Theater of the Absurd

By Martin Sherman

Published in YNet News.com

Obama, after the “pragmatic” Palestinians have repudiated any idea of “historic compromise,” any recognition of Jewish national sovereignty: “…so far the talks are moving forward in a constructive way…”

You couldn’t make this stuff up!

In a different universe the recent events regarding the rekindling of the “peace process” could well be the stuff of a macabre comedy, couched and conveyed in deliberately overstated caricature.

But sadly in this universe they portend tragedy.

It has been an almost inconceivable spectacle, beginning with the Israeli prime minister traveling to Washington to express his resolve and commitment to implement a policy that he has repeatedly repudiated – and ridiculed – for over a decade and a half.

Macabre Comedy

Even more astonishing is the fact that he did so not because his earlier criticism was proven unfounded in any way, but despite the fact that it was proven well founded in every way; not because his previous warnings that the policy would herald disaster were proven wrong but despite the fact that they were proven right.

Yet the absurdity does not end here. In the Alice-in-Wonderland world of Middle East politics things get “curiouser and curiouser.”

No less astounding than Netanyahu’s acquiescence to discuss the implementation of the very policy he correctly predicted would fail, is the identity of the “partner” with whom he assented to do so. The Palestinian negotiation team is led by Mahmoud Abbas, someone who has neither the formal legality (since his terms of office has expired) nor the political legitimacy (since his authority in not recognized by a sizeable segment of the electorate) to do so.

And then enter Hamas. With an impeccable sense of timing, Abbas’ radical adversaries carried out two brutal terror attacks on Israelis, dramatically demonstrating that the man Netanyahu has incongruously deemed “my-partner-in-peace” cannot control events in the areas he purports to administer- underscoring both the impotence of the Palestinian “partner” and pointlessness of negotiating with him.

For what would be the value of an agreements reached if there is no guarantee that the Palestinian signatories will be any position to honor or enforce them, even assuming they desire to do so?

Abbas wants to shape Israel 

And just to drive home the absurdity and futility of the entire exercise, after explicitly rejecting Netanyahu’s call for a “historic compromise,” Abbas pronounced categorically that “we won’t recognize Israel as a Jewish state,” as to do so would “block any chance of Palestinian refugees from returning to their original homes inside Israel.”

This was reiterated the very next day by senior Palestinian negotiator Nabil Shaath, who declared that “The Palestinian Authority will never recognize Israel as a Jewish state,” since this “would…prevent Palestinian refugees, who left their homes and villages a number of decades ago, from being granted the right to return to them.”

So not only do the Palestinian leaders openly admit that they will never recognize the Jews’ right to political sovereignty in the Israel, but by obdurately insisting on the “right of return,” they make it quite clear that the only agreement acceptable to them is one that would make the maintenance of such political sovereignty untenable.

Now one might well ask: If Netanyahu is not recognized by his Palestinian interlocutors as representing the Jewish nation-state, precisely in what capacity is he participating in the “process”? But an even more troubling conundrum arises: In what capacity is Abbas doing so? For it seems that he has adopted a trans-national – or at least a trans-frontier – posture, speaking not only for the people he foresees living under the sovereignty of the envisioned Palestinian state, but also for those who he foresees will not!

Indeed, Abbas’ demands are not restricted to shaping the future state of Palestine, its character, the extent of its boundaries and the composition of its population (i.e. Judenrein with all the Jewish “settlements” evacuated and all the Jewish settlers expelled.) His demands extend to shaping the character of the State of Israel and to what the composition of its population should be (which à la Abbas is to include millions of non-Jewish Palestinian “refugees.”)

In short, the “president” of a yet-to-be-established state – whose term of office has expired and whose legitimacy is contested by a significant portion of those he purports to represent – lays down, as a categorical demand, that for any agreement to be reached literally millions of people from third-party countries must be admitted as citizens – not into the sovereign territory of putative state over which he supposedly will have authority but into the sovereign territory of another state.

Like I said: You couldn’t make this stuff up!

Why help faltering, anti-Israel president? 

But perhaps the most macabre aspect of this preposterous tragic-comic spectacle is that it the only conceivable reason for Israel to participate in it at all, is to mollify a floundering US Administration desperate for some indication – any indication – of success to boost its flagging popularity

Now had this been an Administration that had wide spread support across the US, there might have been some justification in reluctantly acquiescing to its behest. Alternatively, had this been an Administration which was favorably disposed towards Israel there might have been some argument for lending it support in a time of distress. But neither of these is true.

On the one hand, the approval rates for the Obama Administration have been dropping like a lead balloon with public support evaporating with each passing week. On the other hand, the Obama Administration been described as arguably “the most anti-Israel Administration in the modern history of the state of Israel.”

So what conceivable political rationale is there in Netanyahu embracing a policy that rewards the White House’s hostility and hubris and accommodates Israel’s humiliation? What is possible political wisdom is there in providing the deeply unpopular incumbent Administration anything that might make it “look good”; anything that could give it any electoral advantage over the far more Israel-friendly Republican Party – especially as the crucial mid-term elections approach?

And if anyone thought that matter could not get any more farcical, they would be wrong. For just recently, Obama issued his latest exhortation for Netanyahu to make another gesture and extend the soon-to-expire building freeze. His reasoning: After the “pragmatic” Palestinians have repudiated any idea of making an “historic compromise” and any recognition of Jewish national sovereignty 60 years after Israel’s establishment, was:

“…so far the talks are moving forward in a constructive way, it makes sense to extend that moratorium so long as the talks are moving in a constructive way.”

You couldn’t make this stuff up! Or have I said that before?

9-11 The Day the Sky Fell

This Saturday will mark the ninth anniversary of the day when many of us woke up to the fact that we had been attacked, and that thousands of innocent people had been killed in Manhattan at the World Trade Center by Islamist jihadists.  This was not the first time that terrorists, in the name of Islam, had attempted to destroy the World Trade Center, and the people in it.  This was the time they succeeded.
The Day the Sky Fell

World Trade Center ManhattanMy friend, Daniel Greenfield, has written an excellent essay about September 11th, titled “The Day the Sky Fell”  I encourage you to go to his site and read it.

Some excerpts:

“That Tuesday we faced a new world. A world in which the sky fell. And some of us rose to face the challenges. And some of us fled into the comforts of the Monday that had come before, and all the days and years before it. Escaping history. Fleeing destiny. Forgetting that the world had changed, and no amount of politics as usual could make it stay the same.”   

[…]

“9/11 changed that. It tore down the sky and opened a gaping hole in the self-centered arrogance that had been the legacy of the 90’s, best exemplified by its champion, the morally ambiguous William Jefferson Clinton. It reminded us that we cannot just be satisfied with bread and circuses. That the world does not exist for our amusement. And that all views and beliefs are not created equal. That despite the ironic detachment of pop culture, there was a right and a wrong. And that despite the retreat from faith in a higher being, to a faith in our own technocratic castles in the sky, there was such a thing as good and evil. And not that we had forgotten that we were meant to be the good– evil had come to pay a call on us.”

His article is an excellent piece about 9/11 and I recommend highly that you take a couple of minutes to read it.

We ask that you will join us in remembering and celebrating the brave citizens and first responders who gave their lives on that fateful morning. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families and friends who lost someone during that craven attack on America.
Sincerely,

Gary Aminoff
President
San Fernando Valley Republican Club

SFVRC_Logo

What Humanitarian Crisis in Gaza?

There has been an attempt by many organizations around the world over the past year to establish the appearance of a humanitarian crisis in Gaza. Even US based organizations, like JStreet, have convinced members of Congress that this is true.

It is not true.
The bottom line is that there is no lack of goods going into Gaza. Each week the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs publishes the amount of aid transferred into Gaza.  See a comprehensive report here  and a weekly update here.
Israel agrees that there is a humanitarian crisis, but it is not due to lack of goods entering Gaza, its the fact that Gaza is ruled by a terrorist organization.

Look back to 2005, Israel withdrew completely allowing the Palestinians to decide on their own how to govern.

In 2007 Hamas expelled Fatah moderates in a bloody battle (good reference here.) and began attacking Israeli towns with rocket barrages.
From 2007 to 2009 literally thousands of rockets rained down on civilian territories (see detailed stats here). In response, Israel along with Egypt, imposed a naval blockade. For an interesting perspective from Egypt go here.

The other nations in the area are wary of radicals like Hamas infiltrating and gaining a political foothold in their country and destabilizing the state so in practice they agree with Israel – yet the public rhetoric is always anti-Israel. Though Egypt has since left its border with Gaza open (though I’m not sure what “open” really means) I believe that soon they will resume their own blockade once public attention drifts. 
The bottom line is that Israel, along with Egypt, wants to ensure that Hamas cannot arm itself. Why? Because if Hamas resumes its attacks against Israel, then Israel will retaliate and the Gazans will seek refuge in Egypt – and Egypt does not want to support that population. To see an Arab blogger’s political analysis re: Egypt 2009, go here.  Go here to see where Egypt opens fire against Gazans in 2009.  Go here and here to see how Egypt deals with the Gazans in 2010.  I am curious why the international community makes no criticism of Egypt, only of Israel?  (Not really!)

With the above information and analysis Israel is clearly justified and is acting morally both in defense of its own citizens and in providing aid to the Gazans. But it does beg the question – where is the Arab support of Palestinians? 
They pledge millions but never deliver.

Meanwhile in the West Bank conditions are very different: The West Bank is experiencing a 7% economic growth rate, declining unemployment, growing tourism and a wage increase of 24% this year.  Read Bloomberg’s analysis of the West Bank economy here.  One wonders why the West Bank is prospering and Gaza is not?  The answer lies in who governs Gaza.  There is no Hamas in the West Bank, and the West Bank isn’t firing rockets into Israel or threatening Israel.  See Ambassador Oren’s article about the West Bank here.  For a comprehensive report on both the West Bank and Gaza go here.  The same prosperity could occur in Gaza as well if Hamas agreed to cease hostilities and work with Israel like Fatah is doing.  That is not likely.

The bottom line is that the residents of Gaza do not suffer from a lack of essential goods or medical supplies.  The press has been complicit with Hamas in attempting to present a picture of humanitarian need in Gaza when none, in reality, exists.

Aid to Hamas??

Investors Business Daily writes in an editorial today:

Diplomacy: President Obama sat for a White House photo op with the Palestinian Authority’s leader and then announced a $400 million aid package for the West Bank and Gaza. What’s wrong with this picture?

The president seemed to go out of his way this week to please his latest guest, President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority, in a way he didn’t when Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, came calling last month.

Why is the White house providing $400 Million in aid to a terrorist regime?

Why the U.S. should be supporting a regime that so far this year has fired 370 lethal rockets into Israel, that still refuses to recognize Israel’s right to exist and that has made a cottage industry of teaching children to hate is beyond us.

Extra cash for the same people who danced in the streets on 9/11 will just free up more resources for new terror and mayhem against the Jewish state. Some $10 billion has been spent globally in the last decade on Palestine, and places like Gaza remain as miserably pro-terrorist as ever.

This gift to a terrorist regime that kills its people for singing and dancing at a wedding because it is against sharia law does not deserve aid from the United States.

The editorial concludes:

If the plan is to buy off Gazans so they’ll vote for non-terrorists, it’s hard to see how this would work. Hamas could refuse to let the U.S. build the schools, just as the group refused aid from Israel-inspected ships that ran the Gaza blockade. These aren’t people who help themselves.

Nor can such aid ever help them as long as they remain committed to Israel’s destruction. President Obama’s aid offer was both expensive and naive.

Read the whole article.

An Open Letter to American Jews

AN OPEN LETTER TO AMERICAN JEWS
By Ben Shapiro

Dear American Jews,

I write to you as a charter member of the tribe. I’m not only Jewish, I’m religious. I’m married to an Israeli girl (she’ll receive her citizenship next year and she is a proud soon-to-be American). I go to synagogue regularly, keep kosher, keep the Sabbath.

American Jews, I have one request of you: please pull your heads out of your posteriors.

I mean that in all sincerity. Your continued support for Democrats and an administration that is openly anti-Semitic is a disgrace. Your embrace of a party that seeks to hamstring Israel in the name of a wholly fictitious Middle East peace process is contemptible. Your loyalty to a president who consistently sides with Palestinian and Iranian mass murder-supporters is disgusting.

Your backing of a man who has spent his life surrounding himself with the worst anti-Semites America has to offer — Jeremiah Wright, Rashid Khalidi (former Palestinian terrorist spokesman), Louis Farrakhan (“I don’t like the way [Jews] leech on us”), Samantha Power, Robert Malley, to name a few — is nothing short of reprehensible. Rahm Emanuel’s presence in the Obama cabinet doesn’t ameliorate Obama’s anti-Semitism — it just provides it convenient cover. Al Sharpton wrongly called Condoleezza Rice and Colin Powell “house negroes”; Emanuel is a kapo.

Even as you continue to buttress a president who seeks the destruction of your co-religionists, you demonstrate your myopia by rejecting the tea party movement and evangelical Christian Israel-supporters.

The tea party movement is your ally for three important reasons. First, it supports capitalism against the forces of socialism — and capitalism keeps America strong enough to provide Israel with a hand against its evil adversaries. Second, American Jews are, by far, the highest-earning religious group in the United States — the tea party fights for your right to keep your money. Third, the tea party stands against government overreach — and in an era when government overreach promotes anti-religious secularism, Jews must stand with the tea party.

Your rejection of evangelical Christians is even more idiotic. Evangelical Christians are the only major voting bloc preventing President Obama from breaking ties with Israel. When Janet Porter, an evangelical Florida talk show host, heard about Obama’s anti-Israel tyranny, she responded by asking her listeners to buy dozens of yellow roses to send to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office as a show of support. The price per dozen: $19.48, in honor of the year of Israel’s founding (1948). Over 14,000 flowers were delivered. Meanwhile, Adm. James Jones, Obama’s national security adviser and the man who brought Jew-hater Zbigniew Brzezinski into Obama’s inner circle, was busy telling anti-Semitic jokes before the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.

“But they want to convert us!” many American Jews shout. Not all Christians do. But for the rest — so what? Would you sacrifice the support of millions of good-hearted Christians because they want to discuss Jesus with you? If your own belief system is so fragile, the weakness is yours, not theirs. While you expend energy whining about Jehovah’s Witnesses who show up at your door with a Bible, Obama supports radical Muslims who would show up at your door with a gun — or, as in the case of Daniel Pearl, a butcher’s knife.

Now, I understand, American Jews, that most of you don’t care about Israel.

I understand that you’re more concerned about a woman’s unconditional right to abort her unborn child (which Judaism rejects) than you are about Israel. Fine. Understand that you have removed yourself from the vast river of Jewish history in favor of a chimerical morality that values libertinism over liberty.

I understand that many of you — all of you above age 70 — still think FDR is alive. He isn’t, but Jimmy Carter is.

I understand that some of you still think that conservatives and Republicans are the same folks they were during the 1950s, when they banned you from country clubs. They aren’t.

The simple fact is this: There is only one mainstream political ideology in this country that asks you to check your principles and cultural history at the door in the name of the greater good — leftism, the same ideology that virtually exterminated Judaism in Russia and Europe. While the left exploits your adherence to bagel-and-lox Judaism by appealing to your watered-down and perverted “tikkun olam” sensibilities, you are enabling your own destruction. The same people who urge you to reach out to terrorists will be the first to sacrifice you to those terrorists’ tender mercies. The same people who urge you to worry about same-sex marriage rather than religious freedom will be the first to take your religious freedoms away.

I love you, my brothers and sisters. That’s why I’m writing to you. Time is running out; the clock is winding down. Pick a side.

The Real Hamas

We have heard from many lately that Hamas is not a terrorist organization, but is a humanitarian, charitable organization. This is another lie spread by the Islamists.

Hamas is a radical Islamist terrorist organization that forces the Palestinian people to comply with Sharia law through threat, intimidation, terror and ultimately death. The following is a video, prepared by an Israeli Arab opposed to Hamas, showing the true face of Hamas.

In this video you will see a wedding in Gaza at which the wedding party is having a good time,dancing and celebrating the joyous occasion. That is forbidden under sharia law. This video shows Hamas arriving at the wedding scene, killing the participants, including the bride and groom because they were playing music and dancing.

There are many scenes in this video of how Hamas treats the Palestinian Arabs in Gaza. This is the leadership that the Gazans elected, and therefore, the leadership they deserve. But don’t let anyone tell you that Hamas is a benign organization, as you can see for yourself.

The Palestinians will have a better life, and possibly peace, if they can get rid of Hamas. I am not sure that is likely.

The Truth about The Gaza Flotilla and the Gaza Blockade

If you want the facts, and not the media spin, about what really happened with the Gaza Flotilla then you should go to these two sites:

1) UPDATED FACTS: The Gaza Flotilla and the Maritime Blockade of Gaza

2) Glenn Beck Web Exclusive on the Flotilla

Watch Eric Holder Squirm Because He Can’t Say "Radical Islam"

What a jerk! He has been so brainwashed by his bosses not to say “Radical Islam” that he can’t get it out. How can you protect against a force you can’t say the name of?

The truth is, that it is not “radical” Islam. It is the true Islam that promotes violent jihad. Holder seems to erroneously think that jihad is practiced by those who have “distorted” the religion. Obviously he has never read the Qur’an just as he never read the Arizona law.

Obama Eradicates Islamic Terrorism – From NSA Documents Only

From the Middle East Forum:The Obama administration has just announced its intent to ban all words that allude to Islam from important national security documents. Put differently, the Obama administration has just announced its intent to ban all knowledge and context necessary to confront and defeat radical Islam (news much welcomed by Islamist organizations like CAIR). While this move may reflect a naively therapeutic administration — an Obama advisor once suggested that Winnie the Pooh should inform U.S foreign policy — that Obama, the one U.S. president who best knows that politically correct niceties will have no effect on the Muslim world is enforcing this ban, is further troubling.

An Associated Press report has the disturbing details:

President Barack Obama’s advisers plan to remove terms such as “Islamic radicalism” from a document outlining national security strategy and will use the new version to emphasize that the U.S. does not view Muslim nations through the lens of terrorism, counterterrorism officials say.

First off, how, exactly, does the use of terms such as “Islamic radicalism” indicate that the U.S. views “Muslim nations through the lens of terrorism”? It is the height of oversensitivity to think that the so-called “Muslim street” can be antagonized by accurate words in technical U.S. documents — documents they don’t know or care about — especially since the Arabic media itself often employs such terms. Surely we can use “Islamic radicalism” to define, well, Islamic radicals, without simultaneously viewing all Muslims “through the lens of terrorism”? Just as surely as we can use words like “Nazism” to define white supremacists, without viewing all white nations through the lens of racism?

The AP report continues:

Obama’s speechwriters have taken inspiration from an unlikely source: former President Ronald Reagan. Visiting communist China in 1984, Reagan spoke at Fudan University in Shanghai about education, space exploration and scientific research. He discussed freedom and liberty. He never mentioned communism or democracy.

The analogy is flawed. For starters, in Reagan’s era, the Soviet Union, not China, was America’s prime antagonist — just as today, Islamic radicals, not Muslims, are America’s prime enemy. Moreover, unlike Obama, who would have the U.S. bend over backwards to appease Muslim nations— or, in his case, just bend over — Reagan regularly lambasted the Soviet Union, dubbing it the “evil empire.” Finally, the Chinese never attacked America, unlike Islamic radicals, who not only have attacked it, but daily promise it death and destruction — all in the name of Islam.

The ultimate problem in the White House’s new “words-policy,” however, is reflected in this excerpt from the report:

The change [i.e., linguistic obfuscation] would be a significant shift in the National Security Strategy, a document that previously outlined the Bush Doctrine of preventive war. It currently states, “The struggle against militant Islamic radicalism is the great ideological conflict of the early years of the 21st century.”

Read the whole article.

The emasculation of America by its 44th President

Melanie Phillips, at the UK Spectator, writes about the weakening of American and the sucking up to America’s enemies and the throwing of America’s friends under the bus by the current administration:

“Terrific blog post at the Telegraph by Nile Gardner who absolutely gets the point about Obama’s catastrophic strategy of sucking up to America’s enemies while kicking its friends in the teeth:

In the past month we’ve seen ample evidence of this with the State Department’s appalling decision to openly side with Argentina against Great Britain over the Falklands, and the White House’s bullying of Israel. Meanwhile, the Obama team swiftly issued a groveling apology to terrorist sponsor Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, for earlier casting aspersions over the Butcher of Tripoli’s call for a jihad against Switzerland. A barbaric Islamist tyrant with American blood on his hands is, incredibly, treated better than the leaders of both Britain and Israel.

…In the space of just over a year, Barack Obama has managed to significantly damage relations with America’s two closest friends, while currying favour with practically every monstrous dictatorship on the face of the earth. The doctrine of “smart power” has evolved into the shameless appeasement of America’s enemies at the expense of existing alliances. There is nothing clever about this approach – it will ultimately weaken US global power and strengthen the hand of America’s enemies, who have become significantly emboldened and empowered by Barack Obama’s naïve approach since he took office.

The Obama presidency is causing immense damage to America’s standing in the free world, while projecting an image of weakness in front of hostile regimes. Its treatment of both Israel and Britain is an insult and a disgrace, and a grim reflection of an unbelievably crass and insensitive foreign policy that significantly undermines the US national interest.

As a result, the world’s tyrannies are now looking upon the nation that is supposedly the protector of the free world with undisguised contempt at its self-induced weakness. As Jennifer Rubin notes at Commentary, while Hillary Clinton and the Obamites went ballistic at the ‘insult’ to the US of Israel’s housing policy, Clinton herself was subjected to a public and humiliating dressing down by none other than Vladimir Putin. Rubin observes:

Putin has figured out that there is no risk — so long as you aren’t a small democratic ally of the U.S. — of incurring the wrath of the Obami. No condemnations or even frowns will be forthcoming. This is, you see, what comes from throwing ourselves at our adversaries’ feet and scorning our allies. Adversaries learn to take advantage of us while friends learn not to trust us.

Weakening America and strengthening its enemies. Yup, that was all in the prospectus when Obama ran for power. And now we are beginning to see its mortal effects.”