Jeffrey Goldberg from the Atlantic did what he could do best to harm Netanyahu's chances to win a decisive victory next week. Goldberg is considered to be close to the Obama administration and on several occasions during the past four years the White House has channeled public messages through him to Israel and the prime minister – regarding both the Palestinian and Iranian issues.
The messages in Goldberg’s column on Bloomberg news, which apparently came from a briefing by top officials at the White House, describes growing frustration in the White House of Netanyahu's latest moves following the Palestinians unilateral declaration of Statehood at the UN last November.
Golberg describes the moment when Obama was informed about the Israeli decision to build in E-1:
"Obama didn’t even bother getting angry. He told several people that this sort of behavior on Netanyahu’s part is what he has come to expect, and he suggested that he has become inured to what he sees as self-defeating policies of his Israeli counterpart."Education Minister Gideon Saar dismissed the claims that the prime minister had undermined relations with the United States, telling Israeli radio that Netanyahu is entrusted with ensuring Israel's interests "including relations with the U.S." and is capable and experienced in diplomatic work with Obama.
"In the weeks after the UN vote, Obama said privately and repeatedly, “Israel doesn’t know what its own best interests are.” With each new settlement announcement, in Obama’s view, Netanyahu is moving his country down a path toward near-total isolation.
'And if Israel, a small state in an inhospitable region, becomes more of a pariah -- one that alienates even the affections of the U.S., its last steadfast friend -- it won’t survive. Iran poses a short-term threat to Israel’s survival; Israel’s own behavior poses a long-term one."
This is not the first time Netanayhu is faced with a President who would prefer to work with one of his opponents, but unlike Clinton in 1999, Obama hasn't taken a public role in indicating he would like to see Netanayhu replaced, but rather let Jeffrey Goldberg a little lose, so the left can do the job in narrowing Bibi's margin of victory, and ultimately undermining Netanyahu's capability to renew negotiations with the Palestinians in his new term.