Obama: U.S. won’t be able to defend Israel if peace talks fail

“If not now, when? And if not you, Mr. Prime Minister, then who?” Obama said.

The president went on to condemn in no uncertain terms Israel’s settlement activities in the West Bank, and said that though his allegiance to the Jewish state was permanent, building settlements across the Green Line was counterproductive and would make it extremely difficult for the US to defend Israel from painful repercussions in the international community.

“If you see no peace deal and continued aggressive settlement construction — and we have seen more aggressive settlement construction over the last couple years than we’ve seen in a very long time — if Palestinians come to believe that the possibility of a contiguous sovereign Palestinian state is no longer within reach, then our ability to manage the international fallout is going to be limited,” Obama said.

The president added that Israel must come to a decision over its future character and weigh whether its current policies were conducive to achieving its true aspirations.