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Steve Jones

Obama Going To Israel

By February 5, 2013

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President Barack Obama, for the first time in his presidency, will be visiting Israel sometime in this spring. Obama will, of course, meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who recently won another term in office. While Israeli TV said Obama's visit would begin March 20, the White House did not confirm the date.

White House spokesman Jay Carney did say, however, that "The start of the President's second term and the formation of a new Israeli government offer the opportunity to reaffirm the deep and enduring bonds between the United States and Israel, and to discuss the way forward on a broad range of issues of mutual concern, including of course Iran and Syria." He said an actual dates of the trip would be forthcoming.

While Obama has staunchly supported Israel, he and Netanyahu have not had the most congenial relationship. Most recently, Netanyahu has pressed Obama to set definite "red lines and deadlines" for action against Iran's nuclear program. As both men enter new terms, the trip should offer them a chance to defrost their relations.

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