Sunday, July 18, 2010

It’s Hard to Defend This One

Well, I’ve been offering a sort of semi-defense, or at least an explanation, of Obama’s unwillingness to confront Israel and its supporters.  But I can’t handle this one (from this morning’s Haaretz):

“U.S. official: More American aid will help Israel make 'tough' decisions”: 

An expanded security aid package would allow Israel to reach "tough decisions" in peace talks with the Palestinians, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Andrew J. Shapiro said Friday, adding that Washington planned to provide Israel with its most extensive military aid package in history.


Juan said...

This aid package may be part of an attempt to prevent an Israeli attack upon Iran. The Palestinian "threat" could easily be addressed by a UN peacekeeping force (which the Israelis have opposed for years) with no additional military aid.

Anonymous said...

No you can't.

Anonymous said...

It's remarkable that (according to Israel) cutting supplies to their opponent Hamas in Gaza is the proper policy to effect change in Hamas attitudes, but that when the elected US leadership opposes current Israeli policies then the proper stance for the US is to INCREASE aid and supplies to Israel. Very coherent.....

If the official US response to Israel's Gaza blockade and recent illegal assault upon a muslim aid vessel (and our supposed condemnation of same) is to increase our aid package to Israel, then I think it's fair to say that there can never be the slightest shift in policies towards our dubious ally under any imaginable US political regime. We have been "captured" as an ally.

Jeff Warner said...

Will this really help? I doubt it. I think that Israel citing security concerns is just an excuse for not negotiating a deal with the Palestinians and the entire Arab world. We have to face the fact that Israeli leaders from Ben Gurion on have worked to prevent a Palestinian state from emerging.

Does anyone believe that a bit more military aid will change that conviction? I don't. Maybe the issue is how the U.S. should deal with an Israeli state that illegally occupies another nation's trerritory?

Paul Lookman said...

I concur with your view, which is also reflected in the open letter of December 29, 2008, to President-Elect Barack Obama, from retired U.S. Army Special Forces colonel Jean-François Angevin-Romey, in which he said a.o. “Short of an immediate massive international intervention, the only other path to a negotiated solution to the Middle East conflict is injecting sufficient military parity in the equation to drive the Israeli side to meaningful negotiations. The Cold War taught us that lack of military parity prolongs armed conflict, creates tactics of despair--such as suicide attacks, and targeting civilians for simple lack of capability to take on legitimate military targets. In simple objective politico-military terms, supplying the Palestinian Resistance with the same weapons the U.S. gave the Afghan Mujaheddins to use against Soviet occupation forces—i.e. portable anti-armor and anti-aircraft missiles—would most likely have facilitated negotiations and certainly obviated the deplorable need to attack soft civilian targets. In not thus supporting the Palestinian Resistance, particularly today, the Arab states are writing a chapter of their history they may bitterly regret.”

Anonymous said...

“I ask Rabin to make concessions, and he says he can’t because Israel is too weak. So I give him arms, and he says he doesn’t need to make concessions because Israel is strong." - Henry Kissinger.

Same old, same old.

Ran Greenstein said...

Why would it even cross your mind that you need to defend this?

Jerome Slater said...

Re Ran Greenstein's query: Only because a couple of weeks ago I posted a blog arguing that Obama faced a genuine dilemma if he sought to pressure Israel: it would jeopardize his domestic program and chances for reelection, and anyway, given the state of Israeli madness, it wouldn't work. So what I meant was that no matter what Obama's dilemma, nothing could excuse actually INCREASING U.S. aid, and on the basis of an argument that has been repeatedly proven to be wrong.

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