On Friday, the Obama administration decided not to veto a UN Security Council resolution harshly criticizing Israel and calling its settlement activity illegal. The decision not to veto was cowardly, hypocritical, wrong, and yet, thankfully, ultimately ineffectual.
Do not be misled -- the decision to abstain was not the thoughtful action of a principled leader determined to make peace no matter what the cost. At worst, it was the cowardly move of a lame-duck politician who waited until there was absolutely zero political accountability before reversing his previously held position on vetoing anti-Israel Security Council resolutions (despite bipartisan calls from congressional leadership for him to stay the course) in order to take a symbolic parting shot at Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and President-elect Donald Trump.
At best, it was another failed attempt by President Obama to impose his will by any means available on a situation that he has never fully understood -- despite the fact that the entire time he had any political accountability he explicitly said that he would never sink to use these means, which he acknowledged are ineffective, and in fact even counterproductive because they encourage the parties to harden their positions and refrain from further direct negotiations.
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