May 20, 2011
Disturbing Questions about President Obama's Vision for IsraelBy Peggy Shapiro
President Obama's speech yesterday about U.S. policy in the Middle East in general and about the Israel-Palestinians conflict specifically calls for democracy yet abandons the only democracy in the Middle East. It rewards terror states and potential terror-states. It asks Israel to accept U.S. assurances while abandoning all the assurances he made as a candidate. Rather than answers, the speech leaves us with many disturbing questions.
1. The president promises billions in aid to Egypt with no non-terror strings attached.
Will these funds be forthcoming if Egypt is in the control of the Muslim Brotherhood (a more likely scenario each day) and tears up the peace treaty with Israel?
2. The president frames the Palestinian-Israeli conflict as the root of larger problems across the Middle East.
Candidate Obama said to the pro-Israel community at AIPAC in 2008.
3. The president calls for ethnic cleansing of some areas in the disputed territories and even Jerusalem.
There are no calls for Palestinians to refrain from building in certain areas which the president wants Muslim-free. Is ethnic cleansing only for Jews?
4. The president asks Israel to take bold (dangerous) steps for peace.
Responding to American pressure, Israel has acted bolding in unilateral withdrawal from Lebanon and Gaza. The return for these bold moves was increased terror. What bold steps does the president ask the Palestinians to take?
5. While maintaining that "No peace can be imposed upon them, nor can endless delay make the problem go away," yet he issues a concrete proposal with the starting point major concessions from Israel?
These armistice lines, drawn after the War of Independence, left Israel vulnerable to attack then and would be even more dangerous today. Every assurance since then, including UN Resolution 242 acknowledged that such lines were indefensible. A border on these lines would return the strategically important Golan Heights to Syria and make Israeli towns once again easy targets for the Syrian state-sponsor of terrorism.
6. The pre-1967 lines endorsed by President Obama includes Jerusalem's holiest sites. Jews would be denied access to their holiest sites, which would certainly be desecrated as they were when Israel lost control of Jerusalem in 1948 or even more recently when Israel removed guards from Joseph's Tomb. The president's Israel denies safety and religious rights to the Jewish state. Where is that Barack Obama who pledged in his last address to AIPAC, "Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel, and it must remain undivided."
7. The president's vision describes a sliced up nation of Israel.
Look at a map and try creating a contiguous Palestinian state without splitting Israel into little indefensible slices.
8. The president holds onto a fantasy that Hamas will reject the path of terror and rejection. Is there any evidence on this planet that Hamas will reject terror and the annihilation of the Jewish state since the end to all Jewish existence is the core element of the terror group's charter? He also hopes for the Hamas-Fatah terror state to provide border security for Israel.
9. The president expects Israel to negotiate with terrorists and give up security for empty promises.
Will Israelis be so gullible or so pressured to accept another promise, which can be tossed into the bin of broken Palestinian promises? In this case, talk is cheap, but the price Israel would have to pay in blood is very high. In 2008, Obama understood that Israel must not negotiate with terrorists.
10. This analysis focuses on Israel, but there is a broader question of a major address which begins with encouragement of the democratic movements in the Middle East and sells out its only democracy.
If President Obama wants to support democracy in the Middle East, then why is he endangering the only true democracy in the region; Israel?
Asking Israel to accept a terror state on dangerous pre-1967 armistice lines and giving up its holy sites, all in return for meaningless words, rewards terrorism, not democracy. The message to terror groups is, "Keep up the violence and the US will back you to get whatever you want." The message to a democratic ally is, "Make dangerous concession for peace with US assurances and the US will forget the assurances and ask for more concessions."