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Tell Obama not to repeat Bush's Mideast mistakes

Fighting broke out this morning across the Israel-Lebanon border. One senior Israeli officer is dead, as are three Lebanese soldiers and one journalist.

The details of what took place today are still emerging, but one thing is clear: Without strong American leadership events like today's could spiral out of control.

Tell President Obama to engage to prevent an escalation.

In 2006, we saw fighting along the Israel-Gaza and the Israel-Lebanon borders escalate into a full-on war.  Today's developments - coming on the heels of an uptick in rocket fire targeting southern Israel - are eerily similar.

In 2006, President George W. Bush made a number of strategic blunders:

He chose to sit on the sidelines during the fighting, viewing it as a "moment of opportunity" to change the Middle East landscape.  

He sacrificed America's diplomatic muscle in favor of a blind adherence to the notion that there are some parties in the Middle East with whom America would not engage.

He allowed the fighting to careen out of control, to the detriment of the thousands of Lebanese, Palestinians, and Israelis killed and injured in the conflict.

Tell President Obama not to repeat the Bush administration's mistakes.

Pushing for Middle East peace is not just about getting Israelis and Palestinians to the negotiating table.  Fighting on both the Gaza and Lebanon fronts can quickly escalate into something much bigger and more dangerous. Iran and other spoilers have an interest in fanning these flames. This would have devastating effects not only on efforts to achieve Israeli-Palestinian peace, but on a broad range of U.S. national security interests.
 
Those who deny Israel the right to defend its borders are wrong. At the same time, there is a limit to what can be achieved using military means. Peace for Israel requires diplomatic action.

We need your help to demonstrate to Washington that Americans who care about Israel want to see our government act to defuse cross-border violence. Click here to take action