[Freemanlist2] Barack Obama’s top ten insults against Israel -Nile Gardiner

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Barack Obama’s top ten insults against Israel
By Nile Gardiner  The Telegraph (UK) World Last updated: April 26th, 2010
http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/nilegardiner/100036389/barack-obama’s-top-ten-insults-against-israel/

Last week Israel celebrated its 62nd year as a nation, but there was major 
cause for concern amid the festivities as the Israeli people faced the 
looming menace of a nuclear-armed Iran, as well as the prospect of a rapidly 
deteriorating relationship with Washington. The Israel-bashing of the Obama 
administration has become so bad that even leading Democrats are now 
speaking out against the White House. New York Senator Chuck Schumer blasted 
Barack Obama’s stance towards Israel in a radio interview last week, stating 
his “counter-productive” Israel policy “has to stop”.

At the same time a poll was released by Quinnipiac University which showed 
that US voters disapproved of the president’s Israel policy by a margin of 
44 to 35 percent. According to the poll, “American voters say 57 – 13 
percent that their sympathies lie with Israel and say 66 – 19 percent that 
the president of the United States should be a strong supporter of Israel.”

I recently compiled a list of Barack Obama’s top ten insults against 
Britain, America’s closest ally in the world. This is a sequel of sorts, a 
list of major insults by the Obama administration against America’s closest 
ally in the Middle East, Israel. As I wrote previously on Obama’s treatment 
of both Britain and Israel:

In the space of just over a year, Barack Obama has managed to significantly 
damage relations with America’s two closest friends, while currying favour 
with practically every monstrous dictatorship on the face of the earth. The 
doctrine of “smart power” has evolved into the shameless appeasement of 
America’s enemies at the expense of existing alliances. There is nothing 
clever about this approach – it will ultimately weaken US global power and 
strengthen the hand of America’s
enemies, who have become significantly emboldened and empowered by Barack 
Obama’s naïve approach since he took office.

The Obama presidency is causing immense damage to America’s standing in the 
free world, while projecting an image of weakness in front of hostile 
regimes. Its treatment of both Israel and Britain is an insult and a 
disgrace, and a grim reflection of an unbelievably crass and insensitive 
foreign policy that significantly undermines the US national interest.

So here’s my top 10 list of Obama administration insults against Israel 
after just 15 months in power:

1. Obama’s humiliation of Benjamin Netanyahu at the White House

In March, the Israeli Prime Minister was humiliated by Barack Obama when he 
visited Washington. As The Telegraph reported, “Benjamin Netanyahu was left 
to stew in a White House meeting room for over an hour after President 
Barack Obama abruptly walked out of tense talks to have supper with his 
family”, after being presented with a list of 13 demands. As I wrote at the 
time:

This is no way to treat America’s closest ally in the Middle East, and a 
true friend of the United States. I very much doubt that even third world 
tyrants would be received in such a rude fashion by the president. In fact, 
they would probably be warmly welcomed by the Obama White House as part of 
its “engagement” strategy, while the leaders of Britain and Israel are 
frequently met with arrogant disdain.

2. Engaging Iran when Tehran threatens a nuclear Holocaust against Israel

In contrast to its very public humiliation of close ally Israel, the Obama 
administration has gone out of its way to establish a better relationship 
with the genocidal regime of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, which continues to 
threaten Israel’s very existence. It has taken almost every opportunity to 
appease Tehran since it came to office, and has been extremely slow to 
respond to massive human rights violations by the Iranian regime, including 
the beating, rape and murder of pro-democracy protesters.

3. Drawing a parallel between Jewish suffering in the Holocaust with the 
current plight of the Palestinians

In his Cairo speech to the Muslim world, President Obama condemned Holocaust 
denial in the Middle East, but compared the murder of six million Jews 
during
World War Two to the “occupation” of the Palestinian territories, in a 
disturbing example of moral equivalence:

“On the other hand, it is also undeniable that the Palestinian people – 
Muslims and Christians – have suffered in pursuit of a homeland. For more 
than sixty years they have endured the pain of dislocation. Many wait in 
refugee camps in the West Bank, Gaza, and neighboring lands for a life of 
peace and security that they have never been able to lead. They endure the 
daily humiliations – large and small – that come with occupation. So let 
there be no doubt: the situation for the Palestinian people is intolerable. 
America will not turn our backs on the legitimate Palestinian aspiration for 
dignity, opportunity, and a state of their own.”

4. Obama’s attack on Israeli “occupation” in his speech to the United 
Nations

In his appalling speech to the UN General Assembly last September, President 
Obama dedicated five paragraphs to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, without 
once referring directly to Palestinian terrorism by name, but declaring to 
loud applause “America does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli 
settlements.” He also lambasted the Israeli “occupation”, and drew a 
connection between rocket attacks on Israeli civilians with living 
conditions in Gaza. The speech served as a ghastly PR exercise aimed at 
appeasing anti-Israel sentiment in the Middle East, while bashing the 
Israelis over the head.

5. Obama’s accusation that Israel is the cause of instability in the Middle 
East

As The Wall Street Journal noted, “the Obama Administration seems 
increasingly of the view that Israel is the primary cause of instability in 
the Middle East”, citing a recent press conference where he stated:

“It is a vital national security interest of the United States to reduce 
these conflicts because whether we like it or not, we remain a dominant 
military superpower, and when conflicts break out, one way or another we get 
pulled into them. And that ends up costing us significantly in terms of both 
blood and treasure.”

6. The Obama administration’s establishment of diplomatic relations with 
Syria

While actively appeasing Iran, the Obama administration has also sought to 
develop closer ties with the other main state sponsor of terrorism in the 
Middle East, Syria, establishing diplomatic relations with Damascus in 
February. Syria remains a major backer of Hamas and Hizbollah, both 
responsible for a large number of terrorist attacks against Israel.

7. Hillary Clinton’s 43-minute phone call berating Netanyahu

As The Telegraph reported, Hillary Clinton sought to dictate terms to Israel 
in the wake of Vice President Joe Biden’s visit to Jerusalem:

“In a telephone call, Hillary Clinton, the US secretary of state, ordered 
Mr. Netanyahu to reverse a decision to build 1,600 homes for Israeli 
settlers in occupied East Jerusalem that sparked the diplomatic row. She 
also instructed him to issue a formal pledge that peace talks would focus on 
core issues such as the future of Jerusalem and the borders of a Palestinian 
state. In addition, the Israeli prime minister was urged to make a 
substantial confidence-building gesture to the Palestinians. Mrs. Clinton 
suggested this could take the form of prisoner releases, an easing of the 
blockade of Gaza and the transfer of greater territory in the West Bank to 
Palestinian control.”

Last time I checked, Israel was still an independent country, and not a 
colonial dependency of the Obama White House. Yet that still hasn’t stopped 
the Secretary of State from acting like an imperial Viceroy.

8. David Axelrod’s attack on Israeli settlements on “Meet the Press”

It is extremely unusual for a White House official to launch an attack on a 
close US ally on live television, but this is exactly what the President’s 
Senior Adviser David Axelrod did in an interview in March with NBC’s Meet 
the Press, designed to cause maximum humiliation to Israel, where he stated 
in reference to new settlement construction in East Jerusalem:

“This was an affront, it was an insult but most importantly it undermined 
this very fragile effort to bring peace to that region. For this 
announcement to come at that time was very destructive.”

9. Hillary Clinton’s call on Israel to show “respect”

As The Telegraph revealed, the Secretary of State lectured the Israelis at a 
dinner attended by the Israeli ambassador and the ambassadors of several 
Arab states in mid-April, urging Israel to “refrain from unilateral 
statements” that could “undermine trust or risk prejudicing the outcome of 
talks”. In Clinton’s words:
“Prime Minister [Benjamin] Netanyahu has embraced the vision of the 
two-state solution. But easing up on access and movement in the West Bank, 
in response to credible Palestinian security performance, is not sufficient 
to prove to the Palestinians that this embrace is sincere. We encourage 
Israel to continue building momentum toward a comprehensive peace by 
demonstrating respect for the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinians, 
stopping settlement activity and addressing the humanitarian needs in Gaza.”

10. Robert Gibbs’ disparaging remarks about Israel

Not one to shy away from criticizing America’s friends when the opportunity 
arises, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs entered the fray in an 
interview on Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace in March where he attacked 
the Israeli government for weakening “the trust that’s needed for both sides 
to come together and have honest discussions about peace in the Middle 
East.” In condescending terms he stated that Benjamin Netanyahu should 
start “coming to the table with constructive ideas for constructive and 
trustful dialogue about moving the peace process forward.” 

--------------------------------------------
IMRA - Independent Media Review and Analysis
Website: www.imra.org.il
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