Good

Sounds like the administration is pushing back on the Israeli settlements. Good:

WASHINGTON — Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Friday delivered a stinging rebuke to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for his government’s announcement this week of new Jewish housing in east Jerusalem, calling it “a deeply negative signal” for the Mideast peace process and ties with the U.S.

The State Department said Clinton spoke to Netanyahu by phone for 43 minutes to vent U.S. frustration with Tuesday’s announcement that cast a pall over a visit to Israel by Vice President Joe Biden and endangered indirect peace talks with the Palestinians that the Obama administration had announced just a day earlier.

The length and unusually blunt tone of Clinton’s call underscored the administration’s concern about prospects for the negotiations it has been trying to organize for more than a year and its anger over Israel’s refusal to heed U.S. appeals not to make provocative gestures.

“The announcement of the settlements on the very day that the vice president was there was insulting,” Clinton said in an interview with CNN Friday. “It was just really a very unfortunate and difficult moment for everyone, the U.S., our vice president who had gone to reassert America’s strong support for Israeli security, and I regret deeply that that occurred and made that view known.”

Clinton called “to make clear that the United States considered the announcement to be a deeply negative signal about Israel’s approach to the bilateral relationship and counter to the spirit of the vice president’s trip,” State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley told reporters.

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