much more difficult for the U.S. to persuade – or strongarm – Israel and the PA into a deal. There is a fear in the State Department that the stronger Bayit Yehudi is, the more likely Netanyahu will take rigid positions and be less likely to American ministrations to enter into negotiations.

Another White House "concern", according to the report, is the apparent lack of concern among the Israeli electorate of what Washington calls Israel's increasing “isolation” from the world community, due to continued construction in Judea and Samaria.

Obama supporters and leftist Israeli media had strongly criticized alleged, but not substantiated, interference by PM Netanyahu in the US elections, claiming that he supported Romney. The only Israeli criticism of Obama's blatant interference with Israel's sovereign and democratic elections has come from Arutz Sheva and Yisrael Hayom..