In U.S., A Change In Tone On Israel

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Some experts believe Washington and Jerusalem may be headed toward a clash over how to restart negotiations on Palestinian statehood.

On Sunday, Israel appointed its controversial, far-right foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, as point man for strategic dialogue with the United States.

Last week, Vice President Biden spoke to the annual gathering of the powerful pro-Israel lobby AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. "Israel has to work toward a two-state solution," he said. "You're not going to like my saying this, but [don't] build more settlements, dismantle existing outposts and allow the Palestinians freedom of movement."

Aaron David Miller, former State Department adviser on the Middle East, tells Guy Raz that the Bush administration gave Israel wide latitude. Biden's speech, Miller says, reflects a change in tone in the way Washington addresses Israel, but "whether or not that change in tone is going to be translated into a change in policy, however, remains to be seen."

Next weekend, Israel's conservative prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, will meet with President Obama in Washington.



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