President Obama has picked Samantha Power to head up his new Atrocities Prevention Board. Ironically enough, the Board launches Monday, the same day President Obama speaks at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, where he will be introduced by author Elie Wiesel.
Power has made her career talking about genocide — she won a Pulitzer Prize for her book, A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide. But her choice is ironic since she is also an ardent opponent of Israel; she has stated that Israel is not a genocidal power, but a “major human rights” abuser. She is a fan of Noam Chomsky’s, and she has been linked to George Soros. Here’s what Power had to say in 2002 about America’s role in facilitating Israel-Palestinian relations:
What we don’t need is some kind of early warning mechanism there, what we need is a willingness to put something on the line in helping the situation. Putting something on the line might mean alienating a domestic constituency of tremendous political and financial import; it may more crucially (sic) mean sacrificing–or investing, I think, more than sacrificing–billions of dollars, not in servicing Israel’s military, but actually investing in the new state of Palestine, in investing the billions of dollars it would probably take, also, to support what will have to be a mammoth protection force, not of the old Rwanda kind, but a meaningful military presence. Because it seems to me at this stage (and this is true of actual genocides as well, and not just major human rights abuses, which were seen there), you have to go in as if you’re serious, you have to put something on the line.
Unfortunately, imposition of a solution on unwilling parties is dreadful. It’s a terrible thing to do, it’s fundamentally undemocratic. But, sadly, we don’t just have a democracy here either, we have a liberal democracy. There are certain sets of principles that guide our policy, or that are meant to, anyway. It’s essential that some set of principles becomes the benchmark, rather than a deference to [leaders] who are fundamentally politically destined to destroy the lives of their own people. And by that I mean what Tom Friedman has called “Sharafat” [Sharon-Arafat]. I do think in that sense, both political leaders have been dreadfully irresponsible. And, unfortunately, it does require external intervention … Any intervention is going to come under fierce criticism. But we have to think about lesser evils, especially when the human stakes are becoming ever more pronounced.
Power certainly has expertise on genocide. Unfortunately, she is also rabidly anti-Israel, and may well use her seat on the Atrocities Prevention Board to target the Jewish State.