Sunday, January 8, 2012

Obama's Failures and a Reply to Mets102


In a recent post I began the process of outlining Barack Obama's failures viz-a-viz the Arab-Israel conflict.

There are at least four major failures, including:

1) The Ruination of the Peace Process.

Wherein Obama destroyed any near term potential for a negotiated agreement between Israel and the Palestinians by insisting upon "total settlement freeze."

2) The Validation of Palestinian Anti-Semitism.

Wherein Obama seems to agree with the Palestinian Authority that Jews should not be allowed to live, and therefore build housing for themselves, in what Jordan dubbed the "West Bank."

3) The Encouragement of Jihad.

Wherein Obama compared the rise of genocidal Islamism throughout the Arab world to the American Revolution and the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s.

And 4) The Capitulation to Iranian Nukes.

Wherein Obama capitulates to Iranian nukes.

I did forget one, though.

5) The Insistence Upon De-Coupling our Understanding of Terrorism from the Radical Jihad.

Wherein Obama discourages his administration from acknowledging the Islamic nature of Jihadi terrorism.

In response to the first four of these concerns, Obama supporter, Mets102, wrote the following:

Are the Egyptian People not entitled to the same blessings of liberty that Israelis enjoy or that we Americans enjoy? What is wrong with our president engaging the largest political party in an emerging democracy?

It's difficult to know just how to respond to this comment.

Mets seems to believe that a single election in which the genocidal, anti-Semitic Muslim Brotherhood gain 41 percent of the Egyptian vote and the even more extreme Salafists gain an additional 20 percent, thus giving the entire country over to Political Islam, somehow represents the "blessings of liberty that Israelis enjoy or that we Americans enjoy."

Forgive me if I disagree with such an assessment for, at least, two reasons.

The first, of course, is that the mere fact of an election does not suggest democracy.  Mets knows as well as I that the Nazis were democratically elected, as was Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood affiliate in the Gaza strip.  Even dictator Abbas ran out his mandate about 3 years ago and is now a non-elected, non-democratic ruler. What I fail to understand is that, given the fact that Mets knows these things, just why he would raise this canard?

The second reason, which is more important, is that people seem to know little of the history of the Muslim Brotherhood, and must be ignoring what they currently say:

Oh Allah, take this oppressive, Jewish Zionist band of people. Oh Allah, do not spare a single one of them. Oh Allah, count their numbers, and kill them, down to the very last one. - Yusuf al-Qaradawi / Muslim Brotherhood.

One of the themes of this blog is that progressives are remaining willfully ignorant about Radical Islam, both its history and its current behavior, and thereby refuse to educate themselves to the Nazi roots of the Islamist trend. Or, as I like to say, progressives would not acknowledge the Jihad if they were blindfolded and on their knees in some basement in Karachi.

The Nazi roots of the Brotherhood is established historical fact that anyone should learn about before speaking on the subject.

As I have mentioned any number of times previously, there is honest academic work currently being done on this topic. The main writers that I am immediately familiar with are:

Matthias Kuntzel, Jihad and Jew-Hatred: Islamism, Nazism and the Roots of 9/11 (2007).

Paul Berman, Terror and Liberalism (2003) and The Flight of the Intellectuals (2010).

Edwin Black, The Farhud: Roots of the Arab-Nazi Alliance in the Holocaust (2010).

and Jeffrey Herf, Nazi Propaganda for the Arab World. (2009)

This is a fascinating and emerging historiography and you cannot speak about groups like the Brotherhood without having some familiarity with what the historians are saying and what they are showing us is the Nazi provenance of this movement. These are not ideologues.  These are not people involved in political dirt-fights.

These are scholars.

It is time to move on from old alliances that are no longer reliable and old assumptions, such as progressive-left friendship to the Jewish people, which simply no longer hold true.



  1. While we know that the Islamist parties have won a majority in the parliamentary elections, we do not know exactly what shape the government will take in Egypt.  Similarly, we are waiting for that answer in Tunisia as well.  Islamist does not inherently equally anti-democratic, just as here, in the west, Christianist (for lack of a better term) does not inherently equally anti-democratic.

    Furthermore, I would point out that the initial impetus for democratization in the Arab world did not come from President Obama, or even from the left.  It came from George W. Bush and Dick Cheney and others hewing to neoconservative philosophy.  Despite this, I have not seen you call them out in the same way you continually call out President Obama, who is a great friend to the Jewish People and to the State of Israel.

    Now, let's go through your piece point-by-point.

    1. President Obama, like every American president seeking to tackle the Israel-Palestinian conflict, is not perfect.  Additionally, his actions here speak to his general philosophy:  Cut the bullshit and get right to the point.  That's it.  Nothing more.  Nothing less.

    2.  See my first point.  President Obama is just stopping the bullshit and applying reality to the situation.  Aside from the major settlement blocs, that land is going to be part of a Palestinian state.  Just as Tel Aviv and Haifa are not up for negotiation, so too Nabulus and Ramallah are not up for negotiation.

    3.  Obama has merely encouraged democracy and the belief that all the people of this world are entitled to the same blessings of freedom and liberty and individual dignity that we in this country enjoy.  I see nothing wrong with this and plenty right with this.

    4.  Perhaps you missed the statement from our Secretary of Defense, Leon Panetta.  You know, the statement where he said that a nuclear Iran was a red line?  And, you know, the statement that Iran would not be allowed to close the Strait of Hormuz?

    5.  Terrorism is not a uniquely a Muslim phenomenon, and it is Islamophobic, and bigoted, to treat it as such.  Before 9/11, the deadliest act of terrorism on American soil was Oklahoma City and the perpetrators were far-right, white, Christians.  Similarly, those bombing abortion clinics, and interfering with a woman's right to choose, are usually Christian.  Then there are groups like the JDL and other Kahanist organizations, which are terrorist groups composed primarily of Jews.  There is a strain of terrorism that uses Islam as a justification, just as there are strains of terrorism that use other religions as justification.  Acknowledging that does not make one soft on terrorism.  It actually means they understand some basic information about terrorism.

  2. More than that... President Obama HAS NOT said that "Jews can't live in the West Bank". What the President has said is that Israeli Nationals cannot settle on land that is not Israeli. BTW, every U.S. President has taken this view point. Every. Single. ONE.

    Now, if one claims that Israelis can settle the Occupied Territories then one is de-facto arguing that the West Bank is Israel. Since the settlers have all the rights of full Israeli citizens is that then confirmation that the Territories are Israel? If that is the case then what does one suggest for the Palestinians in said territories? If they are not Israel (and not even Israel says they are Israel) then why are Israeli Nationals settling on land that is not theirs to begin with?

    This has nothing to do with "where Jews can settle" or not. That is a silly argument. It has everything to do with where Israeli citizens can settle outside their borders.