Barack Obama has found his enemy.
While he cozies up to the ayatollahs and watches feebly while Yemen falls into the hands of terrorists, while he presides over the unspeakable horror he created in Iraq and Syria, while he stands idly by as Libya disintegrates, while he systematically and cravenly refuses to call Islamist terrorism by its name, Obama has recently gone to war against … Israel.
Just in case you thought that he was pusillanimous.
That’s right. Now that Israel has elected a new prime minister, Barack Obama has been lashing out at Benjamin Netanyahu.
This morning his administration leaked that Israel has been spying on John Kerry’s talks with Iran (allegation strongly denied by Israel). When Netanyahu apologized for some remarks made during the political campaign and walked back one of his proposals the Obama administration rejected them.
Yesterday, Obama’s chief of staff addressed a liberal Jewish group and said that Israel had been occupying Palestinian lands.
To be more precise, Denis McDonough said this yesterday, mouthing Palestinian propaganda:
An occupation that has lasted for almost 50 years must end, and the Palestinian people must have the right to live in and govern themselves in their own sovereign state.
Bret Stephens outlines the problem this morning in the Wall Street Journal:
There is an upside-down quality to this president’s world view. His administration is now on better terms with Iran—whose Houthi proxies, with the slogan “God is great, death to America, death to Israel, damn the Jews, power to Islam,” just deposed Yemen’s legitimate president—than it is with Israel. He claims we are winning the war against Islamic State even as the group continues to extend its reach into Libya, Yemen and Nigeria.
He treats Republicans in the Senate as an enemy when it comes to the Iranian nuclear negotiations, while treating the Russian foreign ministry as a diplomatic partner. He favors the moral legitimacy of the United Nations Security Council to that of the U.S. Congress. He is facilitating Bashar Assad’s war on his own people by targeting ISIS so the Syrian dictator can train his fire on our ostensible allies in the Free Syrian Army.
He was prepared to embrace a Muslim Brother as president of Egypt but maintains an arm’s-length relationship with his popular pro-American successor. He has no problem keeping company with Al Sharpton and tagging an American police department as comprehensively racist but is nothing if not adamant that the words “Islamic” and “terrorism” must on no account ever be conjoined. The deeper that Russian forces advance into Ukraine, the more they violate cease-fires, the weaker the Kiev government becomes, the more insistent he is that his response to Russia is working.
One does not want to quibble, but Obama’s consistency is terrifying. It’s as though the American people had put Jeremiah Wright’s protégé in the White House.
Clearly, Obama hates Israel more than he hates Islamist terrorism, the ayatollahs in Iran or the Muslim Brotherhood.
Seen through Obama’s eyes, and the eyes of those who will follow him off whatever cliff he points to, Israel is the problem. Through his biased eyes, Israel is the obstacle to peace in the Middle East. He almost seems to believe that undermining the state of Israel will put an end to Islamist terrorism.
How can anyone believe that Benjamin Netanyahu is the greatest, even the principal obstacle to peace in the Middle East? Does the president understand who Mahmoud Abbas really is? Does he give any weight to the fact that Abbas is allied with Hamas?
Apparently not. Bigotry blinds you to reality.
Stephens reminds us:
In 2014 Mr. Abbas agreed to a power-sharing agreement with Hamas, a deal breaker for any Israeli interested in peace. In 2010 he used the expiration of a 10-month Israeli settlement freeze as an excuse to abandon bilateral peace efforts. In 2008 he walked away from a statehood offer from then-Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. In 2000 he was with Yasser Arafat at Camp David when the Palestinians turned down a deal from Israel’s Ehud Barak.
And so on. For continuously rejecting good-faith Israeli offers, Mr. Abbas may be about to get his wish: a U.S. vote for Palestinian statehood at the United Nations. For tiring of constant Palestinian bad faith—and noting the fact—Israel will now be treated to pariah-nation status by Mr. Obama.
If Barack Obama were a terrorist sympathizer and an anti-Semite to boot, his behavior would be perfectly consistent, his thinking perfectly cogent.
What should Israel do? Stephens recommends treating Obama like the bully he is:
Here is my advice to the Israeli government, along with every other country being treated disdainfully by this crass administration: Repay contempt with contempt. Mr. Obama plays to classic bully type. He is abusive and surly only toward those he feels are either too weak, or too polite, to hit back.
As this unfolds in full public view, where are Israel’s supporters in the Democratic Party? How is it that Jewish Democrats in Congress have nothing to say about Obama’s actions, actions which are threatening the state of Israel? Why do Jewish Democrats refuse to stand up to actions that are legitimating anti-Semitism?
Where is Charles Schumer? What does the voluble senator have to say about this? Where are Al Franken and Bernie Sanders and Dianne Feinstein?
When it comes to Obama’s assault on Israel they are manifesting the silence of the lambs.
Were they cowed into silence by the indictment of Sen. Robert Menendez, a Christian who had the temerity to speak up against the Obama administration’s attitude toward Iran?
Could it be that liberal Democrats are more attached to their ideology than they are to America’s most staunch ally in the Middle East? Could it be that they care more about the success of the Democratic Party than they do for the fate of Jews outside of America?
If so, the situation eerily resembles events in the past.
If Jewish Democratic politicians have been struck dumb, the same cannot be said of serious Jewish media intellectuals. They are rallying, not behind Israel, but behind their president. They are blaming the problem on Benjamin Netanyahu. That’s right, they are blaming the Jew.
This morning Michael Tomasky attacked Netanyahu for making Israel a partisan issue. Being a good liberal Democrat Tomasky is blind to the fact that when Netanyahu was invited to address Congress, the president could have welcomed the speech. Obama’s petulant response produced the divide.
Tomasky places all of the blame on Netanyahu. You see, Netanyahu made the Iran negotiations a partisan issue by addressing a joint session of Congress. Joint session means that members of both parties were present.
But then, Netanyahu rejected an invitation to a separate meeting with Congressional Democrats. By Tomasky’s reasoning, if Netanyahu had accepted the meeting the Democrats would have had his back.
Thus, Congressional Democrats are lining up behind Obama and against Israel because they were offended that Netanyahu did not have a separate meeting with them. Tomasky fails to point out that Obama had already declared war on Netanyahu and that Congressional Democrats were trying to cover their own asses. They were looking for photo-ops they could use in their next campaigns.
And then there’s David Remnick in The New Yorker. He believes that Netanyahu is as bad as Richard Nixon at his worst:
The tragedy is that the likely price of his [Netanyahu’s] vainglory is the increasing isolation of a country founded as a democratic refuge for a despised and decimated people. He will soon surpass David Ben-Gurion as Israel’s longest consecutively serving Prime Minister. Unfortunately, this has given Netanyahu plenty of time to erode the tone of his country’s political discourse. And so now, as he forms an unabashedly right-wing and religious government, he stands in opposition not only to the founding aspirations of his nation but also to those Israelis—Jews and Arabs—who stand for tolerance, equality, democratic ideals, and a just, secure peace.
In order to defend Obama, Remnick trashes the democratically elected prime minister of Israel and blinds himself to the truth about the Palestinian Authority and its ally Hamas.
To him Palestinians are willing to negotiate peace with the Israelis, but are prevented from doing so by Netanyahu:
The Palestinians, for their part, have every reason to believe that Netanyahu has shown both his hand and his heart; they will likely drop any thought of negotiations and take their campaign for statehood to the United Nations. For the first time, they may not face a reflexive veto from the United States.
Since the Palestinians have NEVER negotiated in good faith with Israel, since they have consistently used the negotiation process to advance their eliminationist agenda, why would any sentient soul pretend that the Palestinians were planning to have good faith peace negotiations?
By allying itself with Hamas the Palestinian Authority has declared, loudly and clearly that it will never accept the existence of the state of Israel. Since Hamas does not just want to destroy Israel, but wants to kill all Jews anywhere, Mahmoud Abbas has shown himself willing to accept that principle.
Why does Remnick imagine that there is something to negotiate about? How naïve or blind do you have to be to blame the problems on Benjamin Netanyahu?
Barack Obama is at war with Israel, he has vilified the prime minister of Israel in ways he would never do with terrorist leaders like the ayatollahs in Iran… because American Jews have his back.
The way to force him to change his tune is for American Jews, led by their politicians to take a stand against Barack Obama, against Jeremiah Wright’s protégé, and against anti-Semitism?
For now too many American Jews think that their real enemies are the Republican Party and Bibi Netanyahu?