WARNING : This site is not for you if you cannot see the otherness of other and sufferings of both sides of the party in the conflict. Security for Israel and Justice for the Palestinians are interdependent, one will not happen without the other. My view focuses on building cohesive societies where no one has to live in apprehension or fear of the other. I hope and pray a sense of justice to prevail. Amen. Website www.IsraelPalestineDialogue.com | Also Check Israel Palestine Confederation a pragmatic solution

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Harsh Turn against Israel

Mike Ghouse comments on the article by Mr. Pipes below
A Rapid and Harsh Turn against Israel

The enemies of Israel are not Palestinians or the Arabs; it is the leadership of Israel, the Israel Lobby, and a few American Neocons who are messing up the peace and security of Israel.

Mr. Pipes and his likes have not done much towards reconciliation and mitigating the conflicts, instead they are master aggravators. I hope they reconsider their approach towards peace; they may become actual contributors towards the peace and I would welcome it and the people of Israel would love them for it.

If the Netanyahu’s, the Pipes and their likes can think of the safety and security of Israel for generations to come, they would act smart. Security comes when the Israelis don’t have to think twice about going to shopping or the kids going to schools, it is dropping all the guards and living a life of freedom. The Israeli leadership like the Palestinian leadership has screwed their people over the last sixty years, and they want to continue with what has not worked? You simply cannot have peace and feel secure when you deny the same to others around you.

Mr. Pipes writes “with a series of tough American demands” why is it tough? That is the rightful and lawful thing to do that was the call of the UN Resolutions and a requirement for peace.
“The Israeli governing coalition chairman pointed out the mistake of prior "American dictates," – Heck no, It is not the dictates, it is the thing that will bring Israel out of virtual insecurity the leaders have committed to, further more, we shell out billions of dollars a year – and we don’t have a right to ask the right thing to do? And it does not benefit the United States, it benefits Israeli citizens who can live in peace once the conflicts are resolved; Security to Israelis and hope for the Palestinians is the right thing to do. Settlements are an impediment in bringing peace and security to Israelis and must be stopped.

“Obama has revived a long-dormant Palestinian fantasy: that the United States will simply force Israel to make critical concessions,”... it is a good fantasy, it is the aspiration of every people who were dislodged from their homes and that was indeed the fantasy of the Jewish diaspora for thousands of years; to have place to call their home.

Mr. Pipes adds “If Washington continues on its present course, the result may well be spectacular policy failure that manages both to weaken America's only strategic ally in the Middle East even as it worsens Arab-Israeli tensions.” The Israeli people deserve security and peace and for the first time in history, Washington is doing what is right for the Israeli people – to bring security and peace of mind to them. You guys are going to mess it up. I do hope the Jews and the Israelis would muster the guts to speak up and do the right thing.

The words and actions of Netanyahu and their likes will guarantee the conflict for another decade. Do the Israeli Citizens deserve these rascals?

Mike Ghouse is a Speaker, Thinker and a Writer on Pluralism, interfaith, terrorism, peace, Islam, Israel and India. He is a frequent guest on talk radio and local television network discussing interfaith, political and civic issues. His comments, news analysis and columns can be found on the Websites and Blogs listed at his personal website http://www.mikeghouse.net/. Mike is a Dallasite for nearly three decades and Carrollton is his home town. He can be reached at MikeGhouse@gmail.com

A Rapid and Harsh Turn against Israel

by Daniel Pipes
Jerusalem Post
June 4, 2009

The much-anticipated meeting between Barack Obama and Binyamin Netanyahu on May 18 went off smoothly, if a bit tensely, as predicted. Everyone was on best behavior and the event excited so little attention that the New York Times reported it on page 12.

As expected, however, the gloves came off immediately thereafter, with a series of tough American demands, especially U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's insistence on May 27 that the Netanyahu government end residential building for Israelis in the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem. This prompted a defiant response. The Israeli governing coalition chairman pointed out the mistake of prior "American dictates," a minister compared Obama to pharaoh, and the government press office director cheekily mock-admired "the residents of Iroquois territory for assuming that they have a right to determine where Jews should live in Jerusalem."

If the specifics of who-lives-where have little strategic import, the Obama administration's rapid and harsh turn against Israel has potentially great significance. Not only did the administration end George W. Bush's focus on changes on the Palestinian side but it even disregarded oral understandings Bush had reached with Ariel Sharon and Ehud Olmert.

Yasir Arafat smiles as Barack Obama meets Mahmoud Abbas in July 2008.

An article by Jackson Diehl of the Washington Post captures this shift most vividly. Diehl notes, based on an interview with Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority, that by publicly and repeatedly stressing the need for a without-exception freeze of Israeli building on the West Bank, Obama has revived a long-dormant Palestinian fantasy: that the United States will simply force Israel to make critical concessions, whether or not its democratic government agrees, while Arabs passively watch and applaud. "The Americans are the leaders of the world. … They can use their weight with anyone around the world. Two years ago they used their weight on us. Now they should tell the Israelis, 'You have to comply with the conditions'."

Of course, telling the Israelis is one thing and getting their compliance quite another. To this, Abbas also has an answer. Expecting that Netanyahu's agreeing to a complete freeze on building would bring down his coalition, Diehl explains that Abbas plans "to sit back and watch while U.S. pressure slowly squeezes the Israeli prime minister from office." One Palestinian Authority official predicted this would happen within "a couple of years" – exactly when Obama is said to expect a Palestinian state in place.

Meanwhile, Abbas plans to sit tight. Diehl explains his thinking:

Abbas rejects the notion that he should make any comparable concession—such as recognizing Israel as a Jewish state, which would imply renunciation of any large-scale resettlement of refugees. Instead, he says, he will remain passive. … "I will wait for Israel to freeze settlements," he said. "Until then, in the West Bank we have a good reality . . . the people are living a normal life."

Abbas's idea of "normal life," one should add, is also largely provided by Washington and its allies; West Bank Palestinians enjoy by far the highest per-capita foreign aid of any group in the world; at just one "donors' conference" in December 2007, for example, Abbas won pledges for over US$1,800 per West Banker per year.

As Diehl tersely concludes, "In the Obama administration, so far, it's easy being Palestinian."
Even if one ignores the folly of focusing on Jerusalemites adding recreation rooms to their houses rather than Iranians adding centrifuges to their nuclear infrastructure and even if one overlooks the obvious counter productivity of letting Abbas off the hook – the new U.S. approach is doomed.

First, Netanyahu's governing coalition should prove impervious to U.S. pressure. When he formed the government in March 2009, it included 69 parliamentarians out of the Knesset's 120 members, well over the 61 minimum. Even if the U.S. government succeeded in splitting off the two parties least committed to Netanyahu's goals, Labor and Shas, he could replace them with right-wing and religious parties to retain a solid majority.

Second, the record shows that Jerusalem takes "risks for peace" only when trusting its American ally. An administration that undermines this fragile trust will likely confront a wary and reluctant Israeli leadership.

If Washington continues on its present course, the result may well be spectacular policy failure that manages both to weaken America's only strategic ally in the Middle East even as it worsens Arab-Israeli tensions.

Related Topics: Arab-Israel conflict & diplomacy, US policy Daniel Pipes RECEIVE THE LATEST BY EMAIL: SUBSCRIBE TO THE FREE MEF MAILING LIST This text may be reposted so long as it is presented as an integral whole with complete information provided about its author, date, place of publication, and original URL.


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