They say a leopard doesn’t change his spots, well… neither does this President. Those who though that the NY-9 election and recent polls would cause Obama to temper his one-sided policy regarding the Israeli/Palestinian dispute were very disappointing. It’s not what he said that should be alarming to friends of Israel, its what he didn’t say, namely that Israel needed to be recognized as the Jewish State. Oh he flirted around it sometimes, but carefully negotiated around stating it, an act of appeasement to those who would destroy Israel. It is that one recognition which keeps this 40 year dispute alive (yes 40 years- before 1967 Judea and Samaria were part of Jordan and Gaza was part of Egypt).
This is what the President actually said about recognition of Israel at the UN Today.
Let us be honest with ourselves: Israel is surrounded by neighbors that have waged repeated wars against it. Israel’s citizens have been killed by rockets fired at their houses and suicide bombs on their buses. Israel’s children come of age knowing that throughout the region, other children are taught to hate them. Israel, a small country of less than eight million people, look out at a world where leaders of much larger nations threaten to wipe it off of the map. The Jewish people carry the burden of centuries of exile and persecution, and fresh memories of knowing that six million people were killed simply because of who they are. Those are facts. They cannot be denied.
The Jewish people have forged a successful state in their historic homeland. Israel deserves recognition. It deserves normal relations with its neighbors.
Some will say “see he talked about the Jewish people, you can assume that’s what he meant.” Sadly in diplomacy as well as “Odd Couple” reruns, when you assume you make an ass of u and me.
The avoidance of calling Israel the Jewish State was no accident. As recently as last month the President of the Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas declared that he would never accept Israel as a Jewish State.
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“You see, our conflict has never been about the establishment of a Palestinian state. It has always been about the existence of the Jewish state. This is what this conflict is about….
They were simply unwilling to end the conflict. And I regret to say this: They continue to educate their children to hate. They continue to name public squares after terrorists. And worst of all, they continue to perpetuate the fantasy that Israel will one day be flooded by the descendants of Palestinian refugees.”
My friends, this must come to an end. President Abbas must do what I have done. I stood before my people, and I told you it wasn’t easy for me, and I said… “I will accept a Palestinian state.” It is time for President Abbas to stand before his people and say… “I will accept a Jewish state.”
A few days before Netanyahu made his speech in the halls of Congress, President Obama gave his big Mid East peace speech. He spent much time telling Israel what she had to do, and included the controversial call for negotiations to start with recognition of Israel’s return to the 1949 Armistice lines, but he didn’t address the fact that neither Palestinian President Abbas’ Fatah party and the Hamas party refuse to recognize Israel as the Jewish State.
I put forward a new basis for negotiations in May of this year. That basis is clear. It’s well known to all of us here. Israelis must know that any agreement provides assurances for their security. Palestinians deserve to know the territorial basis of their state.
….We seek a future where Palestinians live in a sovereign state of their own, with no limit to what they can achieve. There’s no question that the Palestinians have seen that vision delayed for too long. It is precisely because we believe so strongly in the aspirations of the Palestinian people that America has invested so much time and so much effort in the building of a Palestinian state, and the negotiations that can deliver a Palestinian state.
Again he fails to mention that the reason it has taken so long is the Palestinian refusal to accept the fact that the Jewish State of Israel has the basic right to exist. The simple truth is that with seven words, President Abbas can get what he wants “We Accept a Jewish State of Israel.” Once he says that all the other issues will become much easier.
But President Abbas will not make that declaration, and President Obama is satisfied with making demands of Israel while refusing to demand that the Palestinian side make the most basic of statements. Israel cannot negotiate with someone who does not believe that it should exist. And President Obama will never regain the trust of voters who support Israel as long as he continues to appease the Palestinians lack of this basic recognition.