Posted by Joshua on Thursday, May 10th, 2007
Forward, Fri. May 11, 2007 |
At a regular gathering of Jewish Republicans, sources said, Abrams described President Bush as an “emergency brake” who would prevent Israel from being pressed into a deal; during the breakfast gathering, the White House official also said that a lot of what is done during Rice’s frequent trips to the region is “just process” — steps needed in order to keep the Europeans and moderate Arab countries “on the team” and to make sure they feel that the United States is promoting peace in the Middle East…
Nationally syndicated columnist Robert Novak accused Abrams of preventing the administration from having a “coherent Middle East policy” which would engage Iran and Syria in an attempt to stabilize Iraq. “I do know that there are a number of Israelis who would like to engage Syria,” Hagel told Novak. “They have said that Elliott Abrams keeps pushing them back.”
Foreign ministers, ambassadors and former Americans officials as saying they believe Abrams “is making policy in the Middle East.” Israel, according to sources close to decision-makers in Jerusalem, also sees Abrams as the leading policy figure in the administration on Middle East issues, a status that has led Olmert to keep an open channel of communications with Bush’s senior adviser. According to the sources, Abrams is also a leading voice in trying to convince American Jews to be more supportive of the war in Iraq….