Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Pressuring Israelis not necessary

This letter was published in the New Haven Register on Tuesday, May 17, 2011.

Aaron David Miller's Forum column, "Payoff key to taking on Netanyahu," includes highly questionable assertions, but the bigger problem is that he ignores the refusal of the Palestinian Arabs to show any interest in living in peace with America's only real friend in the Middle East.

In response to the death of Osama bin Laden, the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades published a statement calling his death a "catastrophe" and those who killed him "gangs of heretics." The group is a branch of Fatah, led by Mahmoud Abbas, who leads the Palestinian Authority, which we support to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars a year.

Everyone knows Israelis will go along with any reasonable proposal to bring peace. Pressuring Israel is unnecessary and counterproductive, since it simply rewards Arab intransigence. The key to peace is putting pressure on those responsible for the continued conflict, Israel's Arab enemies.

Alan Stein


There is NO Santa Claus said...

President O'Bama is hardly pressuring Israel. He's scapegoating them.

Any President uttering the words "Israel" and "borders" in the same sentence will be viewed as support of Israel by its regional enemies. As such, the President's speech was far more counterproductive than mere "Pressuring".

U.S./Pakistani relations are in a tailspin. This leaves the possibility that U.S. troops will be totally surrounded in Afghanistan by hostile forces. The President needs a scapegoat before things get any worse.

The President's speech had nothing to do with solving the War Against Israel. It had everything to do with the growing realization that his administration gave a $500 Million aid package to Pakistan last year only to find Osama bin Laden enjoying safe haven there.

There is NO Santa Claus said...

The President is not pressuring Israel. He is scapegoating them.

Any sentence the President utters that includes "Israel" and "borders" is problematic to Israel's enemies. The real problem is that U.S./Pakistani relations are in free-fall. A quick look at a map should tell you (or anyone) what that means to U.S. troops stationed in Afghanistan.

Last year, the Administration gave a $500 Million aid package to Pakistan only to find Osama bin Laden (i.e. "Public Enemy Number One") enjoying safe haven there. As the euphoria of the bin Laden assassination quickly wears off in an election season, it is only natural for the President's domestic political adversaries to criticize the Administration's handling of affairs in that region.

Scapegoating Israel deflects attention away from mounting problems in Pakistan (quite unrelated to the War Against Israel) and throughout the region before they bite the American public. It returns the President to his "Plan A" thesis established on day two of his Administration: "Solve the Israel-Palestinian conflict and 'all these other problems' go away." Since President Nixon resigned from office, virtually every one-term President has applied this thesis. Frankly, I thought President O'Bama had the political savvy to avoid that mistake entering the election season.

Oh well! It's not like he listens to little-old-me.