The Obama administration's recent less-than-entirely-submissive relationship with Israel may have cost the outgoing president a free locker at a swanky Maryland country club.
The U.S. delegation's abstention in a U.N. vote to halt Israeli settlements in the West Bank last month effectively ruined Obama's chance of taking advantage of what was originally intended to be a "back-door thing to . . . give him the membership — free of charge — and circumvent the rules," according to The New York Post.
Members of the historically Jewish Woodmont Country Club — which charges an $80,000 initiation fee and a $9,673 annual fee — "are at each other’s throats over whether to accept the golf-loving president, with many saying he deserves to be snubbed," writes The Post, citing only anonymous sources.
"Can you imagine how angry I would be if I had paid $80K to have to look at this guy who has done more to damage Israel than any president in American history?" an anonymous "official in a Washington Jewish organization" told the Post. "After the UN vote and attack on Israel, I think it probably hurts the club. If there is a club that excludes Jews, he would probably be more comfortable around those folks."
Before the U.N. vote, however, Woodmont members had seemed thrilled by the prospect of the black leader joining a club founded in 1913 to accommodate Jewish individuals who weren't permitted to join other D.C.-area country clubs.
"How cool is it that the first African-American president of the United States may well be joining a country club originally established because Jews couldn’t get in anywhere else?" Ronald Halber, executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington, D.C., asked the Jewish publication The Forward in July.