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Applause is in order. The Kabuki theater is over. Last week’s annual meeting of the American-Israeli Public Affairs Committee, or AIPAC, garnered tremendous attention because of the group’s influence, access to power, and lobbying efforts. The plot was Iranian nuclear ambitions. The dialogue was filled with war. There was even a romantic subplot as each suitor promised his undying support for Israel. But it was just theater, and the actors — President Obama, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, the would-be presidents, the rest of the attendees — were all sophisticated enough to have known it as they repeated lines that meant very little. The only remarkable aspect of the whole act is that anyone still believed it has consequence. Progress in foreign affairs is less a stylized performance for an exclusive audience and more often improv wrapped in Greek tragedy.


Kayyem, Juliette. "Tough Poses in a Political Theater." Boston Globe, March 12, 2012.