How absurd.  Tuesday on the progressive network, MSNBC, Hardball host Chris Matthews and his guest NY Times’ Ethan Bronner suggested that Barack Obamas low popularity in Israel can be attributed to his dark skin and Arabic Middle Name.

Bonner is the Jerusalem Bureau Chief of the Times was asked to rate the popularity of American politicians by Israeli public: 

CHRIS MATTHEWS: Let’s talk about politics.  Who’s more popular: Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, Barack Obama, Joe Biden? Put them in order.  Who’s the most popular figure?

ETHAN BRONNER: I would say Bill Clinton is the most popular of the four. And I would say Hillary is probably next.

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MATTHEWS: The Secretary of State.

BRONNER: That’s correct.  And then I would say Joe Biden, and then President Obama.

MATTHEWS: OK, that tells you a lot. So tell me why the President of the United States is so far [inaudible].  Is it his middle name? Hussein?

BRONNER: I would say that there is some level of prejudice about the fact that he had some Islamic background through his stepfather.  But I think it has more to do with the fact that when he came into office a year ago he wanted to recalibrate the relationship between the United States and the Muslim world. And the easiest and clearest way of doing that was to put some distance between the United States and Israel. And he did that, and that made people nervous.  I think there’s also some sense here, some degree of racism to be perfectly honest.

MATTHEWS: Yeah, because they see him as a black man.

 This explanation belies the truth, if either of these men took the time to research the reason the would see that polls reflect that Israelis are not fans of Obama because they perceive him to be anti-Israel. And Obama caused it himself.

He has turned the Israeli populace against him and strengthened the hand of Prime Minister Netanyahu. At the same time he has eroded his own support among American Jews and other US friends of Israel.

It started with his Cairo speech when Obama threw Israel under the bus. When he started to get more involved he showed how little he knew about Israel and how much he sided with the Palestinians. Added to the fact that it broke an agreement the US had with Israel, their insistence on  a freeze on natural growth of present settlements, and the constant public berating of the Jewish State seemed legitimately one-sided by the Israelis, as was his declaration that anybody is allowed to move to  East Jerusalem as long as they weren’t Jewish. That is the reason why Israelis are not big fans of Barack Obama.

But the truth doesn’t matter to Matthews and the Times Bronner. A simple search at the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA) website reveals a long list of false and biased reports under Bronner’s bi-line.

The two Hardball haters are voices of the far left progressive movement. The Bronner/ Matthews incident is another example of how the progressives are working to de-legitimize Israel and pro-Israel Democratic Party legislators such Steve Israel and Jerrold Nadler of NY are remaining quiet in fear of angering their progressive President and his power base.