A leading Israeli author called on the United States to withdraw its ambassador from Tel Aviv.
A.B. Yehoshua, a left-leaning novelist who has flouted convention for decades, published an Op-Ed in Italy’s La Stampa newspaper over the weekend in which he accused President Bush of being too lax in tackling Israel’s failure to raze illegal West Bank settler outposts as required by the “road map” for peace with the Palestinians.
“If the U.S. president really wanted Israel to dismantle the illegal settlement outposts, it would behoove him to stay in the White House and provide medical insurance for his citizens. It would be best for him to recall his ambassador in Tel Aviv indefinitely for consultations, until the evacuation of the settlement outposts,” Yehoshua wrote.
“I can promise you that if he were to do this, the Israeli government would very quickly dismantle the illegal setter outposts, and the U.S. administration would gain the trust of the Palestinians and the Israelis in resuming the peace process.”
Yehoshua further described all West Bank settlements as illegal and described the “Jewish lobby” as having “become a powerful tool of influence on Israel’s behalf within the U.S. administration.”
The comments were reprinted in Sunday’s Yediot Achronot and stirred anger in Israel, where many consider the United States to be their only reliable ally.