Obama Pitches Nuclear Pact to US Jews

Obama Pitches Nuclear Pact to US JewsObama Pitches Nuclear Pact to US Jews

Amid a bitter public fight with Israel's government, US President Barack Obama on Friday pitched his nuclear deal with Iran.

Visiting Washington's conservative Adas Israel synagogue, Obama embarked on a Hebrew-sprinkled charm offensive which stressed that US-Israeli relations encompass more than just official links with the Likud government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, AFP reported. Telling the 1,000-plus congregation he said "my commitment to Israel's security is and always will be unshakeable."

"The people of Israel must always know America has its back, and America will always have its back."

Netanyahu has publicly opposed a deal that would place constraints on Iran's nuclear program for specified durations in return for sanctions relief. The White House views the framework accord as a potential signature foreign policy achievement.

"There will be disagreements on tactics when it comes to how to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, and that is entirely appropriate and should be fully aired," Obama said. Iran denies the allegation that it may be seeking to develop a nuclear weapons capability under the guise of a civilian program, saying the work is solely for peaceful purposes such as generating electricity.

The US president added that he had no interest in reaching a bad deal. "I'm interested in a deal that blocks every single one of Iran's pathways to a nuclear weapon -- every single path." In other words, a deal that makes the world and the region -- including Israel -- more secure. That's how I define a good deal."