Tags: jimmy carter | israel | president

Jimmy Carter and Israel: Why Does Former President Have Such Rocky Relationship?

By    |   Sunday, 14 December 2014 08:04 PM

The relationship between former President Jimmy Carter and Israeli leaders started on a high note and then got rocky.

The 39th president of the United States achieved substantial and historic results when he brokered the historic 1978 Camp David peace accord between Jewish Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian President Anwar Sadat.

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"There will never be a history of the Middle East written without Jimmy Carter's name in the index," historian Douglas Brinkley told PBS. "Camp David is the beginning of a process that still goes on. And a hundred years from now, 200 years from now, people will be talking about the Camp David process, that began in those Maryland mountains."

However, Carter has been called anti-Semitic. The Times of Israel reported a “storm of criticism” occurred when Gal Godot — the Israeli actress chose to play “Wonder Woman” in that upcoming movie — posted a photo of herself posing with Carter on her Facebook page.

The Times reported some commenters called Carter a "Nazi." with one critic writing, “I’m surprised he touched a Jew.”

Those perceptions have apparently arisen, at least in part, from political stances Carter has taken regarding Israel. The former president angered the Israeli government by describing its policy in the occupied Palestinian territories as a “system of apartheid” in a book published in 2006, then met with leader Khaled Meshaal of the U.S.-designated terrorist group Hamas in 2008 in Syria, the Palestine Chronicle reported.

In 2013 Carter called on the European Union to label products from West Bank settlements that he said were illegal under international law, although he rejected an economic boycott to pressure Israel over the settlements, the Times of Israel reported. Carter had been an outspoken critic of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Carter further alienated the Jewish community when he and Mary Robinson, former President of Ireland, jointly recommended last August that the West recognize Hamas as a legitimate "political actor" that represents the bulk of the Palestinian population, according to USA Today.

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The relationship between former President Jimmy Carter and Israeli leaders started on a high note and then got rocky.
jimmy carter, israel, president
Sunday, 14 December 2014 08:04 PM
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