Pictures From The Opening Of The U.S. Embassy In Jerusalem Today

This are two pictures from Israel today as America opens its Embassy in Jerusalem.

In December 2017, The Washington Post reminded us:

Ten days before he was assassinated in Tel Aviv, Israeli prime minister Yitzhak Rabin gave a speech in Washington about the city of Jerusalem.

“Jerusalem is the heart of the Jewish people and a deep source of our pride,” Rabin said at an event recognizing the 3,000th year of the city’s existence.

“We differ in our opinions, left and right,” he said as the speech concluded. “We disagree on the means and the objective. In Israel, we all agree on one issue: the wholeness of Jerusalem, the continuation of its existence as capital of the State of Israel. There are no two Jerusalems. There is only one Jerusalem. For us, Jerusalem is not subject to compromise, and there is no peace without Jerusalem.”

That speech was given Oct. 25, 1995. On Nov. 4, a far-right student fatally shot him.

The evening before his speech, the Congress of the United States passed a law echoing Rabin’s assertions about the city. Spurred by the desire to act before Rabin’s visit, the House and Senate passed a bill called the “Jerusalem Embassy Act,” which formally recognized the city as the country’s capital and called for the U.S. Embassy in Israel to be moved there from Tel Aviv by 1999. Support for the bill was overwhelming. It passed the Senate by a 93 to 5 vote, with four Republicans and one Democrat voting no. It passed the House 374 to 37, with 153 Democrats joining most of the new Republican majority that had swept into power in 1994.  (the underline is mine)

So why wasn’t it done? The article explains:

The bill was not signed into law by then-President  Bill Clinton. Clinton had made an early effort to craft a new peace agreement in the Middle East, forging the Oslo accords between Israel and Palestinians, signed in 1993 and September 1995. (Rabin’s support for the accords was apparently one of the things that motivated his assassin.) The Embassy Act, Clinton said in a statement, “could hinder the peace process. I will not let this happen and will use the legislation’s waiver authority to avoid damage to the peace process.”

That waiver authority was a critical escape valve for Clinton and his successors. Initially, the legislation introduced by then-Kansas senator Bob Dole (R) mandated that groundbreaking on a new embassy in Jerusalem begin in 1996. To quell concerns from Clinton allies on the Hill, Dole added a provision that allowed the president to postpone implementation of the move for six months if “such suspension is necessary to protect the national security interests of the United States.”

Every President since Clinton has taken advantage of that waiver to avoid moving the Embassy. Why? Because up until now America has been almost totally dependent on Arab countries in the Middle East for our energy supply. Now that we are on the road to energy independence, we are free to make decisions on the basis of what is right rather than how much oil we need.

Thank you, President Trump, for having the courage to move the Embassy.

Details On The Iranian Nuclear Program

On Wednesday, Bill Gertz posted an article at The Washington Times which provided some of the details on the Iranian nuclear program. The information presented by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was truly an intelligence coup. Secretary of State (and Former CIA Director) Mike Pompeo noted that much of the information Israel had obtained was new to the United States.

The article reported:

An Israeli government PowerPoint briefing on the documents showed Iran moved the files in 2017 to a secret warehouse in an industrial area of southern Tehran called Shorabad. Inside the warehouse were numerous safes protecting some 55,000 pages of documents in binders, and 183 CDs containing 50,000 more digital files.

An Israeli official told reporters the daring operation by Mossad agents to steal the documents was carried out on Jan. 31, and included Iranians discovering the break-in as it was happening. The Iranians flew a drone aircraft into Israeli airspace 11 days after the document raid, possibly in response to the operation.

 The document cache was so large, Israeli agents were unable to bring all the files out. The storage facility and the materials in it were among the Tehran government’s most closely guarded secrets and Iranian authorities were alarmed that warehouse was discovered and sacked.

The documents reveal Iran’s nuclear arms program was called “Project Amad” and operated from 1999 to 2003.

An Iranian presentation in Farsi revealed in the Israeli presentation said that the goal of Project Amad was to “design, produce and test” nuclear weapons. Under the plan, the Iranians were to build five warheads with yields of 10 kilotons that would be designed “for integration on a missile.”

That is not a peaceful nuclear program to provide energy for Iran (as was claimed by Iran).

The section of the article dealing with Iran concludes:

The Israeli presentation included documents showing that Iran deceived the International Atomic Energy Agency in its final report on Iran’s past and present nuclear program that was required as part of the 2015 nuclear deal. The documents show that — contrary to Iran’s denial to the IAEA of a coordinate arms program and denying the existence of Project Amad — Iran in fact carried out a coordinated nuclear weapons programs.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said this week the documents obtained by the Israelis from Iran were “authentic.” He called the documents that are being reviewed by U.S. intelligence agencies an “arsenal of knowledge.”

“It’s not just in the minds of people whom they have. It’s the actual calculations that they’ve done, the blueprints, the measurements,” he said.

The Pentagon’s latest nuclear posture review said the Iran nuclear deal has constrained Tehran’s arms program, “many of the agreement’s restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program will end by 2031.”

“In addition, Iran retains the technological capability and much of the capacity necessary to develop a nuclear weapon within one year of a decision to do so,” the posture review said.

On May 10, 2016, I wrote an article about the role that Ben Rhodes had played in securing positive public opinion about the Iran deal. The deal was seriously flawed from the beginning. I am not sure that it can be changed in any way that would make the world safer from Iranian nuclear weapons. If it can’t be changed, it needs to be scrapped. At that point someone needs to pinpoint all locations of the Iranian nuclear program and make them disappear.

Notes On The Iran Deal

Scott Johnson at Power Line posted an article today about the new revelations by Israel about Iran’s nuclear program.

My favorite quote from the article:

Not even Neville Chamberlain funded Hitler’s aggression to secure his infamous agreement with the madman. That innovation in treachery took one Barack Obama and his many enthusiastic servants such as John Kerry.

There is even more information about the treachery involved in the Iran deal in the New York Times article I posted about in May of 2016 (here). The Iran deal was supported by the European nations because it was financially advantageous to them. They either did not believe or were not concerned about the fact that Iran was planning to threaten them with nuclear weapons as soon as the restrictions in the treaty expired.

Senator Ted Cruz posted the following press release yesterday after Prime Minister Netanyahu gave his presentation explaining the Iran actually does have a nuclear weapons program:

HOUSTON, Texas – U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) today issued a statement following Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s revelations about Iran’s nuclear program:

“Today’s stunning revelations by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu powerfully demonstrate why the Obama Iran nuclear deal is not just unfixable, but truly catastrophic. The Prime Minister’s presentation was remarkable—unprecedented—and worth watching in full. Through extraordinary intelligence operations, Israeli agents captured over 100,000 secret documents and files from Iran. These Iranian documents prove that (1) for two decades, Iran has conducted a clandestine nuclear weapons program; (2) Iran lied repeatedly, and brazenly, denying that secret program; (3) the Obama nuclear deal was predicated on that edifice of lies; and (4) Iran is today in violation of that deal.

“The national security consequences of the Obama Iranian nuclear deal are twofold: First, America has allowed billions of dollars to flow to the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism, a nation directly responsible for the murder of hundreds of U.S. servicemen and women. And second, those billions of dollars have also propped up a despotic regime and provided vast resources for ongoing ballistic missile tests designed to enable Iran to launch a nuclear weapon on the American homeland.

“In light of these astonishing Israeli revelations, the course before President Trump is clear. As the President has said repeatedly, this deal is a ‘terrible deal,’ even worse than many previously realized. The United States should therefore withdraw immediately, re-impose crushing sanctions, work to encourage our allies to do the same, and do everything necessary to insure that the Ayatollah Khamenei never — never — acquires the nuclear weapons to make good on his pledge of ‘death to America.’”

I don’t know if Europe will join us in exiting the Iran nuclear deal–it is very profitable for them to stay in it. However, I think it is time for us to leave. Obviously, Iran has no problem telling us what they think we want to hear, and we have not been very good at finding out what the truth is.

Of Course They Do

Breitbart.com posted an article today citing a Times of Israel report stating that Arab leaders support John Kerry’s proposals for solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Of course they do. The 1967 borders are indefensible. Kerry’s peace plan is the blueprint for the Arab dream of driving the Israelis into the sea.

The article reports:

Saudi Arabia issued a statement Thursday via an official news agency saying that the kingdom “welcomed the proposals” set forth by Kerry and that they were in accordance “with the majority of the resolutions of international legality and most of the elements of the Arab Peace Initiative” adopted by the Arab League in 2002.

Kerry’s proposals represent “an appropriate basis for achieving a final settlement of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict,” the Saudi Press Agency reported, citing an unnamed source in the Saudi Foreign Ministry.

This is amazing. If you remember, the concept is called ‘land for peace.’ Israel gave the ‘Palestinians‘ the Gaza Strip in exchange for peace. The Palestinians promptly destroyed all the greenhouses that could have provided income for them and then used the land as a staging area to fire rockets at Israeli civilians. The Palestinians also used the Gaza Strip to build underground tunnels to move troops through to attack Israeli civilians. The Palestinians got the land, but Israel did not get the peace. Shouldn’t we learn from history?

Israel is being asked to give up the Wailing Wall and part of the Golan Heights. The Wailing Wall is Jewish–it doesn’t in any way belong to the Arabs. The Golan Heights is strategic–it is a great place to lob rockets at innocent Israeli civilians–it was used for that purpose before the 1967 War. The 1967 boundaries were never actually boundaries–they were cease-fire lines drawn until a solution could be worked out. They were indefensible at the time, and they are indefensible now. Forcing Israel to give up more land for an illusive peace will only create more war. It is truly a shame that the Obama Administration chooses not to understand this. I am sure Israel, along with those who sincerely want peace in the Middle East, is looking forward to the Trump Administration.

The Actual History Behind The Country Of Israel

Michael Oren is Israel‘s Deputy Minister for Diplomacy. On Tuesday he was interviewed by Hugh Hewitt on the subject of U.N. Resolution 2334, the Resolution that declared Israeli ‘settlements’ in parts of Israel illegal. Hugh Hewitt posted a transcript of the interview.

This is a highlight from the interview that explains why Resolution 2334 is neither appropriate or helpful:

HH: I have to begin by asking, you’re such a great historian, will you reset what the dispute over the territory is and why the Western Wall is not occupied territory, as the UN Resolution 2332 declares it to be?

MO: It’s, okay, I’ll try to do it as quickly as possible. In 1947, the UN declared that Palestine, as it was then known, would be partitioned into two states – an Arab state and an Jewish state. Notice, not a Palestinian state, but an Arab state. The Palestinians didn’t quite exist, yet, and at least not on the international radar. And the Arabs went to war to destroy the Jewish state when it was created on May 14, 1948. And the city of Jerusalem was divided. The eastern part of the city was occupied by the Jordanians, the West Bank was occupied by the Jordanians. In June, 1967, the Jordanians attacked Israel again. Israel repulsed the attack, reunited Jerusalem under Israeli rule, and captured the West Bank, or as we call it, Judea and Samaria. It is not occupied by international law, because the West Bank and East Jerusalem was never part of a recognized sovereign country. Nobody in the world, except for Britain and Pakistan, recognized the Jordanian annexation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem. So the entire international law claim is spurious. But when Israel reunited the city and reunited the city, the Western Wall is in the eastern part of the city. The old city is in the eastern part of the city. We certainly can’t consider our homeland for 3,000 years to be occupied territory. You know, tell a member of the Sioux Nation that his tribal lands are occupied and he can’t live on them. That’s what the UN is telling us. They’re telling us more than that, that by living in them, we’re criminals.

HH: Yeah, this audience has heard Steven Pressfield talk about The Lion’s Gate, the book that will bring people to tears. And you’ve talked about it in your histories as well. It just is absurd. So what happened? Why would the United States do this? And what was the United States’ role in Resolution 2332, which was not vetoed in a breach of American policy that is as bad for the country of Israel as it is for the Palestinians and indeed the world?

MO: It’s bad for the world, and it’s bad for the United States, too, Hugh, and I’ll explain why. The American role was to stand back and let Israel take a tremendous hit, a tremendous hit that will expose us to sanctions and boycotts. It will kill the peace process. It will deliver a deadly, deadly blow to the people of the Middle East who look to the UN for salvation and get absolutely none at a time when hundreds of thousands of people are being massacred here. What does the UN do? It beats up on the Middle East’s only democracy. And America’s role, according to Prime Minister Netanyahu, was to cook it all up and to do some arm twisting and make it happen? Why? The Obama administration did this, I can recommend another book, I can’t do that because I’m in government, where it explains the Obama’s worldview, a worldview that sees the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as the core conflict of the Middle East, sees the core of that conflict, the settlement and the occupation, as he calls it, and was going to do his utmost to his last day in office to discredit and delegitimize Israel for our position in settling our homeland and reuniting our ancestral capital, Jerusalem.

This resolution essentially states that Jews building houses on their own land is an obstacle to peace. Somehow it overlooks the fact that rockets fired into Israel from the Gaza Strip might be an obstacle to peace. Somehow it overlooks the fact that Hamas and the PLO have never acknowledged Israel’s right to exist–that might be an obstacle to peace.

It is a shame that this resolution was passed. If peace is possible in the Middle East, this resolution will make it more difficult to achieve. It is difficult to make peace with people whose goal is ‘to drive you into the sea,’ which has been the stated goal of the Arab nations surrounding Israel since 1948 when Israel became a nation. It is even more unfortunate that nations who generally support freedom do not support the only free country in the Middle East where Jews and Arabs have equal rights and religious freedom.The Israeli model of equal rights is the only path to peace in the Middle East, and the United Nations just threw a giant obstacle in that path.

A Really Disgraceful Legacy

There are no words to describe fully what the Obama Administration did at the United Nations this week.

Tablet Magazine posted the following statement by the Prime Minister’s Office in Israel:

“Israel rejects this shameful anti-Israel resolution at the UN and will not abide by its terms. At a time when the Security Council does nothing to stop the slaughter of half a million people in Syria, it disgracefully gangs up on the one true democracy in the Middle East, Israel, and calls the Western Wall “occupied territory.” The Obama administration not only failed to protect Israel against this gang-up at the UN, it colluded with it behind the scenes. Israel looks forward to working with President-elect Trump and with all our friends in Congress, Republicans and Democrats alike, to negate the harmful effects of this absurd resolution.”

The article further reports:

The resolution was authored by Egypt, which shelved the draft after the Netanyahu government reached out to the transition team of President-elect Donald Trump, which then pressured Cairo to drop the resolution. Venezuela, Malaysia, Senegal, and New Zealand say that if Egypt doesn’t push forward, they will. The resolution will permanently enshrine as a matter of international law that the Western Wall is “occupied Palestinian territory,” and that Jews building homes in the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem is illegal. One prominent member of the pro-Israel community in Washington called the resolution “a nuclear bomb.”

The Obama Administration is already briefing friendly press organizations that they’re showing no animus toward the Jewish state in refusing to veto the resolution. Rather, it’s “tough love”: for an Israel that seems not to have the will or vision to take chances for peace.

That’s not how Israel sees it. As a senior Israeli official in Jerusalem told Tablet: “President Obama and Secretary Kerry are behind this shameful move against Israel at the UN. The US administration secretly cooked up with the Palestinians an extreme anti Israeli resolution behind Israel’s back which would be a tailwind for terror and boycotts and effectively make the Western Wall occupied Palestinian territory. President Obama could declare his willingness to veto this resolution in an instant but instead is pushing it. This is an abandonment of Israel which breaks decades of US policy of protecting Israel at the UN and undermines the prospects of working with the next administration of advancing peace.”

What really concerns me about this resolution is the idea that building homes in the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem is illegal. This resolution will not bring peace–it will encourage more violence on the part of those who want to see Israel destroyed. For evidence of the success of ‘land for peace’ all you have to do is look at the Gaza Strip, now a launching pad for launching rockets at civilians in Israel.

Article 1 of the United Nations Charter states:

Article 1

The Purposes of the United Nations are:

  1. To maintain international peace and security, and to that end: to take effective collective measures for the prevention and removal of threats to the peace, and for the suppression of acts of aggression or other breaches of the peace, and to bring about by peaceful means, and in conformity with the principles of justice and international law, adjustment or settlement of international disputes or situations which might lead to a breach of the peace;
  2. To develop friendly relations among nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples, and to take other appropriate measures to strengthen universal peace;
  3. To achieve international co-operation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural, or humanitarian character, and in promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language, or religion; and
  4. To be a centre for harmonizing the actions of nations in the attainment of these common ends.

In my opinion they have not lived up to their charter and need to be disbanded. Where is the outcry about the killing of Christians in the Middle East and Africa? Where is the outcry against the subjugation of women in Saudi Arabia? Where is the outcry against the killing of homosexuals in Iran? It is truly time for the United Nations to go away.

Meanwhile, I hope the Trump Administration will either undo what has just been done or else simply defund the United Nations.

One Of The Few World Leaders Who Tells The Truth

Below is some of the speech made by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the 71st sessions of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, September 22, 2016:

Mr. President,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

What I’m about to say is going to shock you: Israel has a bright future at the UN.

Now I know that hearing that from me must surely come as a surprise, because year after year I’ve stood at this very podium and slammed the UN for its obsessive bias against Israel. And the UN deserved every scathing word – for the disgrace of the General Assembly that last year passed 20 resolutions against the democratic State of Israel and a grand total of three resolutions against all the other countries on the planet.

Israel – twenty; rest of the world – three.

And what about the joke called the UN Human Rights Council, which each year condemns Israel more than all the countries of the world combined. As women are being systematically raped, murdered, sold into slavery across the world, which is the only country that the UN’s Commission on Women chose to condemn this year? Yep, you guessed it – Israel. Israel. Israel where women fly fighter jets, lead major corporations, head universities, preside – twice – over the Supreme Court, and have served as Speaker of the Knesset and Prime Minister.

And this circus continues at UNESCO. UNESCO, the UN body charged with preserving world heritage. Now, this is hard to believe but UNESCO just denied the 4,000-year connection between the Jewish people and its holiest site, the Temple Mount. That’s just as absurd as denying the connection between the Great Wall of China and China.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The UN, begun as a moral force, has become a moral farce. So when it comes to Israel at the UN, you’d probably think nothing will ever change, right? Well think again. You see, everything will change and a lot sooner than you think. The change will happen in this hall, because back home, your governments are rapidly changing their attitudes towards Israel. And sooner or later, that’s going to change the way you vote on Israel at the UN.

More and more nations in Asia, in Africa, in Latin America, more and more nations see Israel as a potent partner – a partner in fighting the terrorism of today, a partner in developing the technology of tomorrow.

Today Israel has diplomatic relations with over 160 countries. That’s nearly double the number that we had when I served here as Israel’s ambassador some 30 years ago. And those ties are getting broader and deeper every day. World leaders increasingly appreciate that Israel is a powerful country with one of the best intelligence services on earth. Because of our unmatched experience and proven capabilities in fighting terrorism, many of your governments seek our help in keeping your countries safe.

Many also seek to benefit from Israel’s ingenuity in agriculture, in health, in water, in cyber and in the fusion of big data, connectivity and artificial intelligence – that fusion that is changing our world in every way.

You might consider this: Israel leads the world in recycling wastewater. We recycle about 90% of our wastewater. Now, how remarkable is that? Well, given that the next country on the list only recycles about 20% of its wastewater, Israel is a global water power. So if you have a thirsty world, and we do, there’s no better ally than Israel.

How about cybersecurity? That’s an issue that affects everyone. Israel accounts for one-tenth of one percent of the world’s population, yet last year we attracted some 20% of the global private investment in cybersecurity. I want you to digest that number. In cyber, Israel is punching a whopping 200 times above its weight. So Israel is also a global cyber power. If hackers are targeting your banks, your planes, your power grids and just about everything else, Israel can offer indispensable help.

Governments are changing their attitudes towards Israel because they know that Israel can help them protect their peoples, can help them feed them, can help them better their lives.

This summer I had an unbelievable opportunity to see this change so vividly during an unforgettable visit to four African countries. This is the first visit to Africa by an Israeli prime minister in decades. Later today, I’ll be meeting with leaders from 17 African countries. We’ll discuss how Israeli technology can help them in their efforts to transform their countries.

In Africa, things are changing. In China, India, Russia, Japan, attitudes towards Israel have changed as well. These powerful nations know that, despite Israel’s small size, it can make a big difference in many, many areas that are important to them.

But now I’m going to surprise you even more. You see, the biggest change in attitudes towards Israel is taking place elsewhere. It’s taking place in the Arab world. Our peace treaties with Egypt and Jordan continue to be anchors of stability in the volatile Middle East. But I have to tell you this: For the first time in my lifetime, many other states in the region recognize that Israel is not their enemy. They recognize that Israel is their ally. Our common enemies are Iran and ISIS. Our common goals are security, prosperity and peace. I believe that in the years ahead we will work together to achieve these goals, work together openly.

So Israel’s diplomatic relations are undergoing nothing less than a revolution. But in this revolution, we never forget that our most cherished alliance, our deepest friendship is with the United States of America, the most powerful and the most generous nation on earth. Our unbreakable bond with the United States of America transcends parties and politics. It reflects, above all else, the overwhelming support for Israel among the American people, support which is at record highs and for which we are deeply grateful.

The United Nations denounces Israel; the United States supports Israel. And a central pillar of that defense has been America’s consistent support for Israel at the UN. I appreciate President Obama’s commitment to that longstanding US policy. In fact, the only time that the United States cast a UN Security Council veto during the Obama presidency was against an anti-Israel resolution in 2011. As President Obama rightly declared at this podium, peace will not come from statements and resolutions at the United Nations.

…We will not accept any attempt by the UN to dictate terms to Israel. The road to peace runs through Jerusalem and Ramallah, not through New York.

Israel is one of the few nations in the Middle East that is actually working toward peace. The United Nations is not helping that effort. You can read the entire speech here.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Statement Regarding Orlando

Below is Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s statement regarding the shooting in Orlando:

In Orlando, a terrorist walks into a nightclub and murders nearly 50 human beings. Sons and daughters, brothers and sisters cut down in cold blood.

They did nothing wrong. They were dancing with friends, they were enjoying music with loved ones.

Why did the terrorist murder them?
Because he was driven by a fanatical hatred.

He targeted the LGBT community because he believed they were evil.

Now, the murderer wasn’t alone.

Regimes and terrorist organizations around the world ruthlessly persecute the LGBT community.

In Syria, ISIS throws gays off rooftops.
In Iran, the regime hangs gays from cranes.

Too many people have remained silent in the face of this awful persecution.

This week’s shooting wasn’t merely an attack on the LGBT community. It was an attack on all of us, on our common values of freedom and diversity and choice.

Radical Islamist terror makes no distinction between shades of infidel.

This week it was gays in Orlando. A few days before that it was Jews in Tel Aviv. Before that it was music fans in Paris; Travelers in Brussels; Yazidis in Iraq; Community workers in San Bernardino; Christians and journalists in Syria.

All of us are targets.

We believe that all people are created in the image of God.

ISIS, by contrast, believes that all people who aren’t just like them deserve to die.

We will not be terrified into submission.
We will fight back. And we will triumph.

Today I ask you to reach out to friends in the LGBT community. Comfort them.
Tell them you stand together, we stand together as one. And that you will always remember the victims.

Tell them they will never be alone, that we are all one family deserving of dignity, deserving of life.

I have no doubt that those who seek to spread hate and fear will be defeated.

Working together we will defeat them even faster.

We need to stand united, resolute in the belief that all people regardless of their sexual orientation, regardless of their race, regardless of their ethnicity, all people deserve respect, deserve dignity.

As The Obama Administration Is Winding Down, Some Foreign Policy Experts Are Beginning To Speak Out

Ambassador Dennis Ross posted an article at Political analyzing the consequences of President Obama’s Middle Eastern foreign policy.

The article begins with comments on recent events in the Middle East:

The United States has significantly more military capability in the Middle East today than Russia—America has 35,000 troops and hundreds of aircraft; the Russians roughly 2,000 troops and, perhaps, 50 aircraft—and yet Middle Eastern leaders are making pilgrimages to Moscow to see Vladimir Putin these days, not rushing to Washington. Two weeks ago, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu traveled to see the Russian president, his second trip to Russia since last fall, and King Salman of Saudi Arabia is planning a trip soon. Egypt’s president and other Middle Eastern leaders have also made the trek to see Putin.

Why is this happening, and why on my trips to the region am I hearing that Arabs and Israelis have pretty much given up on President Barack Obama? Because perceptions matter more than mere power: The Russians are seen as willing to use power to affect the balance of power in the region, and we are not.

‘Leading from behind’ is not leading, and it is not a foreign policy that is respected in other nations. We have not been a reliable ally to those nations that were previously considered allies. We have not stood for the principles that we have stood for in the past. The next President will have a lot of damage to our international reputation to repair.

The article goes on to explain that in order for America to be trusted once again in the Middle East, the countries in the region will have to be convinced of a few things:

…they will want to know that America’s word is good and there will be no more “red lines” declared but unfulfilled; that we see the same threats they do; and that U.S. leaders understand that power affects the landscape in the region and will not hesitate to reassert it.

The article has a few suggestions on how to achieve that goal:

⧫ Toughen our declaratory policy toward Iran about the consequences of cheating on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action to include blunt, explicit language on employing force, not sanctions, should the Iranians violate their commitment not to pursue or acquire a nuclear weapon;

⧫ Launch contingency planning with GCC states and Israel—who themselves are now talking—to generate specific options for countering Iran’s growing use of Shiite militias to undermine regimes in the region. (A readiness to host quiet three-way discussions with Arab and Israeli military planners would signal we recognize the shared threat perceptions, the new strategic realities, and the potentially new means to counter both radical Shiite and Sunni threats.)

⧫ Be prepared to arm the Sunni tribes in Iraq if Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi continues to be blocked from doing so by the Iranians and the leading militias;

⧫ In Syria, make clear that if the Russians continue to back Assad and do not force him to accept the Vienna principles (a cease-fire, opening humanitarian corridors, negotiations and a political transition), they will leave us no choice but to work with our partners to develop safe havens with no-fly zones.

We have never really had a successful Middle East policy. The problem began after World War I when western powers carved out countries in the Middle East with no regard for ethnic and tribal rivalries. We will not have peace in the region until we begin to recognize the different factions and find ways to bring them together.

 

In Case You Were Wondering About The Source Of The Recent Violence In Israel

The Jerusalem Post is reporting today that the army will be helping protect Israelis from the recent wave of attacks by Palestinians.

The article reports:

Israel will instruct its military to bolster police forces currently patrolling cities that have been rocked by Palestinian attacks against Jewish passersby, Channel 2 reported on Tuesday.

The IDF will enlist soldiers to aid police in city centers throughout Israel, the security cabinet resolved on Tuesday.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu convened senior government officials and defense chiefs to discuss possible steps to take after another day in which three Israelis were killed and over 20 were injured by Palestinian assailants.

If you would like to know why there is this sudden outpouring of violence against Israelis, The Middle East Media Research Institute has posted a transcript of a recent sermon preached in Gaza.

This is the transcript:

Rafah Cleric Brandishes Knife in Friday Sermon, Calls upon Palestinians to Stab Jews

In an October 9 Friday sermon delivered at the Al-Abrar Mosque in Rafah, the Gaza Strip, Sheikh Muhammad Sallah “Abu Rajab” brandished a knife, calling upon his brothers in the West Bank: “Stab!” “Oh young men of the West Bank: Attack in threes and fours,” he said, and “cut them into body parts.”

Following are excerpts:

Muhammad Salah “Abu Rajab”: Brothers, we must constantly remind the world, and everyone who has forgotten… The world must hear, via these cameras and via the Internet: This is Gaza! This is the place of trenches and guns! This is the West Bank! This is the place of bombs and daggers! This is Jerusalem… Jerusalem is the code word… This is Jerusalem… Much can be told about Jerusalem. This is where the soldiers of the Prophet Muhammad are. This is the grace of Allah. The soldiers of the Prophet Muhammad are here. Brothers, this is why we recall today what Allah did to the Jews. We recall what He did to them in Khaybar.

[…]

Today, we realize why the [Jews] build walls. They do not do this to stop missiles, but to prevent the slitting of their throats.

[…]

“Abu Rajab” brandishes a dagger and makes stabbing motions

My brother in the West Bank: Stab! My brother is the West Bank: Stab the myths of the Talmud in their minds! My brother in the West Bank: Stab the myths about the temple in their hearts!

[…]

Today, we have declared a curfew [in Israel]. Listen to what the Jews are saying to one another: Stay at home, or go outside to your death. They have no alternative. Oh men of the West Bank, the first phase of the operation requires stabbing in order to bring about a curfew.

[…]

Now, we are imposing a curfew with daggers, and in the next phase, which is Allah willing, about to be realized… We shall not send you back to Russia, Bulgaria, the Ukraine, or Poland. We shall not send you back there. You have come here… The Islamic military court has ruled… This court, presided over by the Prophet’s Companion Sad Ibn Mu’adh, has ruled… Sa’d Ibn Mu’adh has reappeared – in the West Bank. Sa’d Ibn Mu’adh is now in the streets of Jerusalem, Afula, Tel Aviv, and the Negev. The Islamic military court has made the divined ruling: You will get nothing in our land except for slaughtering or stabbing. Why? The world will say that we are terrorists, that we incite. Yes! “Oh Prophet, sufficient for you and for whoever follows you of the believers is Allah. Oh Prophet of Allah, incite the believers to fight.” Why? Oh America, oh Crusader aggressors, oh Arab Zionists, oh Zionists from among the criminal Jews: Are we aggressors? You have come of your own volition to be slaughtered on our land.

[…]

“When the promise of the Hereafter comes, We shall gather you from various nation.” Allah has brought the Jews, His enemies and the enemies of humanity, who have destroyed our homes in Syria, Iraq, Egypt, and everywhere.

[…]

Oh people of Al-Abrar Mosque and the people of Rafah – from this mosque of yours, you have the honor of delivering these messages to the men of the West Bank: Form stabbing quads. We don’t want just a single stabber. Oh young men of the West Bank: Attack in threes and fours. Some should restrain the victim, while others attack him with axes and butcher knives.

[…]

Do not fear what will be said about you. Oh men of the West Bank, next time, attack in a group of three, four, or five. Attack them in groups. Cut them into body parts.

I may be naive, but somehow I don’t see this as a recipe for peace.

With Friends Like President Obama, Israel Does Not Need Enemies

Yesterday The Daily Caller reported that U.N. Ambassador Samantha Power was instructed to skip Benjamin Netanyahu‘s remarks at the United Nations on Thursday. Secretary of State John Kerry was also not present at the United Nations for Netanyahu’s speech. The U.S. delegates who did attend did not applaud the speech.

The Wall Street Journal described Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech as follows:

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday delivered a fiery address here condemning the Iranian nuclear deal, largely unbowed in his opposition despite losing steep political ground to President Barack Obama over the issue this year.

In his speech to the General Assembly, Mr. Netanyahu thundered that Iranian threats to destroy Israel have been met in the world body by “utter silence, deafening silence.”

Evidently the Obama Administration did not want to hear the truth.

The Wall Street Journal further reports:

Still, Mr. Netanyahu’s supporters don’t see the debate over the nuclear agreement as over. U.S. lawmakers are drafting new legislation to target Iran’s support for international militant groups and to limit the ability of foreign companies to invest in Iran.

Much of the congressional debate over Iran is focused on trying to dry up funding for Iran’s elite military unit, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, which dominates the Iranian economy.

Israeli officials and many Iran watchers in Washington say they believe there is a high likelihood that Iran will cheat on the nuclear agreement, and that the West must be prepared to move quickly with punishments if it does.

“The next phase is not just enforcing the nuclear accord, strictly, but putting in place new mechanisms to guard against the cancer of Iran spreading across the region,” said Josh Block, president of The Israeli Project, which campaigned against the nuclear deal.

Releasing billions of dollars to a country that has supported terrorism since the 1970’s is not a path to peace. Hopefully those who support this agreement will realize that before it is too late.

The Truth About The Obama Administration And Israel

The Washington Free Beacon posted a story today about former Israeli Ambassador to the United States Michael Oren‘s new book, “Ally: My Journey Across the American-Israel Divide.”

The article states:

By the summer of 2013, President Obama had convinced several key Israelis that he wasn’t bluffing about using force against the Iranian nuclear program. Then he failed to enforce his red line against Syrian dictator Bashar Assad—and the Israelis realized they’d been snookered. Michael Oren, the former Israeli ambassador to the United States, recalls the shock inside his government. “Everyone went quiet,” he said in a recent interview. “An eerie quiet. Everyone understood that that was not an option, that we’re on our own.”

That is one of the saddest statements I have ever read.

The article explains the impact of Israel’s loss of United States’ support in the international community:

What Obama wanted was to create diplomatic space between America and Israel while maintaining our military alliance. Oren says military-to-military relations are strong, but the diplomatic fissure has degraded Israel’s security. America, he says, provided a “Diplomatic Iron Dome” that shielded Israel from anti-Semites in Europe, at the U.N., and abroad whose goal is to delegitimize the Jewish State and undermine her economically.

This rhetorical missile shield is slowly being retracted. The administration threatens not to veto anti-Israel U.N. initiatives, Europe is aligning with the Boycott Divestment Sanctions (BDS) movement, and anti-Israel activism festers on U.S. campuses. Obama’s unending criticism of Israel, and background quotes calling Israel’s prime minister a “chicken-shit” and a “coward,” provide an opening for radicals to go even further.

Israel has been our only reliable ally in the Middle East since its founding in 1948. It is the only country in the Middle East where Christians, Jews, and Muslims are free to practice their religion. The Obama Administration has consistently come down on the wrong side of history in its dealings in the Middle East. Abandoning Israel in favor of a nuclear agreement with Iran would be a serious mistake. Unfortunately, that seems to be the path President Obama has chosen.

Coming Down On The Wrong Side Of History

I don’t claim to be a historian,  but I believe in the Bible. Genesis 12:3 (and also a few other places) says in referring to Israel, “I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” I am not going to argue with something that is stated in the Bible more than once. Recently, the U.S. Supreme Court has made a decision that could easily be considered less than a blessing to Israel.

The Wall Street Journal reported today:

Liberals have spent four decades condemning the Imperial Presidency—and especially the depredations of the Bush-Cheney regime—but all of a sudden they are celebrating the Supreme Court for its Jerusalem passports decision on Monday. We guess the “unitary executive” is fine as long as he happens to be a Democrat.

Those of us with more respect for the Constitution’s separation of powers think Zivotofsky v. Kerry is a closer legal call. But the decision is still the right constitutional resolution to a long-running dispute between Congress and the executive branch about recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

…This judicial outcome is highly unusual. For the first time in U.S. history the Court has sided with a President openly defying an act of Congress related to foreign affairs.

CBN News reported today:

Palestinian Authority leaders praised Monday’s Supreme Court ruling disallowing Americans born in Jerusalem to list Israel as the country of birth on their passports, saying it clarified that “Jerusalem is occupied territory.”

“It is a clear message to the Israeli government that its decisions and measures in occupying and annexing Jerusalem are illegal and void and that it should immediately stop these measures because it’s a clear violation of the international law,” P.A. chief negotiator Saeb Erekat said.

President Barack Obama also welcomed the decision as affirming his power to set the nation’s foreign policy, while demonstrating his neutrality in Israeli-Palestinian negotiations.

There is nothing neutral in refusing to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

Last week I posted an article detailing the history of Israel beginning with the granting of the land of Israel (then called Palestine) to the Jews in 1921. The article included the following map:

The current demand for a Palestinian state is garbage. Transjordan (now Jordan) was set up to be a Palestinian state. That land was taken away from Israel (it was given to Israel in the original Balfour Declaration) in 1921.

The most telling quote in this whole distortion of history we are currently dealing with comes from Walid Shoebat, who stated, “One day during the 1960’s I went to bed a Jordanian Muslim, and when I woke up the next morning, I was informed that I was now a Palestinian Muslim, and that I was no longer a Jordanian Muslim”

The issue of a Palestinian state in land that belongs to Israel is nothing more than a plan on the part of the Arab nations to drive Israel into the sea.

As I have stated in previous articles:

Palestine was the name given to Israel at that time.  Transjordan was originally to be given to the Jewish state, but Britain reneged on its promise and gave the land to the Arabs instead.  In 1921, the Arab representative responsible for the above division of the land, Emir Feisal, agreed to abandon all claims of his father to Western Palelstine if he secured Iraq and Eastern Palestine as Arab terrorities.  We saw how well he kept this agreement. These are the borders set up for the nation of Israel.  The 1949 borders were simply an armistice.

After the nation of Israel was declared, the Arabs invaded and took control of the Old City of Jerusalem. During the time the Arabs controlled the Old City, Jews were barred from their holiest sites. Unfortunately, past behavior is often an indication of future behavior.

Why are we attempting to create another terrorist state? We are definitely on the wrong side of history with this decision.

Facts Are Very Inconvenient Things

The basis for this article is the recent statement by former Presidential advisor David Axelrod that President Obama considers himself “the closet thing to a Jew that has ever sat in this office.” The statement is quoted in a Breitbart.com article dated June 2. If that is true, then he is a Jew that has no understanding of who he is or what Israel is about.

Let’s look at some of President Obama’s recent and past actions.

Yesterday the Los Angeles Times reported:

In an interview with an Israeli television station, Obama noted that his administration has “up until this point” quashed such efforts at the U.N. while insisting that the Israelis and Palestinians must negotiate a resolution. But he said it is a challenge for the U.S. to keep demanding that the Palestinians negotiate in good faith if no one believes the Israelis are doing the same.

The Israelis have not been the ones launching rockets at civilian targets or building terrorists tunnels with money given to them to help their people. Why does the President want to create another terrorist state?

In May of 2011, the New York Times reported:

A day before the arrival in Washington of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, Mr. Obama declared that the prevailing borders before the 1967 Arab-Israeli war — adjusted to some degree to account for Israeli settlements in the West Bank — should be the basis of a deal. While the 1967 borders have long been viewed as the foundation for a peace agreement, Mr. Obama’s formula of land swaps to compensate for disputed territory created a new benchmark for a diplomatic solution.

President Obama, you need a history lesson.  There is no 1967 border–there is only an armistice line created after all of Israel’s neighbors invaded her as soon as she became a nation.  The 1949 armistice line was never internationally recognized as a border.  I have posted this before, but it bears repeating. This is the map of the land given to Israel in the original British Mandate:

Palestine was the name given to Israel at that time.  Transjordan was originally to be given to the Jewish state, but Britain reneged on its promise and gave the land to the Arabs instead.  In 1921, the Arab representative responsible for the above division of the land, Emir Feisal, agreed to abandon all claim of his father to Western Palelstine if he secured Iraq and Eastern Palestine as Arab terrorities.  We saw how well he kept this agreement. These are the borders set up for the nation of Israel.  The 1949 borders were simply an armistice.

After the nation of Israel was declared, the Arabs invaded and took control of the Old City of Jerusalem. During the time the Arabs controlled the Old City, Jews were barred from their holiest sites. Unfortunately, past behavior is often an indication of future behavior.

The Gaza Strip is now a terrorist haven. To cede more land to the Arabs would create additional terrorist havens. Mr. President, either you are misinformed or you do not support the survival of Israel.

The Winston Churchill Of Our Time

Yesterday was Holocaust Remembrance Day. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gave the following speech:

Seventy years ago, the bells of freedom rang out across the free world. The horrific nightmare that had engulfed all humanity in blood had come to an end in Europe. But the day the Nazis were vanquished was not only a day of relief and jubilation. It was also a day of great sorrow for our nation, and a day of reflection for the world’s leaders. Leaders of modern countries realized that it was a propitious time to establish a new world order based on defending liberty, eradicating evil and opposing oppression. They articulated the most important lesson of World War II: democracies must not turn a blind eye to the aspirations of tyrannous regimes to expand. A conciliatory attitude toward these regimes only increases their propensity for aggression. And if such aggression is not stopped in time, humanity might find itself in a much bloodier battle.

In the years before World War II, the free world tried to appease the Nazi regime, to gain its trust, to curry its favor through gestures. There were those who warned that this concessionary policy would only whet Hitler’s appetite, but these warnings were ignored due to the natural human desire for calm at all costs. And indeed, the price was exacted not long after, and it was too heavy to bear – six million of our people were slaughtered in the Holocaust, and millions of others were killed in this terrible inferno.

When the war ended, the conclusion was clear: there is no room for weakness when facing tyrannous regimes that send their murderous tentacles in every direction. Only by standing firm and adhering to the values of liberty and tolerance can we ensure the future of humankind.
There are many around the world who claim that the lessons learned then are still valid today. They affirm: “Never again!” They declare: “We will not turn a blind eye to the expansionist intentions of a violent tyranny.” They promise: “We will oppose evil as soon as it begins.” But as long as these announcements are not backed by practical actions – they are meaningless. Did the world really learn a lesson from the inconceivable universal and Jewish tragedy of last century? I wish I could stand here and tell you that the answer to this was yes.

Today, ever more threats challenge human civilization. Radical Islamist forces are flooding the Middle East, destroying remnants of the past, torturing the helpless, murdering innocents. They hope to establish caliphates, more than one, like in the Middle Ages. At the same time, the extremist regime in Iran is oppressing its people; it is rushing forward and submerging the Middle East in blood and suffering – in Yemen, in Syria, in Lebanon, in Iraq, in Gaza and across the border of the Golan Heights.

Just as the Nazis aspired to crush civilization and to establish a “master race” to replace it and control the world while annihilating the Jewish people, so too does Iran strive to gain control over the region, from which it would spread further, with the explicit intent of obliterating the Jewish state. Iran is advancing in two tracks: the first is in developing the ability to arm itself with nuclear weapons and stockpile ballistic missiles; and the second – exporting the Khomeinist revolution to many countries by widely using terrorism and taking over large parts of the Middle East. Everything is out in the open – it is all taking place in broad daylight, in front of the cameras. And yet, the blindness is immense.

“For, behold, darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the peoples,” said the Prophet Isaiah. The determination and lessons that were acquired through blood seventy years ago are now dissipating, and the darkness and fog of denying reality are taking their place. The bad deal that is being made with Iran demonstrates that the historic lesson has not been internalized. The West is yielding in the face of Iran’s aggressive actions. Instead of demanding a significant dismantling of the nuclear program in Iran – a country that clearly states its plans to exterminate six million Jews here and elsewhere, to eradicate many countries and many regimes – the superpowers back down. They are leaving Iran with its nuclear capabilities intact, and even allowing it to expand them later on, regardless of Iran’s actions in the Middle East and around the world.

As the civilized world is lulled into slumber on a bed of illusions, the rulers of Iran continue to encourage subversion and terrorism and disseminate destruction and death. The superpowers turn a deaf ear to the crowds in Iran shouting: “Death to America; Death to Israel.” They turn a blind eye to the executions of those who oppose the regime and of  members of minority populations. And they hold their peace in the face of the massive arming of terrorist organizations. At most, they make a halfhearted statement for the record.

I have heard that in honor of Holocaust Remembrance Day a competition with prizes is soon to take place in Tehran with participants from 56 countries. It is a Holocaust denial cartoon competition. Will we hear protests? At best, a minor condemnation might be heard; that will minimally fulfill their obligation.

Distinguished guests, Israeli citizens and representatives of other countries,
The bubble of this illusion is going to burst. Democratic governments made a critical mistake before World War II, and we are convinced – and I must say that many of our neighbors are too – that they are making a grave mistake now too. It is possible that this partnership with many of our neighbors, the partnership in identifying threats, will be the foundation for the partnership to forge a better, safer and more peaceful future in our region. Meanwhile, we will not flinch. We will continue to insist on the truth, and we will do everything we can to open the eyes that are shut.

I do not want to mislead anyone. We have tests ahead of us. We are in the midst of a great battle against the enervation, the weakness, the denial of reality – we will stand with our full force.

While there are those who refuse to understand our position, there are many others who identify with us. But even if we are compelled to stand alone, we will not be afraid. In any scenario, in any situation, we will safeguard our right, we will maintain our ability, we will keep our resolve to defend ourselves.

Seventy years ago we were war refugees, powerless and voiceless. Today we express what we have to say, and we are determined to safeguard our existence and our future. It is our duty to fight those who wish to destroy us, not to bow down to them or to downplay reality. We will not allow the State of Israel to be a passing episode in the history of our people.

Distinguished guests,
Today in my office I met an 85-year-old  Holocaust survivor, Abraham Niederhoffer. Abraham was born in Romania. When he was 12 years old he witnessed the brutal murder of his relatives by a Romanian soldier. He was taken on a cattle train to Ukraine, where he survived the Holocaust. Due to the persistent refusal of the communist authorities in Romania to permit his emigration, he only came to Israel in 1969. Here he worked as an engineer and supervisor, contributing to the building of the country. He told me his story with great emotion, so much so that he had to pause several times. At the end of the meeting, he beseeched me, “Prime Minister,” he said, “it is your duty to prevent another Holocaust.” And I responded: “That is exactly how I see my responsibility. That is exactly how I see my responsibility.”

Seven decades ago, the survivors emerged from the camps, from the forests, from the March of Death, battered and bruised with nothing but the tattered clothes on their backs. Upon their release, the prisoners of the camps from all nations were asked by the Allied soldiers where each one wished to go. The Poles returned to Poland; the Russians returned to Russia; the Hungarians – to Hungary; the Ukrainians – to Ukraine. But a great many of them had nowhere to return to. They stood hopeless, because they did not have their own country.

Today, we have our own country – a flourishing and modern country; a country that rests on the heritage of our forefathers and stands at the vanguard of global knowledge; a country that disseminates a great light; a country that has taken charge of its destiny. Seventy years after the valleys of death, we revere the living, the vibrant, the creative, the flourishing.

Israel breaks ground on every front of modernization – in science, medicine, technology, agriculture, education and culture. And we do this not only for our people. We do this for the benefit of all humanity. This is what our existence is based upon – on our commitment to the safety and future of Israel, on the deference to our heritage, and on the unity of a nation in which a vast life force shines. The nation of Israel, which has arisen from the hellfire, is ready for any challenge.

“Shake thyself from the dust; put on thy beautiful garments, my people.” The eternal nation has shaken itself from the dust, returned home, stood tall, established an outstanding country and an outstanding army, the Israel Defense Force, in which our brave and courageous sons and daughters serve.

We will remember those who were murdered, we will guarantee life.

Don’t Listen To What They Say, Watch What They Do

Fox News posted an article today about an interesting wrinkle in the Iranian nuclear negotiations. Before I continue this article, I would like to point out that our only ally in the Middle East that has never betrayed us is Israel. It is a shame that we have not always treated them very well.

The article reports:

A State Department official dismissed a plea Friday from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that the Iran nuclear agreement include clear recognition of his nation’s “right to exist,” declaring negotiations are “only about the nuclear issue.”

State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf, in a terse response to a question about Netanyahu’s concerns, told reporters, “This is an agreement that is only about the nuclear issue” — a comment that indicates the Obama administration is not looking to enshrine Israel’s security into a final agreement. 

Harf, for her part, suggested the talks are complicated enough already.

“This is an agreement that doesn’t deal with any other issues, nor should it,” she said.

Obama administration officials have insisted all along that despite their public disagreement with Netanyahu over the Iran deal framework, the U.S. commitment to Israel’s security is unwavering. Further, White House spokesman Eric Schultz told reporters on Air Force One on Friday that the U.S. would not agree to any deal that would threaten Israel. 

I can’t believe our State Department is that naive. When Iran obtains a nuclear weapon (which it will under the terms of the agreement negotiated), their first target will be Israel, their second target will be America. This agreement is a fool’s attempt at peace.

It seems to me that asking Iran to acknowledge Israel’s right to exist would reveal how serious Iran is about the negotiations. If Iran is not even willing to acknowledge the right of an American ally to exist, why are we negotiating with them at all? Also, why are we negotiating with a country that is currently holding an American citizen in prison (Pastor Saeed Abedini) without demanding his release as a precursor for the negotiations? President Obama lacks the necessary negotiation skills to sit down with Iran–he is playing tiddlywinks while they are playing chess. Does he not realize that it is not only Israel’s right to exist in question, but eventually it will be America’s right to exist?

This Does Nothing To Make The World Safer

President Obama’s dislike for Prime Minister Netanyahu is no secret, but some of the actions taken by the Obama Administration toward Israel are petty and dangerous to the world.

Yesterday IsraelNationalNews reported the following:

In a development that has largely been missed by mainstream media, the Pentagon early last month quietly declassified a Department of Defense top-secret document detailing Israel’s nuclear program, a highly covert topic that Israel has never formally announced to avoid a regional nuclear arms race, and which the US until now has respected by remaining silent.

But by publishing the declassified document from 1987, the US reportedly breached the silent agreement to keep quiet on Israel’s nuclear powers for the first time ever, detailing the nuclear program in great depth.

America is supposed to be an ally of Israel. This is not something you do to a friend.

The article concludes:

Aside from nuclear capabilities, the report revealed Israel at the time had “a totally integrated effort in systems development throughout the nation,” with electronic combat all in one “integrated system, not separated systems for the Army, Navy and Air Force.” It even acknowledged that in some cases, Israeli military technology “is more advanced than in the U.S.”

Declassifying the report comes at a sensitive timing as noted above, and given that the process to have it published was started three years ago, that timing is seen as having been the choice of the American government.

US journalist Grant Smith petitioned to have the report published based on the Freedom of Information Act. Initially the Pentagon took its time answering, leading Smith to sue, and a District Court judge to order the Pentagon to respond to the request.

Smith, who heads the Institute for Research: Middle East Policy, reportedly said he thinks this is the first time the US government has officially confirmed that Israel is a nuclear power, a status that Israel has long been widely known to have despite being undeclared.

Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East. It is the only place where women have equal rights with men. It is one of the few places where all religions are free to practice their faith. It is the country in the Middle East most closely aligned with America in terms of values and form of government. Israel is an ally America needs, not the other way around. If President Obama continues down the road he is currently on, Israel will form alliances with other Middle Eastern countries and America will be shut out of the region. President Obama is building an alliance with Iran as the other countries in the area are feeling seriously threatened by Iran’s nuclear program. Diplomatically this will be a disaster for America.

Foreign Policy Driven By Petulance

CBN News is reporting today that because of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s victory in Israel’s election, President Obama may stop American opposition to the United Nation‘s imposing a two-state solution on Israel. First of all, let’s look at this logically. When Israel turned over the West Bank to the Arabs, what did they get? They got suicide bombers and rocket attacks coming from the area. When the Arabs took over the land, the first thing they did was destroy the greenhouses that would have provided employment and a source of income. The money coming into the area from foreign countries was not spent on infrastructure–it was used to buy weapons and build tunnels to attack Israel. Why in the world would anyone want to give terrorists more land?

The article at CBN reports:

The prime minister’s acceptance of two states has always been based on the Palestinians‘ recognition of Israel as a Jewish state, secure borders for Israel, and keeping Jerusalem the united capital of Israel. All three conditions were rejected by Palestinian Chairman Mahmoud Abbas.

The administration is also hinting it may support the Palestinian Authority‘s petition to the U.N. Security Council on the unilateral establishment of a state.

“Our position in support of a two-state solution is very clear. Only a two-state solution that results in a secure Israel alongside a sovereign and independent Palestine can bring lasting peace and stability to both people,” U.S. State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki said.

“Of course, we will continue to pursue this goal with the new Israeli government and the Palestinian Authority,” he added.

The notion of a Palestinian state next door to Israel troubles many Israelis after all of the terrorist attacks they’ve faced in recent years from Islamic fighters.

If the United States and the United Nations do support such a deal, that could mean still more tension between the Jewish state and much of the rest of the world.

This is a total turnaround from previous American foreign policy. The Arabs do not want a two-state solution–they want to drive Israel into the sea and kill all the Jews. That is not something America should be supporting.

We need to remember that the Bible says that he who blesses Israel will be blessed and he who curses Israel will be cursed. The Obama Administration is about to put America in mortal danger.

Petulant Children Do Not Belong In The White House

PJ Media posted two stories today about the Israeli election. The first notes that leaders of other countries are congratulating Benjamin Netanyahu on his election victory, but President Obama has not commented. The second article notes exactly how the Obama Administration has handled the Netanyahu victory.

The second article reports:

On CNN this morning, White House aide David Simas avoided congratulating Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on the Israeli elections. Instead, he would only congratulate the Israeli people on having an election.

“We want to congratulate the Israeli people for the democratic process for the election that they just engaged in with all the parties that engaged in that election. As you know now, the hard work of coalition building begins. Sometimes that takes a couple of weeks. And we’re going to give space to the formation of that coalition government and we’re not going to weigh in one way or another except to say that the United States and Israel have a historic and close relationship and that will continue going forward,” Simas said.

The article then goes on to list the leaders that President Obama congratulated on their election victories in recent years. The list includes leaders elected in Russia, Iran, Turkey, and Egypt. There seems to be a double standard here. Oddly enough, as the Obama Administration pulls away from Israel as an ally, Middle Eastern countries are quietly forming alliances with Israel. The countries in the Middle East realize the threat that Iran poses, and also realize that President Obama will not be willing to deal with it. Prime Minister Netanyahu will deal with the threat, and since other countries share the threat, alliances are quietly forming. The rest of the world recognizes that there is an empty suit occupying the White House. I just wish more Americans would wake up to that fact.

President Obama Seems To Be The Only One Missing The Point

Yesterday Western Journalism posted an article about Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu‘s speech before Congress. The irony in the article is that many of the gulf state Arab leaders agree with Prime Minister Netanyahu–not President Obama on how to deal with the Middle East. It also occurs to me that since Prime Minister Netanyahu lives in the Middle East, he might know more about how things work than someone who does not live there.

The article reports:

Tzvi Yechezkieli, the Arab affairs expert of Channel 10, said that many Arab commentators supported the content of Netanyahu’s speech. He cited a commentator on Al-Arabiya TV, who had said that he could have written a large part of the speech.

Yechezkieli said that the Arab countries are convinced that Obama will not safeguard their security interests in the current negotiations with Iran and will not protect them against Iranian aggression.

Evidently Israel is not the only country in the region worried about Iranian aggression.

The article quotes the Saudi Daily Al-Jazirah columnist Dr. Ahmad Al-Faraj:

“I will conclude by saying the following: Since Obama is the godfather of the prefabricated revolutions in the Arab world, and since he is the ally of political Islam, [which is] the caring mother of [all] the terrorist organizations, and since he is working to sign an agreement with Iran that will come at the expense of the U.S.’s longtime allies in the Gulf, I am very glad of Netanyahu’s firm stance and [his decision] to speak against the nuclear agreement at the American Congress despite the Obama administration’s anger and fury. I believe that Netanyahu’s conduct will serve our interests, the people of the Gulf, much more than the foolish behavior of one of the worst American presidents. Do you agree with me?”

President Obama has behaved like a petulant child during the run-up to the speech, the speech, and after the speech. It would be nice to have a President who looked past himself and was watching out for the interests of America and our American allies in the Middle East.

 

Today In Congress

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will be speaking before a joint session of Congress this morning. Today’s Wall Street Journal had two very good articles that provide context for his speech.

Bret Stephens posted an article entitled, “Israel and the Democrats,” and Chris Steward posted an article entitled, “In What Way Is Iran A Reliable Negotiating Partner?

Bret Stephens reminds us that the Democrat party has traditionally supported the nation of Israel. He points out that the Democrat Party is on the cusp of abandoning the state of Israel.

The article reports:

But that party is evaporating. A 2014 Pew survey found that just 39% of liberal Democrats are more sympathetic to Israel than they are to the Palestinians. That compares with 77% of conservative Republicans. During last summer’s war in Gaza, Pew found liberals about as likely to blame Israel as they were to blame Hamas for the violence.

That means the GOP is now the engine, the Democrats at best a wheel, in U.S. support for Israel. The Obama administration is the kill switch. Over the weekend, a defensive White House put out a statement noting the various ways it has supported Israel. It highlighted the 1985 U.S.-Israel free-trade agreement and a military assistance package concluded in 2007. When Barack Obama must cite the accomplishments of Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush as evidence of his pro-Israel bona fides, you know there is a problem.

…Yet the calendar chiefly dictating the timing of Mr. Netanyahu’s speech was set by John Kerry , not John Boehner , when the secretary of state decided that the U.S. and Iran would have to conclude a framework deal by the end of this month. Mr. Netanyahu is only guilty of wanting to speak to Congress before it is handed a diplomatic fait accompli that amounts to a serial betrayal of every promise Mr. Obama ever made to Israel.

Bret Stephens goes on to list the betrayals of Israel by the Obama Administration. Please follow the link above to read the entire article.

Chris Steward reminds us of the history of America’s relationship with Iran and Iran’s intentions and actions toward western civilization.

He points out:

Iran is a state sponsor of terror and has been officially listed as such for more than 30 years. It has developed an extensive military-industrial complex, the Defense Industries Organization, which is capable of supplying all of its own military equipment, weapons and ammunition. With this capability, Iran has become the primary supplier of weapons to two other state sponsors of terror, Sudan and Syria, as well as the primary sponsor of other foreign terrorist organizations, including Hezbollah, Hamas and numerous Shiite militias in Iraq. With Iran’s help, Hezbollah has stockpiled about 60,000 surface-to-surface rockets in Lebanon while Hamas has stockpiled about 10,000 surface-to-surface rockets in Gaza, all for the stated purpose of wiping Israel off the face of the earth.

Tehran’s regime suppresses internal dissent and has executed tens of thousands of its own citizens for opposing the regime. It is responsible for the deaths of hundreds of U.S. military personnel in Iraq through improvised explosive devices supplied to Shiite militias in the past decade. Iran counts as close allies Russia, China and North Korea, which team with the regime in developing ballistic missiles and nuclear capabilities.

Iran is not just a problem for the Middle East. In South and Central America it has engaged in money laundering, drug and arms trafficking, counterfeiting, promoting jihad, and plotting terrorist attacks.

Why in the world are we negotiating with these people? And why in the world are we condemning Israel for telling the truth about the futility of these negotiations?

 

For Your Consideration

I am not familiar with the source of this story, so please understand that I am not endorsing it–although I suspect it may be true. I am posting it because I doubt it will ever appear in the American media.

A website called Radixnews reported on February 24th that Iran has accused America of helping Israel with its nuclear weapons program in 1987.

The article reports:

Officials from the Islamic Republic of Iran claim they have documents that prove the United States assisted Israel in its development of a hydrogen bomb, which they claim is a crime according to international laws, according to the Iranian news media. And there is suspicion that President Barack Obama declassified the documents and released them to a left-wing think-tank to hurt Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The Iranians published a copy of a 129-page memorandum they claim is one of about 100 copies distributed by the Institute for Defense Analysis (IDA) while under contract with the Pentagon in 1987. The Iranian press reported that Israeli nuclear facilities that were built independently were similar in structure to U.S. nuclear facilities such as Los Alamos and Oak Ridge National Laboratories which are key facilities for creating and testing nuclear weaponry, Iranian-controlled news agencies reported.

The article concludes:

According to Iranian news reports, the information was released after Grant Smith, director of the left-wing Washington think-tank Institute for Research on Middle Eastern Policy, submitted a Freedom of Information Act application in 2012. When he was never given the requested documents, Smith filed a lawsuit in September 2014, and a judged ruled that the Pentagon must comply with the request. According to the Iranian news stories, Smith in his lawsuit outlined how the U.S. government failed to comply with federal laws at the time that Israel was developing a nuclear program.

“It’s our basic position that in 1987 the Department of Defense discovered that Israel had a nuclear weapons program, detailed it and then has covered it up for 25 years in violation of the Symington and Glenn amendments, costing taxpayers $86 billion,” said Smith during a hearing before a judge in the District of Columbia in late 2014.

I wonder if the Jewish Americans who support President Obama will ever realize the threat to Israel he represents.

Isn’t it interesting that Israel has had nuclear weapons for more than twenty years and no one in the Middle East has felt threatened by this fact. It is common knowledge that when Iran obtains nuclear weapons that a nuclear arms race will begin in the Middle East. That tells us all we need to know–the Arab countries know their neighbors better than America does.

Rewriting History When It Is Convenient

BuzzPo posted an article today about some recent remarks made by Secretary of State John Kerry.

The article reports:

Later, Kerry was asked to comment on Netanyahu’s criticism of a hypothetical deal with Iran as a threat to Israel.

“The prime minister was profoundly forward-leaning and outspoken about the importance of invading Iraq under George W. Bush,” Kerry replied. “We all know what happened with that decision.”

Well, isn’t that special. Benjamin Netanyahu became Prime Minister of Israel in 2009–long after the invasion of Iraq. John Kerry, as a Senator, voted for the invasion of Iraq.

Facts are such inconvenient things.

Common Sense From One Of My Favorite Liberals

Alan Dershowitz is a Professor at Harvard University. He is a brilliant man with unassailable credentials as a political liberal. He has campaigned for President Obama twice. He posted an article in the Wall Street Journal today.

His article on the opinion page deals with the upcoming visit to America by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Professor Dershowitz states:

At bottom, this controversy is not mainly about protocol and politics—it is about the constitutional system of checks and balances and the separation of powers.

Under the Constitution, the executive and legislative branches share responsibility for making and implementing important foreign-policy decisions. Congress has a critical role to play in scrutinizing the decisions of the president when these decisions involve national security, relationships with allies and the threat of nuclear proliferation.

Whether or not Iran gets nuclear weapons should not be a partisan issue–if Iran goes nuclear, all Americans are in danger.

Professor Dershowitz continues:

Whether one agrees or disagrees with Speaker John Boehner ’s decision to invite Mr. Netanyahu or Mr. Netanyahu’s decision to accept, no legal scholar can dispute that Congress has the power to act independently of the president in matters of foreign policy. Whether any deal with Iran would technically constitute a treaty requiring Senate confirmation, it is certainly treaty-like in its impact. Moreover, the president can’t implement the deal without some action or inaction by Congress.

…Another reason members of Congress should not boycott Mr. Netanyahu’s speech is that support for Israel has always been a bipartisan issue. The decision by some members to boycott Israel’s prime minister endangers this bipartisan support. This will not only hurt Israel but will also endanger support for Democrats among pro-Israel voters. I certainly would never vote for or support a member of Congress who walked out on Israel’s prime minister.

Professor Dershowitz concludes:

Inviting a prime minister of an ally to educate Congress about a pressing foreign-policy decision is in the highest tradition of our democratic system of separation of powers and checks and balances.

This is a security issue for all Americans. Anyone in Congress who boycotts this speech should be defeated as soon as they are up for re-election.

Avoiding Working With The People Who Actually Understand The Threat

Fox News posted an article today stating that the United States is withholding the details of the nuclear negotiations with Iran from Israel. Since Israel is the country most threatened by an Iranian nuclear weapon and since Israel is the country with the best intelligence on the Iranian nuclear program, this approach makes very little sense.

The article reports:

In extraordinary admissions that reflect increasingly strained ties between the U.S. and Israel, the White House and State Department said they were not sharing everything from the negotiations with the Israelis and complained that Israeli officials had misrepresented what they had been told in the past. Meanwhile, senior U.S. officials privately blamed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu himself for “changing the dynamic” of previously robust information-sharing by politicizing it.

The comments came as a late March deadline to forge the outline of an Iran nuclear deal looms. Netanyahu has angered the White House by his open opposition to a deal he believes threatens Israel’s existence, and by accepting a Republican invitation to address Congress about Iran in early March without consulting the White House, a breach of diplomatic protocol.

The article further reports:

Netanyahu has insisted that Iran, whose top officials have sworn to obliterate Israel, should not be allowed to enrich any uranium. The U.S. and its partners say that stance is untenable because Iran would never accept it.

As the talks have progressed, Netanyahu’s opposition to an agreement has increased over what he believes to be extreme concessions made to Iran that would leave it as a threshold nuclear weapons power and a direct threat to Israel’s existence.

The White House and State Department maintained that the U.S. will not leave Israel threatened. They also insisted that Israel has not been completely cut out of the loop and that overall security cooperation with the Jewish state remains strong.

If Iran will not accept the prohibition of enriching uranium, doesn’t anyone think there might be a reason for that? Have we not learned from what happened with North Korea (which incidentally has played a very large role in Iran’s nuclear program and nuclear talks)? Any treaty that comes out of the current negotiations with Iran is not worth the paper it is written on. President Obama heralding a treaty with Iran is very much along the lines of Neville Chamberlain declaring, “Peace for our time” after the 1938 Munich Agreement. We know how that turned out.