July 23rd, 2008
08:46 AM ET
12 years ago

Obama meets key Mideast leaders

Sen. Barack Obama meets with Israeli President Shimon Peres in Jerusalem.

Sen. Barack Obama meets with Israeli President Shimon Peres in Jerusalem.

JERUSALEM (CNN) - Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama pledged Wednesday to maintain a close relationship between the United States and Israel.

He also said he will work toward bringing peace in the region regardless of whether he is elected president.

Obama spoke during a meeting with Israeli President Shimon Peres in Jerusalem. It was one of many stops the senator from Illinois made during the day.

The senator is on an international tour aimed to boost his foreign policy credentials.

"I'm here on this trip to reaffirm the special relationship between Israel and the United States and my abiding commitment to Israel's security, and I hope I can serve as an effective partner, whether as a United States senator or as a president, in bringing about a more lasting peace in the region," he said.

Peres said he had "high regard" for Obama and described his belief that "the future belongs to the young."

Obama began his second day in the Middle East on Wednesday by meeting Israeli leaders and laying a wreath at the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial in Jerusalem.

Full story

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (198 Responses)
  1. Sue

    Bible believers know that the anti-Christ ("a man of peace") will be a man who is acceptable to all nations, too. The anti-Christ will bring about the destruction of the world for his own political ends.

    July 23, 2008 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  2. Xavier, Saint Louis, MO

    Peres sent a clear signal to McCain, "the future belongs to the young", and that future ain't McCain.

    Obamanation '08


    July 23, 2008 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  3. Independent-Minded American

    I get the sense that Obama is highly respected and regarded by most foreign leaders... way more than Bush or McCain... So what's all this crap about foreign policy credentials? Doesn't every president rely on the experts for these credentials? To me, all the president needs is good judgment to make the best decisions based on what the experts tell him... That's exactly what make Reagan a great president.
    Based on what I've seen this week, Obama gets my vote... period!

    July 23, 2008 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  4. Doug

    Obama's trip to the Mid-East and Europe has been great.
    The trouble that Obama (or McCain if he suddenly remembers who he uesd to be and actually wins) will have as president is the paradox of the middle east. Israel is virtually our only ally in the region....and they have nothing we want or need. All of the other countries in the region are not our allies...and arguably are our enemies...but they have the one thing that seems to control us the most economically: oil.
    My hope for the next president is that we look to the development of alternative and renewable energy sources so that we can wash our hands of the middle east and then redirect the resources to solving our social and cultural problems here at home.

    July 23, 2008 09:53 am at 9:53 am |


    July 23, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  6. atypical

    Obama 08

    July 23, 2008 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  7. David from Ohio

    I'm glad Obama, unlike Bush, believes that the Middle East peace process should be a priority.

    July 23, 2008 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  8. Future

    The future belongs to the young-to President Obama.

    July 23, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  9. NPA

    So McCain thought he was setting a trap for Obama when he insisted that Obama goes to the war zone. Now that Obama has been met with unimaginable success, McCain's camp is trying to accuse Obama of looking too presidential.

    So McCain dug a hole for Obama but fell in it himself and now is crying foul?! This guy wants to be president?!

    God saves us from another freak-out-under-stress republican president.

    July 23, 2008 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  10. Ellie

    God Bless you Sen. Obama, every step is worth it's weight in gold. I think this trip is EXACTLY what America and the entire WORLD was waiting for. YOU have quickly CHANGED the perception across the globe and the world LIKES what they see.

    GREAT JOB! I take my hat off to you. I know everyone in the media and the McCain camp is just hoping you fall flat on your face, but hey that's just "haters" at their best. Until people are WALKING in your shoes, they have NO IDEA what it takes to even begin to bridge the gaps and hatred that the BUSH/CHENEY administration has created. So kuddos to you for making a sincere effort in rectifying the damage done by that idiot Bush and his gangsta partner Cheney.

    July 23, 2008 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  11. Vet in Texas

    Understanding how to listen and step up to the events that are taking place in other nations, is one of the most important things that a future leader can and must be able to accomplished in order to lead. It's not always my way or the highway mentality.

    OBAMA 08

    July 23, 2008 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  12. Uncle Sam

    Comedian Jon Stewart reported that, while travelling in Israel, Barack Obama stopped off at the holy manger in Bethlehem – to visit his birthplace.

    From his days as a high school student in Hawaii, when Barack carved the words "King Obama" into the pavement, it appears that his ambition has actually grown over the years.

    July 23, 2008 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  13. Judgement over experience

    This picture is priceless because you will never see mccain embraced this warmly by anyone including his wife. Go Barack! The world loves you and you will boost America's relationship with the world.

    July 23, 2008 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  14. Kris from AZ

    Isreal leadership is worried about their partnership with Bush but Isreal needs to know that we are allies and will help defend our allies to the best of our abilities with Obama as president. I cant wait.

    July 23, 2008 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  15. 17 year old future politician

    Dude what if Obama brings peace between Isreal and Palestine? That would be sweet!....also impossible....but im sure he will do a fine job with both countries and continue to build our relationship with foreign countries, something McCain hasn't shown an ability to do.

    Obama/Sebelius 08'

    July 23, 2008 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  16. ree

    He had to be forced to go meet the mideast leaders.

    Really don't care what they think of him. They must think he makes good speeches, too.

    I am not going to make my decision on Obama or McCain by who they like.

    July 23, 2008 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  17. wendy

    The fact that Obama "Gets it", coupled with his common sense which is missing in the Bush administration, add up to hope and change.

    July 23, 2008 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  18. Save The World

    The outcome of most elections are determined by the late deciding independent voters.

    Obama supporters, we don’t need to ARGUE with posters here. Trust me, the anti-Obama views ARE NOT coming from the people the Democrats need to win this election. The Democrats need the people that are largely sitting back QUIETLY reading and reviewing these blogs.

    Use the anti-Obama posts so that you know all the negative attacks that we should dissect on this blog so that the UNDECIDED voter gets honest clarity around those topics and makes the smart choice. We don’t need to twist, manipulate or parse words. We’re backing the more intelligent, more thoughtful candidate that builds high performing teams.

    Succinctly rebut the false claim. Support it with facts and give the reference for the facts so that it can be checked. When quoting McCain or a surrogate, list the name of the publication or TV show, the date it ran, etc. Pick your words carefully to remove ambiguity and to avoid exaggerating, or being bombastic.

    Verbally denigrating an opponent never impresses someone else that you want to join your team.

    Remember this is a public forum and people perpetrate their identities and their motives. Let us be the adults here.

    Let's make sure we hire the smart guy, pleas

    July 23, 2008 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  19. MT

    I highly recommend that Senator McCain's campaign starts addressing issues "other than" the surge. Americans do have many other concerns. I gave him credit for the surge months ago but that's currently the only positive mark he's earned. I'm still anxiously waiting for more substance from the McCain Camp!

    July 23, 2008 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  20. Foreign observer

    Peres the old rock of Israel politics states it well : the future belongs to the young ones.

    July 23, 2008 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  21. Thomas, Illinois


    July 23, 2008 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  22. Adam

    BARACK ALL THE WAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    July 23, 2008 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  23. boered1

    Several of the people he has met with in Israel and Palestine have said that he has an "excellant understanding of the problems and nuances in the region" so this should (but most likely will not) shut up all those saying he does not understand foreign policy. Our next president (please!) has shown he throughly understands the Middle East and its complexities. Iraqi government officials agree with his Iraq plans, Israeli officials say he understands the problems, Palestinian Officials (from both Hamas and Abbas' group) have said they think he understands the concerns and is ready to help end the fighting. Even Jordan had praise for him! So it is apparent that he DOES understand the area, he DOES have trust from all members concerned and he WILL make a change for the better in the Middle East! meanwhile McACain continues to show he does not iunderstand the realities of the Middle East by saying that Obama is wrong...

    July 23, 2008 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  24. Herman in LA

    What a great photo of Barack and president Shimon Peres he and president Obama will make Israeli a much better place for Israel.

    July 23, 2008 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  25. Esther

    Wasnt this the same Jordan that was the only nation that favored McSame, per CNN's poll awhile back? I guess they were just trying to steal Obama's favor and at least give McSame some credit. The truth is Obama is stronger foreign policy and is well respected worldwide and will be more successful on diplomatic missions with other countries all around the World!

    Anyway, check out HUFFIGNTONPOST.com for the real truths. For the truth about the surge that the MSM seems to be promoting that the surge that McSame voted for worked, See "McCain Gets History Of The Surge Wrong, CBS Doesn't Air Footage"

    July 23, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
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