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NYT: Some Bush Sr. advisers express 'deep unease' with 'Israel policies of the son'

RAW STORY
Published: Tuesday August 1, 2006

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"Some advisers to the father are expressing increasingly deep unease with the Israel policies of the son," reads an article slated for the front page of Wednesday's New York Times, RAW STORY has found.

The paper reports that there is "a generational and philosophical divide between the Bushes" which "is exacerbating the friction between their camps."

"When they first met as United States president and Israeli prime minister, George W. Bush made clear to Ariel Sharon he would not follow in the footsteps of his father," writes Sheryl Gay Stolberg for the Times.

"The first President Bush had been tough on Israel, especially the housing settlements Sharon had helped develop," Stolberg continues. "But over tea in the Oval Office that day in March 2001 the new president charted a different course, going beyond the usual expression of support by pledging to use force to protect Israel."

"That embrace represents a generational and philosophical divide between the Bushes, one that is exacerbating the friction between their camps of advisers and loyalists over foreign policy more generally," writes Stolberg.

"As the president continues to defend Israel's bombing campaign against Hezbollah -- even after a weekend attack that left many Lebanese civilians dead and provoked international condemnation -- some advisers to the father are expressing increasingly deep unease with the Israel policies of the son," Stolberg writes.

Excerpts from the Times article:

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“The current approach simply is not leading toward a solution to the crisis, or even a winding down of the crisis,” said Richard N. Haass, who advised the first President Bush on the Middle East and worked as a senior State Department official in the current president’s first term. “There are times at which a hands-off policy can be justified. It’s not obvious to me that this is one of them.”

Unlike the first President Bush, who viewed himself as a neutral arbiter in the delicate politics of the Middle East, the current president sees his role through the prism of the war on terror. This President Bush, unlike his father, also has deep roots in the evangelical Christian community, a staunchly pro-Israeli component of his conservative Republican base.

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Link to full Times article here...