Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Op-Ed: Israelis Must Protest Obama's Visit

Mike L. 

Editor's note
- This piece was originally published at Arutz Sheva and is authored by Att'y Steven M. Goldberg.  Goldberg agrees with me that nothing good will come from Obama's forthcoming visit to Israel and, in fact, calls for Israelis to protest the unpopular American president upon his arrival.  Here is my prediction of what we are likely to see in the coming months and years.

1) Obama-and-Abbas will demand another anti-Jewish settlement freeze, because any future state of Palestine must apparently be Judenrein, and will claim that the Palestinian Arabs cannot negotiate without one, thereby justifying Arab racism toward Jews.  Netanyahu will partly comply with their demands.

2) Obama-and-Abbas will not be satisfied and there will either be no negotiations or entirely meaningless negotiations that will not result in anything that resembles a peaceful conclusion of hostilities.

3) Obama-and-Abbas will then "lead from behind" as the Europeans take point on pressuring Israel to concede to Obama-and-Abbas's demands that the Jews give away their land for the purpose of creating yet another racist Arab-Muslim criminal dictatorship in the Middle East.

4) There will be an increase in hatred toward the Jewish State of Israel which will correspond with an equal increase in hatred toward Jewish people, more generally, which will correspond to increasing violence against us everywhere on the planet.

5) The international left, including many Jewish "progressives," will blame the mess mainly on Israel and mainly on Benjamin Netanyahu.

6) The Palestinian Arabs will incite further hatred toward the Jews among them and will plan and execute violence against those Jews, which the international left will declare a righteous form of "resistance against oppression."

7) Meanwhile Iran, on the verge of gaining nuclear weaponry because the American president refuses to stop them even as he seeks to prevent Israel from doing so, will continue to arm both Hezbollah and Hamas, the latter of whom will ramp up the rocket attacks.

8) This will lead, after the people of either southern Israel (or all of Israel) are sufficiently traumatized, to another war which the United States will ensure that neither the Arabs, nor the Israelis, actually win.

9)  And round and round and round we go as well-meaning Jews outside of Israel continue to blame the Israelis for the fact that the Palestinian Arabs refuse to negotiate or to allow the Jews of the Middle East to live in peace.

Y'know, I've only been to Israel once and I am very much looking forward to going back, but my father has never been to Israel.  I asked him once why he had never gone and he said, "I kept thinking that I would go after they made peace.  And it just never happened."

I have to tell ya, I laughed my ass off!

What else can you do?

In any case, with any luck I am entirely wrong and the Palestinian Arabs do, in fact, want a state for themselves in peace next to the Jewish one and Barack Obama knows what he is doing viz-a-viz foreign policy.

Anything is possible, I suppose... all evidence to the contrary. - ML




By Steven M. Goldberg
Netanyahu's speech in Congress was a rousing success that taught Obama something. Now he wants to return the compliment. A call for action.

"To sin by silence, when they should protest, makes cowards of men." ---Abraham Lincoln
President Barack Hussein Obama is coming to Israel in March. This is ominous news. Only the naive can believe Obama's oleaginous promises of solidarity with Israel. Instead, it is painfully apparent that the President is coming to pressure Israel to make life-threatening concessions to the Palestinians.

According to U.S. Ambassador Daniel Shapiro, Obama is bringing "a very urgent agenda," and, among other things, wants to confer about ways of "bringing Israel and the Palestinians back to the negotiation table." Although the Iranian nuclear threat and the deteriorating situation in Syria will also be discussed,

Obama is certain to seek "good faith gestures" from Prime Minister Netanyahu to lure the Palestinians to engage in peace talks, including a halt to building in Judea, Samaria and eastern Jerusalem. According to White House spokesman Jay Carney, "Any time the President and Prime MInister have a discussion, and certainly any time the President has a discussion with leaders of the Palestinian Authority, those issues are raised.

Of course the Israeli government has little choice but to feign enthusiasm. Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren gushed, "Listen, we're delighted he's coming.... He'll be received enthusiastically by the government of Israel, by the Prime Minister of Israel, by the people of Israel."

Obama is betting on a hero's welcome by the Israeli people, which he can then parlay into an attempt to strong-arm Netanyahu. The President senses that Netanyahu has been weakened by the mediocre showing of Likud-Beitenu in the recent election.

In May of 2011, Netanyahu came to Washington, D.C., gave a powerful speech in front of Congress and received a rousing reception. Although not Netanyahu's intent, the result was a chastened Obama.

The President would love to return the favor during his upcoming visit. Already there are calls among the Prime MInister's political opponents to invite Obama to address the Knesset. Expect Obama to repeat empty promises of his unshakable commitment to Israel's security followed by hard, clarion demands that Israel stop building in the settlements and prepare for the establishment of a Palestinian state within its borders.

The President intends to visit Ramallah to meet with Abu Mazen and Amman to meet with King Abdullah. Outgoing Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon predicts that Obama will compel a meeting among Netanyahu, Abbas, Abdullah and himself to begin the process of ramming through his agenda.

Netanyahu appears helpless to stop the oncoming Obama train. Outgoing Minister Dan Meridor launched a transparent trial balloon, undoubtedly authorized by Netanyahu, by calling publicly for a halt in construction in Judea and Samaria other than in the large settlement blocs.

Not a peep can be heard from any of the Likud MKs, including those who ran as committed nationalists, or even from the Bayit Yehudi group, all of whom appear to be hoping for plum ministry or committee assignments. It is leadership at its weakest.

If Obama's plans to impose his will on Israel are to be thwarted, it will be up to the people of Israel to make their voices heard. Polls show that most Israelis realize that Obama is no friend. Any lingering doubt about the President's coldness and indifference has been erased by his appointment of John Kerry as Secretary of State and nomination of the Israel-bashing, anti-Semitic Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense.

The President must not be granted his hero's welcome. Instead, he should be greeted by thousands, and perhaps tens of thousands, of concerned Israeli citizens who will demonstrate that they are not fooled by his insincere assurances and will not surrender their sovereignty to his imperious plans.

Several decades ago, when under unfair pressure from the United States President, Prime Minister Menachem Begin famously set Ambassador Samuel Lewis straight by exclaiming that Israeli is neither a vassal state nor a banana republic.

Now, in the absence of leadership from their politicians, the Israeli people must take to the streets and make the same statement, loudly and clearly. There are American Jews who will fly out to join them.

The time to plan the protest is now.
By the way, this is the very first comment under the piece at Arutz Sheva:
1. Best idea I have heard in ages

Israelis love America, but we are not fools. Obama is no friend of Israel, and we don't like him, nor are we afraid of him. Our government has to pretend otherwise, but we do not. Let's tell him how we feel. The Talmud says, Shtika k'hodoah, Silence implies consent. We should not be silent.  
Philip, Jerusalem (11/2/13)

"An Open Letter to the World from Jerusalem"

Written by Stanley Goldfoot in 1969. 

10 comments:

  1. Though it seems clear to me the Palestinian leadership does not intend to do anything differently than they've done in the past, I suppose one last attempt at 'negotiations' can't hurt any. But how long do you go on granting them a permanent veto over the (alleged) 'process?' That would seem to me to be the only truly losing proposition here.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What we are seeing is the next round in the delegitimization process.

      The long Arab war against the Jews in the Middle East includes riots and pogroms during the years of the Mufti, such as the Hebron massacre of '29 and the "Arab Revolt" of '36 to '39, then a civil war in '47 - '48, then a series of conventional wars between '48 and '73 which coincided with the terrorism efforts which we might date from '64 (the year of the founding of the PLO) to the present, and currently the delegitimization efforts which I would date from '75 (the UN's "Zionism is racism" resolution) until today.

      The point of the delegitimization effort is to create the necessary conditions for the international isolation (economic, diplomatic, and academic) of the Jewish state of Israel.

      This next round, lead by Obama (from behind) will further that goal.

      Watch.

      Delete
    2. This sounds about right to me, Mike.

      I was rather amusingly smeared as a crypto-one stater elsewhere recently, and accused of being some sort of far-right pro-Israel flip side of the antisemitic BDS crowd.

      (Ah, the joys of partisan internet warfare.)

      I would argue, however, that those who aid in the delegitimization effort, wittingly or not, by continuing to insist that this stage of the conflict can only end when the Palestinian leadership finally agrees to a state of their own in peace next to Israel via 'negotiations,' despite all clear evidence that this will not happen anytime soon (if ever), is much closer to the BDS side of the issue. In fact, it's on the same side. Simply just a different feather of the delegitimization wing.

      (I would love to play poker with people like that...)

      Delete
    3. They refuse to learn from history for reasons that I find unfathomable.

      For 14 centuries the Arab world has been kicking the Jews of the Middle East in the head and for nearly the entire last century they have absolutely refused to accept Jewish sovereignty on historically Jewish land.

      And, yet, against all reasons, Jewish progressives are still groveling and begging the Arabs to be nice and accept yet another state for themselves, if only it would be in peace with the Jewish one... or even if it won't be in peace next to the Jewish one.

      And what's worse is that they continue to blame their fellow Jews in the Middle East (as well as diaspora Jews who do not share their ideological blinkertude) for Arab violence and hatred toward us.

      I still favor two states for two peoples, but there must come a point where we understand that "no means no" and that what the Arabs want is Israel gone.

      Period.

      Anyone who claims otherwise is either a liar or a fool.

      Delete
    4. Fortunately, in that case, it seemed to just be one person making that specific accusation. But yeah, all those who do think this way, and have made it clear that they will never take "no" for an answer (even if over the next couple of decades that 'strategy' would seem to make a potental turning of the rest of the world against Israel likelier), certainly do seem to come from the 'progressive' side of the aisle.

      Delete
    5. It's a very odd thing.

      The Obama administration insists upon pressuring Israel to accept what it has always accepted going all the way back to the early years of the twentieth century, i.e., the formula of two states for two peoples.

      And, yet, he places no pressure on the Arabs to accept what they have never accepted, i.e., Jewish sovereignty on that tiny strip of historically Jewish land.

      And, yeah, what we will see going forward is the continued delegitimization of Israel, except now with the assistance of the president of the United States.

      Delete
    6. btw, you were called a "crypto one-stater"?

      Because what counts is not what you say or think, but how they wish to portray you in order to dismiss whatever you have to say.

      Delete
    7. Yeah. this exactly -

      "Because what counts is not what you say or think, but how they wish to portray you in order to dismiss whatever you have to say."

      The 'logic' to such an allegation is completely nonexistent, and it is clearly simply a means of dismissal. David Harris-Gershon does the exact same thing.

      "Ignore that right-winger!"

      Facts be damned, of course. Hyperbolic partisan internet warfare at its 'finest.'

      Delete
    8. Of course I've been guilty of engaging in that a few times myself, but I'm trying not to anymore. I'm getting there slowly but surely. ;)

      Delete
    9. Jay, none of us are entirely innocent of this kind of thing and, I have to tell ya, my disdain for Republicans during the Bush years takes a backseat to no one.

      But, y'know, times change and we need to remain flexible in our thinking so that our stances reflect not just the past, but also the present.

      And the truth of the matter is that at the present moment, whether we like it or not (and I don't), the biggest source of anti-Semitic anti-Zionism in the west today comes from the progressive left.

      Now that's just a cold and pertinent fact.

      Another cold and pertinent fact is that Barack Obama skewered whatever potential there may have been for a negotiated conclusion of hostilities between the Jews and the Arabs through his demand for "total settlement freeze" which then emerged as a precondition for negotiations.

      This is also a cold and pertinent fact.

      I don't make this shit up. I just report the news!

      :O)

      Delete