Reprinted from Wallwritings
Three days after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Speech to Congress, President Barack Obama delivered a stinging response to the latest in a series of Netanyahu diplomatic insults.
The President chose Robert Malley (above) as Special Assistant to the President and White House Coordinator for the Middle East, North Africa and the Gulf Region.
Special Assistant Malley will begin his new assignment April 6.
The news of the Malley promotion raised hardly a ripple in U.S. mainstream and cable news media, currently obsessing over Hillary Clinton's email servers.
Pro-Israel media outlets, however, rushed to sound the alarm. The word went out to Israel's staunch U.S. backers, "Obama has struck back with the dangerous Malley."
National Security Adviser Susan E. Rice made the announcement on March 6:
"Philip Gordon, Special Assistant to the President and White House Coordinator for the Middle East, North Africa and the Gulf Region will be stepping down, and will be succeeded by Rob Malley, currently NSC Senior Director for Iran, Iraq, Syria and the Gulf States. Dr. Malley will assume his new position on April 6, 2015."
And no, newly-minted Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton, who feels qualified to lecture the world on U.S. governmental procedures, Malley is not subject to Senate approval.
Rice was lavish in her praise of Malley:
"There could be no better successor to Phil than Rob Malley, who is already one of my most trusted advisers and ideally placed to provide a seamless transition.
"One of our country's most respected experts on the Middle East, since February 2014 Rob has played a critical role in forming our policy on Iran, Iraq, Syria, and the Gulf. I look forward to working with him in his new role."
She might have added that Rob Malley has long been a "bete noir" to defenders of Israel's tightly controlled view of reality.
From 1996 to 1998, Malley served as Executive Assistant to National Security Adviser Sandy Berger. In October 1998, he was appointed Special Assistant to President Clinton for Arab-Israeli Affairs, a post he held until the end of the administration in 2001.
After directing the Middle East Program at the International Crisis Group from 2001 and 2014, Malley joined the Obama staff in 2014.
His promotion played big in Israel, of course, where The Times of Israel reminded its readers of Malley's background in ominous headline language: