News / USA

Obama: Gaza Crisis Poses More Damage to Mideast Peace Efforts

US President Barack Obama speaks during a media conference in Bangkok, Thailand, November 18, 2012.
US President Barack Obama speaks during a media conference in Bangkok, Thailand, November 18, 2012.
President Barack Obama says he continues to work to achieve a negotiated solution to the crisis between Israel, and Hamas in Gaza.

Before the president arrived in Southeast Asia, White House officials said he was working the phones with leaders in the region in search of a solution to end Hamas rocket attacks on Israel.

During a news conference in the Thai capital, he was asked if an Israeli military ground operation into Gaza would constitute an escalation of the crisis.

The president summarized his message to leaders like President Mohamed Morsi of Egypt and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey.

"My message to all of them was that Israel had every right to expect that it does not have missiles fired into its territory," he said. "If that can be accomplished, without a ramping up of military activity in Gaza, that is preferable. That is not just preferable for the people of Gaza, it is also preferable for Israelis, because if Israeli troops are in Gaza they are much more at risk of incurring fatalities or being wounded."

The president, and members of his foreign policy team, including Secretary of State Hillary Clinton who is with the president in Asia, are also talking with Israeli leaders, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his advisers.

In his remarks in Bangkok, Obama said he wants to see what progress can be made in coming days.  

The president expanded on what he says he told the Egyptian and Turkish leaders.

"Those who champion the cause of the Palestinians should recognize that if we see a further escalation of the situation in Gaza, then the likelihood of us getting back on any kind of peace track that leads to a two-state solution is going to be pushed back way into the future," said Obama.

Obama said if regional leaders are serious about wanting to resolve the situation and create a genuine Israeli-Palestinian peace process, in his words, "it starts with no more missiles being fired into Israel's territory" creating the space to deal with longstanding conflicts.

You May Like

Turkey: No Ransom Paid for Release of Hostages Held by IS Militants

President Erdogan hails release of hostages as diplomatic success but declines to be drawn on whether their release freed Ankara's hand to take more active stance against insurgents More

Audio Sierra Leone Ends Ebola Lockdown

Health ministry says it has reached 75 percent of its target of visiting 1.5 million homes to locate infected, educate population about virus More

US Pivot to Asia Demands Delicate Balancing Act

As the tumult in the Middle East distracts Obama, shifting American focus eastward appears threatened More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 2
    Next 
by: Poboy
November 23, 2012 7:07 AM
Any hope for peace in that region is a pipedream while its people allow radical Islamic terrorists to determine their national policy. Until then, Israel should continue to do what any sovereign nation has a duty to when confronted by insane neighbors.


by: Meggy from: Canada
November 19, 2012 5:29 AM
If Obama is so worried about "Peace Effort", then why pump more weapons into Middle East? Today Middle East is more armed than any time in history. And we might see Nukes in Middle East once Iranians get their hands on them. Saudi Arabia has already signed contracts with China to transfer Nuclear know-how.


All because Israel wants to deprive a group of people from basic human rights and US turns a blind eye? Pathetic!


by: Sunny Enwerem from: Nigeria
November 19, 2012 1:13 AM
Here goes another round of an unpresidented Hamas provocation in the middleast which I see as an intended move to involve the new Egypt in a fresh new power struggle in the region,Egypt Muslim brotherhood is obviously getting prepared in a fight she intends to make no point to the world,I expect Israel to go for an all out ground invasion to prove a clear point in the region that no state or country will live under the fear of a faceless organization that threatens the citizens with rockets with the intention of bombing anybody,Hamas will remain a place of terror and should b treated with an iron hand until rockets are no longer fired from Gaza.


by: Tim Dailey
November 19, 2012 12:16 AM
i can't stand any of you religious nut cases. i can't stand any of you political nut cases. thank god for the second amendment. leave me alone.


by: Tim Dailey
November 19, 2012 12:10 AM
how about all you folks living over there in the sandy countries............wash your faces and knock it off already. i'm sick of you and your fighting. sick of the western "leaders" playing games. sick of all of you. please don't make me waste any of my stockpiled ammo on your sorry carcasses. please. i hate all of you. kiss my rear. all of you.

In Response

by: Poboy
November 23, 2012 7:09 AM
I love this comment and second his heartfelt plee for tolerance.


by: Michael from: USA
November 18, 2012 11:32 PM
John Calvin [1509-1564 AD, France] mentioned that ingratitude is without excuse. Arab man listens to teacher, but teacher re-examined her role as Jew who did not like having lost her aplomb


by: JohnWV from: USA
November 18, 2012 4:42 PM
The Jewish state has the world's fourth most powerful military which malevolently besieges and imposes the apartheid occupation of Palestine. The Jewish state kills to further its paranoid pursuit of invulnerability, territorial conquest and supremacist empire in, and beyond, the Mideast. The Palestinians, with no chance of prevailing, are driven by decades of Israeli imposed deprivation and desperation. During similar “Operation Cast Lead” the Jews enjoyed a kill ratio near one hundred to one .

In Response

by: Patrick from: USA
November 18, 2012 9:55 PM
No, Israel is not a malevolent beseiger. Are you even aware that in Israel the Muslim Call to Prayer can be publicly heard bellowing 5 times a day? Where in any Muslim territory can one hear the Jewish shofar blasting publicly during the Jewish New Year? As for kill ratio, that was a determining factor when the U.S. bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki to save American lives. Are you suggesting Israel not save their lives? Why do missles come from a densely populated Gaza, with the militants putting innocent Gazans at risk? So I seize this opportunity to ask you who values life more, Israel or the militants in Gaza?


by: JohnWV from: USA
November 18, 2012 4:41 PM
Besieged Palestinian Gaza is an experiment in provocation. Stuff one and a half million people into a tiny space, stifle their access to water, electricity, food and medical treatment, destroy their livelihoods, and humiliate them regularly...and, surprise, surprise - they turn hostile. Now why would you want to make that experiment? Because the hostility you provoke is the whole point. Now under attack you can cast yourself as the victim, and call out the helicopter gunships and the F16 attack fighters and the heavy tanks and the guided missiles, and destroy yet more of the pathetic remains of infrastructure that the Palestinian state still has left. And then you can point to it as a hopeless case, unfit to govern itself, a terrorist state, a state with which you couldn't possibly reach an accommodation. And then you can carry on with business as usual, quietly stealing their homeland.

In Response

by: Poboy
November 23, 2012 7:14 AM
Are you sure you're from America? I find it hard to believe rampant ignorance on your level was able to survive in a country with free access to information. It's not as though every aspect of our lives is controlled (Iran) by an insane regime (Gaza) that makes a habit of preaching genocide (guesss who?) against another ethnic group. Perhaps you'd care to leave my country and go provide your support for the unjustly crushed Palestinian aggressors at the ground level? We'll still be here when you crawl back and eat your words.


by: Dick Brandlon from: Seal Beach, California
November 18, 2012 3:05 PM
If the United States were occupied by an invading nation and one of its leaders assassinated, wouldn't its real leaders speak up for revolution? We did once before. Being against the poisonous policies of the Netanyahu government is no more being against Israel than being against Bush's phony war was being anbti-American.


by: Anonymous
November 18, 2012 2:22 PM
what "peace efforts...?" this guy is delusional... listen to the Muslim Brotherhood and their threats to use their children as suicide murderers... this is not the perversion of Islam - it is Islam..!!!

Comments page of 2
    Next 

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Natural Gas Export Plan Divides Maryland Towni
X
Deborah Block
September 21, 2014 2:12 PM
A U.S. power company that has been importing natural gas now wants to export it. If approved, its plant in Lusby, Maryland, would likely be the first terminal on the United States East Coast to export liquefied natural gas from American pipelines. While some residents welcome the move because it will create jobs, others oppose it, saying the expansion could be a safety and environmental hazard. VOA’s Deborah Block examines the controversy.
Video

Video Natural Gas Export Plan Divides Maryland Town

A U.S. power company that has been importing natural gas now wants to export it. If approved, its plant in Lusby, Maryland, would likely be the first terminal on the United States East Coast to export liquefied natural gas from American pipelines. While some residents welcome the move because it will create jobs, others oppose it, saying the expansion could be a safety and environmental hazard. VOA’s Deborah Block examines the controversy.
Video

Video Difficult Tactical Battle Ahead Against IS Militants in Syria

The U.S. president has ordered the military to intensify its fight against the Islamic State, including in Syria. But how does the military conduct air strikes in a country that is not a U.S. ally? VOA correspondent Carla Babb reports from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Iran, World Powers Seek Progress in Nuclear Talks

Iran and the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany, known as the P5 + 1, have started a new round of talks on Iran's nuclear program. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports that as the negotiations take place in New York, a U.S. envoy is questioning Iran's commitment to peaceful nuclear activity.
Video

Video Alibaba Shares Soar in First Day of Trading

China's biggest online retailer hit the market Friday -- with its share price soaring on the New York Stock Exchange. The shares were priced at $68, but trading stalled at the opening, as sellers held onto their shares, waiting for buyers to bid up the price. More on the world's biggest initial public offering from VOA’s Bernard Shusman in New York.
Video

Video Obama Goes to UN With Islamic State, Ebola on Agenda

President Obama goes to the United Nations General Assembly to rally nations to support a coalition against Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria. He also will look for nations to back his plan to fight the Ebola virus in West Africa. As VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports, Obama’s efforts reflect new moves by the U.S. administration to take a leading role in addressing world crises.
Video

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calais

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Westgate Siege Anniversary Brings Back Painful Memories

One year after it happened, the survivors of the terror attack on Nairobi's Westgate Shopping Mall still cannot shake the images of that tragic incident. For VOA, Mohammed Yusuf tells the story of victims still waiting for the answer to the question 'how could this happen?'
Video

Video Militant Assault in Syria Displaces Thousands of Kurds

A major assault by Islamic State militants on Kurds in Syria has sent a wave of new refugees to the Turkish border, where they were stopped by Turkish border security. Turkey is already hosting about 700,000 Syrian refugees who fled the civil war between the government and the opposition. But the government in Ankara has a history of strained relations with Turkey's Kurdish minority. Zlatica Hoke reports Turkey is asking for international help.
Video

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

The International Whaling Commission, meeting in Slovenia, has voted to uphold a court ruling banning Japan from hunting whales in the Antarctic Ocean. Conservationists hailed the ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid