Another Middle East Crisis

March 17th, 2010

By Tom Carter

The crisis of the day regarding the Middle East is that Israel has announced its intention to build more housing in East Jerusalem.  It gained control of that territory at the end of the 1967 war, one of the attempts by Arab nations to destroy Israel in which the Arabs were defeated.  Most of the U.S. and European media are spewing spittle in outrage over this, partly because the announcement was made while Vice President Biden was visiting the region.  The Obama Administration is as outraged as its supporters in the media; Secretary of State Clinton’s undiplomatic first reaction was that the announcement was an intentional insult to the United States.

Richard Cohen is a Washington Post columnist and a liberal.  However, unlike the majority of liberals, he’s not anti-Israel (and whatever else that implies).  Cohen pointed out in his column yesterday that the media has largely ignored something else that happened at the same time:

What can you say about a 19-year-old woman, pretty in the pictures, who participates in a terrorist attack in which 38 people, 13 of them children, are killed in cold blood? The answer, if the woman is Palestinian and the dead are Israelis, is heroine or martyr — and if she is Dalal Mughrabi, you name a school and a camp after her, and last week, a square in the West Bank town of El Bireh. It will be the fitting venue for those who furiously single out Israel for allegedly killing civilians in violation of all the rules of warfare. Hypocrisy Square would be its appropriate name. …

The veneration of terrorists says something unsettling about Palestinian society.

…determination in the West, particularly Europe, not to hold Palestinians morally accountable for terrorism — as well as their commonplace anti-Semitism — is a repugnant form of neocolonial mentality in which, once again, the Palestinians are being patronized. I dare say the Brits would have reacted differently if a square in Belfast had been named for some IRA terrorist.

The Obama Administration has shown repeatedly that they are hard on Israel and soft on the Palestinians.  The only reason they’re restraining themselves to any extent is that a significant majority of Americans supports Israel, and groups in the U.S. that defend Israel don’t let politicians forget it.

One has to wonder if the Administration understands that if they continue on this course, the eventual result would most likely be the destruction of Israel.  That is the ultimate goal of the Palestinians and the Arab and other Muslim states of the region.  Has it now become the American goal, too?

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One Response to “Another Middle East Crisis”

  1. Tom |

    Here’s an interesting article — The Crisis: Was Obama’s confrontation with Israel premeditated? Excerpts:

    Obama is directly responsible for one of the most absurd turns in the history of Middle East negotiations. Though Palestinian leaders negotiated with Israeli governments that built extensively in the West Bank, they now refused to sit down with the first Israeli government to actually agree to a suspension of building. Obama’s demand for a building freeze in Jerusalem led to a freeze in negotiations.

    Finally, after intensive efforts, the administration produced the pathetic achievement of “proximity talks”—setting Palestinian-Israeli negotiations back a generation, to the time when Palestinian leaders refused to sit at the same table with Israelis.

    That Obama could be guilty of such amateurishness was perhaps forgivable because he was, after all, an amateur. But he has now taken his failed policy and intensified it. By demanding that Israel stop building in Ramat Shlomo and elsewhere in East Jerusalem—and placing that demand at the center of American-Israeli relations—he’s ensured that the Palestinians won’t show up even to proximity talks. This is no longer amateurishness; it is pique disguised as policy. …

    In the last year, the administration has not once publicly condemned the Palestinians for lack of good faith…. Just after Biden left Ramallah, Palestinian officials held a ceremony naming a square in the city after a terrorist responsible for the massacre of 38 Israeli civilians. That too didn’t merit an administration rebuke.

    Obama’s one-sided public pressure against Israel could intensify the atmosphere of “open season” against Israel internationally.

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