Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will address the United Nations today to ask the Security Council for membership. While President Obama is expected to veto the bid, French President Sarkozy is pushing a new time frame with slower negotiations to achieve Mid East peace within a year.
Just a year ago, Obama's speech to the United Nations included a call for a Palestine state and the U.S. supported the Arab Spring, so is the president's credibility in the Middle East at stake?
James Rubin, former U.S. Assistant Secretary of State, and Robin Wright, senior fellow at the U.S. Institute of Peace, talk to Christine Romans on American Morning today about Palestine's bid for statehood and America's strategy in the Middle East.
Confronted with the prospect of a Palestinian bid for full U.N. membership, U.S. President Barack Obama issued a sharp rebuke yesterday to those pressing for statehood.
Hanan Ashrawi, executive committee member for the Palestine Liberation Operation, appears on American Morning today to offer her reaction to Obama's remarks and to weigh on the country's impending request for statehood.
"We do not want any delays or procrastinations in the deliberations on our membership," Ashrawi explains. "We know that the United States has been working overtime and has spent so much energy and effort trying to pressure different countries to persuade them not to vote in our favor."
Ashrawi also comments on yesterday's speech by French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who called for a resolution for non-member "observer status" for Palestine as a bridge toward statehood.
"We found it extremely interesting," Ashrawi says. "We did meet with President Sarkozy and we said we would view it positively and give it positive consideration.
President Obama spoke out about the impending request by the Palestinians for statehood this week, asserting that the U.S. believes that peace between Israel and Palestine will not come through statements and resolutions at the United Nations.
Today on American Morning, Daniel Ayalon, Israeli deputy minister of foreign affairs, sits down with Carol Costello to discuss Palestine's request for statehood and to comment about how the United States is handling the situation.
When asked to comment about the fierce criticism that Obama is receiving from GOP presidential candidates, Ayalon affirms that he does not think that the president has "thrown Israel under the bus."
"It's a very heated political season here and Israel is not part of the campaign," Ayalon explains. "When it comes to Israel, I don't see a difference between Republicans and Democrats. We see only Americans."
While diplomats and world leaders will be tackling some tough global issues at the United Nations general assembly today, the big story of the week will be unfolding on Friday when the Palestinians formally request membership in the U.N. and recognition as a state.
The United States has pledged to block the application should it reach the Security Council but Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas appears undeterred.
Is a showdown looming at the United Nations, or is there still time to come up with a solution that will work for the U.S. and Palestine?
John Negroponte, former U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, talks to Carol Costello on American Morning today about what statehood for Palestine would mean for Israel, the Middle East and the United States.
Negroponte is also participating in the Concordia Summit Tuesday. The Summit focuses on eliminating global terrorism and this year features an address by former President George W. Bush. Read more about the summit here.
Just hours before two American envoys were set to meet with Palestinian leaders yesterday in an attempt to work out a deal for resumption of peace talks with Israel, the Palestinian Authority's foreign minister said that the Palestinians will seek full United Nations membership next week.
The announcement sets the stage for a showdown with the United States, who has vowed to veto a vote on full Palestinian statehood if the question comes to the U.N. Security Council.
Daniel Kurtzer, former ambassador to Israel and Egypt, explains the importance of this move on American Morning today, breaking down the potential repercussions for both the United States and peace talks in the Middle East.