The President Scores Big At AIPAC By Sticking To His Guns

May 22, 2011 2:57 pm ET — MJ Rosenberg

I didn't expect anything good to come out of President Barack Obama's AIPAC speech today. I was wrong.

The President strongly endorsed "two states for two peoples" and explained to a skeptical crowd that the status quo is Israel's worst enemy.

Politely and nicely, he stuck it to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu by explaining that Bibi's faux-outrage over the '67 lines is utterly bogus. This was critical. He showed, citing history, that there is absolutely nothing new about saying that peace must be built on the '67 lines with modifications (made up by land swaps).

And AIPAC accepted it, even applauded it. The right-wing meme was destroyed, as much by AIPAC's reaction as by Obama's explanation.

Yes, he gave AIPAC the usual Israel boilerplate. He'll veto a unilaterally declared Palestinian state, etc. But all that stuff is standard and subject to change as situations change. However, the overarching message was the necessity for two states and the unsustainability of the occupation.

And AIPAC applauded. Strongly.

The President did a masterful job. The neocons are outraged. And I expect that Netanyahu, seeing AIPAC's reaction to their President, will cut his losses and back down.

Bravo, Mr. President. You even brought out the best in AIPAC.

You gave us all — Americans, Israelis, Palestinians — reason for hope.

You laid the groundwork. Now it is time for some serious action. This is your moment.