Hanging Israel Out to Dry

Hanging Israel Out to Dry

Posted By Larry Elder On June 4, 2010 @ 12:08 am In FrontPage | 21 Comments

Vice President Joe Biden, wrong on virtually every major foreign policy issue since his election to the Senate in 1972, nailed this one: He warned that actors on the international stage would test the new, inexperienced President.

He knew that President Barack Obama’s enemies would perceive his strength-through-peace (versus peace-through-strength) approach as weakness. They do and are acting accordingly.

Candidate Obama vowed to hold high-level talks with Iran and North Korea without “preconditions.” Obama promised a “reset” of all things President George W. Bush, with no more talk of “victory” in Iraq and Afghanistan. He reneged on the promised missile shield defense in Poland and the Czech Republic. He waits for countries like China and Russia, both of which have business interests in Iran, to agree to “tough, crippling” sanctions.

The President dropped the term “war on terror” and refuses to call Islamofascists “Islamofascists.” He apologetically says America is vital in maintaining world peace “whether we like it or not.” He sent a videotaped message to Iran telling of our willingness to re-engage the country — if only it would unclench its fist. It unclenched more time for Iran to pursue a nuclear bomb. The administration was painfully slow to acknowledge that the Times Square truck bomb attempt involved foreign Islamic terrorists.

The administration chastised Israel for settlement construction in an area of east Jerusalem that President Bill Clinton, President George W. Bush and even Palestine Liberation Organization leader Yasser Arafat assumed would be part of Israel in any peace agreement. During Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s state visit, Obama treated him worse than a White House dinner gate-crasher.

How’s the hope and change working out?

North Korea, in an act of war, sank a South Korean ship. Iran may now have sufficient materiel and technical knowledge to build a nuclear bomb. The Iranian-backed terrorist group Hezbollah — under the nose of United Nations “peacekeepers” — continues to stock southern Lebanon with weapons that threaten Israel.

Now comes the anti-Israel “humanitarian” flotilla.

After Israel unilaterally withdrew from Gaza, the terror group Hamas seized power. Israel and Egypt began a naval blockade of ships in and out of Gaza. Though Israel had uprooted every Israeli settler from Gaza, Hamas fired thousands of rockets into Israel, a bombardment that continues today.

Israel already sends humanitarian aid into Gaza and allows others to do so.

Israel even agreed to allow the supposed humanitarian flotilla cargo to enter, provided Israeli security could check it for weapons. And never mind that some of the flotilla’s “humanitarian activists” appear to have ties to terror organizations.

The flotilla’s attempt to run the blockade resulted in nine deaths when the Israeli military boarded ships to inspect the cargo. As Israel’s enemies hoped, Israel stands accused of a “disproportionate” response.

But why the flotilla now?

The most significant intervening event is the election of President Obama. Now Israel’s most important ally considers Israeli intransigence the principal obstacle to peace with the Palestinians in particular and in the Middle East in general. The activists got the message: Israel is on the defensive.

Israel, with good reason, feels alone.

Obama, like Bush in his second term, seems willing to accept a nuclear-armed Iran — even as Iran threatens Israel with annihilation. Obama apparently considers a nuclear-armed Iran inevitable, even if it ignites a regional nuclear arms race — since Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Jordan fear Iran more than they do Israel.

Give Obama credit for continuing many of Bush’s policies. Gitmo remains open, the administration finally understanding that the prison exists for a reason. He continued rendition, the terror surveillance program and the increased use of drone predators in Pakistan. He used the same “state secrets” argument to fight courtroom disclosure of sources and methods. He increased troop strength in Afghanistan and continues the Bush “clear and hold” strategy for that country and Iraq.

But Jimmy Carter governed as a strength-through-peace president. He pressured the Shah of Iran to release “political prisoners.” The shah was toppled, only to be followed by the repressive and threatening Islamic Republic of Iran. Carter urged Americans to abandon their “inordinate fear of communism.” Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev considered Carter weak and rewarded him by invading Afghanistan. This triggered a chain reaction from which the world continues to suffer. The Arabs and Muslims who fought to expel the Soviet Union then turned on the United States and the West in a grand plan for an Islamic world.

Israel’s response to the flotilla was an act of self-defense. The Western world’s reaction has been shameful. Western countries once again fail to distinguish the arsonist from the firefighter.

In 1962, the United States imposed a naval blockade — a “quarantine” — on Cuba. What would we have done to a “humanitarian” flotilla determined to help Fidel Castro place Soviet missiles 90 miles from Florida?

Larry Elder is a syndicated radio talk show host and best-selling author. His latest book, “What’s Race Got to Do with It?” is available now. To find out more about Larry Elder, visit his Web page at http://www.WeveGotACountryToSave.com.

Obama’s Charm Offensive Masks Israel Policy Change

Obama’s Charm Offensive Masks Israel Policy Change

By Leo Rennert

The two contrasting faces of President Obama in his relations with Israel and American Jews were on full display this week.

On Thursday, Obama hosted some 250 Jewish luminaries and high-achievers at an elaborate White House reception to mark Jewish Heritage Month. The administration pulled out all the stops to make this a memorable, first-ever event. 
It gave Obama another chance to pump up his charm offensive to persuade Jews who voted overwhelmingly for him to remain lined up behind him. The President spoke about the “unbreakable Israeli-U.S.” alliance and pulled out his oratorical skills to dispel any concern that his administration might be going wobbly on Israel.
But even as Jewish leaders basked in the glow of the White House, the president’s diplomatic team was busy in New York cutting a nuclear deal at the UN with Egypt and other Arab states that stabs Israel in the back.
With U.S. support and endorsement, representatives of 189 nations adopted a nuclear non-proliferation declaration that calls for expedited action on a nuclear-free Mideast zone, with an international conference in 2012 to get this project moving to fruition.   But even before 2012, the declaration already calls on Israel to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and invite UN inspectors’ full access to lay bare its nuclear activities.

Israel immediately rejected the NPT declaration as a “duplicitous” move against the Jewish state.  Prime Minister Netanyahu’s office denounced it for singling out Israel, while ignoring Iran.   As an NPT non-signer, Israel did not participate in the New York conference.  A Netanyahu spokesman said the prime minister intends to bring up Israel’s objections when he meets with Obama at the White House on Tuesday.
No other nation — not Iran, which is moving to join the nuclear club and thumbs its nose at UN inspections; not North Korea, the No. 1 nuclear proliferator in the world — is singled out in the NPT declaration.  Only Israel, in a step widely and rightly regarded as signaling a direct threat to the Jewish state’s ultimate deterrent — is supposed to open its arsenal of nuclear weapons.
Israel always has followed a policy of nuclear ambiguity — its version of nuclear “don’t ask, don’t tell.”  Israel doesn’t confirm or deny that it has nukes and, until this week, enjoyed full U.S. support in maintaining this guessing game.
No longer. In backstage deal-making negotiations with the U.S. delegation, Arab states cooked up an NPT declaration designed to strip away Israel’s nuclear veil of secrecy and deprive it of a nuclear deterrent against the likes of a nuclear Iran, which in the words of its own rulers, is determined to “wipe Israel off the map.”
Since NPT conferences can reach decisions only by consensus, every delegation in New York had to acquiesce. Each delegation had a veto. A single “no” would have killed the conference’s declaration.
Obama, however, went along, even going so far as to call the declaration “balanced” on wider non-proliferation and disarmament issues.
But to protect his Jewish flank, he quickly put out a defensive statement that “we strongly oppose efforts to single out Israel and will oppose actions that jeopardize Israel’s national security.”
Not to put too fine a point on it, this was a totally disingenuous ploy — after the damage was done — to remain in the good graces of Jewish voters and supporters.  Because this clearly was a conference action that directly jeopardizes Israel’s national security — and Obama let it happen.  If he didn’t want Israel singled out, he could have prevented it and instructed his delegation to insist on removing any reference to Israel as the price of U.S. concurrence.
Moving into full damage-control, Obama added that before there can be a nuclear-free Mideast region, there first has to be a “comprehensive and durable peace in the region and full compliance by all regional states with their arms-control and non-proliferation obligations.”
But this again was a U.S. afterthought that leaves intact the U.S.-backed declaration.  For its part, Israel also happens to favor a nuclear-free Middle East once all countries in the region live happily and peacefully forevermore.  The new U.S.-backed NPT declaration, however, attaches no such pre-conditions to its demands that Israel be required to sign on to the treaty whatever its own security implications might be in the meantime.
Echoing his boss, National Security Adviser James Jones voiced “serious reservations” about the declaration’s singular focus on Israel.   U.S. Undersecretary of State Ellen Tauscher said the NPT declaration, which the U.S. had just approved, “might seriously jeopardize U.S. efforts to get Israel to attend the 2012 talks.”
Of course, Jones and Tauscher could have spared themselves any worries or the need to distance themselves from a document they had rubber-stamped if Obama had stood fast and insisted that the NPT conference treat every country alike — i.e. not singling out anyone — instead of putting Israel, and Israel alone, behind the eight ball.
So we end up with a tale of two Obama personas — the one that charms Jews at a gala White House event and the other that kicks them in the rear as they leave the premises.

How do you say ‘under the bus’ in Hebrew?

Richard N. Weltz

For those diehard leftists who still adhere to the cult of Obama to the extent that they cannot/will not recognize his campaign against Israel and for the Palestinians in particular and Muslim Arab causes in general, his latest efforts to “throw Israel under the bus” should come as a wake-up call.
For the first time in memory, the US has announced that it is ready, willing, and able to allow the UN Security Council to pass one of its long string of anti-Israel resolutions — all of which have previously been vetoed by us — if the Netanyahu government doesn’t yield to Obama’s pressure to give in to Abbas’s demands (which, incidentally, violate agreements between Israel and the Bush administration and have the effect of trying to predetermine the future of Jerusalem as something other than the undivided capital of Israel).
As reported in Monday’s Wall Street Journal:
JERUSALEM-The White House brought Palestinians back on board for derailed Mideast peace talks with a pledge that the U.S. would consider allowing a United Nations Security Council resolution-if one should arise-condemning Israel for building in disputed territory, according to officials briefed on the diplomacy. …
Withholding a veto from a U.N. resolution critical of Israel…would be a significant reversal of decades of U.S. policy of largely unwavering support for Israel in the body.
The U.S. has vetoed more than 40 U.N. resolutions critical of Israel since 1972-at least three of them explicit condemnations of Israeli construction activity in East Jerusalem.
The New York Times, although minimizing the major policy shift in a brief en passant paragraph, confirmed the cave-in:
Separately, these officials said, Mr. Mitchell’s deputy, David Hale, indicated to the Palestinians that if Israel proceeded with the construction of 1,600 housing units in Jerusalem’s ultra-orthodox neighborhood of Ramat Shlomo, the United States would abstain from, rather than veto, a resolution in the United Nations Security Council condemning the move.
If that isn’t clear enough for the Obama apologists who claim to support Israel, I can’t imagine what would be.