I'm not a political reporter, or a partisan (really, I know Repubs think I am, but I'm not), so I can have opinions about these things, and express them, and you don't like it, that's okay.
This is why President Obama didn't meet with any heads-of-state at the United Nations meeting yesterday.
1. If he met with any of them he would have had to meet with Netanyahu. He certainly couldn't have met with any other leader from the Middle East or North Aftrica without meeting with Netanyahu. The noise from Repubs and the press would have been deafening.
2. He knows this, better than anyone else -- there is no light between Netanyahu and the neocon part of the Republican Party in the US. They coordinate. Share the same goals. It's as if the Republicans here were of the same government as Netanyahu, much more so than they are of the same government at Obama. The disloyalty to America is disgusting, but it's there nonetheless.
3. If he met with Netanyahu, it would be scripted by Karl Rove, they would all know what to say. Netanyahu, masquerading as the head-of-state of a foreign government, as someone independent from the Republicans, would say something that could be spun by the Republicans as showing that Obama was weak. They would have worked this out before-hand. Karl Rove approved this message™. :-)
4. Obama figured the cost of meeting with no one would be less than the cost of going through this charade. He's ahead in the polls. He wants basically nothing more than to run the clock on the election. Give the Repubs nothing to latch on to. A meeting with Netanyahu would give them the opportunity to push him into a corner.
The press, I suppose, has to pretend that there's no coordination between the Republican neocons here and the Israeli neocons there, but Obama actually isn't weak, and certainly isn't stupid. There's no reason he should give them ammo. Stay the course. Whatever negative publicity comes from this will pass quickly, because he didn't give the neocons any soundbites or photo-ops to grab onto.
PS: My link shortener chose this URL for this post. http://0bb.r2.ly/. I swear I didn't choose it.
Dody, that's a very good point that I hadn't thought of. Probably because I don't expect his term to really end. But it's a good point for another reason. He was caught on tape saying to Putin that they should talk again after the election. Everyone would be watching for things like that. In fact, I bet that's what Netanyahu would say -- that he threatened him with retribution after the election. It's always fun to try to guess what evil plots Karl Rove is hatching up. I bet he funnels money to Bibi too.
There is also another practical matter - his term is ending in 6 weeks (albeit with really high chance of being reelected); Any meeting discussions with President Obama at this point would be qualified with "let's wait until the election".