Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Analysis: Obama's midterm loss could be Netanyahu MidEast win

(reuters).Yasser Abed Rabbo, a Palestinian peace negotiator, voiced confidence the Republican victories would have no bearing on the White House's Middle East policy.

"The American interests in the region do not change as a result of midterm elections," he told Voice of Palestine radio.

But George Giacaman, a Palestinian political scientist, said the Obama administration had already shown "great weakness" in standing up to Israel over settlements.

When the White House confronted Israel last year over plans for settlement expansion on land Palestinians want for a state, Republicans seized on the dispute as a sign that Obama was weak on security issues and unfairly pressuring on a trusted ally.

"Maybe there will be a period of waiting to see if the American administration plans to do some serious work but there is a great feeling of despair and hopelessness," Giacaman said.

In any case, he said, "we only have one year left" before Obama devotes his attention to a campaigning for re-election in the 2012 presidential poll