Instead of this being just a test of how Jerusalem will respond, it is also a test of how Washington will respond. It is an interesting upping of the stakes coming, as it does, against a backdrop of American inability to realize its demands.
“The tone is sharp. The words are tough. However, I do not see this as a prelude to a serious deterioration in US-Israeli relations,” Miller agreed. “I don’t see this as part of an effort to impose accountability [or] sanctions on Israel.”
He argued that the US was too dependent on Israel’s acquiescence to its Middle East policies – specifically, the peace process and Iran – to push Israel too hard, and that the likely payoff would be too low to justify the domestic aggravation.
And, pointing to the past year of US criticism and retreat on settlements, he added, “They have not yet decided whether their policy should punish the Israelis or pander to them.” Instead, he dismissed the talk of accountability.
“We’re no longer feared, admired or respected as we need to be because small powers – and not just Israel – say no to us without cost or consequence,” he said. This case will just devolve into “another no.” Or, another failed test.