Why Barack Obama Hates Benjamin Netanyahu

U.S. President Barack Obama (right) meets with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, D.C., on May 20, 2011.
JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images

Why Barack Obama Hates Benjamin Netanyahu

The Hamas war has everything to do with it.

The United Nations Security Council voted on Monday to support a United States ceasefire plan for Israel and Hamas. Fourteen out of 15 unsc members voted for it; only Russia abstained. The plan appears to be based on a May 31 proposal from U.S. President Joe Biden.

The main thrust of the pitch is a total Israeli withdrawal from Gaza. “The people of Israel,” Biden said, “should know they can make this offer without any further risk to their own security because they’ve devastated Hamas forces over the past eight months. At this point, Hamas is no longer capable of carrying out another October 7.”

This is similar to other ceasefire proposals the U.S. government has tried to broker for months: Israel unilaterally withdraws, Hamas releases what Israeli hostages it still has, and reconstruction on Gaza commences with some sort of power-sharing agreement between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority. This is meant to lead to an independent Palestinian state. The international community has been pushing for this kind of agreement for some time.

Most “ceasefire” plans pitched, by the U.S. or other international actors, are actually intended as stepping-stones to a lasting “peace” deal—one that leaves Hamas intact with some influence or control over Gaza. In other words, one that turns Hamas from an illegal terrorist group into a legitimate government.

What is the main obstacle to making this a reality? The same obstacle that’s been getting in the way of the international community for the better part of 15 years: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.


In his decades-long political career, one of Netanyahu’s core views has been that Israel cannot compromise on its security and defense. To Netanyahu, an independent State of Palestine comprising the totality of the West Bank would be Israel’s biggest security risk. “I believed that the Palestinians should have all the powers required to govern themselves but no power to threaten Israel,” he writes in his autobiography. “If this meant they got a ‘state-minus,’ an ‘autonomy-plus,’ or whatever else they chose to call their political entity, so be it. I was not going to put my country’s existence in danger.”

This may not be politically correct in certain international circles, but many Israelis share this view and vote for Netanyahu because of it. So why is the international community bent on forcing Israel to create the two-state solution through the Israel-Hamas war?

In May 2009, Netanyahu met with recently elected U.S. President Barack Obama, their first meeting as the leaders of their respective countries. Netanyahu knew he and Obama didn’t see eye-to-eye on Middle Eastern affairs, but he thought he could start dialogue on two important issues: Iran’s nuclear program and the Palestinians.

“Obama,” Netanyahu writes, “to my pleasant surprise, said that he agreed” with Netanyahu’s hard-line approach on Iran. Obama has since proved himself to be more on Iran’s side.

“But when we moved to the Palestinian issue,” Netanyahu writes, “Obama took the gloves off. With staff present, he made it clear that the U.S. would not tolerate further stalling or obstructions in the peace process, leaving no doubt which party he thought was responsible for such things.” According to Netanyahu, Obama demanded he stop all Israeli development of land in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

The next month, Obama gave his famous speech on his vision for the Middle East. “America will not turn our backs on the legitimate Palestinian aspiration for dignity, opportunity and a state of their own,” he said. “The only resolution is of the aspirations of both sides to be met through two states, where Israelis and Palestinians each live in peace and security. That is in Israel’s interest, Palestine’s interest, America’s interest and the world’s interest.

“And that is why I intend to personally pursue this outcome with all the patience and dedication that the task requires.”

Shadow Presidency

Netanyahu was prime minister for the rest of Obama’s presidency and for years afterward. He has resisted international pressure to withdraw from the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Obama knows that as long as Netanyahu is in office, his vision for the Middle East won’t be realized.

Obama has been out of office for seven years, but his influence still casts a long shadow in Washington and around the world. His fingerprints are all over Israel’s current political crisis. His establishment has courted Netanyahu challengers like Benny Gantz and Naftali Bennett. He has ties to the International Court of Justice and the International Criminal Court, two global bodies attacking Netanyahu. October 7 itself happened because of the billions of dollars in sanctions relief Iran received from Barack Obama and Joe Biden.

Why is Obama investing so much into attacking Netanyahu? Is it because of personal spite or because he wants to remove an obstacle of Iran’s? Probably both.

Obama said he would “personally pursue” the formation of a Palestinian state “with all the patience and dedication that the task requires.” He has already shown he will work as long as it takes, in or out of office, to fundamentally transform the United States. Is he doing the same with the Middle East?

Obama wants an immediate and unilateral withdrawal by Israel from Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Nominally, the Palestinian Authority, headed by Mahmoud Abbas, would take over as the new state’s government. But Abbas is a corrupt autocrat who runs half his realm as his personal fiefdom and has lost control of the other half to terrorist groups. Most Palestinians want him gone. Hamas, by contrast, is gaining popularity. A ceasefire deal would legitimize Hamas to the international community.

Existence Threatened

Gaza is a deadly thorn in Israel’s side, but a Hamas-ruled West Bank would be a catastrophic nightmare. The next war in the Middle East would be bigger, longer and bloodier. If this ceasefire were adopted, Biden in a sense would be right: Hamas would not be capable of launching another October 7. It would be capable of a Holocaust on the same scale as the Nazis.

A prophecy in 2 Kings 14 adds context to what we see in Israel today: “For the Lord saw the affliction of Israel, that it was very bitter: for there was not any shut up, nor any left, nor any helper for Israel. And the Lord said not that he would blot out the name of Israel from under heaven: but he saved them by the hand of Jeroboam the son of Joash” (verses 26-27).

Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry writes in America Under Attack:

The Bible shows that anciently, God raised up the kingdom of Israel to represent Him. Satan attacked that nation in every way he could. History shows that at one point in the ninth century b.c., an enemy almost completely destroyed it—but God intervened. …

Israel was in bitter affliction—on the verge of being blotted out of existence! There was an effort to blot out the name of Israel—a very satanic goal.

Mr. Flurry shows that this isn’t only ancient history; 2 Kings 14 is actually a prophecy describing conditions in our day. This means somebody today is trying to accomplish the same goal: blotting out the name of Israel.

The world got a good look at what blotting out the name of Israel means on October 7. But the damage Hamas did from Gaza, horrific as it was, was limited. A Hamas-controlled West Bank would spell sudden death for the nation.

There is good news though. The same prophecies that speak of “no helper for Israel” also show that God isn’t ignorant of what is going on. He sees what is happening and has a plan to save the nation. America Under Attack shows how and why; request your free copy today.