President Obama's Open Mic Gaffe

By: Brianna Keilar Email
By: Brianna Keilar Email

11/09/2011 -- An open mic during last week's G-20 summit caught President Obama and French President Nicolas Sarkozy complaining about Israel's Prime Minister, according to a report by Reuters.

"I cannot bear Netanyahu. He's a liar" said Sarkozy. Obama, according to a French interpreter who was translating his remarks, replied: "You're fed up with him, but I have to deal with him even more often than you."

The President didn't exactly come to the defense of Netanyahu, whom he most recently saw at the U.N. in September.

It's not surprising, says Martin Indyk, who served as U.S. Ambassador to Israel during the Clinton and Bush administrations.

"It reveals the inner feelings of the president toward Prime Minister Netanyahu. I don't think it's any secret these two leaders have not gotten on from the first meeting on," said Indyk.

An oval office encounter this past May further revealed the frosty relationship between the leaders.

White House press secretary Jay Carney - in an off camera briefing - would not comment on the open mic gaffe.

He instead stressed the president's support of Israel, most recently in opposing a vote to give the Palestinian authority membership in the U.N.'s cultural agency, UNESCO; a move France supported.

It's an embarrassing incident, as both the U.S. and Israel keep a close eye on regime changes in the middle east, and on the growing threat of a nuclear Iran.

Indyk says, it may have no real affect on U.S.-Israel relations. "The subject is too serious to be affected by personalities. They agree on the nature of the threat, and they agree on the way to deal with it -- that is, by ratcheting up sanctions."

President Sarkozy's office had no comment on the exchange nor did Prime Minister Netanyahu's office.


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  • by tom on Nov 11, 2011 at 04:24 AM
    Iran is developing a nuclear bomb and says they want to wipe Israel off the map so Israel threatens to bomb Iran first to destroy the bomb and Obama thinks Israel is acting badly.........now Libya is doing nothing to the US or France and we go and bomb the heck out of the country kill a bunch of women and babies without the consent of Congress and Obama thinks that is behaving well........and he wins the Nobel Peace Prize to boot!!!!! Now that is crazy
  • by Anonymous on Nov 10, 2011 at 04:50 AM
    people talk behind each others backs. fact of life. altho you would expect your president to be above it.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Nov 10, 2011 at 05:08 AM in reply to
      Obama hates America and Israel.
      • reply
        by Abel on Mar 26, 2012 at 07:00 PM in reply to
        You are right!He is a traitor to this country and the stupid liberals are not smart enough to see what is going to happen to all of us!Good bye America!
  • by Anonymous on Nov 9, 2011 at 05:50 PM
    What this story omits is the fact that reporters who observed this, were forced to sign an agreement to keep their mouths shut about the incident. If the story hadn't been leaked, we would have never known about it. What other incidents have been covered up?
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