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BLITZER’S BLOG:  Will open-mic comments hurt U.S.-Israeli relations?
November 8th, 2011
04:20 PM ET

BLITZER’S BLOG: Will open-mic comments hurt U.S.-Israeli relations?

By CNN's Wolf Blitzer

(CNN) - Political leaders should always be careful of what they say anytime they are near a microphone.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy and President Obama have learned that again – painfully.

According to a Reuters correspondent, the two men were chatting in Cannes, France, the other day when Sarkozy, referring to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, said: “I cannot bear Netanyahu. He’s a liar.” To which, Obama reportedly replied: “You’re fed up with him, but I have to deal with him even more often than you.”

The two men did not know reporters were listening.. But it has now come out.

This isn’t the first time that an open microphone has embarrassed world leaders – and it won’t be the last.

It does come at a very awkward time for President Obama who has been actively trying to improve his relationship with the Israeli prime minister. That relationship was seriously strained for much of the Obama administration over the issue of Israel’s continued settlement activity on the West Bank and in East Jerusalem.

Still, the two men seemed to have worked through some of their differences during their most recent meeting in New York in September.

President Obama delivered what Netanyahu described as a very pro-Israel speech at the United Nations General Assembly.

In contrast, Netanyahu certainly didn’t like Obama’s State Department speech on the Middle East back in May.

I don’t know whether these latest comments will have any real impact on the U.S. relationship with Israel. My guess is they probably won’t. That’s because there have been many times over the decades when that relationship seemed very strained only to bounce back.

One example was in June 1990 when then-Secretary of State James Baker told Congress that the Bush administration was ready to walk away from the peace process because of Israel’s settlement activity.

“Everybody over there should know that the telephone number (of the White House) is 1-202-456-1414,” Baker testified. “When you’re serious about peace, call us.”

That was a pretty blunt warning to then-Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir who had just taken office.

Baker’s threat was also delivered over an open microphone. The difference was that he knew that the whole world was listening.

RELATED: Sarkozy, Obama bemoan Netanyahu over open mic

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Post by:
Filed under: Barack Obama • Benjamin Netanyahu • Israel • Nicolas Sarkozy • Situation Room • Wolf Blitzer
soundoff (237 Responses)
  1. blake

    Another proof of Obama's anti-Israel, Muslim sympathizer sentiments. This man must be replaced in 2012. He is bad for America on so many fronts.

    November 8, 2011 at 10:02 pm |
  2. david

    i never trusted obama he speaks through both sides of his mouth he is a typical liberal that hates israel

    November 8, 2011 at 9:48 pm |
  3. barbara

    what can u expect from a liberal president most liberals hate Israel and will blame Israel for all the problems un the middle east instead of blaming the Muslim terrorists that are killing innocent Israelis every day just because they are Jews, liberals don't have the courage to come out and condemn these Muslims for blaming the Jews for all their problems instead liberals will justify Muslim hate against Israel and the Jewish people what a shame

    November 8, 2011 at 9:43 pm |
  4. randy

    can somebody explain to me, what can of benefit does the US gain by being friends from israel.

    November 8, 2011 at 9:34 pm |
  5. Uthor

    These guys live in a fishbowl. Sometimes it's refreshing to know what they really think. So what if one said one thing and the other said something else. We all do this. It's just that no one cares what most of us think about our colleagues and contemporaries, and what crappy little complaints we have. This is a non-issue. The US needs Fort Israel, and Israel most definitely needs the power and sanction of the US. But that doesn't mean our leaders need to love and respect each other and give each other love hugs. Grow up.

    November 8, 2011 at 9:26 pm |
  6. Prometheus

    So what? Folks don't like Israel. NEWS FLASH...people don't like 'insert your country here' very much either. Nobody is going to tell America how they should proceed with their own business so I find it amusing to think that nations should think that Israel is going to be any different no matter what the consequences are.

    Butt out butt-heads

    November 8, 2011 at 9:25 pm |
  7. Jarhead4life

    No surprise that this story is being broadcast on Wolf 'yes I'm a Jew' Blitzers blog. Most interesting is that a good 90+ percent of the comments posted here support Obama & Sarkozy's statements. Get a clue Wolf.

    November 8, 2011 at 9:23 pm |
  8. Edgar

    Probably but who cares when he's speaking the truth. I'd rather our president tell it like it is when it comes to Israel.

    November 8, 2011 at 9:13 pm |
  9. Charlie from the North

    Why the heck would he apologize. Netenyahu has set back the cause of middle east peace by decades and he is proud of it. If he thought the mic has off and that is all he said that was lucky. I would have said much worse.

    November 8, 2011 at 9:07 pm |
  10. George

    by accident uh-huh..
    Tell journalists not to listen and then expect them to oblige. This was an intentional statement made for whatever purpose they wanted it to serve.

    November 8, 2011 at 9:06 pm |
  11. Cassandra Chu

    It's the first honest thing that the media has reported about what the World thinks of Netanyahu and Israel. They ARE liars and hypocrites. I'm surprised that Jewish Blitzer and pro-Israel CNN try to negate the importance of such comments. This is the transparency that Obama was talking about. It's time the Israelis got the hll out of American politics! They only cause havoc, leech our taxpayer dollars, break international law and human rights... and try to cause wars in the MidEast.

    November 8, 2011 at 9:06 pm |
  12. Jarhead4life

    YES, more an more everyday it becomes more clear how much the entire workd is sick and tired of the Israelis. They are liars. They act like they want peace, yet constantly do illegal land grabs. The only reason that they have gotten away with it for years is because of all of the rich JEWS in the U.S. that control Wall St, Hollywood & D.C. The world is sick and tired of the Israeli Nazi treatment of the Palestinians. Its time to end the unlawful occupation of Palestine.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:54 pm |
    • barbara

      ur right the entire world never liked the jewish people 1 billion muslims hate israel becasue its not popular to defend israel in the world but as an american i am a proud supporter of israel and support their war aginst muslim extremist and muslim anti semitism

      November 8, 2011 at 9:45 pm |
    • Brian

      your statement is fair. our issue is not with Jewish people, it's the Israeli government. US may impose its will around the world, yet its purpose is to preserve our way of life and promote world peace. Our support for Israeli government was intended to stabilize middle east, yet the effort not only fails miserably, it also made us the most hated country in the world. Not to mention the unholy amount of debt all our kids will be paying for years to come.... maybe it's not an accident, but a message for Israeli government to behave.

      November 8, 2011 at 10:33 pm |
    • jcgaunet

      If the Palestinians are so great and wonderful, why haven't their wealthy brothers in the Mid East come their aid? The reason Israelis treat the Palestinians like dirt is because you can't walk around Israel without the constant threat of a suicide bomber attack. What's funny is I don't see Jordan, Syria, Saudi, Egypt or Iran really caring too much about Palestinians. Why is that?

      November 9, 2011 at 11:22 am |
    • maljazur

      You are so right! The amount of power they wield despite their horrific behavior is mind-blowing.
      They are the ultimate example of double-standard bearers...

      November 9, 2011 at 11:27 am |
  13. Derrick, Atlanta

    Of course we all can read between the lines when Obama said, “You’re fed up with him, but I have to deal with him even more often than you.” He's implying that he's also not fond of the Israeli leader, we get that.

    ...But what does that have to do with US-Israeli relations? At most, he made a politically incorrect comment about Netanyahu, not Isreal. Netanyahu's own approval ratings are in the 30's*, so it would seem most would agree with the frustration.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:48 pm |
    • JasonP

      Well said

      November 8, 2011 at 9:00 pm |
    • Mel

      I don't see what the big deal is. It's not like it's a big secret what the those two leaders's feelings for Netanyahu are.
      As a friend of Israel, it's dismaying to see what his administration is doing to Israel's image to the rest of the world. They have NO friends left in the world, besides the U.S. And even here, patience is running thin.
      Their stances of those settlements and the situation in Gaza make it hard to defend them. Netanyahu is a bully and against peace. They need to adjust their course very soon otherwise they will be totally isolated from the world ( Europe is already throwing them under the bus) and guess who they would be sharing that unenviable position with? Yes, Iran. Oh, the Irony.

      November 8, 2011 at 10:44 pm |
    • American Jew

      Netanyahu is making world leaders angry because he is not there puppet. No other leader has the right to tell Israel what to do.

      Bibi is one nasty and tough Jew. He is my kind of leader. When he comes to America he makes mincemeat out of Obama who can hardly hide his contempt.

      The hateful look on Hussians face is priceless.

      November 9, 2011 at 11:27 am |
  14. b

    how do you think we feel, we have to deal with obama.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:46 pm |
  15. Vicki

    Nothing out of line was said between President Obama and Sarcozy. Netanyahu may be a big liar. He kisses up to the GOP and they have done nothing but lie about everything good and great that President Obama as accomplished. Lying is a republican tactic for the nitwits on the right who will never beleive the truth on anything.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:46 pm |
    • Roosevelt

      What are the 'great' things that President Obama has accomplished, Vicki?

      November 8, 2011 at 9:13 pm |
    • hillary for pres

      um – the Jews have all funded and voted for the Dumbicrats – at least they did up until this next election. They were warned that Obama hated the Jews... they did not listen and voted for him anyway. Now they are learning the lesson. They won't make that mistake again.

      November 8, 2011 at 10:40 pm |
  16. Paul Willson

    Can we remember Mr Regans open mike happening way back when ? This sort of stuff just happens

    November 8, 2011 at 8:46 pm |
    • Brian

      For the record, Reagan knew the mic was on because he was testing it when he joked about nuking the russians.

      November 8, 2011 at 9:13 pm |
  17. David

    Isreal needs to be brought down a few inches and realize they are not the center of attention for the world. They treat Palestinians like dirt. Who do they think they are?

    November 8, 2011 at 8:44 pm |
    • Hiba

      You say that Israel treats Palestinians like dirt. Are you aware of how Palestinians in Gaza were treated by Egyptians from 1948-1967? Do you know how Jordanians have treated Palestinians historically and today? Palestinians in Israel vote, hold office, have political parties. This is better treatment than they receive in any Arab country - it's better treatment than what most Arabs receive in Arab countries.

      November 8, 2011 at 9:19 pm |
    • cinge

      how exactly do they treat palestinians like dirt? by giving them voting rights in israel? by having them attend universities in israel while young israeli's are off defending their country from suicide bombers and missile attacks? by sending truckloads of aid every day? if your palestinian friends really wanted peace they could have had it decades ago. they are proving it now by going to the UN instead of negotiating. get the facts before you spew garbage.

      November 8, 2011 at 9:58 pm |
  18. telemander

    I don't see this as embarrassing at all for Obama. If someone's a liar and difficult to deal with, others shouldn't be blamed for it. Obama merely stated a fact. End of story. He keeps getting on open mics and coming out looking better for it.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:44 pm |
    • cinge

      please list the lies that Netanyahu has told.

      November 8, 2011 at 9:59 pm |
  19. GrandmaWI

    When Obama was running for election and the way he talked on TV, I said the Jews are in trouble. He couldn't hide his distaste.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:36 pm |
    • BostonDawg

      A year from now neither Obama nor Sarkozy will be in power, so who cares what they said?

      November 8, 2011 at 8:42 pm |
      • Jay

        Their in power NOW, so it does matter. Hopefully, Nutandyahoo will be out of office next election.

        November 8, 2011 at 10:12 pm |
    • Dustin

      If a foreigner disliked George W. Bush, but likes Obama, is he anti American? Does he dislike Americans?

      If a foreigner liked George W. Bush, but dislikes Obama, is he anti American? Does he dislike Americans?

      So if Obama dislikes or distrusts Netanyahu, does it mean he is anti Israel / anti semitic?

      No. Don't get me wrong – I find these types of stories hilarious too. The words of diplomacy are often laughably different than the words uttered in "privacy." I just think we should drop the concept: a statement about a nation's leader is a statement about the entire nation.

      I'd hate to be judged because of how certain people saw GW Bush, and I'd also hate to be judged because of how certain people see Obama. Just my two cents!

      November 8, 2011 at 9:01 pm |
    • Nycvin

      Obama merely agreed with a statement on bibi. Why are you bringing the entire Jewish community into it?

      November 8, 2011 at 9:54 pm |
    • Marry

      Everyone is tired (including Israelis) of people like Netanyahu. He does not work in the interest of Israel and there will never be peace with his attitude. Especially, since times change and perhaps Israel can soon not claim anymore to be “the only Democracy” in the Middle East. It is very good when the policies broaden to include Israel’s neighbors.
      President Obama does not only work “for the moment” but also for a better future. All should be thankful for that!

      November 9, 2011 at 3:29 am |
    • Ben

      It is not news that Obama and Netanyahu don't like each other, that should not be mistaken that the president Obama does not support Isreal. His actions speaks for itself. He is given more aid to Isreal than any other president, including military aid.
      However, Isreal must change this isolationist strategy. Mr. Netanyahu is not smart enough to know that he have a very unique opportunity to work with Obama to make peace with the Palestinians.
      The whole world know that Netanyahu have not been honest about peace-how can he say that he is for peace and yet continue to build on the Palestinian land?
      The Isrealy and the Palestinian deserve peace, but with a leader like Netanyahu, unless he changes his ways, I do not see peace in the near future.
      Alot of Arabs are mad at Obama because his actions have shown biase for the Isrealies. For Netanyahu, he needs to get off his behind and show courage to peace and put a stop to erecting these settlements.
      For the Palestinian, Amas, they also have to share part of the blame. How can they talk about peace when they have refuse to acknowledge the right of Isreal to exist.
      Both the Isrealies and the Palestanians deserve peace, and until Netanyahu, and Amas realize that Obama is not their enemy, but a potential vehicle to the realization of peace , the world is going to remain stuck with this unneccessry cat fight that is not in the interest of the Palestinians or Isrealies and certainly not in America's interest.

      November 9, 2011 at 12:25 pm |
  20. KRS1

    I was happy to hear Obama say it. It's not just Sarkozy and Obama fed up with Israel, it's the world.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:31 pm |
  21. jack m.

    Palestinians do not want peace. They live on handout from israel, europe, america. Why have peace? If there I'd peace, tjey would have to rely on themselves. No they can milk the world. Obama and europe think that by pleasuring them problem would go away. And all of u who think we do not need isrsel look back in 1981. This is why france hates israel.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:28 pm |
    • waheid

      Let's look back even further, to 1967. That's when Israel deliberately and maliciously attacked the USS Liberty, a U.S. warship, killing 34 and injuring 71. The U.S. gov't did everything possible to cover up the incident because politicians then, like politicians now, were afraid of the Jewish lobby in the U.S. So we continue to send them billions of dollars so that they can buy weapons and pay their soldiers to maim, kill and otherwise terrorize the Palestinians.

      November 8, 2011 at 10:20 pm |
  22. jack m.

    Let's face it. France is antisemitic, europe is antisemitic and now us president has antisemitic agenda. Palestinians do not wan

    November 8, 2011 at 8:23 pm |
    • GPC

      Disliking one particular Jew doesn't make someone antisemitic. They dislike Netanyahu because he is an arrogant extremist who doesn't want compromis.

      November 8, 2011 at 10:33 pm |
    • Ben

      Jack, that is nonesense, by your analysis, the rest of the world must be anti-semy. I love Isreal, but to ignore what is obvious to the rest of the world is not in his best interest as evident in the vote at the united nations, and UNISCO. In my opion, Netanyahu is not doing Isreal a favor by continue to allow the building of settlements on Palestinian lands-that is what the world see, and they don't like it.
      As for Obama's quote, their is no supprise their. The world knows that this two leaders are not fund of each other, however, Obama's policies towards Isreal speak for itself. His policy shows an overwhelming support for the Isreally people both in financial aid and military aid however misguided Netanyahu have been.

      November 9, 2011 at 12:48 pm |
  23. Rick

    It's time to stop pretending that what's good for Israel is also good for the United States. It's time for McCain and all those other GOP and Dem stooges to stop acting like they pledge allegiance to the Israeli flag instead of the American flag. Netanyahu is not our President, although with the way all these "American" representatives squeal everytime he or Israel is criticized, you would think , you would think he was. Here's a news flash – Israel is hated by its enemies and even disliked by all its allies EXCEPT us – it's time to start getting to the reasons behind that dislike. And it's time to for Israel to work with the United States to bring it back into the international fold, not constantly working against it.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:22 pm |
    • kams

      I agree with you! US has been kissing Israel's butt since a long time. If US had been kissing the European butt, we would have been in a different and in a better world right now. Israel has caused more damage to USA than to the Palestines. Their friendship is nothing but a scheme to use USA as a shield when the world falls on them. Sadly, our country men, our "great" people in Congress men/women, President's, Representatives, and all other loonies actually visit to Israel to gain their support at home. Very Sad!

      November 9, 2011 at 12:10 am |
    • Country Above Parties

      so well articulated what most of us think but afraid to say... then again what are we afraid of? GOP Reps treating this big lier Netanyahu like a second coming of Jesus when he visited Congress some months back. while they treat our own president like dirt and continue to make getting him out in disgrace their first priority and don't give a damn about the country current problems which were their own doing. How disgusting!!!

      November 9, 2011 at 9:34 am |
    • maljazur

      Perfectly stated. There comes a point when you have to wonder if the problem is everyone else!

      November 9, 2011 at 11:31 am |
  24. bob

    When are people going to realize that "lying" is part of cultures in most countries of the world.....???? They look at you straight in the eyes and lie, without even blinking folks....wake up to reality.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:21 pm |
  25. Alex

    Oh I am sure Netanyahu is heart broken.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:20 pm |
  26. bertha59

    The Israelis are using the USA. And the more they use us...the more our national security is weakened. It is time that Netanyahu and the Israelis stop using the USA to come to their defense. The Israelis need to give up their victimization status that they so dearly cling to despite that fact that generations have passed since the holocaust. The Israelis are now the persecutor. They are killing people who have the right to live. And the Israelis expect (and pretty demand) that the USA support them in their endeavor of whole culures killing and taking, taking, taking.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:19 pm |
    • Hiba

      Really? Israel is killing people. Last time I checked, HAMAS was dropping bombs on Israel - daily. Suicide bombings and terrorist missions from Gaza - is this not killing people? Yet the Palestinians claim they want peace. How can they want peace if they refuse to accept Israel's right to exist?

      November 8, 2011 at 9:23 pm |
  27. Reality1

    Another example of Amateur Hour in the failed presidency of Obama.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:19 pm |
    • kams

      George Bush FAILED not Obama!! We owe a huge THANK YOU to President Obama, who actually did what other Presidents couldn't finish or even get near to their goal. President Barak Obama got rid off the scum such as Binladen, and other terrorist's. HE is bringing our brother and sisters in arms back home, WHERE THEY BELONG! He made the government a stronger government in the eyes of the world, even with a bad economy. He made all other countries to respect United States of America. Get your facts right, because being isolated for reality will just harm you more mate. God bless America and its President!

      November 9, 2011 at 12:18 am |
  28. jneuy

    way to unite the country Obama. Back to the campaign trail and bashing republicans....

    November 8, 2011 at 8:16 pm |
  29. Dubben

    Netanyahu is a liar, and has no interest in peace with Palestine if it requires that concessions be made on Israel's behalf. Seems like the comments made by these two leaders were, though accidental, fair.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:14 pm |
    • cinge

      israel has made concession after concession. name one? they totally left the gaza strip in 2005. what did they get? more attacks. please- tell me what concessions the palestinians have made- JUST ONE. they won't even negotiate! israel wants peace and their building on their own land has absolutely nothing to do with anything except act as an excuse for people to bash israel which is exactly what the palestinians and the arab world wants. they are fighting a propaganda war with lies and manipulations and you all here are falling for it.

      November 8, 2011 at 10:03 pm |
  30. mickthequick

    Bibi has more courage and leadership skills in one strand of his thinning hair than Sarkozy and NoBrainer have in both their intellects multiplied by ten thousand.

    I applaud Bibi for standing up to the fool in the White House. Thankfully, the vast majority of Americans feel the same way!

    November 8, 2011 at 8:09 pm |
    • Africain

      Who is the vast majority you are talking about....people or interest group!? We know exactly that he's got ppl.

      President Obama and Sarko know THE GUY is a LIAR! THE GUY thought about it....and agrees, too!

      November 9, 2011 at 1:10 am |
  31. Steve

    Obama will have many more years to deal with Netanyahu and he will have more Democrats back him up after the tea baggers lead the GOP to a real butt-whipping.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:08 pm |
  32. Pablo

    I can't wait for Obama's innocuos comment to be spun into a "anti-semitic" one.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:06 pm |
  33. Repugnant

    Obama's words were understandable, and not outrageous at all. Of course, as far as I am concerned, U.S. relations with Israel are way better than they ought to be. (here come the trolls)

    November 8, 2011 at 8:04 pm |
  34. Oldie in TampaBay

    the truth hurts ... seems to me Obama was simply calling it as he saw it ..

    November 8, 2011 at 8:02 pm |
    • Repugnant


      November 8, 2011 at 8:06 pm |
    • Marty

      ....but yet if a conservative says anything derogatory about Netanyahu or Isreal, they are labeled as anti-semites. Nice double standard.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:18 pm |
    • david

      Unfortunately your right. I wish it wasn't that way....

      November 8, 2011 at 8:18 pm |
    • matthouston

      Amen to that bro. Israel is a parasite. We need to stop giving them money and help our own nation for a change.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:24 pm |
      • Stan

        But you forget that Israel is the only country that pays back it's loans.

        November 8, 2011 at 10:36 pm |
    • joe d

      proffesional liar is more like it

      November 9, 2011 at 1:21 pm |
  35. Egbert

    Our relationship with Israel hit the toilet when we elected the Dear Leader Zerobama. He is no friend of Israel. This is no surprise with his M uslim background and Marxist ideology.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:00 pm |
    • SHUPKI

      Israelis still sees the americans as their best friends, Obama is just an error in the american politics

      November 8, 2011 at 8:17 pm |
    • david

      If only bibi hadn't lost his way.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:20 pm |
    • rs1201

      totally agree with you...I knew Israel and the American Jewish Community was in for it at obama's inauguration. His speech was all about a rapprochement with the muslim what end?...I'm not sure...Obama has certainly shown his deep dislike for Jews and Israel for the last three years and he will pay for that in Nov 2012. He and his wife can start packing...and say goodbye to the White House and hello to rev Wrights church.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:26 pm |
    • batman

      Well screw u too egbert!!!!!! I say leave the whole world outside of the US to their OWN ISSUES and PROBLEMS and goes for ISREAL also...if they want peace let them fix it themselved!!!!!

      November 8, 2011 at 8:30 pm |
      • jsmoulder

        They would have taken care of it by now if WE the USA would have let them. But we stopped them, and now we owe it to them to help.

        November 9, 2011 at 1:37 pm |
    • Chuck in Jasper, Ga.

      Sure. Obama made a statement of fact. He has to deal with Netanyahu more than France's President. Is that a lie? Was he supposed to defend Netanyahu while walking with the French President in France? Should he have said "No he isn't!!"? if someone wants to know the definition of absurd... look in a dictionary and you will see a picture of Egbert.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:30 pm |
    • Jason

      I am glad the relationship with Israel "hit the toilet", as you said. Israel takes and takes form the US and gives NOTHING in return. If they are the chosen people, God will defend them...they don't need our money. And, as far as Obama being a M uslim...grow up, your churlish behavior is embarrassing.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:32 pm |
      • matt

        i feel that the US should back the palastinians should be given there own state..
        that way when the Palestinians kill innocent men, women in children, isreal can declare war on a state. something the UN would be forced to endorse.
        personally, i believe that every attack on israel (as one of Americas closest allies not only in that region but also the planet), should be retailiated against by the US as we stand shoulder to shoulder in our unity...
        oh, wait, thats right, the US should give up our military advantage for parity and the prospect of peace... or some other horse pucky uttered by our non combatant commander and chief.

        November 8, 2011 at 8:53 pm |
    • AtheistUS

      Hopefully Israel people will get rid of extremists that are now ruling their country and elect normal moderate government.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:40 pm |
    • telemander

      You should educate yourself on Marxism. Obama's truly nothing like one. He's more of a corporatist.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:42 pm |
    • nigel

      You're being a parrot. Wake up and think for yourself.

      Obama was raised a Christian, and thus has been threatened with beheading by fundamentalist Muslims. How do you think that feels? Or are you unable to put yourself in someone else's shoes.

      Obama is well right of most 20th century Republican presidents. Including Reagan, who raised taxes on several occasions; Nixon, whose national health care plan was shot down, Eisenhower, who decried the military-industrial complex, and Teddy Roosevelt, who was a self-proclaimed Progressive. Read some history, maybe even figure out what "Marxist" means. It would do you a world of good. Oh, and try to stay on topic.

      November 8, 2011 at 9:39 pm |
    • Stephen Daugherty

      Our relationship with Israel won't land in the toilet because of what Obama has done. Bush gave the right-wing leaders in that country carte blanche, and failed to make sure that their behavior was restrained, so we wouldn't have to look like jackasses trying to justify some of the lousy and dumb things those leaders have done. Israel's a lot easier to sell when their leader doesn't undermine your designated representative and humiliate him when he comes over.

      If you support more carte blanche, you don't support a free Israel, you support turning Israel into a pariah state. Israel should make itself a lighter burden for those who support it, by ending the misbehavior that lends sympathy to its enemies, and makes it look like a spoiled client state, rather than a sensible democracy thriving in the Middle East among its Arab neighbors. Netanyahu deserves the scorn he is being given. He and others have dropped the ball for their country, putting it in an unsustainable place.

      November 8, 2011 at 10:14 pm |
  36. DavidinTampa

    I did not read a word about Israel....I read how two men feel about Netanyahu.Looks like 68% of Israelies feel the same way as Sarcozy does. All our president said was that he had to deal with him more. How does that affect our relationship with Israel?

    November 8, 2011 at 7:57 pm |
    • rs1201

      As an American Jew...I'm deeply offended by what obama said and he will pay for that in Nov 2012.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:27 pm |
      • AtheistUS

        As an American Jew, I like what Obama said, and I wish he'd say it out loud.

        November 8, 2011 at 8:44 pm |
      • Dean

        What if someone said "As an American Muslim, I think..." I bet you would be offended by that as well. Shows how immature you are.

        November 8, 2011 at 8:46 pm |
      • Stephen Daugherty

        What is it in particular that offends you? This Prime Minister undercuts him at every turn. Should he be grateful he makes Obama look like a fool when he's trying to negotiate a peace process? Should he be grateful when he goes behind his back with the Republicans, or makes speeches critical of him?

        The problem with far too many people in politics nowadays is that they screw people over royally, but get shocked when other people don't like them or rush to shower them with praise. Supporting Netanyahu and Israel are not the same thing. Supporting the dumb fools on the right in Israel who think that there nation can indefinitely sustain an aimless, endless war of counterterrorism, rather than settle things down is not the same thing as supporting Israel.

        Folks are confusing agreement and flattery of their politics with constructive support, so Obama looks less like an ally than Bush. However, what Bush allowed Israel to do hasn't ended it's problems, only let them settle in all the more toxically. The Israeli Government, especially on the right, needs a wake-up call, not more yes-man nonsense from the right in this country.

        November 8, 2011 at 10:25 pm |
      • Mico Jäger

        As an American Atheist, I am deeply pleased that Obama said that; only wish he had said it louder. He will certainly get my vote in 2012.

        November 8, 2011 at 10:54 pm |
      • bob

        nice to see where your priorities are – you dont put america first. you put israel first. you arent a jewish american. you are a jew who happens to live in america. it's time america started to put america first, instead of worrying about 'special relationships'.

        November 8, 2011 at 10:58 pm |
    • nigel

      Wow. How close minded can you be? I don't think Obama really counts you among his supporters anyway, so go ahead and vote for whatever whacko is willing to put principles aside and suck up to Bibi. Bibi is such a beautiful person.

      November 8, 2011 at 9:45 pm |
  37. Sunnyside18

    Open mouth, Obama and put foot in. Whether people like Prime Minister Netanyahu or not is not the point. The president of the United States should have more discretion then to open his mouth and say something like that. He was totally wrong. If he wanted to express what he felt about the prime minister, then say it in private or keep it to himself.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:51 pm |
    • Chuck in Jasper, Ga.

      I love the way some create something out of nothing. Where in Obama's statement did he express his "opinion" about Netanyahu? He did no such thing. He stated he has to deal with him more often. Period. There was no opinion expressed as you intimate but not factual in the remotest of ways. That is your interpretation but I am sure that if Obama said he leaned to the left to pass gas, you would claim he was doing it wrong that he had to lean to the right. You are just one of those people that will never get it.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:35 pm |
    • matt

      if fupaus like this don't happen on an open mic, its not like it will be admitted on the campaign trail..
      i mean, we all know politicians say everything they feel, and speak the truth 100% so the american voting public can elect the right person right? because being the right man for the job isn't nearly as important as personal glory and greed.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:57 pm |

    Too bad these Presidents don't have the courage to express their views in public. We all know Netanyahu is a liar. He so called " wants to" negotiate w/ the palestinians but continues to build illegal settlements. Why is the world so scared of Israel. It is such a small country. US although has it's hands tied by organizations such as AIPAC.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:41 pm |
  39. june

    I don't think President Obama's comment was mean spirited at all. “You’re fed up with him, but I have to deal with him even more often than you.” Obama didn't call him a liar, he just stated that he has to deal with him more often than what he probably would like. But wait, the rightwingers haven't put their 2% in so I'm sure they'll get a different reading.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:40 pm |
    • Jules

      One need not be a right winger to understand that this statement was inappropriate and disrespectful at best. Go ahead, keep whining and blaming one party while failing to acknowledge the weaknesses and hypocrisy of the left. That'll really bring on the hope and change.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:42 pm |
      • Stephen Daugherty

        Weakness and Hypocrisy? That's what we get from the Right, the folks eager to start wars, but who can't seem to finish them. Why? Because in their eagerness, and their arrogance about their abilities as defenders of the realm, they've actually lost the proper skill-sets to figure out the real threats and the wisest way of dealing with them.

        November 8, 2011 at 10:27 pm |
  40. not to smart

    I can't believe Presidents actually let this kind of thing happen, Professional Idiots.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:39 pm |
    • Rob

      Not to smart? I believe you meant to use the word "too." You aren't too smart.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:29 pm |
    • Brian

      not TOO smart... is what you meant. And what you are

      November 8, 2011 at 8:29 pm |
  41. HowlinWolves

    Sick of the amount of attention Israel gets compared to what it contributes to the rest of the world. They spend more than just about anyone else lobbying the US gov't. The US still sends them billions every year for absolutely no reason at all. All they do is whine and connive.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:39 pm |
    • matt

      israel (per capita) has the most nobel lauriats in the world...
      muslims with millions and millions more people, has almost none...
      you do the math.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:59 pm |
      • John

        Amazing what you can do when you're the biggest welfare state in the world, isn't it? Israel has leeched more money out of the coffers of the US and Europe than any other nation in it's short history. Looks like socialism works for them... with your money, of course.

        November 8, 2011 at 10:08 pm |
      • Truth will someday come

        Actually, its not millions, its over a billion.. so if Israel has the most with their small numbers, and muslims dont have alot with their 1.2 billion, then what about christians who are also 1.5 billion.. and what about the other 4 billion people in the world... if you gonna talk about the stupidity of 1 group, you might as well comment on everybodys.. and in this case, your "put down" of muslims, really led to you stating that the rest of the world are idiots.. since the global population is much larger.. dont forget, its not always what you say, its whats you neglect to say that shows the rest of us what youre really stating..

        November 8, 2011 at 10:29 pm |
    • Mr. N

      israel (per capita) has the most war crimes in the world...
      is also the most militant state in the world
      has the largest illegal WMD stockpile in the world
      Has the most UN condemnations of any state...

      November 8, 2011 at 9:54 pm |
  42. Edwin

    This won't hurt U.S.-Israel relations. Israel is frosty towards us now, but we still give them gobs of money, so they're not gonna stop being an ally. And Obama didn't really say anything terrible.

    It might hurt France-Israel relations, but I doubt they really have any.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:33 pm |
    • Stan

      Don't know where you get the idea that the US gives them anything. Israel is one of the few countries that repays everything the US sells (gives) them.

      November 8, 2011 at 10:43 pm |
  43. scott

    President Sarkozy is governed by principle, and he has stood up for his beliefs. Obama's statement is just another example of his weakness. He is in effect revealing a lot more than he fully understands, not very clever after all.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:30 pm |
  44. Ron

    Obama's past comments and actions told us where he stood regarding Israel long ago. Something like this isn't unexpected.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:28 pm |
  45. Blue Chip

    Obama's comments were hardly offensive. If anything; sarkozy was sincere in his comments, perhaps he shouldn't have uttered them. At some point israel will have to own their existence and the challenges that come with that. How long are we going to shoulder the world and their problems while ours bury us. Palestinians deserve peace and existence just as the israelis do. I think obama is the first U.S president to make that painfully clear.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:26 pm |
  46. SPQR

    So what. People have the right to have an opinion.

    What do you think Netanyahu calls President Obama off the record.

    To Zionist's anybody that is not Jewish is a Goyim.

    Ask a Jewish person what that means.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:25 pm |
  47. Don McLaughlin

    oops... my comment ran afoul of the censors here. Let me try again...

    I don't see a problem the two had a frank and honest conversation about a rather dishonest Israeli politician.

    Why is it that the truth gets so many people in to trouble. What ever happened to the expression:

    And the truth shall set you free...

    November 8, 2011 at 7:25 pm |
  48. Don McLaughlin

    I don't see a problem the two had a frank and honest conversation about a rather disreputable Israeli politician.

    Why is it that the truth gets so many people in to trouble. What ever happened to the expression:

    And the truth shall set you free...

    November 8, 2011 at 7:23 pm |
  49. SPW

    Obama should act like this more often.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:19 pm |
    • Che-3

      CNN Israeli Website: Your comment is awaiting moderation.

      You couldn't have said it better to the World. I bet CNN as Israeli Website will be making this a political issue in this presidential elections. Wait and see

      November 8, 2011 at 8:40 pm |
  50. Greg, Ontario

    Ho humm...more irrelevant babble. Do you really think Israel is going to sit back and let Iran make a bomb? All you negative people are going to want Netanyahu at the helm when he finally has had enough of foreign meddling. Maybe if America had a leader with a backbone like him it wouldn't be the worlds biggest mess.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:18 pm |
    • Stephen Daugherty

      You're saying this about the guy who intervened in Libya and who got Bin Laden after Bush never laid a hand on him. The thing folks like you fail to understand is that people like Bush and Netanyahu may sound tough, may sound decisive, but in reality, they make one decision, and then can't back their stupid rear ends off of them. They talk tough, and end up in a position where they lose prestige if they make another choice, so they end up letting their problems grow and fester.

      That's how Bush took so long, and spent so much of America's future tax dollars on unseating Saddam Hussein, while Obama succeeds in dislodging another dictator, one who long troubled us, without one dead America on the ground, with a budget of a billion dollars, and with a military engagement that is now basically over.

      You may think yourselves tough, but you're really just stubborn, and don't take telling well.

      November 8, 2011 at 10:36 pm |
  51. Dreamer96

    French leaders in the past have been verbal about dealing with Israel, and referred to Israel as being such a little country, that causes so much trouble....Even the U.S. has been upset in the past with Israel selling technology to China that Israel just got from the U.S....or using Israeli spies in the U.S.....Or the Israel's getting money to NOT build more housing on disputed lands in Israel, and then doing it anyway...

    November 8, 2011 at 7:17 pm |
  52. Erik

    Truth hurts sometimes. Get over it.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:16 pm |
  53. QS

    Blah blah, blah blah blah blah blah, blah blah....blah blah, blah!!

    Oops, was that on an open mic? Great, now everyone knows that I don't care about the arrogance and childishness that religion has perpetuated in that region.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:13 pm |
    • Jules

      Why blame religion? I get a little tired of the sort of arrogance which assumes that only the religious are capable of lying, childishness, hypocrisy, close-mindedness, and pettiness. We should all look in a mirror and figure out how to get rid of it in ourselves before we blame those who have opposing views.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:46 pm |
  54. Ozzi

    The Israelis are treacherous liars and I am tired of my tax dollars going to their country instead of my country. I don't want my country to devolve into the third-world backwater. America out of Israel!

    November 8, 2011 at 7:12 pm |
  55. Jose

    I'm glad they were caught - it's about time someone has called Netanyahu out... that guy is an obstinate dou che.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:11 pm |
  56. QuietStormX

    What is this? I think this is criminal and suspect someone set tis up to record the off conversation between President Barack Obama and French President Sarkozy. But to then report on a private conversation and get comments on it is just rag news trying to make news. This is now nothing new between world leaders. A Private Conversation people that wern't suppose to be news! Report the News, don't try and make news like they have done in the U.K. , spying.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:08 pm |
  57. guy from NM

    The only embarrassment is that both country are still treating Israel with kids gloves. Netanyahu is a criminal.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:07 pm |
  58. Richard

    Israel should deal with its problems not us.
    We have enough problems at home.
    We got too much trouble for the mistakes Israel has done.
    Don't come with that line that they are our allies, como on, that one is too old.
    The US belongs to americans and not anyone else.
    Let's get real.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:06 pm |
  59. Luke Brown

    So what? Everyone in Israel knows that Netanyahu is a pain in the butt. That's why they elected him.

    That the President of France thinks he is a liar is not news, nor is the fact that Obama has had a very hard time working with him.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:04 pm |
  60. Ramy

    Eventhough I am not a fan of president Obama, I don't see anything that could be held agaist him in what he said. On the contrary, what he said was a very political answer. He didn't insult Netenyahu and at the same time was establishing common ground with Sarkozy.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:03 pm |
  61. Berman

    This won't damage the US-Israel relationship b/c the US-Israel relationship is based on so much more than whether or not the current heads of state are BFFs or not. Shared commitments to democracy, freedom of speech, freedom of religion, minority rights, freedom of the press, scientific advancement, and combating extremism bind us together. Those binds are stronger than the relationship between any two Presidents or Prime Ministers.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:03 pm |
  62. RowlandP

    Obama continues to embarrass the United States with his gross ineptitude. Whether he cares for Netanyahu or not, the President (for God's sake) should not disrespect him to other world leaders. Obama has become a bad joke among Americans who wish for our president to possess a modicum of statesmanship. I fear that even CNN's orgasmic support for this "historic" president won't keep him in office following the next election.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:02 pm |
    • JP

      The only one to be embarrassed is Bibi, who was subject to a conversation that parents have about a misbehaving child. What will he do? Refuse our billions that they take from American taxpayers against their will by buying US politicians?

      November 8, 2011 at 9:16 pm |
    • Ben

      The only joke is your short sightedness. The President did not say anything that was offensive. He simply made a statement that the whole world knows is true. What problem do you have with the truth?
      I hope you enjoy's Obama's second inuguration.

      November 9, 2011 at 1:34 pm |
  63. Jon

    Benjamin Netanyahu is a murdering new-con thug. He has the blood of Palestinians AND Jews on his hands. He's an escalator of perpetual war, and he'll burn in hell. Is he liar? Who cares. Let's stop letting American Neo-Con religious crusaders lead us into perpetual wars. They're bankrupting us.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:57 pm |
  64. Perry

    In general I find you to be a fairly respectable reporter (even if you work for CNN, relax Ted, its a joke) and while this post doesn't destroy that crediblity it is however sad. Making a mountain out of "no-hill". President Obama (and I am not a big supporter) responded in a perfectly politically correct way, sympathizing with his French counterpart and not directly bashing the other. He left it up to interpretation, which you interpreted as a way to sell yourself and your boss, SAD. Where have all the real journalists gone?

    November 8, 2011 at 6:55 pm |
  65. Paganguy

    The leaders of Israel (not the paople) are like spoiled children. They know that the parents (USA, England, France) will bail them out no matter what.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:52 pm |
  66. Dixie AZ

    I agree with the 2 statesmen - French and American - I'm fed up, too.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:52 pm |
  67. the_dude

    Its just 2 colleagues badmouthing another. Happens every day at my job.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:50 pm |
  68. Chris

    I don't think this will strain the relationship much. Netanyahu already knows he's a liar.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:43 pm |
  69. Dave

    Is it just me that wishes they'd be honest like this always, rather than just by accident?

    November 8, 2011 at 6:41 pm |
  70. JnDeckers

    Netanyahu works hard so Israel can survive. Perhaps Obama and Sarkozy don't care for Netanyahu because they are are pro-Palestinian.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:39 pm |
  71. obd

    Obama seems to have suddenly remembered that it was Jews and not Arabs who put him over the top in 2008. This snafu won't hurt him a bit. Hymietown still supports Jesse Jackson.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:38 pm |
    • Ben

      The Jews are smart people. They can judge is actions which have been absolutely pro-Isreal- Notting the republicans will like to see more than a wedge between the president and the Jewish community.
      Yes, we all know that he is not the best of buddy's with Netanyahu, but is policies have been overwhelminly pro-Isreal-you won't know it from the way the right wing is trying to use Isreal as a tool for their political dance. That is what the republicans does.

      November 9, 2011 at 1:46 pm |
  72. JnDeckers

    Netanyahu works hard so Israel can survive. Perhaps Obama and Sarkozy don't care for Netanyahu because Obama and Sarkozy are pro-Palestinian.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:37 pm |
  73. Brian

    This is not the quote I read of Mr. Obama on the BBC. "You may be sick of him, but me, I have to deal with him every day." I don't find this damning of Obama, while Sarkozy's feelings are clear, and don't think this is merely semantics, especially when considering Obama's speech, and most likely the conversation with Sarkozy, was pro-Netanyahu and against Palestinian membership. Also, entire diplomatic relationships should be based on what leaders think of leaders on a personal level, or comments taken by media, unprofessionally, under no context. I think all counties involved understand where they stand with one-another, France, USA, and Israel.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:37 pm |
    • Brian

      CNN is also reporting Obama as saying, "You're tired of him; what about me?" You guys need to figure it out. A quote is a quote. Get it right.

      November 8, 2011 at 7:20 pm |
  74. Jersey3038

    I'm tired of all the BS with Isreal and everyone else over there. I say we support them by selling them arms and nothing more. It's time they stopped talking and got after it. It's enough already.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:30 pm |
  75. Justaminit

    BB is a hawk and building is a provocation against the Palestinians. This conflict has gone on and on and on, with no end in sight. BOTH sides are entrenched and refuse any real compromise. I am sure that the whole world is tried of hearing about it. Time to get off your duffs in Israel and come to an agreement. There are too many other global issues right now. Some one be the grown-up.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  76. Are we surprised?

    Netanyahu is not the easiest premier minister to get along with. He takes a lot for granted and a lot of risks that might turn out to hurt his country when world opinion turns against Israel. Yes, unfortunately nations that have been hurt in the past are not above hurting others in present time.
    Israel's building policy in the west Bank is not helping to negotiate any of the problems. Good thing that Sarkozy is of jewish descent, so nobody can come here and throw in the anti semitism card.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  77. bb69

    President Obama and his staff are plenty busy as it is - a schedule reportedly burdened with relentless visits and discussions with Richard Trumka. One can guess that it is possible that Axelrod, Plouffe and Jarrett find this unusual
    cat from Israel to be a bit of a pain, and apparently have advised the President to treat him as such.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  78. musings

    Wow, sounds pretty mild, what Obama said. As for Sarkozy, you certainly cannot smear him as an anti-semite. Netanyahu is not a sacred cow, just another politician. As such, calling him a liar is probably like saying he brushes his teeth when he gets up in the morning.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:17 pm |
  79. Albert

    I think it was all planned. These guys new that reporters were nearby, and that they always keep the mic on. This was done on purpose to send a message.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
  80. JK

    That's what happens when Obama is away from his teleprompter. He's got no clue what to say.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:11 pm |
  81. Notalida

    The French newspaper that broke the story quotes Obama as saying, "You’re fed up with him, but I have to deal with him every day," which raises all kinds of uncomfortable questions. So did Wolf "Mossad" Blitzer change the quotation for American consumption?

    November 8, 2011 at 6:10 pm |
  82. Jim in Florida

    CNN is good at drawing out the anti Semites in droves – looks like they are out on this one. I am sure Netanyahu would say the same thing about having to deal with Obama – a lot of world leaders probably say that in private.

    Obama has never been a friend of Israel. Obama was trained by the anti Semite Rev Jeremiah Wright. No surprise that Obama is more than willing to throw the State of Israel under the bus, then turn around and beg US Jews for campaign contributions.

    Obama lies, lots of people around the worl dwill die

    November 8, 2011 at 6:09 pm |
  83. azRose

    I don't think Obama's comment will go over very well with Jewish voters.

    November 8, 2011 at 6:05 pm |
  84. John

    Funny, the BBC and others are reporting that Obama said... " I have to deal with him every day"

    November 8, 2011 at 6:05 pm |
  85. Elphaba

    Israel has to stop building settlements in Palistinian land. They're provoking the Palistinians, then crying when the Palistinians fight back. When Netanyahu got elected, I said to myself "There goes any chance for peace in the middle east." It just isn't going to happen as long as he's in power.

    November 8, 2011 at 5:56 pm |
  86. dlaurels

    I don't think that the President's comments will have anything to do with the relationship with Israel.

    November 8, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  87. fortydam

    Call it like it is! Israel is the biggest problem in the world! It's the reason we have a target on our backsides. It's the reason the conservatives in this country continue to get funding from super pac funding. Israel owns the United States, and corporate America.

    November 8, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
    • Jack

      Its great to hear what the leaders are really thinking instead of them always being PC

      November 8, 2011 at 6:55 pm |
    • Texana

      Respectfully, your comment shows your complete misunderstanding of Israel and the issues. It would benefit you to do your own research from unbiased sources about the history of Israel, their government (the only Democracy in the Middle East), and its relationships with the US. Your comment seems anti-Israel and anti-Jewish. There are many problems in the world, and Iran comes to my mind. The Muslim extremists come to my mind, as I think of not only 9/11 but also the many plots against US citizens. The human rights violations around the world, and you think that Israel is the biggest problem? Your lack of understanding is horrifying.

      November 8, 2011 at 7:08 pm |
    • augustwashington

      I don't know about all of that, but I've never understood why we do so much for Israel, or why we seem bound to them for life.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:02 pm |
    • J

      Almost Everything we do is for ourselves (the US) so it is in my opinion incorrect to state that what we are presently or most currently doing is for Israel. That's what people don't get. Right now we are not doing for them we are doing for us. But here the article is about people not nations, and this blog has become about the nation of Israel. It is politically naive to think we are Israeli puppets, quite the contrary.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:40 pm |
  88. ClosetIguna

    I guess Israel won't be getting a pass on a bombing raid of Iran after all

    November 8, 2011 at 5:20 pm |
    • Nukyular in MI

      You think pass vs. no-pass matters to Israel? When they feel like they can get away with it (flyover issue, etc.) they'll go for it (as they did in Osirak in Iraq in the 80s), and if it works, we (the U.S.) won't make a peep.

      Nothing new to see here. Keep moving, please.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:52 pm |
    • J

      Who attacked Iraq and Libya blame Israel is extreme anti-semetism!

      November 8, 2011 at 7:38 pm |
  89. anthony78

    Wait.. so HOW does this hurt Obama? Because he stated he had to deal with Netanyahu more often then Sarkozy? Sarkozy calls Net a liar... must be some truth to that, especially since he said it when he thought the mics were OFF. That seems like the real story in all of this... Obama and Sarkozy both look like they were having an honest conversation. Maybe Netanyahu should learn to be a little more respectful when he visits our President, and maybe he should actually hold true to some of his words... we all know the reality of that though.

    November 8, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
    • yougotthatright

      Yup, as I recall Benny wasn't very respectful to our President, so what comes around goes around.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:05 pm |
    • John

      Actual words, except at CNN... " I have to deal with him every day"

      November 8, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
    • JP

      I completely concur with you Anthony. Netanyahu is a big liar and so is AIPAC and the whole illegitimate state of Israel (Viva la Palestine)

      November 8, 2011 at 6:14 pm |
    • ch

      You're kidding, right? Obama has been quite disrespectful to Netanyahu- more than once. Wonder how he's going to explain this one.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
    • Berman

      I would like for you to list specific times that Netanyahu has "broken his word" to President Obama. Be very specific.

      November 8, 2011 at 7:03 pm |
    • Keith32

      How does it hurt Obama? Easy. Jewish-American pro-Israel voters. When Anthony Weiner lost his seat, a republican won in a traditionally heavy Democratic district. That district is also heavily Jewish and they were getting restless with the Democrats criticism of Israel.

      November 8, 2011 at 7:25 pm |
    • Ryan

      The mics were ON. It says it in the story. That is the whole point. They were talking about the Israeli PM, not aware the microphones were on.
      Obama needs to keep his mouth shut. He's walking around with the French government, the French that at one point nearly all Americans hated because of their refusal to aid in the Iraq/Afghan wars (remember that people, when Americans ate Freedom Fries instead of French Fries because we were so put out with France? A time before quai-hippy protests that aren't making a difference in economics, when people actually stood side by side for something we all believed in: FREEDOM and AMERICA?) Looks like the President has achieved some thing in office, get the world to hate America, tear America down, and get Americans to turn against each other while not taking responsibility for any of his actions.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:07 pm |
  90. Mark New York

    I'm a civilian that isn't privy to the inside discussions and deliberations, and I have a loathing for him.

    He continues to build homes on the land that the Palestinians claim, and he continues to handcuff America to them, so we can both draw the ire of the middle east. They endanger not only their own National Security, but also ours. That is a problem and I have a serious issue with.

    These Nationalists in Israel have been sabotaging the peace process with the Palestinians for years. Netanyahu is on record proclaiming that he doesn't think the Palestinians should have a state, that he thinks that Jordan is their state. Never mind the fact that that land was majority Arab, and the UN gave them a freebie in 1947 by granting them a bigger slice of the land, never mind the fact that those people have had a rough life over their with the draconian blockade.

    They aren't interested in solving the problem. They are interested in finishing their robbery of the west Bank.

    When is America going to jettison this liability? They clearly don't behave like allies. They behave by blackmail and idiocy.

    November 8, 2011 at 5:09 pm |
    • Phil

      Israel just doesn't get it. They are literally holding U.S. in an extortion-type strangle-hold where they think we need to heed their every desire and stand by their stance which includes ignoring or denying a rightful Palestinian existence as a free and independent neighboring state. Damn the 1948 actions which ignored Palestine's existence when they formed an Israeli State. In actuallity, at present, the shoe should be on the other foot, where we have a Palestine State and Isareal on their knees asking for a state. WW2's Jewish misery should not have been the impetus for an Israel and a complete disregard for the current land occupants, the Palestinians. For what hs resulted, Israel should have been made a state in the arctic for all the headaches the 1948 actions have caused the entire region.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:52 pm |
    • Berman

      Your entire argument is based on the assumption that whatever land the Palestinians claim for themselves is actually theirs. Just because the Palestinians "claim" territory as theirs doesn't make it so. I think some people in Israel would disagree with you on whose land the settlements are being built on. Also, your failure to acknowledge the fact that the Palestinian populace is currently governed by two different governments who are still in a de facto state of war with each other, Abu Mazzen's absolute refusal to negotiate with Netanyahu (Bibi has repeatedly said "any time, any where"), or the fact that Hamas still hasn't renounced terrorism and accepted Israel's right to exist MIGHT have anything to do with the current impasse in negotiations shows either a complete ignorance of the situation on the ground or an incomprehensible bias against the Israelis.

      November 8, 2011 at 7:08 pm |
    • Albert

      Mark you should learn the history of the Middle East. Jews have been on the land for centuries. The "Palestinians could have had their state had they accepted in '47, but rejected it because they thought they could "drive the Jews into the sea".
      What has the PA done as part of their bargain to gain peace with Israel?

      November 8, 2011 at 7:21 pm |
    • Kevin H

      The Israeli government is playing a brinksmanship game and unfortunately – I hate to say this – Sec. Clinton and the President have been too pro-Israeli. Anti-zionist is not the same thing. The Israeli's have crossed the line with settlements in Palestinian territory. No wonder the Palestinians want to destroy them. We are showing far too much favoritism to Israel.

      November 8, 2011 at 7:24 pm |
  91. Rossy

    Obama's every trip to Europe represent a new blooper and a new embarrassing moment for the USA...

    November 8, 2011 at 5:08 pm |
    • sgurdog

      Remember when Bibbi chastised Obama on camera? Well this is payback for trying to dominate US policy.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
    • Jess C

      Actually, they are speaking the truth. If it hurts, so be it.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:09 pm |
    • Irene

      Maybe that's wishful thinking on your part, but Obama runs circles around Bush when it comes to diplomacy. You must believe that if you tell a lie often enough that people will believe it – Shame on you!

      November 8, 2011 at 6:58 pm |
    • John Nemesh

      You think Obama is embarrassing? How do you think Rick Perry or Herman Cain would play overseas? I think it would take either of them about 2 seconds to embarrass the entire nation when speaking in front of a world audience....heaven forbid that crazy teabagger Bachmann ever gets elected...

      November 8, 2011 at 7:06 pm |
    • adam

      I dont see how him being honest is an embarressment to the USA.

      What has Israel ever done for us?

      November 8, 2011 at 7:20 pm |
    • LouieD

      @Rossy: If, by "new blooper and new embarrassing moment", you mean a measure of respect for us restored, after Bush absolutely mortified us, then you are absolutely correct.

      November 8, 2011 at 7:21 pm |
    • Charlotte

      You must be thinking of our previous president, the moron who couldn't even read a book rightside-up. Obama has committed no bloopers and far from embarrassing us like GodaWful Bushie, has brought dignity back to us and some degree of respect on the international stage. Wake up, @Rossy, you're badly confused.

      November 8, 2011 at 7:27 pm |
  92. Rich

    I don't think it will do any more damage then Obama has already done to the frosty relationship between the two nations. It is very unfortunate for America who desperately needs Israel in it's fight in the middle east. The president seems to have forgotten that we still have soldiers in harms way and we need all the allies we can get. Obama stuck his foot in Americas mouth on this one. What he said was definitely un-presidential and uncalled for.

    November 8, 2011 at 5:04 pm |
    • Rossy

      Absolutely right...Less allies in the world implies less influence.....

      November 8, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
    • Charles Dexter Ward

      "Desperately need Israel"? I don't see Israeli troops getting in front of these fact, the only reason we're stuck in most of these wars is BECAUSE of Israel.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:14 pm |
    • obsthetimes

      Ridiculous. America needs Israel like a bad painful fissure.
      Please say it like it is. America props up Israel every day. America does not have a fight in the middle easy.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
    • Nodack

      We aren't owned by Israel as you guys seem to act like. What Israel does effects us since we are their only real ally. Their raid of Palestinian lands is wrong and Obama called them out on it drawing the ire of Republicans that think we should bow down to their every whim. I'm glad Obama stood up to them and called them out. I'm a little saddened the he back tracked some due to pressure from home.

      It seems lots of Americans are getting into hot water for speaking the truth. The General that just got canned in Iraq spoke the truth and is now gone. Oh well, let's kiss Iraq and Israel's butts because they should be telling us what to do I guess.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:29 pm |
    • Jean Sartre, Milwauke, WI

      President Obama did not say anything wrong or hurtful to srael or Nut-In-Yahoo... Sarko, on the other hand, told the TRUTH!

      I know, maybe the French people should fire him as we just fired a good General for telling the TRUTH!

      Don't hold your breath though...

      November 8, 2011 at 6:44 pm |
    • Jack

      Isreal is NO help to us. It if wasnt for them, we wouldnt have so many enemies in the mideast.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:57 pm |
    • Rehabman11

      Israel doesn't help in the middle east. They weren't in Iraq, they weren't in afganistan. They won't leave their own damn country to help anyone else, but they want the world to pity them? Bull, they are the thugs now, maybe it's time they take a hard look in the mirror to see who they have become.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:59 pm |
    • Berman

      I don't understand why people think the relationship between the US and Israel is "frosty". President Obama is not the United States of America and Netanyahu is not Israel. They are two men who represent a portion of their governments. The friendship between the US and Israel runs much deeper than these two men. Just earlier this week the US announced that we will conduct our largest training exercise EVER with the Israelis. Over 5,000 of our troops will train together. Does that sound like a "frosty" relationship? As a matter of fact, did you hear the speech Obama gave at the UN just a couple of weeks ago? The relationship between Obama and Netanyahu is "frosty" however the relationship between our two great democracies has never been better.

      November 8, 2011 at 7:12 pm |
    • stonesrule

      I'll go further.....Obama needs to immediately step aside and let anyone – anyone, Dem or Repub, handle the job that he clearly cannot. It sure would be interesting to hear what other heads of state say about Obama when the mics are off!

      November 8, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
    • Kevin

      Seriously? America desperately needs Israel? You seem to be a bit confused. Israel desperately needs the United States. To be clearer, they need US money and military equipment. Otherwise, they would have been bulldozed into the Mediterranean Sea a long time ago. We need Israel like we need a hole in our head.

      November 8, 2011 at 7:59 pm |
    • larry

      we don't need Israel...they need us and the only people they are fighting are the helpless Palestinians

      November 8, 2011 at 8:05 pm |
    • Vieteran

      Some folks still drinking that tea beleiving the US need Isreal for peace in the middle east, your facts are backwards, Isreal need the US for its exitence, who provide a continous supply of money? who provide all of their weapontry, who provides the majority of their intel? How many conflicts have the Isreal assisted the US in? Zero, are they in Afgan? No, are they in Pkistan? No, Why is Isreal still in exitence and not being attack and destroyed by all of the contries in the Middle East who hate them? The US . So put down the tea and get of the Republican talking point and look at the facts.

      November 8, 2011 at 8:08 pm |
    • Hobbits

      Israel isn't what we need in the middle east, its strong Muslim countries. Its our relationship with Israel that creates problems with the surrounding nations. We are long past the point of letting Israel stand or fall on their own. We can't and shouldn't play big brother forever.

      November 8, 2011 at 10:06 pm |
  93. Griff

    "No!!! If anything it will build a stronger relationship with the USA and Europe (not counting England). Obama is on his way out anyways, and so is the Democrate party. The ermbarassment of even the election of Barack Obama won't go away in decade's, so the Democratic Party is finished to my point of view."

    November 8, 2011 at 5:03 pm |
    • Wes Scott

      Everybody is entitled to their own opinion, and you have yours. However, with the current field of GOP candidates it is highly unlikely that your prediction will prove to be accurate. Personally, I do not like Obama for myriad reasons, and did not want him as our president, but he was the best of the terrible choice we had at the time, and it looks like he will be the best of an even worst choice (if that is possible) this time. The GOP is its own worst enemy. By the time those candidates finish eating each other alive there will be little left for Obama to eat in the general election. Obama will have a campaign treasure chest of nearly $1.5 billion, and the GOP candidate, whomever survives the blood bath, will have perhaps ten percent as much.

      Corporate America, specifically the oligarchy that runs the world, has already determined that Obama best fits their current needs. It is sheer folly to believe that we actually have a real choice in who leads us. Most of the most qualified would never even seek that office because of the infantile way the process works. We keep looking for a saint when none exists.

      November 8, 2011 at 5:50 pm |
  94. Ron Ben

    American president commenting about some country leader. What's wrong with that? If some one does not like free expression, America is not the place for you to live.

    November 8, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
    • Berman

      Well, the issue is that it was a rather unseemly comment about an ally of the United States. However, the issue is being blown way out of proportion.

      November 8, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
  95. Dan

    Does not sound like a friend, our president!?
    More like the same non-leader Obama we know who tries to agree with everyone, including the French on Israel!!!!!!

    November 8, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
  96. a in austin

    So Sarkozy doesn't like Netanyahu – big deal!

    November 8, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
  97. Laverne

    What's so bad about those comments?? Just listening at Netanyahu talk and his actions I would feel the same way, the guy is a bully!

    November 8, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
  98. claude

    Hello Mr. Blitzer, we love your program up here in Canada. I would like to know if Sarkozy’s comments and Obama’s response were being translated to both head of states, if not was both speaking French or English. Thank you

    November 8, 2011 at 4:47 pm |
  99. pierre glenn

    President Obama is nt first one who got caught talking....thinking the mic was off. George W Bush has had it happen an probably many more former President. So dnt mke a big issue, even bet sme jouranlist hve got caught on tv. thanx Wolf columbia Mo

    November 8, 2011 at 4:43 pm |
    • Chris

      lol, he has also been caught on video lying under oath and refusing to take the oath. He was never on our side.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
  100. Newmoon2

    What is unfortunate is BOTH Sarcozy and Obama are correct in their assessment of Netanyahu. He IS a liar and we're ALL tired of dealing with him. The truth is sometimes painful.

    November 8, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
    • BelleAmira

      EXACTLY! He is a liar and a bully, and nothing wrong with a little honesty for ONCE from our politicians!

      November 8, 2011 at 7:05 pm |
    • Berman

      I want you to name 4 times Netanyahu has "lied". Give the dates, the issue, and a link to back up the story. Otherwise you're just spouting a bunch of libel.

      November 8, 2011 at 7:15 pm |
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