(JNS.org) Senior director at the National Security Council (NSC) Robert Malley, who was dismissed from President Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign team when it was revealed that he met with the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, has been named Special Assistant to the President and White House Coordinator for the Middle East, North Africa and the Gulf Region.
A former Middle East advisor for President Bill Clinton, Malley has a history of controversial statements that have criticized Israel. In a 2001 article for The New York Review of Books, he took aim at those who blame only Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat for the failure of the prior year’s U.S.-brokered peace talks at Camp David.
“For a process of such complexity, the diagnosis is remarkably shallow,” Malley wrote. “It ignores history, the dynamics of the negotiations, and the relationships among the three parties. In so doing, it fails to capture why what so many viewed as a generous Israeli offer, the Palestinians viewed as neither generous, nor Israeli, nor, indeed, as an offer. Worse, it acts as a harmful constraint on American policy by offering up a single, convenient culprit—Arafat—rather than a more nuanced and realistic analysis.”
Also in The New York Review of Books, Malley wrote regarding Israel’s 2006 war with Hezbollah in Lebanon, “A war Israel fought without a clearly defined purpose has left the country without any tangible achievement.”