Former Israeli Ambassador Says Netanyahu Should Cancel Speech To Congress

A former Israeli ambassador to the United States said Saturday that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu should cancel his upcoming March address to Congress on Iran at the invitation of House Speaker John Boehner’s request.

“The behavior over the last few days created the impression of a cynical political move, and it could hurt our attempts to act against Iran,” former ambassador Michael Oren said, according to Ynet News. “It’s advisable to cancel the speech to Congress so as not to cause a rift with the American government. Much responsibility and reasoned political behavior are needed to guard interests in the White House.”

The White House has called Netanyahu address at Boehner’s request, done without consultation with the Obama administration, a breach of diplomatic protocol. President Barack Obama will not meet with Netanyahu when he visits, with the White House citing the March 17 Israeli elections.

Oren was tabbed late last year to run for a seat in the Israeli legislature with the centrist Kulanu Party in the March elections. He had been appointed as ambassador to the United States by Netanyahu, who leads the right-wing Likud Party, in 2009. He served in the post until 2013.

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