Mr. President, Israel as just another country?
As the Israeli columnist Ari Shavit noted in the newspaper Haaretz last week……..
“In the past, both the Zionist movement and the Jewish state were careful to be identified with the progressive forces in the world…But in recent decades more and more Israelis took to leaning on the reactionary forces in American society. It was convenient to lean on them.”
By Rex Williams
While the US Intelligence Community (IC) considers Israel the greatest threat to America’s national interests, there are about 7,500 US officials “who do Israel’s bidding,” serving Tel Aviv’s interests with no reservation. — Franklin Lamb
And this is now the situation, clearly. One only has to look at the likes of Schumer, Lieberman, Cantor, Bolton, Kristol, Ros Lehtinen, Neocons en masse and those who have compromised themselves for years to gain some electoral advantage, perhaps 75% of the Congress, generally in the form of financial support in money or kind to assist in their elections. Now with the PACs, this has been amplified immensely and allows the full force of the big financial supporters to be applied across the board.
It is legal graft, approved by Congress and the current sitting members are the beneficiaries.
Just look at the last electoral spending of both parties. It was vulgar, even for the United States.
Romney, as is well known, was purchased, body and soul by the Zionists. The one thing they wanted and to which he agreed to support was a full scale US attack on Iran, against all the advice of the intelligence community, very strident indeed on this subject, the military who one feels is tiring of dalliances for no gain but with the substantial support of the military / industrial complex, who, through the gearing up over the years for production to support substantial wars, have become accustomed to the profits generated in that climate.
The US has now become a country that cannot afford peace.
Then there’s unemployment.
Unemployment could reach 15-20% if there was a 50% cut in US defence spending and anyone that can add up, knows it. So they continue to support over 900 bases throughout the world, seriously contributing to the current 16 trillion dollar national debt and rising. The reduction by half of those bases, or even more, would seriously reduce the national debt, year after year.
Everyone wants to burden the US President with the unemployment figure, a convenient scapegoat. But it is the capitalist system and the need for even more profits that allows this to happen, more each year. Apple, as a convenient example, want more profit. There is no legal requirement for them to manufacture in the US. It’s a free enterprise environment. So Apple outsources the technical resources they require to India at $9-$11 per hour. Next they decide that they need to reduce manufacturing costs, so they contract with China to make all their products at $3-$5 per hour with no labour concerns. Compared to a estimated cost for production line wages in the US, at whatever it is at the moment, including the ‘hard won’ benefits for workers not evident in other countries, the savings are straight profit because the product is then sold into safe, buoyant markets in great numbers, phones probably changed every 18 months in an on-going, self-sustaining marketplace, because the same $2000 product cost in 2012 for a sophisticated laptop should really be $3600 if ‘made in the USA’ . The motivation is profit, pure and simple, because it was made ‘on the cheap’.
The biggest cost to the US was the loss of job numbers, never ever to return. Care to put a number on those job losses?
A clear case of dysfunctional arbritrage.
So as Friedman’s article on behalf of the Jewish lobby concluded by saying, ‘My president is busy’, far too busy to address the matters raised in the article , he may even treat Israel as just another country.
This would be the perfect solution for world peace and a fair and equitable solution for the Palestinians.
The flies in the ointment are Netanyahu and his Foreign Minister Lieberman who have allowed, no, actively encouraged the stealing of what is clearly Palestinian land and have passed legislation to allow the injustices and cruelty to be acceptable and on-going. This is what the Zionists want but it is not necessarily what the decent Jews want.
Israel’s actions have never been acceptable to the world at large, yes, they have been apathetic, (but somewhat overpowered by the other great injustice, the US veto in the UN), and will never ever be acceptable to the alternative writers on the internet or acceptable to decent people everywhere.
So these are the factors, which like the comments of realists such as Friedman, will be the undoing of the Netanyahus and Liebermans of this world together with the decreasing living conditions for middle class America if Obama cannot stop the outsourcing by default of the past US strengths, employment and wealth, no longer a reality.
If, as stated, the ‘president is busy’ then Israel will be forced to face reality, perhaps for the very first time in their existence.
This is one of the most realistic articles I have read in a very long time.
My President Is Busy
By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN
November 10, 2012, The New YorK Times
ISRAELI friends have been asking me whether a re-elected President Obama will take revenge on Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu for the way he and Sheldon Adelson, his foolhardy financier, openly backed Mitt Romney. My answer to Israelis is this: You should be so lucky.
You should be so lucky that the president feels he has the time, energy and political capital to spend wrestling with Bibi to forge a peace between Israelis and Palestinians. I don’t see it anytime soon. Obama has his marching orders from the American people: Focus on Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, not on Bethlehem, Palestine, and focus on getting us out of quagmires (Afghanistan) not into them (Syria).
No, my Israeli friends, it’s much worse than you think: You’re home alone.
Of course, no one here will tell you that. To the contrary, there will surely be a new secretary of state visiting you next year with the umpteenth road map for “confidence-building measures” between Israelis and Palestinians. He or she may even tell you that “this is the year of decision.” Be careful. We’ve been there before. If you Google “Year of decision in the Middle East,” you’ll get more than 100,000,000 links.
Is this good for Israel? No. It is unhealthy. The combination of America’s internal focus, the post-Arab awakening turmoil and the exhaustion of Palestinians means Israel can stay in the West Bank indefinitely at a very low short-term cost but at a very high long-term cost of losing its identity as a Jewish democracy. If Israelis want to escape that fate, it is very important that they understand that we’re not your grandfather’s America anymore.
To begin with, the rising political force in America is not the one with which Bibi has aligned Israel. As the Israeli columnist Ari Shavit noted in the newspaper Haaretz last week: “In the past, both the Zionist movement and the Jewish state were careful to be identified with the progressive forces in the world. … But in recent decades more and more Israelis took to leaning on the reactionary forces in American society. It was convenient to lean on them. The evangelists didn’t ask difficult questions about the settlements, the Tea Party people didn’t say a word about excluding women and minorities or about Jewish settlers’ attacks and acts of vandalism against Palestinians and peace activists. The Republican Party’s white, religious, conservative wing was not agitated when the Israeli Supreme Court was attacked and the rule of law in Israel was trampled.” Israel, Shavit added, assumed that “under the patronage of a radical, rightist America we can conduct a radical, rightist policy without paying the price.” No more. Netanyahu can still get a standing ovation from the Israel lobby, but not at U.C.L.A.
At the same time, U.S. policy makers have learned that the Middle East only puts a smile on our faces when it starts with them: with Israelis and Arabs. Camp David started with them. Oslo started with them. The Arab Spring started with them. When they have ownership over peace or democracy movements, those initiatives can be self-sustaining. We can amplify what they start, but we can’t create it. We can provide the mediation and even the catering, but it’s got to start with them.
We’ve learned something else from our interventions in Afghanistan and Libya: We willed the ends, but we did not will the means — that is, doing all that it would take to transform those societies. That is why we’re quitting Afghanistan, staying out of Syria and relying on sanctions, as long as possible, to dissuade Iran from building a nuclear bomb. These countries are too hard to fix but too dangerous to ignore. We’ll still try to help, but we’ll expect regional powers, and the locals, to assume more responsibility.
Finally, we really have work to do at home. Soon Americans will be asked to pay more taxes for less government. It’s coming. It will not make us isolationists, but it will change our mood and make us much pickier about where we’ll get involved. That means only a radical change by Palestinians or Israelis will get us to fully re-engage.
The other day, in an interview with Israel’s Channel 2, President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority declared: “Palestine for me is the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as the capital. This is Palestine. I am a refugee. I live in Ramallah. The West Bank and Gaza is Palestine. Everything else is Israel.”
This was a big signal, but Bibi scorned it. The Israeli novelist David Grossman wrote an open letter to Netanyahu in Haaretz, taking him to task: “This is a bit embarrassing, but I will remind you, Mr. Netanyahu, that you were elected to lead Israel precisely in order to discern these rare hints of opportunity, in order to transform them into a possible lever to extricate your country from the impasse in which it has been stuck for decades.”
So my best advice to Israelis is: Focus on your own election — on Jan. 22 — not ours. I find it very sad that in a country with so much human talent, the Israeli center and left still can’t agree on a national figure who could run against Netanyahu and his thuggish partner, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman — a man whose commitment to democracy is closer to Vladimir Putin’s than Thomas Jefferson’s. Don’t count on America to ride to the rescue. It has to start with you.
A version of this op-ed appeared in print on November 11, 2012, on page SR13 of the New York edition with the headline: My President Is Busy.
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