What Israelis know about Romney: He's not Obama
Israelis, always feeling vulnerable, want an American president who not only likes Israel the way he likes Taiwan or New Zealand, but loves Israel, feels something special toward it. That is why Israelis liked George W. Bush, and also why they liked Bill Clinton – though many disagreed with his Mideast direction. Still, Clinton went out of his way to demonstrate deep personal friendship for Israel.
Obama – more cerebral, less emotional – has not done so.
Obama, even when everyone from President Shimon Peres on down attests to the unprecedented security cooperation he has overseen, has not transmitted to the Israeli public a feeling of caring for the country in a special way.
Does Romney have that “warm place in his heart” for Israel? Nobody seems to know yet. His trip here will be Israel’s first real chance to gauge that for itself.