The Anti-Defamation League said it was "deeply disappointed"
by the private exchange between French President Nicholas Sarkozy and U.S. President Barack
Obama in which the two leaders were overheard making critical remarks Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Sarkozy, unaware last Thursday that a microphone in the meeting
room at the G20 summit at Cannes was on, was heard calling Netanyahu "a liar" in what he thought was a private conversation
with Obama. "I cannot bear Netanyahu, he's a liar," Sarkozy told Obama, who was also unaware that the microphone had been
turned on and was being monitored by reporters via the headsets used for simultaneous translations.
Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu in Washington, May 2011.
|Photo by: GPO |
"You're fed up with him, but I have to deal with him even more
often than you," Obama replied, according to wire service reports.
"We are deeply disappointed and saddened by this decidedly un-Presidential
exchange between Presidents Sarkozy and Obama," Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, said in a statement. "President
Obama’s response to Mr. Sarkozy implies that he agrees with the French leader.
"In light of the revelations here, we hope that the Obama Administration
will do everything it can to reassure Israel that the relationship remains on a sure footing and to reinvigorate the trust
between President Obama and Prime Minister Netanyahu, which clearly is not what it should be," Foxman continued.
"What is sad is that we now have to worry to what extent these
private views inform foreign policy decisions of the U.S. and France - two singularly important players in the peace process."