President Obama said Monday that "tactical" disagreements between the U.S. and Israel will likely continue, but expressed confidence that both nations believe in the same goal when it comes to peace in the region.
Obama, who has had a tense relationship with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, spoke to a group of Jewish Democratic donors at a Washington fundraiser Monday night as he looks to rally support for his reelection bid.
Obama is looking to clear up any doubts among Jewish donors that he is not supportive of Israel. Many Republican and other critics of the administration were upset over the president's speech on the Middle East last month, when he called for Israel to return to its 1967 borders, with mutually agreed-to land swaps, as part of a broader peace deal with the Palestinians.
Obama and Netanyahu had a strained meeting following the speech, noting their "differences" over a path to Middle East peace.
The president said that the new landscape in the Middle East following the Arab Spring uprisings should encourage both the U.S. and Israel to be "creative" in finding solutions to the peace process.
"What's also going to be true is that both the United States and Israel are going to have to look at this new landscape with fresh eyes. It's not going to be sufficient for us just to keep on doing the same things we’ve been doing and expect somehow that things are going to work themselves out," he said. "We’re going to have to be creative and we’re going to have to be engaged."