Israeli Pundits Slam Obama Weakness

Israeli media diagnose a decline of American deterrence in the Middle East.

Gil Ronen,

Israeli press
Israeli press
Israel news photo: Flash 90

US President Barack Obama's difficulties in deciding upon and securing support for a strike on Syria are seen by Israeli media and analysts as a sign of the decline of American deterrence in the Middle East.

"President in a trap" declared the Sunday front page of Israel Hayom, the top circulation daily which is considered close to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

"Alone in the battle" was the headline of widely read Yediot Aharonot next to a picture of Obama with tightly pursed lips.

According to Yediot Aharonot's military commentator, the likelihood of US strikes against Syria is now "less than 50 percent."

"If Obama's conduct up until last week unsettled his allies in the Middle East, today it is seriously beginning to worry them. Heads of state in the region now realize that while Obama has a very solid worldview, in practice he translates it into gut decisions," wrote Alex Fishman of the president seeking congressional approval for a strike.