Israel, Iran name checks illustrate America’s twin obsessions

TEL AVIV, Israel — In a season dominated by opinion poll numbers, here’s another telling figure: 34.

That was the number of times Israel was mentioned in the final debate between Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama.  Iran recieved a more frequent name check but that was often in association with Israel. All-in-all, it added up to a pretty accurate gauge of the United States’ foreign policy obsessions.

Clearly Israel is still the center of the American world – exactly where a country on the receiving end of $3 billion of military aid annually likes to be.  And at the crux of the Israel-United States’ relationship, and presidential race, is what Washington would do if Israel attacked Iran’s nuclear program.


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