President Obama is not responsible for every conflict on the planet; he has nothing to do with the ongoing battles in Sudan or Somalia, for example. But the Obama administration is almost solely responsible for the latest outbreak of violence between Israel and the Palestinians.
The reason for that is simple: Obama showed more daylight between the United States and Israel than at any time in the history of the State of Israel.
In 2011, the Fatah Party – the military wing of the Palestinian Authority – began working with Hamas. Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu stated, “We will not negotiate with a Palestinian government backed by the Palestinian version of al-Qaeda. I say to President Abbas, tear up your pact with Hamas and sit down and negotiate with Israel.”
The Obama administration refused to back Netanyahu, instead pushing Netanyahu to attempt negotiations with a group that has explicitly refused to recognize the existence of Israel as a Jewish state. In fact, Obama himself warned the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) that the world would “isolate Israel internationally” thanks to the “absence of a credible peace process.”
On June 2, 2014, the Palestinian Authority formed a unity government with Hamas and Islamic Jihad, both internationally-recognized terrorist groups. The Obama administration, which is the lead sponsor of the Palestinian Authority, refused to cut off aid to the new unity government, despite a letter from 88 Senators calling on the administration to do so. Instead, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki stated that the “technocratic” Palestinian government had nothing to do with Hamas, a delusional position utterly unmoored from reality. “Based on what we know now,” she said, “we intend to work with this government.”
On June 12, Hamas terrorists kidnapped three Jewish teenagers and murdered them. For three weeks, President Obama himself said nothing. When the boys were found murdered last week, the Obama administration urged restraint from Israel.
Now, Hamas is firing hundreds of rockets at Israeli population centers, Fatah has declared, “One God, one homeland, one enemy, one goal” – and the State Department continues to maintain that Hamas is not part of the government. “Hamas is not a part of the technocratic government,” Psaki explained. “We have no evidence that Hamas plays any role in the interim technocratic government, and as far as we know, there have also been no steps taken for the implementation of the reconciliation.”
Nothing to see here. Move along.
As for Israel – well, that’s a different story. The Obama administration continues to push Israel to make concessions to the Palestinian unity government, even as some four million citizens hide underground from Palestinian unity rockets. “How will [Israel] have peace if it’s unwilling to delineate a border, end the occupation and allow for Palestinian sovereignty, security and dignity?” asked special assistant to Obama and White House coordinator for the Middle East Philip Gordon – apparently ignoring the fact that Israel did delineate a border in Gaza, withdrew all Jewish civilians and troops from Gaza, and let the elected Hamas government stand.
Israel’s enemies are emboldened by weakness – either weakness from Israel, or from the United States’ support for Israel. And so the rockets fly.
This is nothing new for the Obama administration on a larger scale. Obama’s silence during the Iranian revolution of 2009 allowed the Iranian government a free hand in quashing dissidents. Obama’s hokey-pokey red line dance regarding Syria’s weapons of mass destruction and the funding of Bashar Assad’s opposition allowed the growth of ISIS – and the withdrawal of American troops from Iraq led them to take over the northern half of the country. Obama’s tepid support for the revolution in Ukraine led the Russian government to invade Crimea. Obama’s refusal to show support to our allies in Taiwan, Japan, and South Korea has led China to flex its muscles in the South China Sea.
An America in retreat – a rudderless, principle-free America – means that evil prospers on a global scale. A smaller America means a smaller west, and a smaller west means a larger purview for barbarism. No wonder Hamas is excited.
Ben Shapiro is Senior Editor-At-Large of Breitbart News and author of the new book, The People vs. Barack Obama: The Criminal Case Against The Obama Administration (Threshold Editions, June 10, 2014). He is also Editor-in-Chief of TruthRevolt.org. Follow Ben Shapiro on Twitter @benshapiro.